November 20th, 2020
Candle Lighting 4:16pm
Despite our difficulties and challenges, we have much to be grateful for: our resilience and inner resources, our families and friends, our shul community, and technology which allows to remain in touch, despite being physically distanced. I think that the bracha Shehecheyanu is entirely appropriate this Thanksgiving—and I am certain that when I recite it, I will do so with special feeling and poignancy!

Please also consider joining in our virtual Shul for any of our service over the holiday weekend. We will be grateful for your presence. (Please note: Our service schedule will remain unchanged over the holiday weekend)

First and Foremost: please be safe!!!
Consider Canceling Plans with Relatives Outside their Households.

 AJC’s Thanksgiving Reader: “America’s Table”
Download the Reader here, and use it at your Table.
Mi SheBayrach
We make special prayers for those who are ill at every Shabbat Morning service and during our Monday & Thursday Minyanim. Since the onset of the pandemic, we have been adding a special Mi SheBayrach for those who have contracted the coronavirus.

You can add a name (traditionally: Hebrew/Yiddish name and mother’s Hebrew/Yiddish name, but we’ll take English names and the names of those who are not Members of our Tribe) by calling or emailing me.
Or better yet: why not join us for the 9:00am weekday morning minyan, and read the Psalm (in English) just before we include the name of your family member, friend or acquaintance in the Mi SheBayrach
Torah Reading 
After twenty years of marriage, Isaac and Rebecca have twin sons. Esau, the elder, became a hunter; Jacob, the younger son, was more inclined to remain close to home. Isaac favored Esau, while Rebecca had greater preference for Jacob.
Returning one day from the hunt, a famished Esau traded his birthright (status as a firstborn) to Jacob for a bowl of lentil stew.
Isaac and Rebecca seek relief from famine in Gerar. Isaac presents Rebecca as his sister, just as Abraham had done with Sarah on two previous occasions. This time, however, the truth about their relationship does not lead to expulsion. They are allowed to remain in Gerar and Isaac becomes quite wealthy. His success arouses the enmity of the locals, and their king, Avimelech, requests that they depart.
Esau brings grief to his parents by marrying two Hittite women.
Years later Isaac requests that Esau prepare a special meal for him after which he will confirm his older son’s position as first born. Rebecca overhears her husband’s conversation, and conspires to disguise Jacob as his older brother. While Isaac has some uncertainty as to whom he is blessing, the ruse works because Isaac has become blind in his old age. Jacob receives a blessing for inheriting a fertile land and ruling over nations.
When Esau returns, the plot is revealed. An enraged Esau vows to kill his brother upon their father’s death. Rebecca and Isaac encourage Jacob to leave home and to go to Haran to live with Rebecca’s brother, Laban.
In an effort to appease his parents for marrying Hittite women, Esau also married a daughter of Ishmael.  
ALL our Synagogue Prayer Services and Programs are conducted over ZOOM

You can participate in one of two ways 
  • Dialing in - or - 
  • Using internet access and a smartphone, tablet or computer
Do You Need to Obtain a Siddur? Please call or email me for details. kas
Do you need a CROSS-REFERENCE GUIDE to pages in the old Sim Shalom (Blue cover) for Shabbat and Holidays (when we are using Lev Shalem)?...
to the Weekday Services in Lev Shalem (when we are using the burgundy weekday Sim Shalom)?
Call me or email me for the GUIDE

Fort Lee Virtual Shul Prayer Services CLICK HERE TO ATTEND
Participant ID/Passcode: 585121 (if required)
Dial in: 929 205 6099     Meeting ID: 894 4624 7890

Our Shabbat Services
Friday evenings at 7:00 pm
Shabbat Mornings at 10:30 am
Havdalah at 5:15 pm    

This Week's Yahrzeit Observances
We hope that our weekly listing of yahrzeit observances will serve 2 purposes:
1)   To remind those who have the yahrzeit for a second time, much closer to the date of the actual observance
2)   To alert friends and acquaintances that someone they know is observing a yahrzeit. We hope that you will show them your support by joining them at our (virtual) minyanim, and helping to assure that Kaddish can be recited with a minyan

  • Barbara Fishman will be observing yahrzeit for her father, Jack Eckstein on Monday evening, November 23rd
  • Norman Silverberg will be observing yahrzeit for his brother, Manny Silverberg on Tuesday evening, November 24th
  • Ann Hurwitz will be observing yahrzeit for her husband, Marshall Hurwitz on Wednesday evening, November 25th
  • Ronald Mayer will be observing yahrzeit for his father, Louis Mayer on Wednesday evening, November 25th
  • Gloria Singer will be observing yahrzeit for her mother, Pauline Pickholz on Wednesday evening, November 25th
  • Lorelei Schwartzman will be observing yahrzeit for her mother-in-law, Lillian Schwartzman on Wednesday evening, November 25th

Birthdays & Anniversaries
Jonathan Fox
Sharon Berman
Beth Kaplan
Ronald Mayer
Michelle Reisner & Adrian Osian
Barbara & Harvey Fishman
Fort Lee Virtual Shul Prayer Services CLICK HERE TO ATTEND
Participant ID/Passcode: 585121 (if required)
Dial in: 929 205 6099     Meeting ID: 894 4624 7890

Sunday - Friday Mornings at 9:00 am 

Sunday - Thursday Evenings at 7:00 pm
Special Request: if you purchased or downloaded Siddur Lev Shalem (Shabbat and Holidays) and/or Siddur Sim Shalom (Weekdays), please let Rabbi Stern know. (Please call him or email him).

Our Weekly Programming  
Fort Lee Virtual Shul Classes/Programming CLICK HERE TO ATTEND
Participant ID/Passcode: 144384 (if required)
Dial in: 929 205 6099      Meeting ID: 822 9648 6657

Mondays at 8:00pm
Jewish Film Festival November 9, 16, 23
Wednesdays at Noon - But This Week on TUESDAY!!!! 
Coffee Talk  (BYO coffee, lunch, etc.)

Thursdays at 11:00 - Cancelled this week
Legends of the Bible
Fridays at 11:30 - Cancelled this week
Bible as Literature Class  

Please call me for your free access code if you would like to participate

Our Congregation is a sponsor of ScholarStream Series
Following on the success of our direct-to-public programming for Tikkun Leil Shavuot and Selihot, and in a continuing effort to help our rabbis and congregations during these trying times, the RA, USCJ, JTS and Ziegler are excited to announce a joint initiative to offer high quality adult education opportunities to all those interested in participating. ScholarStream is a four part series which will give communities the opportunity to learn from some of the world’s leading scholars and engage deeply with our texts and traditions.
The first two series will be offered on the following dates and times, meeting for one hour each week.
Hidden Histories and Untold Stories
Tuesdays at 8 PM ET / 5 PM PT
Join JTS scholars as they uncover the hidden context around biblical figures and important eras in Jewish history.
  • 12/1: Dr. Sarah Wolf on how foreign the beit midrash would feel to the early Rabbis
  • 12/8: Dr. Amy Kalmanofsky on what the Bible really had against Jezebel
Equity, Forgiveness and Intersectionality
Wednesdays at 10 PM ET / 7 PM PT
Join Ziegler faculty as they explore issues related to race, gender equality, intersectionality, and building a democracy of the future. Download the full descriptions for each Ziegler session here.
  • 12/2: Rabbi Dr. Gail Labovitz on what Exodus has to teach us about intersectionality
  • 12/9: Rabbi Dr. Aryeh Cohen on building a multiracial democracy

Because our congregation is a sponsor you are eligible for free access to this series.
Any questions email Max Arad at

Our Weekly Programming  
Fort Lee Virtual Shul Classes/Programming CLICK HERE TO ATTEND
Participant ID/Passcode: 144384 (if required)
Dial in: 929 205 6099      Meeting ID: 822 9648 6657

LINDA RICHMAN is looking for VOLUNTEERS to share their passion or expertise with the COFFEE TALK crowd….
Your profession
Your avocation
Your hobby
Your expertise 
Your life experiences
Your travels
Please be in touch with the Rabbi to volunteer or to make suggestions for programming…

Please note this Special Day and Date for this COFFEE TALK:
(please email me to secure your seat in the Knesset)
A Visit to the Knesset with Masorti Israel
The program, under the auspices of Masorti’s Jewish Pluralism Watch, will include a virtual tour of the Knesset and a conversation with Knesset Member,  TELHILA FRIEDMAN, who was featured in my Kol Nidre sermon.
Reservations are required. Please email me to secure your seat in the Knesset. Click here for the Times of Israel article on Tehila Friedman's speech.
Tehila Friedman is also the chief sponsor of this newly proposed legislation:

Future Coffee Talks
Wednesday, December 2
What I Learned from ScholarStream About Moses’ Family         
I’ll try my best to convey Dr. Alan Cooper’s masterful lesson—Rabbi Ken Stern

Wednesdays December 9 & 16
The Evidence (or Lack Thereof) for the Exodus with Marvin Chertkoff
Thursdays at 11am: - but not this week!
Re-Inventing the Bible
The Rabbis were both close readers of the text, sensitive to every nuance, and, it turns out, also great fiction writers and spinners of yarn. They weren’t just legal scholars!
Using Louis Ginzberg’s masterful narrative compiling these legends, The Legends of the Bible, we will continue our exploration of these tales, known as Midrash Aggada.
Available for cheap on Amazon! 
Fridays at 11:30 am (using the new Zoom logins)  - but not this week!
Important/Interesting Reads
Airing Sunday night on BBC One, Robert Rinder’s documentary ‘My Family, The Holocaust And Me’ explores the impact of the Shoah on three families as the chain of PTSD is unbroken                               
A former Syrian prime minister was a double agent who worked with Britain, France and Israel   
Jewish-Muslim Solidarity in Azerbaijan  The Karabakh war is the latest chapter in a little-known but important Jewish story          
And the scientist responsible for the pioneering breakthroughs that allowed for the development of an mRNA vaccine is Jewish University of Pennsylvania professor Drew Weissman!
How a Jewish Filmmaker Wound Up Eating Cake with the Pope —                
BDS / Anti-Semitism / anti-Zionism
 Annual session sees UN body adopt resolution, co-sponsored by Syria, Cuba, Turkey, Qatar, and the Palestinians, condemning Israel for allegedly violating the health rights of Palestinians and Syrians in the Golan Heights. UN Watch director decries the "cynical politicization of the world's top health agency at the expense of focusing on the COVID-19 pandemic and other vital global health priorities and emergencies."
That’s it???? 19 days????....
Corbyn will hold his seat as an independent
Rose by 14%                                           
An Open Letter to Christiane Amanpour (Who tried to draw an equivalency between Trump’s tactics and Kristallnacht)                                                               
The Palestinians
I think they are just using Biden’s election as a way to save face; they are desperate to re-engage with Israel on a variety of matter for many self-sustaining reasons, despite being outmaneuvered diplomatically, and being practically rejected by the Arab Gulf States:
That was fast! (I wrote that they were desperate):
Sunni Arab Leaders Are More Concerned with Tehran's Designs than Palestinian Aspirations
Pop Culture 
He’s Paying His Own Way and Will Fly with Tom Cruise
The actor who played Harry Potter is a proud Irish Jew, among many other fun facts                                                                      

The British Jewish actor, best known for playing Lucius Malfoy in the Harry Potter series, is really a "big ball of candy-floss fluff."
Who Are Cole and Ella Emhoff?                                                               
18 things to know about the kids who call our next Vice President "Momala." 

The Whizin Center for Continuing Education is pleased to present our mid-fall lineup of classes and learning opportunities, delivered in an ONLINE format.
We wish continued good health and safety to the entire community. We will be updating our offerings and classes on an ongoing basis. Be sure to visit our website to learn more:

Help us usher in the Festival of Lights!
Join us for a global evening of music and community with more than fifty performers from around the world, supporting the NYTF 
Sign Up and attend our virtual show 
from the comfort of your home! 
Tickets are FREE / Donations Encouraged

and Starring more than 50 performers from the Yiddish and Broadway stage

Special audio greeting by Carol Burnett:
SAVE THE DATE: Tuesday December 8th 2020 7:00pm

Register here.

As lovers of Jewish music, you probably already know what a groundbreaking and important contribution The Milken Archive of Jewish Music: The American Experience has already made to the Jewish world. What you may not have known is that many of the Conservative Movement's most prominent cantors, CA members all, recorded extensively for that years-long project.

For five more weeks, through December 21, every Monday at 8:00 PM ET, we'll be bringing you their stories and their music. Cantors on Record will feature live interviews with the artists and the music they recorded along with archival photos.

This week, Dr. Mark Kligman of UCLA's Lowell Milken Fund for American Jewish Music steps into the role of host to interview our regular host, Hazzan Elizabeth Shammash.

About Hazzan Shammash:
The daughter of a mother with roots in Latvian Jewry, and a Baghdad-born father of Babylonian Jewish tradition who emigrated to America, mezzo-soprano Elizabeth Shammash earned a bachelor’s degree in Italian studies from Brown University (including a year of study at the University of Bologna in Italy), an artist diploma from Boston University’s Opera Institute, and a master’s degree in music and voice performance from the Manhattan School of Music. Her opera credits include the role of Idamante in Mozart’s Idomeneo with the Wolf Trap Opera, and her concert appearances have included an all-Bernstein program with the National Symphony Orchestra, and Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony with the Seattle Symphony under Gerard Schwarz. She holds a master of sacred music and certificate of hazzanut from the Jewish Theological Seminary in New York, and currently serves as cantor at Adath Israel in Merion Station, Pennsylvania.

In subsequent sessions, you'll get to meet and hear from such luminaries as these:

  • November 30: Hazzan Simon Spiro
  • December 7: Hazzan Charles Osborne
  • December 14: Hazzan Raphael Frieder
  • December 21: Hazzan Aaron Bensoussan

The Cantors Assembly is thrilled to be continuing our collaboration with The UCLA Lowell Milken Fund for American Jewish Music and The Milken Archive for Jewish Music: The American Experience, and we hope that you enjoy and share this program with your fellow lovers of Jewish music.

Register here.

For a press release to share with your congregation or organization, please click here.
From the Lowell Milken Fund for American Jewish Music
To learn more about our session with Frank London, click here.
To learn more about David Amram's session, click here.

For more information about all our programs, click here.

25 years ago today, Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin was assassinated because he was building a world where the Jewish State and her neighbors could live side-by-side in peace. 

Especially in these fraught times, the Z3 Project honors his memory by continuing to fight for the cause: not just for peace between Israel and her neighbors, but also peace between ourselves. Let’s come together now — left and right, Orthodox and secular, West Bank settler and Berkeley student—to embrace our shared legacy and a common destiny.

Be a part of The Z3 Project, a virtual experience during the week of Hanukkah, Dec. 10-17, 2020. Join artists, performers, speakers, and regular folks from around the world as we reimagine Diaspora-Israel relations in an online communal experience like none other. 
The 2020 gathering will be 100% online, during the eight days of Hanukkah, from December 10 through December 17, 2020. On each day, we will premiere exclusive Main Stage conversations, alongside feature articles and educational videos. In addition, there will be local conversations hosted by JCCs from around the globe. Keep your eyes on the program for up to date information.
The $36 registration fee gives you an all-access pass to every aspect of the global Z3 Experience, including voting rights in the Z3 Giving Circle. Proceeds from ticket sales will support seven programs at partner JCCs worldwide, based on votes by ticket holders, with final results revealed during the closing session. This is Z3's new spin on Hanukkah - until the very end of this eight-day virtual experience, you have a stake and a say in our future: your money, your vote, and your voice.
Last Wednesday’s Coffee Talk guest, YIVO’s Dr. Stefanie Halpern, directed me to the YIVO UTUBE Channel:

Israeli Culture in North America
Friday, November 19, 2020