B'nai Israel Congregation
Wilmington, NC
2013 ~ Rare snowstorm in Jerusalem.
Shabbat Shalom
Friday, January 8, 2021 ~ 24 Tevet
Shabbat Candle Lighting ~ 5:01pm
All services are held on ZOOM until further notice.
Please join us.

Torah ~ Exodus 1:1-6:1
Haftarah ~ Jeremiah 1:1-2:3

Due to the recent increase of cases of Covid-19 in our region and state, we will continue to hold all services on Zoom only. We will reassess in January and continue to follow the recommendations of the CDC and
NC Dept. of Health & Human Services.

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Friday evening, January 8 6:00 pm

Meeting ID: 870 4502 6973
Passcode: 296299

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Saturday morning, January 9, 9:30 am

Meeting ID: 840 5575 1022
Passcode: 296299

You may also listen by calling this telephone number for either service:

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These services will include the opportunity to say the
Mourner's Kaddish and to offer names for the
Mi Sheberach

Torah ~ Exodus 1:1-6:1
Haftarah ~ Jeremiah 1:1-2:3

This Week Tune In for ...

Historian Beverly Tetterton speaks on
"Wilmington in 1966"
Thursday, Jan 14 at 7:00 pm on Zoom

From the President

Dear Bnai Israel family,

As I write this letter, I am in a state of shock and sadness. Yesterday, the world witnessed our Congress and Senate under siege from those opposed to the outcome of the Presidential election. To see it happen in this country was frightening and for most, unthinkable. Peaceful protest is part of our history and our rights. Violence is never the solution. I pray that, as a nation, we are able to move past this period of division and distrust towards a time of mutual respect, civility and peaceful dialogue in order to continue to improve the democracy that has been an example to the rest of the world.

Rabbi Bender invites us to read the Conservative movement's stance on the actions that took place yesterday:

paste this URL into your browser

While we are a synagogue filled with people of many differing political opinions, Rabbi Bender reminds us of what she has said many times: the political process is a sacred one and voting is our religious duty. While many might not agree with the statement put out by our movement, she hopes that it will spark an constructive and healing conversation. 

My sadness and shock only worsened when I received the terrible news that Jerry Smith had passed away. From the many people I have spoken with since, the entire Jewish community of Wilmington is in mourning. Jerry and his wife Debbie moved here about 7 years ago. Since then, they have become pillars of our community. Jerry never met a stranger. He seemed to know everyone, and he probably did. If his phone didn’t ring 4 or 5 times when you were with him, it was probably broken.

Jerry was our Treasurer for 4 1/2 years, stepping in to fill an unexpected vacancy. He worked very hard during that time and through his efforts our financial security, records and income all improved. He developed the Circle of Honor and spent untold hours completing the paperwork for a PPP loan as well as the requirements to have the loan forgiven. He was also active in the Men’s Club and in the ongoing Capital Campaign. That’s only a small part of how he supported and served Bnai Israel. He was the first to step up if there was a need, with a donation, his home for an event or whatever help someone needed. He was a mensch, which is how he will be remembered. Jerry leaves behind many distraught friends and family members.

Our hearts go out to Debbie, his sons Howard and Richard, daughter-in-laws Emily & Alex and his beloved grandchildren, Landon, Ruby and Maeve.

Baruch Dayan Ha’Emet. May his memory be a blessing.

Shabbat Shalom and Stay Safe,
Rabbi Bender Out of the Office
Rabbi Bender will be out of the office until January 19. During that time she will have limited access to email. In case of an emergency, do not hesitate to call her cell phone, 910.547.7595, so she can best figure out how to get you immediate assistance.
Go to our web page for OODLES of information about
Coming Events.
Just click on the event on the right-hand side of the web page, and you will be taken to a synopsis of the event and how to connect to it.

or paste the following into your browser:

Thursday, January 14, 7:00 pm on Zoom
Historian Beverly Tetterton speaks on Wilmington in 1966

Saturday, Sunday & Monday, January 16-18, 7:00 pm
on the internet
Wilmington Film Festival film "Aulcie" see article below

Sunday, January 17th, 4:00 pm on Zoom
Interfaith Service honoring The Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Thursday, January 21, 5:30 pm on Zoom
Having Uncomfortable Conversations

Thursday, January 28, 7:00 pm on Zoom
Adult Tu BiShvat Seder (Birthday of the Trees)

Sunday, January 31, 3:00 pm on Zoom
The Challenge of Anti-Semitism on College Campuses
with Avi Goldwasser

Saturday, February 6, 7:00 pm on Zoom
Artist in Residence: Eliana Light Presents:
s*ngs ab-ut g?d: havdalah and concert
(Yes, the spelling of the title is correct!)


Lunch & Learn (Please provide your own lunch)
Tuesday, January 19, 12:30 - 1:30 pm for this date only
Weekly Torah Portion Class and Mincha
Tuesday, January 26, 12:00-1:00 pm on Zoom
Introduction to the Prayer Service
Tuesday, February 2, 12:00-1:00 pm on Zoom
Introduction to the Prayer Service
Tuesday, February 9, 12:00-1:00 pm on Zoom
Introduction to the Prayer Service
Tuesday, February 16, 12:00-1:00 pm on Zoom
Introduction to the Prayer Service

Introduction to Judaism Classes
Wednesday, January 20, 6:00-7:30 pm on Zoom
Wednesday, February 3, 6:00-7:30 pm on Zoom
Wednesday, February 17, 6:00-7:30 pm on Zoom

Virtual Trip to Israel
Thursday, February 4, 1:00 pm on Zoom
Thursday, February 11, 1:00 pm on Zoom
Thursday, February 18, 1:00 pm on Zoom

We will be offering a pop-up winter film on Saturday-Monday, January 16-18 in honor of basketball season and Martin Luther King Jr. Day. We are proud to present the film,  “Aulcie”, a documentary about Aulcie Perry, an African-American professional basketball player who was recruited to play for the Tel Aviv Israel Maccabi basketball team. He converted to Judaism, fell in love with Israel and eventually became a citizen.

Be sure to register in advance by clicking below.

The film will be available to view for 48 hours beginning at 7:00 pm on Saturday night, January 16 and ending Monday at 7:00 pm. Ticket price will be $10 per device (computer or television or phone or tablet) and can be purchased here. You will need an Elevent account, if you do not already have one. A free account can be set up here. On the top menu, click Login/Register to complete the process. It only needs to be done one time.

We thank you for your continued support of the Wilmington Jewish Film Festival and look forward to the coming year. 

Debbie Smith
Chair, Wilmington Jewish Film Festival 

MLK Day Virtual Service Project

Monday, January 18, 2021
11:00 am-Noon on ZOOM

First Shift 11-11:30am
Second Shift 11:30-12pm

The entire congregation is invited to participate in this event. Come write letters to Congress with the Bnai Israel Congregation High School Students to make your voice heard in honor of MLK Day. We will guide you through the process of how to write a letter online​ about any issue that you care about, and how it reflects our Jewish values. Please sign in at either 11:00 am or 11:30am for a tutorial on online letter writing.

ZOOM details to be sent soon.
January 24, 2021 for a Sisterhood Bingo
at 2:00 pm on Zoom

Come schmooze with Sisterhood and play VIRTUAL BINGO. Prizes will be awarded to the winners. Don’t feel like playing…join in to kibbitz!

MUST RSVP to Sherry Padva at sherry.padva@gmail.com no later than January 17th to get your Bingo cards.

Zoom details to follow

Sisterhood Book Club News
Happy New Year to you--may you all have hugs and good health in 2021!
This is a reminder that we meet next month, February 3rd, at 1:00 PM. Our book for discussion is The Song of the Jade Lily, by Kirsty Manning. There is a synagogue library book in circulation. Of course, you don't have to have read the book to join us for an hour or so on February 3rd!
I'm in the middle of the novel and always look forward to getting back to it. I hope you are enjoying it too.  
All the best for 2021,
Barbara Waxman
Sydel Gluck
Cindy Throne
Kenneth Densmore
Theresa Densmore
Mimi Bloch
Rena Goldwasser
Jeff Roberts
Faye Sobol
Stephanie Bell
Henry Jordan
Barbara Prushik
Heather Harris
Myra Frieder
Nancy Kraselsky
January 2021 Birthdays
Rena Goldwasser ~ 3rd
Emily Jaeger ~ 12th
Mike Huckman ~ 16th
Jack Levy ~ 17th
Teasa Abrams ~ 18th
Heather Harris ~ 19th
Deborah Meyerson ~ 20th
Walter Winter ~ 27th
Susan Mintzes ~ 29th
18 - 24 Tevet 5781
January 2 - 8, 2021
Anna Israel Shain
Respectfully remembered

Benjamin May
Respectfully remembered

Bessie Green
Mother of Zee Reitblatt

Emanuel Sugar
Respectfully remembered

Harold Brandeis Abrams
Respectfully remembered

Harry Joseph Trucker
Respectfully remembered

Herbert Smith
Father-in-law of Debbie Smith
Howard Neuwirth
Respectfully remembered

Jacob Horowitz
Respectfully remembered

Jean Rubenstein Greene
Respectfully remembered

Michael Kramer
Husband of Terry Kramer

Pearl Bluestein
Mother of Elane Janz

Reba A. Caplan
Respectfully remembered

Robert F. Clemmons
Father of Thom Clemmons

If you would like to make a donation to B'nai Israel, please click on the link below and use the To make Donations or Payments tab.

Anne Strauss
General Fund
in memory of Elaine Lathrop

Marvin & Esther Eisenstein
General Fund
in memory of Marvin's father,
Bernard Ellis

Lester & Susan Ravitz
Rabbi's Discretionary Fund
In appreciation for wonderful Chanukah & other events

Steven Janz
Rabbi's Discretionary Fund
In appreciation for our current and previous rabbis

Steven Janz
Sunshine Meals Team
In appreciation

Steven Janz
General Fund
In memory of loved ones

Steven Janz
Building Fund
to help the prayer garden grow

Steven Janz
General Fund
In appreciation for our current and past presidents

Pam & Barry Weiss
in memory of Pam's mother,
Pat Packard

Pam & Dennis Sender
B'nai Israel Sisterhood
in memory of Dennis' mother, Ilse Sender

Diane & Alan Gerberg
B'nai Israel Sisterhood
in memory of loved ones

Roberta & Harold Eichenholz
Building Fund
in loving memory of
Jerry Smith
Carolyn & Bruce Moskowitz
Rabbi's Discretionary Fund
in memory of Carolyn's father, Raymond Fox

Alan & Rita Katz
Rabbi's Discretionary Fund
In appreciation for those who cooked and served Christmas Dinner at the Good Shepherd Center

Rabbi & Barbara Waxman
Library & Book Fund
in memory of Jerry Smith

Rabbi & Barbara Waxman
Rabbi's Discretionary Fund
in memory of Barbara's beloved father, Oscar Frey

Sandy Moskowitz
Library & Book Fund
in memory of Jerry Smith

Noa & Jeremy Alper
Rabbi's Discretionary Fund
in honor of Rabbi Bender's help preparing and guiding Kyla Alper for her Bat Mitzvah and for her great Zoom skills!

Noa & Jeremy Alper
Rabbi's Discretionary Fund
in honor of Rabbi Kenter preparing Kyla Alper for her Bat Mitzvah

Roselle Margolis
Capital Improvement Fund
in appreciation for B'nai Israel

Marvin & Sarah Neuwirth
Rabbi's Discretionary Fund
in memory of Arnold Neuwirth

Kate Maclay
Building Fund
in fond memory of Jerry Smith

Rabbi Chaya Bender

Office Hours Monday thru Friday - 10:00 am to 4:00 pm
Administrative Secretary, Kate Maclay