Temple Israel Reform Congregation
of Staten Island
315 Forest Avenue
Staten Island, New York 10301
Rabbi Michael D. Howald                     Student Cantor Shirel Richman
Co-Presidents Jerry Gross and Alan Siegel
E-Shalom - MAY 2022
Temple Israel’s Electronic Bulletin
“Shalom, Welcome to Temple Israel....” is a phrase taught to us by Carole Lachman, a beloved, long-time congregant and bulletin editor who died in 2002. We named our bulletin in her honor and worked to realize her vision of Temple Israel as a community that welcomes the stranger and lets no one stand alone. As we move to a new version of this tradition of communicating with our Temple Israel family, we continue to forward Carole’s vision, love and devotion for our synagogue.
The current Covid policy regarding participation in on-site activities within our building as adopted by your Board is:

Adults and children 16 and up must show proof of vaccination or present a negative Covid test result taken within the previous 5 days
All children must remain with their parents or guardian except during school classes or organized children’s activities.       
Masks must be worn at all times on the Temple grounds.
Proof of vaccination is to be shown upon entry (copy of certificate or phone app). 
Copies of proof may be submitted to the Temple office in advance of your arrival.
We thank you for your cooperation in maximizing the safety of our Congregants and our Temple.
We are aware of the changing guidelines from the state and CDC. We will monitor them carefully, adapting them as needed to maximize protection for our temple's unique population.
Erev Shabbat Services take place IN PERSON. Live-stream links, for those unable to join us, will be e-mailed to all congregants, along with the Friday night Progam, every Friday. The Zoom link for Saturday morning Torah Study and Services can be found below. (Please check weekly News and Notes and the Friday Night Program for any updates or changes.)
Every week on Saturday at 10:00 a.m. followed by Services at 11:00 a.m.

Meeting ID: 894 4131 1190
Passcode: 981418
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Meeting ID: 894 4131 1190
Passcode: 981418

Please note: The Shabbat Service on Saturday, May 21st will take place IN PERSON at 10:30 a.m. It will NOT be live-streamed. Torah study will take place at 9:00 a.m. in person and via ZOOM.

Through the generosity of the Central Conference of American Rabbis, there is a free online flip-book version of our prayer book, Mishkan T'filah for Shabbat, available 

Through the generosity of the Central Conference of American Rabbis, there is a free online flip-book version of our prayer book, Mishkan T'filah for Youth, available 
April 21, 2022
Dear Fellow Congregant,
As Jews, we are taught that Moses received the Torah at Sinai, which in turn was handed down to Joshua who handed it down to the elders who handed it over to the prophets who in turn handed it over to the great assembly. Truly, we are all responsible for the values handed down to us in Torah, and for Temple Israel, a Beit T’filah, Beit Midrash, and Beit K’nesset, a house of prayer, house of study, and house of communal gathering for all people. 
Join us, therefore, on Wednesday, May 11, 2022 (erev 11 Ilyar 5782), at 7:30 PM when we will hold our Annual Congregational Meeting on site in our building. All voting members in good standing are urged to attend.
The agenda includes:
The clergy and lay leadership will be presenting their annual reports;
The Nominating Committee will be presenting the slate of Officers and Trustees for 202-2023 for congregational approval (the slate is listed in this package);
The Finance Committee will be presenting the budget for congregational approval; and
A proposed Constitutional Amendment will be voted on (listed on the back of this page).
A nomination by petition for an elected office must be made by twenty members of the congregation and must be filed with the Recording Secretary at least two weeks before to the election (i.e., April 27th) and notice of those nominated by petition must be mailed to the congregation at least ten days before the election that date (i.e., May 1st).
Only members in good standing are eligible to vote, with each adult member having an individual vote.
Absentee Ballots are accepted per the Constitution of the Congregation only for the purposes of election of officers and trustees (when contested,) or for approval of the Rabbi’s contract. In the event they are needed, the Corresponding Secretary shall provide official Absentee Ballots to a member in good standing upon request. Only official sealed ballots, marked on the exterior with voting member’s signature, mailed to the stated address via U.S. Mail will be accepted. Unsealed, unsigned, proxy or hand – delivered ballots will not be accepted. The Temple must receive an Absentee Ballot by mail at the designated location at least 48 hours prior to the meeting or it will not be valid. Sealed Absentee Ballots shall be cast by the Corresponding Secretary on behalf of the voting member in accordance with the congregational voting procedure. 
We hope every member will attend this important meeting. 
Jerrold Gross & Alan Siegel,

Accepted by the Board at the March 14, 2022, meeting. 
A request from the Nominating Committee reads, in part:
Dear Jerry and Alan,
As you know, the nominating committee faced the extraordinary challenge of bringing newer leadership talent onto the Board this year, especially with respect to finding qualified nominees for the position of President who either have experience or could be partnered with someone so they would have the time to learn and fill this demanding position.
We really appreciate the two of you willing to stay on at the Executive level to give support to the new leadership, but it was very difficult to find receptive nominees within the current Board structure, who felt able to manage the presidency either  by themselves or with one other person. Therefore, we had to find a way to support new talent as well as having experienced people formally help them guide the Temple through this transition.
The committee has created a temporary workaround to bring a mix of experienced leadership and new talent into the office of President but cannot fit it into the current constitutional structure of two co-presidents. We need four people to carry us through the next two years. This should be a time limited amendment with respect to the office.
As noted, the current wording of Subdivision explicitly imposes a limit of two Co-Presidents as it refers to the non-presiding Co-President in the singular.  This amendment will explicitly allow up to four co-Presidents for a period of up to four years.  The changed wording is in italics.
Article V, Section 1, Subdivision D currently reads:
Office co-holders: Co-office holders shall be permitted only for the offices of President, First Vice President and Second Vice President. The co-Presidents, as needed, will designate the single presiding officer for a Board of Trustees or other meeting for which the President is the presiding officer.  If present, the non-presiding co-President would then be a regular voting participant in the meeting.
Article V, Section 1, Subdivision D: shall be replaced by:
Office co-holders: Co-office holders shall be permitted only for the offices of President, First Vice President and Second Vice President. The co-Presidents, as needed, will designate the single presiding officer for a Board of Trustees or other meeting for which the President is the presiding officer.  If present, non-presiding co-President(s) would then be regular voting participants in the meeting. For the term beginning June 1, 2022, only, the maximum number of co-Presidents shall be four (4.) This exception can be extended by a vote of the Board Trustees for the terms beginning June 1, 2023, June 1, 2024, and June 1, 2025. Regardless of exceptions exercised, for the term beginning June 1, 2026, and going forward, the maximum number of co-Presidents shall be two (2.)

Temple Israel Reform Congregation of Staten Island 
April 4, 2022
The Nominating Committee would like to thank all the previous Executive Board and Board members. These past two years have been so very complicated and the congregation is grateful for all the work that has been done for our temple community.
We would particularly like to thank Jeffrey Ganz who has been treasurer for our congregation for many years. He and Shariann will be soon moving to Florida and so they are unable to stay on our Board. We are so grateful for all they have both done for us.
Our thanks also go to Alan and Jerry who helped us to survive these challenging times.
We would also like to thank Jeffrey Chason, Russell Kaminsky and Sandy Mazzucco for their service as trustees and congratulate them as they assume their new positions as officers of the executive committee. 
Finally, we thank Joe Gamoran and Rhonda Trontz-Allen for their many years of service, as they are currently leaving the of Trustees. 
The nominating committee faced the extraordinary challenge of bringing newer leadership talent onto the Board this year, especially with respect to finding qualified nominees for the position of President who either have experience or could be partnered with someone so they would have the time to learn and fill this demanding position.
We felt the need to find a way to support new talent as well as having experienced people formally help them guide the Temple through this transition.
The committee has created a temporary workaround to bring a mix of experienced leadership and new talent into the office of President. The Board voted to add to the constitution the ability to have a Presidential Cabinet of four members. This Amendment will be voted on by the congregation at the Annual meeting in May. 
Below is our proposed slate.
Executive Board Terms ending May 31, 2023:
Co-Presidents: Bryn Biren, Linda Brill, Sandy Mazzucco and Felicia Otto
First Vice President:  Nina Rohan
Second Co-Vice Presidents: Larry Hanibal and Russel Kaminsky
Treasurer: Jeffrey Chason
Financial Secretary: Alan Siegel
Recording Secretary: Remy Smith
Corresponding Secretary: Jerrold Gross
Trustees for a One Year Term ending May 31, 2023:
Fern Barris; Marni Blit; Polina Leibovich and Jackie Rabinowitz
Trustees for their first 3-year Term ending May 31, 2025:
Samuel Gornstein; Beverly Mazer; Joanna Meltzer and Jodi Siegel
Trustees for the second 3-year term ending May 31, 2025:
Alina Shteynberg and Phil Straniere
Trustees continuing in their first 3-year terms: 
Cheryl Levine; Judy Scher & Lissa Winchel (ending May 31, 2023) and Blanche Ricci: (ending May 31, 2024)
Trustees continuing in their second and last 3-year terms:
Deanna Feder; Claire Guttsman; Rebecca Hand & Judith Pessah (ending 5/31/2023) and
Barbara Fried; Pamela Rogozin and Inez Singer (ending 5/31/2024)
Honorary Trustee
Arnold Grossman
Note: Nominating Committee members Linda Brill and Sandy Mazzucco resigned from the Nominating Committee when the final decisions about their new positions were made
Respectfully submitted,
Jim Rohan, Claire Guttsman and Terry Baver, 
Nominating Committee
A Message from

Rabbi Michael D. Howald

       Blaise Pascal, the 17th century French philosopher, scientist, and theologian, famously wrote in Pensées (“Thoughts”), his most influential philosophical work, that: 
So, while the present never satisfies us, experience deceives us, and leads us on from one misfortune to another until death comes as the ultimate and eternal climax. What else does this craving, and this helplessness, proclaim but that there was once in man a true happiness, of which all that now remains is the empty print and trace?  This he tries in vain to fill with everything around him, seeking in things that are not there the help he cannot find in those that are, though none can help, since this infinite abyss can be filled only with an infinite and immutable object; in other words, by God himself.

          This quote, often understood as an argument that every human being has a “God-shaped vacuum” or “God-shaped hole” in their heart which they yearn to fill, has been used over the centuries since the book’s publication in 1669 to defend the truth of religious sentiment and institutions. Recently, however, Jonathan Haidt, a self-proclaimed Jewish atheist and one of our most influential social scientists, has been using Pascal’s idea of a “God-shaped vacuum” at our mortal core to defend the importance of religious instruction in an age of a significant decline in attachment to religion. In his view, religious instruction is more important than ever today for, if we do not try to fill that vacuum with time-tested religious traditions and beliefs that can shape the moral conduct of the next generation, they will find something else to take its place, often with divisive implications for family and community life. These implications, Haidt argues in a recent article in the Atlantic, have made us more divided and more likely to deny the common humanity of those who disagree with us.
            In making his argument, Haidt begins with surveys of religious life in America that show a decline in religious engagement in the United States. According to the latest Pew survey in late 2021, 29% of Americans now identify themselves as religious “nones”, people who describe themselves as atheists, agnostics or “nothing in particular” when asked about their religious identity.  That overall percentage is in-line with a 2020 survey of the Jewish community in America which indicated that 32% of those who identified as Jewish did not practice Judaism or any other religion. Haidt believes that these “nones” still have an innate hunger to fill Pascal’s “infinite abyss” with the kind of meaning and perspective that religions have traditionally provided. In his view, this “God-shaped vacuum” is an evolutionary human adaption to tens of thousands of years of seeking and cherishing the sacred. Even though an atheist, Haidt maintains that religion, with all its faults, is an inescapable part of human nature, and an essential part of who we are and how we became a civilized species.
            Without the moral structure and the universalizing beliefs that characterize our major religious traditions, Haidt warns, human beings will either find something else to fill the void or be left with a feeling of profound emptiness. In our society, rather than live a life in which nothing is sacred or meaningful, many of those without religious attachment turn to other ideologies that offer a sense of value that transcends self, usually without the moral compass and commitment to the inherent worth of all human beings that characterize religion. As a result, we increasingly live at a time when competing groups, from politics to social movements, invest the outcome of their contests with ultimate meaning and cast their opponents as unworthy of empathy or understanding. Where once we allowed that those who disagreed with us were acting in good faith and worthy of respect, now we increasingly describe them in ways that deny our common humanity.
Judaism teaches, for example, that those who profess differing views still speak the “words of the living God.” The modern ideologies that fill the void created by the absence of religion, in distinction, often describe those who disagree with us as unworthy of regard or understanding.  As a result, our society is increasingly fractured under the weight of beliefs that offer no faith in a shared humanity that transcends our differences. The absence of this faith, Haidt believes, threatens to destroy the institutions that hold our society together.
By educating our children in the rituals and traditions of Israel, accordingly, we not only work to ensure the continuity of our people, but we also offer a vision that can fill the “God-shaped vacuum” at the heart of every human being. If we abstain from this important work, we may deny future generations a sense of meaning that can respond to their inherent yearning to find something worth cherishing in our shared mortal existence.  If we choose to turn from this work, our descendants may find themselves in a world where winning is the highest value and the only people whose humanity we need respect are those who share our beliefs. If we embrace the work of educating the next generation, in distinction, we may fill the “infinite abyss” of which Pascal spoke with a vision broad enough to sustain our community for centuries to come. 
Rabbi Michael Howald   
World Union for Progressive Judaism
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A Message from
Jerry Gross & Alan Siegel

Four years – 48 months – 208 weeks, etc.……    In June 2018 we had the honor to be called upon by the congregation to lead it.  As we reach the term limit for the presidency, we will be handing over the office to new occupants, and we hope you will continue to give the Board your full support.
There is no doubt that they will bring fresh ideas and steady hands to the helm of Temple Israel.  We have reached calmer waters after over two years of COVID.  We have returned to in person Erev Shabbat services and meetings, while keeping a watchful eye on what we need to do keep ourselves safe.  It is extremely important that we re-establish our on-site presence at all services and events.
We urge you to be present Wednesday night, May 11, for the annual congregational meeting.  You will get a chance to hear or read annual reports from all the working parts of our congregation.  You will see how we have worked to keep membership within the reach of everyone, and that is why your pledges and donations are so essential to the fiscal health of our community and why your presence at Temple is so important.
May will bring other pleasant and effortless ways to support Temple both fiscally and socially:  Dine out at Jimmy Max, buy flowers from Brotherhood, join in the year-end celebration of our school, attend the Shabbaton, learn to paint, limber up with Pilates and Yoga, and buy certificates at face value.  The dates of all of these are here in E-Shalom.  And don’t forget the yummy Celebration Make-Up Oneg planned for May 13th where only your appetite is needed – but get your RSVP in so there is enough for all. 
In the meantime, while we look forward to being able to relax more completely at Shabbat services in June and beyond, we will still be here.  We hope to see you in the next pew. 
Jerry and Alan
Jerry Gross
Alan Siegel
Dear Fellow Congregants,

This message will serve as a reminder to us all that the current Fiscal Year for Temple Israel is coming to an end. Please take a moment and review your annual commitment for this year and confirm that you are up to date with your submissions.

Temple Israel depends on the generosity of its Congregants in order to maintain itself as your religious home, your house of worship and a center for the schooling of our ‘next generation’ of membership.  As you can appreciate, the ‘cost of doing business’ increases every year.  Your support, therefore, is more important today.  

In the next few weeks, statements regarding Annual Commitments for the 2022-2023 will be sent to you.  
Your timely response to these notices will help to keep
Temple Israel viable as it meets your individual needs.

Thank you in advance for you anticipated cooperation.
Please plan to continue your active participation in the many activities that your Temple has to offer.

Alan Siegel
Financial Secretary (acting)
Please consider becoming a member of our
It helps to make membership available to all our families. Speak to our Financial Secretary to upgrade your membership.

Each time we gather to pray in the morning, our morning prayers give us a gift. For those who regularly attend Sunday morning services, you know that we ask our Religious School students to draw out the gift they are given of gratitude for the pieces of their lives they normally may not stop to appreciate. We give thanks for the fact that, however intricately our bodies are formed, they function in a way that allows us to wake up each morning and feel grateful. Our liturgy helps us to give thanks for the pieces of our day we may simply gloss over, or for which we are less inclined to give thanks. 

Think, for example, about an early morning when you had to wake up even earlier than you might normally. The alarm goes off, jarring you from warm and peaceful sleep and all you want to do is hit the snooze button as many times as it takes to make it stop waking you up. Or think of a rainy day when you have to be out of the house – it’s cloudy, it might be cold, and you know that you inevitably are going to get rained on while you’re out, leaving your clothes at least a bit damp and cold. Both of these examples are easy to imagine because I suspect we have all been in situations where we have been annoyed to have to wake up early or leave the house in poor weather. 

In both of these situations, we could easily focus on the immediate annoyance or discomfort we may feel. When we interact with our morning liturgy, however, we are given space and words with which we can acknowledge the blessings in each of those moments. Hate waking up in the morning? Instead of focusing on the early morning, our morning blessings help us to give thanks for waking up and for the life in our bodies that allows us to rise and greet the day. Dreading having to go out in bad weather? We give thanks for rain that allows the natural world around us to receive quenching water to grow. 

As an Israeli in America, I try to read the Israeli news as much as I can and try to catch up with friends and family to know what is happening there. It is hard to ignore social injustices, security challenges, terrorism, outrageous politics, etc. But just like the morning liturgy, I feel like Yom Ha’atzmaut (Israel’s Independence Day) is here to remind us to be grateful. Instead of focusing on our security challenges, let us take a breath and appreciate the fact that we have a state. That no matter what happens, the Jewish people have a home where we will always be welcome in times of trouble. Instead of focusing on social injustices, let’s be grateful that we have the ability to do tikkun olam, because Israel is the Jewish people’s country and we all desire to make it a better place. 

The morning prayers are said at the dawn of a new day. Likewise, Yom Ha’atzmaut is the dawn of a new day for the Jewish people. 

Chodesh Tov (have a good month!) 
And Chag Atsmaut same’ach (Happy Israel’s Independence Day!

Shirel Richman
Student Cantor

Adult Choir Rehearsal

Wednesday, May 4- TBA
Wednesday, May 25- TBA

Jodi Siegel & Shariann Ganz
We have finally finished that last box of matzah and packed away all our Passover supplies, after having once again been able to celebrate a seder together in person!  This year’s Jennifer Straniere Memorial Community Passover Seder was wonderful.  We were so happy to be together.  It was a bittersweet experience for the committee who worked so hard to make sure everything was the way Jennifer would have wanted it done.  Special thanks go to Stacie Magnus and Mel Kaplan, and Alyx Magnus, for a sumptuous and delicious meal. We are also grateful to Sabrina Chrystal and her staff for providing such excellent service and to Temple Office Manager John Burman who provided extra support in so many ways.  Thank you to Linda Brill, Nina & Jim Rohan, Pam Carlton, Pam Rogozin, Sue Freedman, Karen & Jerry Gross, Jesse Siegel, Alan Siegel, and Sandy Mazzucco & Richie Marlieb for help with set up and clean up.  Very special thanks to Alan & Jesse for their extra added support which got Jodi through this event with relatively few tears.

As the end of Sisterhood 2021-2022 calendar year approaches, one would think that things would be slowing down for us.  One would be wrong!  

The next couple of months are as busy as ever for our Sisterhood.  

Our Social Action/Fundraising Project: GotSneakers? continues
Thanks to Remy Smith, Polina Leibovich and Gayle Chason for all their work and thanks to everyone who has donated so far.  Help us recycle and reuse! Bring your old sneakers to Temple and drop them in the box in the lobby.  Tell your friends. For more information, see the flyer in this bulletin.

We are so looking forward to celebrating all those missed Birthday & Anniversary Onegs over the past couple of years.  Join us at Services on Friday, May 13th.  It will be a wonderful evening with a music filled Erev Shabbat Service, followed by a fabulous Dessert & Champagne Oneg.  Non-alcoholic beverages will also be available, so please do bring the kids! We do ask that you confirm your planned attendance by e-mailing jsiegel23@aol.com  immediately.  (RSVPs were due by 4/30.)

Our final General Membership Meeting of the Year will take place on Sunday, May 15that 10:00 a.m.  There will be another fabulous breakfast, a review of the proposed slate of officers and directors for the 2022-2023 year and the Election.  We will also be raffling off some amazing prizes including restaurant gift certificates and baskets.  Please be ready to purchase lots of raffle tickets to increase your chances.  And while you’re here, check out Brotherhood’s Plant Sale which will be taking place in the parking lot at 11 a.m.  We also look forward to the delivery of our pretzels from our latest fabulous fundraiser thanks to Sandy Mazzucco.

Our 2nd Annual Shabbaton is taking place on Saturday, May 21st.  This year’s theme is Female Empowerment.  All are welcome…. that includes you, your children, your parents, your friends. There will be a participatory Shabbat Torah service with music, lunch and a wonderful guest speaker.  See the flyer elsewhere in this bulletin for details and registration.  For questions, contact Sue Freedman.

But wait…. there’s more!

On Tuesday, June 7th, we get to show some love to the wonderful Silvia and Sam Gornstein as they are honored by the UJA for their dedication to Temple Israel. Please send in your reservation for that event at the JCC at 7:00 p.m.

Reservations are now being accepted for our End-of-Year Sisterhood Dinner. All Sisterhood members and Friends of Sisterhood are invited to join us at The Staaten on Tuesday, June 14th. Come celebrate this amazing year with us.  All information is available on the flyer later in this bulletin.

And…. don’t miss our Sisterhood Installation Service on Friday, June 17th.  This special Shabbat service will give us all an opportunity to recognize and show our appreciation to all our out-going and in-coming Sisterhood Officers and Directors.  Your presence there would mean so much. 

We look forward to spending some quality time with you at each of these upcoming events.

We wish you all a spectacular Mother's Day!

In Sisterhood,
Jodi Siegel

Click on the icon to the right to print or download the entire Updated Sisterhood Calendar for 2021-2022.
Please note that this calendar may not reflect very recent changes.
Temple Israel – Reform Congregation of Staten Island
Brotherhood continues to keep busy in the work we do for our Temple Family.

Our focus for April was the annual Yellow Candle Project to remember the Holocaust. Once again, Brotherhood provided the Yellow Memorial Candles for the entire congregation. A big thank you to Jeffrey Chason, Larry Flaum and Russell Kaminsky for agreeing to hand deliver many of the candles so that each of our congregants was able to receive one.

On May 15th many events will take place at Temple, including the Brotherhood Flower Sale. Please be sure to support our Affiliate organization.

We need the Men of Brotherhood to step up and lead the affiliate organization for the coming year.

Brotherhood provides many things for our Religious School children and the congregation at large.

Look for information about a Men’s Night Out dedicated to the Memory of our dear late Brother David Meltzer. David was so instrumental in reinventing Brotherhood. I want his example of leadership to continue well into the future. Only you can make that happen.

We will also be holding our Paid-up Breakfast in June details to follow.

Please remember to join us at our Installation Service in June and represent the Men of Brotherhood.

Always know that we are here to assist in any way. If you need something done, someone to talk to or whatever it might be, please reach out and we will make sure your needs are addressed.  I leave you with this:  stay strong, stay safe, be positive and do your best. Together we will come through this stronger,

Brotherhood is a vital affiliate organization to the Temple. Together we are strong and make a difference to our Temple Family.  

Please share your ideas with us to enhance the Brotherhood experience.
Yours in Friendship and Brotherhood,
Jeff Ganz

MAY 2022

CLAIRE & DENNIS GUTTSMAN as their son, Jory, begins a new job as Director of Emergency Management at Bellevue Hospital, NYC;
FELICIA OTTO & FAMILY as her brother, Chad Holtzman is married to Melissa Chotiner;
JUDY LEE & FAMILY as her father celebrates his 105th birthday;  SUSAN & STEWART MARKS as their daughter, Rachel, finished the Boston Marathon

STEPHEN SINGER recovering from cataract surgery; 



Gratefully, Spring has arrived.   And here at Temple Israel we have much to be thankful for.  

Our in-person Erev Shabbat Services continue at their usual times led by Rabbi Howald and Student Cantor Richman with the musical accompaniment of Lincoln Richman.   We note that streaming is available for most Services held in the sanctuary, but we encourage you to attend in person if you are able.

The Family Service on the first Friday of the month begins at 7:00 PM with the balance of the Erev Shabbat Services starting at 7:30PM.   Tot Shabbat is also scheduled monthly for in-person attendance.  Please refer to the Temple calendar for date and time.  
Torah Study and Saturday morning Shabbat Services remain on the Zoom platform for now, except for special events and observances.  Torah Study starts at 10:00 AM followed by the Shabbat Service at 11:00 AM.  Thank you to Jaimie Blackman and Dr. Ken Pickover for their musical expertise and support at Shabbat morning Services when they are available.

On April 15th, we observed the first night of Passover with the in-person Sisterhood sponsored JENNIFER STRANIERE MEMORIAL COMMUNITY SEDER.  We thank all involved in making this happen including Rabbi Howald, Student Cantor Richman, Lincoln Richman, Jodi Siegel and her committee and Stacie Magnus and Kaplan Caterers.  It was wonderful to be together in person.  First day Passover Services were held on the Zoom platform on Saturday morning April 16th and the seventh day Passover Service including Yizkor was held in person at Temple on Friday morning April 22nd.

By the time you read this article we will have already observed Yom HaShoah in person on April 28th starting at 7:30 PM at Temple.  Our guest speaker Farah Kraus, a long time Board Member and volunteer speaker for 3GNY/Descendants of Holocaust Survivors, shared the story of her maternal grandmother, Eva Kostre, who was born in Trzcianne, Poland (near Bialystok).  As a teenager Eva miraculously survived Auschwitz and Revensnbruck and eventually resettled in the US in 1949.  Light refreshments followed the presentation and a short Memorial Service led by Rabbi Howald and Student Cantor Richman was held.  It was certainly a compelling evening.  Again, we thank Manny Saks and Dave Reckess, Executive Director of 3GNY/Descendants of Holocaust Survivors for their assistance in arranging for Farah Kraus’s visit to our congregation.

Looking ahead: There is a Sisterhood Shabbaton scheduled for Saturday May 21st.  Please be sure to make your reservations for lunch.  (Please note that Torah Study will take place at 9:00 a.m. in person and on Zoom that morning and that Shabbat Services will not be streamed.)

Shavuot will be observed in June. There will be an Erev Shavuot Service on Saturday, June 4th at 7:30PM and a morning Service including Yizkor on Sunday June 5th starting at 10:30 AM. Also, there are Bar Mitzvahs scheduled for June 11th and June 18th.
Stay safe.  We look forward to seeing you in person at Temple.

Linda Brill and Jeffrey Ganz

Thank you to the following congregants for their assistance with ushering during services as well as for honoring the Congregation with their presence on the Bimah in April:
Bryn Biren, Linda Brill, Alan Brill, Jeffrey Chason,
Larry Flaum, Janice Gross, Russell Kaminsky, Cheryl Levine, Judy Pessah, Judy Scher, and Steve Scher

Nina Rohan
Ushering Chair
May 6, 2022
Erwin Badrian
Elizabeth Greenfield
Clara Hershenson
Clara Schneider
Gary Singer
Sally Berger *
Stuart Feigelman
Louis Melniker
Michael Duskin *
Katherine Marks *
Rose Kitoff *
Beatrice Kutell
Solomon Nison
Anna Siegel
Alan Bernard Sostek
Harriette Duskin *
Alma Rothwein Jacobs *
Richard Litkofsky *
Clara E. Silverberg *
Muriel Trachman *
Milton Eisen *
Barry Nadel *
Ida Shenman *
Edith Marks
And we remember from the Holocaust:
Brigitta Hertz
Jean Godin
Abrom Tabak
Erwin Koralek
Hilde Reinheimer

May 13, 2022
Fay Schaefer *
Esther Goldman Dumont
Beatrice Lachman *
Ada Lauter *
Dr. A.  Milton Jacobs *
Dorothy M. Melniker *
Rea Silberberg
Ernest Beck
Harold B. Blach
Roslyn Klein
And we remember from the Holocaust:
Roger Stragier
Miklos Ivanyi
Cherne Kremer
Gerszon Kreicer
Konrad Matzke

May 20, 2022
Craig Lawrence Horn *
Suzanne Nadel *
Murray Gold *
Florence Hurkin *
Charlotte A. Braverman *
Seymour G. Gollubier *
William Grodman
Gertrude Gross *
Rose Lipson
Itta Berlyand
Dora Wolchok
Irene F. Carducci *
Edith Gamoran
Iris Mushnick
Etta Rabin *
Ane Sussman *
Rita Feldstein *
Ruth Lewis
Dr. H. Edward Marshon *
And we remember from the Holocaust:
Sara Togman
Ferdinand Dreifuss
Isaak Tsaheski
Jacob Lopes Cardozo
Franziska Schwarze

May 27, 2022
William Brill *
Irving Cohen *
Carole Lachman *
Burton Cohen *
Anna Katy Silverman *
Leon Grossman
Robert Selig
Marilyn Tanzer
Fred Feigelman
Peter Nash *
Beatrice V Dubrim Morse *
James A. Meyers *
Lee Pessah *
And we remember from the Holocaust:
Jansje Pais
Hanna Henner
Theodor Gawrilen
Istvanne Biro
Martonne Farkas

* These names are on our Memorial Wall.
We are sorry if your name was inadvertently omitted. Please contact John at the Temple Office to update your membership information.
The Sisterhood of Temple Israel would like to help you celebrate birthdays and anniversaries for you and your family.
You can share the joy of Shabbat and your birthday and/or anniversary by helping to sponsor an Oneg Shabbat on the Friday evening when we celebrate birthdays and anniversaries for that month.
In addition to sponsoring the Oneg, the names of those celebrating appear in the Friday night program and celebrants are invited to the Bimah.
A contribution of $10 for birthdays and $18 for anniversaries is suggested to honor your special occasion and help the Temple at the same time.  
Letters are sent out early in the month prior and payment would be appreciated before the first Friday of the month of the celebration. 
Erev Shabbat Services

Friday, May 6
Celebration of April
Birthdays & Anniversaries
Service at 7:00 p.m.
In Person and
via Live-Stream
(link to be sent via e-mail)


Friday, May 13
Service at 7:30 p.m.
Special Celebration Oneg
(RSVPs requested)
In Person and
via Live-Stream
(link to be sent via e-mail)


Friday, May 20
6:00 p.m.

Service at 7:30 p.m.
In Person and
via Live-Stream
(link to be sent via e-mail)

Friday, MAY 27
Service at 7:30 p.m.
In Person and
via Live-Stream
(link to be sent via e-mail)


MAY 7, 14, 28
Torah Study and Shabbat Services
Saturdays at 10:00 a.m.

MAY 21
Torah Study
9:00 a.m.
in person & via Zoom

Sisterhood Shabbaton Shabbat Service
10:30 a.m.
in person only
May marks our last month of the school year for our Hebrew and Religious school; and a wonderful one it has been! We came back together for in person learning after a year and a half of virtual school while increasing our enrollment. We welcomed half a dozen new students to school this year! 

Last month's Model Seder was a huge success thanks to Marc Gold's interactive presentation on horseradish and Rabbi and Cantor Richman's awesome play about Passover! All of the children got out of their seats and into the action. Thank you to all of the families who brought in seder foods and items for the kids' plates. 

With only three school sessions remaining this year, our focus is on our STEPPING UP CEREMONY on Sunday, May 22nd. Following our service and ceremony presentation, we will have a celebration for the kids with a magician, ice cream and additional special treats! 

As we prepare for our Stepping Up Ceremony and a growing school for next year, we have two dine in/dine out fundraisers supporting our school that are coming up quickly. Ho Brah on Forest Ave will donate a portion of your bill back to the school on Tuesday, April 26th and Jimmy Max will do the same on Wednesday, May 4th. We encourage you to go out and enjoy a meal with your friends and loved ones while supporting the school. Please see our flyers attached and mention you are with Temple Israel when you dine in/out. 

Have a great month!

Felicia Otto
Parents' Committee Chair
P.S. Don't forget to have your student bring their Shabbat Service Attendance card to Tot Shabbat or the Family Service for another star!

APRIL 10, 2022
Become part of our community by participating in our community. Temple Israel is where community happens
Our Temple Israel was founded in 1948 by a group of dedicated and visionary individuals who recognized the need to bring progressive and inclusive Judaism to Staten Island. We remain the only Reform congregation on Staten Island, affiliated nationally with the Union for Reform Judaism (URJ).

We have just concluded our Passover holiday when we are commanded to tell the story of the Exodus from one generation to the next-l’dor v’dor- so that the story will continue.  Likewise, if we want our Temple Israel and the progressive Jewish values that it represents to continue, we need the next generation to carry our story forward. Please support Temple events and activities. Tell others and encourage them to join so that Temple Israel remains a true house of meeting, house of study and house of prayer for all people on Staten Island.

Learn- Pray-Eat-Sing and Schmooze with us!
 If you know of anyone who is interested in joining our Temple, please have them contact the Membership Committee through the Temple Office.
2.Select "Change Your Charity"
3.Type in “Temple Israel Reform 4.Congregation of Staten Island"
5.Click Search
6.Click Select
7.Order as usual.
Temple Israel benefits!
Combatting Antisemitism-  After a long eight month wait, Dr. Deborah Lipstadt was unanimously confirmed by the U.S. Senate for the position of U.S. Special Envoy to Monitor and Combat Antisemitism. The advocacy of all-the RAC, other Jewish organizations and everyone who emailed and called Senators and Congressional Representatives-helped to finally fill this position at this critical time in our history.

Crisis in Ukraine- The devastation and loss of life in Ukraine is sadly continuing. Donations are still needed and The RAC is asking for donations through The World Union for Progressive Judaism’s Ukraine Crisis Relief Fund. Read more here-

Climate Change- RAC-NY is beginning an important new initiative entitled Climate Covenant: A RAC-NY Campaign to Combat Climate Change. A first step is to get 1000 New York Reform Jews to email their state legislators urging them to pass laws reducing natural gas use in buildings.
Click here for more information.
Click below to find out more information and to get more involved as a leader in the Climate Covenant initiative.

Voting Rights- The RAC is gearing up for their Every Voice, Every Vote initiative, to ensure that all voices are heard, that all voters are mobilized, and that all votes are counted, particularly in communities where voter suppression is high. As Election Day 2022 gets closer, we will keep you posted about the actions that we can take to ensure the integrity of our elections and our democratic process.
Temple Israel Sisterhood Judaica Shop



Just what you need and just what they want!
The only place on Staten Island for all your Jewish gifts.
Special Orders available.
Contact branchtr.ricci@gmail.com or call the Temple Office at 718-727-2231.
Some featured Judaica Shop items this month:
Contact Blanche Ricci at branchtr.ricci@gmail.com
if you are interested in any Judaica Shop items.
The Library is ready to reopen. New acquisitions have been shelved.

There are a lot of new books for young children.
We are accepting book donations but please limit it to Jewish content only. Please contact me through the Temple Office if you would like to make a donation.

If you wish to sign out a book, simply make note of it on the sign up sheet on the desk.

Thank you.
Steve Scher

Bryn Biren
Terry Baver
Avis Foundation Trustees
The mission of the Dr. Ronald Avis Foundation for Temple Israel Reform Congregation is:
…. to provide financial support for young families seeking membership in Temple Israel, and to attract new young families by providing learning opportunities, family programming, and social justice initiatives.

Our year is speeding to a close. One thing is absolutely clear:  Temple Israel’s families with young children are coming out to attend Tot Shabbats, the Family Services on the first Friday of each month and the Religious school activities. Our Model Passover Seders and the Horseradish demonstration by Mark Gold were well attended. There is a spirit of revival in the air!

When Dr. Ronald Avis created the Avis Foundation at Temple Israel in 2017, he had two goals. The first was to make it possible for young families to join our synagogue at a price that was comfortable. His second concern was the development of future leadership for our synagogue. Ron’s vision is coming true.
In the coming year we will see Avis family members joining the Board of Trustees and playing key roles on the Executive Board of Temple Israel.

Young parents are playing major roles in the religious school, helping to implement our educational goals and to raise funds for the school.

What we need now is the DADS to step up and assume roles in the Brotherhood. Brotherhood is so important in the life of our synagogue: socially, ritually, and traditionally. For the past few years, the leadership of Brotherhood was very ably headed by Jeff Ganz, who is now retiring and making plans to reside in sunny Florida. The active members of Brotherhood are getting older. It is time for new blood. Keeping Brotherhood alive is important.  Joining Brotherhood is not a solitary job. Volunteering with other young men will create friendships. The tasks at hand can become bonding experiences. And, there are still long-time members available to help. NEW IDEAS ARE ALSO TERRIFIC! The beneficiaries of the efforts are our children. Can anything be more important?

If you are ready to be more involved, let us know your strengths and interests, just contact Terry Baver at terryqbaver@gmail.com or Bryn Biren at MsBunny7@aol.com. We are ready to find a place for you.

Bryn Biren and Terry Baver
On Wednesday, April 20 the Book Discussion group met on Zoom to discuss “All About Me” an autobiography by Mel Brooks. He has led an amazingly full life as an Actor, Producer, Director, Composer, Writer and Comic. We all might want to view some of his films, including “Blazing Saddles”and “Young Frankenstein” once again. FYI—Sandy Feuerstein’s Mom, Doris Siegler was in the same graduating class as Mel Brooks (Melvin Kaminsky) at Eastern District High School in Brooklyn, and we got to see his picture in her Yearbook! Thanks to Cheryl for leading a thought provoking discussion.
On Sunday, May 1 we look forward to enjoying the musical “Harmony” at the Museum of Jewish Heritage. Barry Manilow produced this telling of the true story of a musical group, performing during World War I!
Looking Forward
On Thursday, June 9th at 7:30 we will enjoy our next Book Discussion. We will be reading “RBG’s Brave and Brilliant Woman; 33 Jewish Woman to Inspire Everyone”, by Nadine Epstein, introduced by Ruth Bader Ginsburg. Judy Lee will lead the discussion.
We are also looking forward to going on a Boat Ride around N.Y. Harbor, sponsored by the National Lighthouse Museum. See the flyer below. We are also planning future trips to the Holocaust Center at Wagner College, and to the Lower East Side.  Check News and Notes and Flyers for dates.

Cheryl Levine and Judith Pessah
Adult Learning Committee Co-Chairpersons

Please join the FUNdraising committee for A Taste of the Rothchild Legend.  The new date is Saturday June 18, 2022. Doors open at 7:30, Starts at 8pm.
We will have a presentation by Larry Flaum about the Rothchild's, followed by a little wine tasting of the region accompanied by a light snack.
BYOB and come socialize with us at Temple Israel.
The cost will be $10 to attend. There will be raffles for prizes and a 50/50. If you cannot attend in person, please be part of the event by purchasing raffles. $15 a sleeve for prizes and $15 a sleeve for the 50/50.
Please make your check payable to Temple Israel and mail it to: Rhonda Trontz-Allen, 660 Bard Ave., Staten Island NY 10310. Please also include your cell # and e-mail for confirmation.
Please see the flyer below.
Respectfully submitted,
Rhonda Trontz-Allen, Karen Frey-Gamoran, Lissa Winchel
Click the order forms above to print or download.


Monday, May 2- 6:00 pm
Thursday, May 5- 6:00 pm
Monday, May 9- 6:00 pm
Thursday, May 12- 6:00 pm
Monday,May 16- 6:00 pm
Thursday, May 19- 6:00 pm
Monday, May 23- 6:00 pm
Thursday, May 26- 6:00 pm
Monday, May 30- 6:00 pm

Instructor: Denise Nizzare

Sunday,May 1- 6:00 pm
Sunday, May 15- 6:00 pm
Sunday,May 22- 6:00 pm
Sunday, May 29- 6:00 pm

Instructor: Katarina Smith


Classes are for ADULTS ONLY.

Both chair and mat students are accommodated at each class.

For more information, contact
Terry Baver at 718-490-4428 or
Bryn Biren at 718-447-6225

The cost of Yoga is:

Temple Israel members: $48 per month $6 per class
Non members : $10 per class
(Two people in a home pay only one fee)

Pilates classes are FREE.
Checks payable to:
Ronald Avis Temple Israel Foundation

Send monthly payment to:
Terry Baver. 30 Theresa Place. SI, NY. 10301
Contributions to Temple Israel as tributes, dedications or memorials are welcome and are published in the weekly Shabbat program.

Donations can be dedicated to the general Temple Israel Fund or to any of the following specific funds: 

  • Adult Education Fund 
  • Building Preservation Fund 
  • Caring Community Fund 
  • Carole Lachman Memorial Fund
  • Choir Fund 
  • Confirmation Fund 
  • Estelle A. Gootenberg Memorial Fund (for Torah Repair/ Restoration) 
  • Gerald J. Lustig Memorial Fund (for Ark & Ark Doors) 
  • Liheyot Fund 
  • Membership Fund 
  • Prayerbook Fund 
  • Rabbi Marcus Kramer Memorial Library Fund 
  • Shoah Education Fund
  • Scholarship Fund 
  • Rabbi Michael D. Howald Fund for Social Action and Tikkun Olam

A $5.00 minimum donation is requested for these funds. Checks for donations to any of these funds should be made payable to Temple Israel.

PRAYERBOOKS may be dedicated in honor or memory of a special person or occasion. For specific prayerbooks and donation amounts, look for the Prayerbook icons found in this bulletin

Please make checks for Donations to the RABBI’S DISCRETIONARY FUND payable to that fund.

Donations in any amount may be made to SISTERHOOD OF TEMPLE ISRAEL or BROTHERHOOD OF TEMPLE ISRAEL with checks made payable directly to the affiliate organization.

For a leaf on the TREE OF LIFE in honor of a simcha, please scroll down. 

For permanent MEMORIAL PLAQUES on our Family Memorial Wall or Original Memorial Wall, please call the Temple office at 718-727-2231.

To see list of all recent
Tributes and Program
Donations to Funds...
If you are not receiving this Bulletin via a direct e-mail and would like to, please contact us at TICOMMUNICATION@aol.com to be added to our mailing list.
Our E-Bulletin is shared with the entire Temple Israel Family and the Staten Island Community. If you are a local business or community organization and you would like to advertise in our monthly bulletin, please contact the Temple Office at 718-727-2231 or e-mail TICommunication@aol.com.