Give Miami Day can mean
great things for Beth Or

We have big shoes to fill on November 19 when we participate in Give Miami Day 2020.

In 2019, nearly 90% of our membership, and many friends and family, supported Beth Or on Give Miami Day. Beth Or’s one day fundraising result was a remarkable $34,103.

One of the advantages of donating to Beth Or on Give Miami Day is that The Miami Foundation (who supervises Give Miami Day) maximizes donations by offering “Match Minutes,” prizes, and other incentives throughout the day as well as a bonus pool at the end. This structure increases individual donations.

Because of this incentive structure, Beth Or encourages you to pay some, or all, of your remaining dues as well as an additional donation of any size, to allow us to make the most of the 2020 bonus pool on Give Miami Day. 

Our goal for 2020 is $36,000 and we CAN make it happen.

In February, Beth Or will be hosting our 40th Anniversary celebration and it is hoped that everyone will participate. Donations for the anniversary can be made ahead of time on November 19. By paying all, or a portion of your remaining dues, plus adding a donation toward the 40th Anniversary event, we have a real chance of exceeding last year’s excellent outcome.

In fact, if you want to donate to any of Beth Or’s special funds such as Covid relief, the Gallery of Light, Yahrzeits, 40th Anniversary, etc., you can do it on Give Miami Day and let the temple office know so we can properly acknowledge that designation.

Visit Beth Or’s Give Miami Day page at, register in advance and consider creating a Champion Page to share on social media, and on Wednesday, November 19, 2020 donate.

For questions, contact Ilien Hechtman , our Give Miami Day Chairperson at or call 305-582-8211.
Why do Beth Or members donate to Give Miami Day? Read on….

From Marilyn Traeger:

“Who knew that the Hebrew word meaning "to give" is Natan? I didn't. Apparently in Hebrew and in English, the word can be read forward and backward, so when we think about philanthropy and the idea of giving it is also about receiving.

“When you give to Beth Or on Give Miami Day our community is eligible to receive additional funds because of your gift. Last year the bonus gift percentage was about 5%.The extra funding is certainly value added and every dollar Beth Or receives as a result is a bonus. 

“I truly feel that giving my time and contributing financially to Beth Or on Give Miami Day is nothing when compared with the spiritual fulfillment I have experienced from being a part of this amazing community. My thanks to all of you at Beth Or who have so very generously given me so very much.”

From Janie & George Emerson:

For years at our yearly annual meetings, George and I bought up the idea of engaging with Give Miami Day as a fundraising opportunity to showcase our temple and secure donations to help us prosper and grow. 

“Though we’re not fund raisers, we took on the challenge to register Beth Or with Give Miami Day, increase Beth Or’s on-line visibility and engage new donors and member prospects. 

“We were successful because EVERYONE pitched in, not just by donating but through “sweat equity”.  
We also succeeded because Give Miami Day is sponsored by the Miami Foundation, and incentives to maximize each donation were made available. One year, there was a 6% percentage bonus added to each donation. Some of us, in addition to our GMD donations, even paid off our temple dues, while Beth Or enjoyed the cumulative percentages added to those contributions. 

“The direct responsibility of Beth Or’s Give Miami Day has passed on to our Leadership Team, but the challenge for all of us is to donate and ask our family and friends to help. 

“We urge everyone to make this year’s GMD the best ever, especially in this time of Covid-19. As we see from our commitment, creativity and participation during this challenging year, we are confident that Beth Or will again rise to the challenge. Go Team!”

From Marti and Tom Gammon:

“Last year we donated the balance of our dues and made other donations during Give Miami Day so that Beth Or could benefit from the bonus funds added to our donations by the Miami Foundation. That was really a “no brainer.” We also used the email tips to encourage family members to contribute to Beth Or that day and plan to do so again this year. GMD is a wonderful opportunity to have our donations make more of an impact.” 
Beth Or Awarded FEMA Security Grant

The Beth Or Leadership team is excited to announce that Beth Or has been awarded a security grant from the Federal Emergency Management System (FEMA) designed for religious institutions. Beth Or is the only South Dade synagogue receiving a grant this year. The grant program was created because of the rise of violence against a variety of religious institutions. 

The grant money can only be used for specific security measures outlined in the grant specs. Beth Or’s grant application designated changing windows and doors, enhancing outdoor lighting and installing an entrance and exit gate as our security enhancements.

The money is not distributed to the winning institution in a lump sum. Each institution must undertake a FEMA approved project, complete the project and submit 
receipts for the project. Once all the t’s are crossed and i’s dotted, then the institution is reimbursed.

This pay first, reimburse later approach, often causes recipient institutions to not receive all the awarded funds. Beth Or is currently verifying all the procedures with the State of Florida before commencing on any of the projects.

Our grant writing committee included the Beth Or Leadership Team (Ilien, Andrea and Annette), Howard Hochman, Tom Gammon and Rabbi Mark Kram. We are indebted to them for their hard work and dedication to this endeavor.

Beth Or is also grateful to the Greater Miami Jewish Federation for their assistance. In particular, GMJF Jewish Community Relations Council Assistant Director, Jacob Markey, assisted us throughout the grant writing process. His guidance was important to our success.
New Member Shabbat November 6

Join our Zoom November 6 Kabbalat Shabbat as we welcome our new members. While we can’t gather in person to break bread with our new members, we hope to make this service a special event. Zoom link:
Meeting ID 812 4054 4596
A Be Mitzvah to Remember…Eitan and 
Olivia made everyone proud

Two outstanding young people celebrated their Bar and Bat Mitzvahs on October 24 at Beth Or in front of an amazing crowd of Zoom onlookers.

Eitan Greenberg and Olivia Greenwald started their Be Mitzvah journey more than a year ago fully expecting to celebrate their special day on Shavuot (May 2020) in front of family and friends gathered around them. Little did they know that midway through their extraordinary journey a pandemic would strike causing their world to be turned upside down.

But on October 24, you wouldn’t have known what trials and tribulations these two fine young people had to endure. Watched on Zoom by family and friends from around the world, Eitan and Olivia were stellar in their mastery of Hebrew, prayers and Jewish ritual. Added to that, they fully understood the true nature of Beth Or’s Be Mitzvah program which emphasizes Social Justice, in addition to ritual.

Mitzvah means commandment and in its secondary meaning, the word mitzvah has also come to express an individual act of human kindness in keeping with the commandment. 

The Beth Or Be Mitzvah program directs students to engage in a hands on social justice initiative. This year the students were fully engaged with Health in the Hood. It is a nonprofit community gardening organization growing vegetables in an urban environment. Many low income urban areas have no immediate access to fresh food within one mile of their homes. Health in the Hood seeks to provide healthy food for these areas.
Olivia and Eitan were fully engaged in this undertaking while fully enhancing their understanding of Judaism, ritual and prayers. Both students delivered heartwarming speeches shedding light on how much they’ve gained through the Be Mitzvah program.

Eitan and Oliva were Instructed by Rabbi Robyn Fisher and Jenifer Berse throughout the year long program. The warmth by which Rabbi Robyn and Jen engaged with them during their Bar and Bat Mitzvahs presentations were evidence of how proud they were of the students’ accomplishments.

Beth Or Musical Director Michael Henry also worked extensively with Eitan and Oliva in preparation for event.

When the pandemic struck, the students had to switch gears and work via Zoom for their studies. Jen and Rabbi Robyn masterfully reworked the program to be fully remote. 
On the day of the event, only parents and siblings were permitted in the sanctuary with Rabbi Robyn, Jen, Michael and of course, Eitan and Olivia. But the Zoom audience numbered in the hundreds. Accolades of praise and love filled the chat room as Eitan and Olivia read from the Torah and led everyone in worship.
Emphasis was placed on the fact that a Bar and Bat Mitzvah is not an ending but a beginning of an advanced journey of exploration of Judaism.

Be Mitzvah is not just for kids!
Never had a Bar/Bat Mitzvah, or want a meaningful do over? Rabbi Robyn and Jen are creating a Be Mitzvah class for adults. If you, or anyone you know, would be interested in joining this year-long effort, contact Jen at for details.
Beth Or joins worldwide Living 
Holocaust memorial
In 2010, an ambitious project was launched to build a worldwide Living Holocaust memorial by planting 1.5 million daffodils in memory of the 1.5 million children who perished in the Holocaust and in support of children who suffer humanitarian crisis in the world today. To date, over 600,000 daffodils in more than 230 locations have been planted worldwide. 

And Beth Or will be joining in on that project this year.

The shape and color of the daffodils represent the yellow stars that Jews were forced to wear during the Holocaust. Yellow is also the color or remembrance. Daffodils represent our hope for the future. 

Special daffodil bulbs designed to grow in South Florida are on their way to Beth Or and Marcy Prince will be directing the project. She plans to plant several bulbs in our Meditation Gardens but will also be distributing bulbs to Beth Or members who are willing to plant them in their own home gardens. We hope to share the planting of the bulbs on a congregation zoom. One of the suggested planting dates coincides with Kristallnacht on November 9-10. Watch your email for more information.
PACT picks Policing as next new topic
Nearly 30 Beth Or members gathered on Zoom on October 26 to participate in the selection process for a new social justice initiative focus for PACT. The three finalist topics were Policing, Mental Health and Environmental Issues. PACT is People Acting Community Together.

Led by Ellen Siegel, Beth Or voted as a group for Environmental Issues but recognized that all three issues are vitally important to Miami Dade County.

Research work now begins to identify what aspect of policing PACT will focus on. All Beth Or PACT Network member are encouraged to serve on the research teams.

The three topics of interest are briefly outlined in this video link, featuring our own Ellen Siegel:
Need a holiday card for that special person? Every purchase benefits Beth Or
Our creative member Rhoni Tannebaum has just the thing. Rhoni designs beautiful cards for all occasions and wants to make her extraordinary creations available to our membership for the holidays. She’s offering to make personalized Channukah and Christmas cards at an incredible price - $5 per card. All proceeds will be donated to Beth Or. Rhoni would prefer you call her directly at 305-775-5850 to order. Persons picking up their orders will pick them up at Beth Or. You'll need to contact Andrea Loring for pick up time and date after your order is completed. Rhoni will notify you when the order is completed.
Those asking for the cards to be shipped to them, will be paying for postage.

Here are a few samples of Rhoni’s creations:
Zoom Book Lovers Trivia November 14
Book Lovers Trivia will be on November 14 at 7:30 PM. All the Trivia nights have been hugely successful with everyone walking away with a smile. Win or loose, everyone has a great time. Register and pay for Book Lovers Trivia by clicking here: 
Gallery of Light ArtTalk
November 17
On November 17, the Gallery of Art event will highlight the artwork of Julie Orsini Shakher. The ArtTalk is entitled Entwined Silver Point. Zoom link information is:
Meeting ID 861 7528 1655 Password 235996
Two great shopping
opportunities for Beth Or
A Gallery of Light Store - You’ll find a select collection of drawings, paintings, prints, photographs, textiles, ceramics, wearable art and more by award-winning artists and makers from South Florida and around the world.

Purchase online by connecting directly with the artist. Every purchase you make supports artists and the Gallery of Light's educational programs. Stay tuned for the opening date.
Shop Amazon for great deals and 
help Beth Or at the same time

 You can always help Beth Or while helping yourself to great deals through Amazon. Use the Smile.Amazon and put in Temple Beth Or as the organization you are helping.

The following is our tributes list:
In honor of the
BethOr@Home Zoom:

Bette Spector in honor of Nancy Kirsner for 
her wonderful workshops

High Holiday Fund

Gerald F. Wade in honor of Rabbi Robyn 
for High Holiday Services

General Mitzvah Fund

Ossie and Harry Hanauer in honor of Marti and Tom Gammon for being heroes to Beth Or, our community, and the nation

Vicki Sobel Margolis & Jan Sobel Fredheim in 
memory of Lois T. Auerbach

Steven and Janice Landis in honor of the good 
work Beth Or is doing

Rhoni and Ned Tannebaum in honor of Rabbi Robyn and all the people who made the High Holidays enjoyable and memorable 
A true work of love

Ilien Hechtman in memory of Iris Chazen

Annette & Steve Katz in honor of Kathy Fisler 
and her wonderful masks

Marti and Tom Gammon in honor of Rabbi Robyn, Kathy Fisler, Marcy Prince, Gail Hochheiser, Tom Gammon and Amy Lomaskin for an inspirational Simchat Torah service

Advancing Jewish Music Fund

Barbara Simon for advancing Jewish Music

Rabbi's Discretionary Fund:

Neal R. Sonnet in honor of Bonnie & Jeff Weiner

Amy Lomaskin and Mel Tenen in honor of Rabbi Robyn for a delightful, stimulating and inspirational Simchat Torah Service

Jerry & Maya Greenberg in honor of and gratitude to Rabbi Robyn,
Jen Berse, Mel Tenen, and Michael Henry for
the wonderful Be Mitzvah experience

Yahrzeit Fund:

Diane Barkow & Dick Dorn in memory of Diane's mother, Esther Akel

Galley of Light Fund:

Marti & Tom Gammon in honor of the Gallery of Light 
team for the Reflections exhibit

Ilien and Keith Hechtman in honor of Marilyn Traeger, Enid Garber, Jen Berse, Linda Faber and Gail Hochheiser

Laura and Dan Koffsky in honor of Rabbi Robyn

Amy Lomaskin in honor of Marilyn Traeger and Jen Berse for bringing to Beth Or such terrific talents as Cathi Rivera with her theme of pearls and Patricia Cummins with her 
National Parks artwork

Marcy Prince in honor of all the wonderful art shows and 
all the talented artists

Marti Gammon in honor of the wonderful Gallery of Light ArtTalks

Amy Lomaskin in honor of the Gallery of Light
Team and of the amazing quilters from SAQA!

Be Mitzvah Fund:

Annette & Steve Katz in honor of Beth Or’s 
exceptional Be Mitzvah program

Tom and Marti Gammon in honor of Eitan Greenberg and Olivia Greenwald's Bar and Bat Mitzvah's. Mazel Tov!

Memorial Plaques:

Permanently remember family members and events by purchasing a memorial plaque

Be sure to visit Beth Or's website at
and view our calendar of upcoming events
305.235.1419 email: