WEEKLY NEWS - April 20, 2021
Office Hours
(Suspended For Now):

*Monday/Friday 
9:30am-2pm
*Tuesday-Thursday
10am-3pm

248.477.1410
Published on Tuesdays.
Deadline for submissions: Mondays at noon.
Scroll down for Rabbi Falick's commentary:
HERE'S TO LIFE APPRECIATED ANEW!
Please Note!
There will be no newsletter next week.
Rabbi Falick will be unavailable from April 21-27. In the event of a pastoral emergency, please call 248.477.1410.
NO SHABBAT SERVICE THIS WEEK
JOIN US AGAIN ON APRIL 30 AT 6PM!
BEGINS MONDAY, MAY 10
AT NOON

A deeper look at Jewish customs, traditions, and historical events ... from ancient times to today!

In one or two sessions, Rabbi Falick will take on a Jewish idea, topic, or custom and review it in depth from its origins right up to today!

This is a great way to learn more about Jewish history and life through a Humanistic lens. For each topic, he'll drill down to the origins, examine the history, and take a look at modern understandings ... including ongoing controversies and disagreements.

First Topic:
The Ancient Temple in Jerusalem:
History, Traditions, Controversies, and ... World War III?
IT'S SPRING CLEAN-UP TIME AND WE NEED...
...YOU!
SATURDAY @ 10:30AM
All hands needed and appreciated!

Please bring any tools, especially hedge trimmers, saws, rakes, yard bags, plus gloves. We have lots of fun!

Please contact Sarah Markowitz, 1luciannn1@comcast.net or Cathy Radner, radner210@gmail.com, with any questions.
Next SJC meeting: Saturday, May 8, 11:15am
All are welcome: Come to contribute ideas or just to hear from others! Link TBA
YOUR SOCIAL JUSTICE COMMITTEE PRESENTS A ...

💐 SPRING CELEBRATION SIGN-MAKING EVENT 💐

DATE CHANGE!!
Saturday, May 22
1:30-3:30pm
No Cost
(rain date: Sunday, May 23)

SOCIALLY DISTANCED IN THE TEMPLE BACKYARD!
AT INDIVIDUAL SEPARATED TABLES / MASKS *REQUIRED*

Who is invited: BT members, and friends of all ages -- family friendly, children may join in the art.

What are we doing?: Making signs in support of issues important to you. No art experience or ability required. The Social Justice Committee will provide the art supplies. Participants may bring extra to use or share ideas and guidance. WE WILL ALSO BE MAKING LAWN SIGNS FOR THE TEMPLE WITH THE NAMES OF BLACK VICTIMS OF VIOLENCE. 

Goal: Self-expression about causes we care for!

Optional Yoga session: 1-1:30pm with Connie Grossman, BT member & amazing yoga teacher, who will lead a gentle practice of standing postures
No yoga experience necessary to participate -- a great chance to try out this relaxing exercise

We'll also provide: Water and snacks, friendly DISTANCED conversation; our nearby play structure for children; information about current social justice issues and events!

RSVP by Tuesday, May 19
By email to Audrey Pleasant (audreypleasant@gmail.com) or text 313.478.641. 

Contact Audrey with questions or suggestions!
BT'S "FREE LITTLE FOOD PANTRY"
BT has installed a "Free Little Food Pantry" for those in need. We will need donations of non-perishables to keep it filled.

WE NEED FOOD DONATIONS!

NO PASTA FOR NOW!

WE ESPECIALLY NEED:

  • PERSONAL CARE / HYGIENE
  • HAND SOAP
  • CLEANING PRODUCTS
  • CEREAL
  • SPICES
  • PAPER PRODUCTS
  • ***NEW! WE NEED CHILDREN'S CLOTHING (good quality / no rips or stains!)

ALSO: canned tuna & chicken * proteins / grains * canned fruits & vegetables * soups / sauces / condiments * breakfast items * snacks

You're likely to find the pantry full, but please be aware that Items ARE being taken and then replenished from supplies kept inside the Temple building.

Contact Audrey (audreypleasant@gmail.com) for more details.
HELP FREEDOM HOUSE CHILDREN!

Freedom House residents need the following: 

Gender-neutral baby clothes for expected newborn ● Pants in large or extra large for pregnant mom ● Shoes for mom: women's size 9 ● Shoes for dad: men's size 10 ● Size 5/6 clothes for boy ● Socks for boy and mom ● Comb for Afro-textured hair ● (Please note: No wipes or diapers needed!)

Audrey (audreypleasant@gmail.com) if you are able to donate any of these or would like her to shop for you.
IMMIGRATION / REFUGEES
HIAS Book Club
Friday, April 23, Noon

A HIAS-facilitated interactive discussion of the HIAS Book and Film Club, to discuss the book "Tell Me How It Ends" by Valeria Luiselli: This story is structured around forty questions the author asked undocumented Latin American children facing deportation, illustrates how our immigration system treats children arriving in the United States in search of a better life.

HUMAN RIGHTS
Tuesday, April 27, 2pm

A program about contemporary genocide and the ongoing persecution of the Rohingya and Uyghur peoples with Nury Turkel of the United States Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF), and Tun Khin, President of the Burmese Rohingya Organization UK.

Learn how we got to this point, and how we can raise awareness about current genocides and take action.This program is being convened by HIAS, Jewish World Watch and AJWS (representing the Jewish Rohingya Justice Network).

REPRODUCTIVE RIGHTS
Join "The Women's Medical Fund" for a screening of "Abortion Hotline, This Is Lisa" to learn how the Hyde amendment has been punishing low income people for 47 years.

JOIN THE SOCIAL JUSTICE MAILING LIST!
Sign up for the Social Justice Committee email list for information about what's happening at BT and beyond. Meeting agenda and copy of the monthly report to the board is emailed to all list members. Send your request to audreypleasant@gmail.com.
HERE'S TO LIFE APPRECIATED ANEW!
This Thursday afternoon I will, at long last, be reunited with my children and grandchildren. It will have been 474 days since I last saw them (that’s one year, three months, and three weeks). During that time my older daughter became pregnant and gave birth to a little girl, Alexandra, who is now five and a half months old. (There’s a picture below of her with my grandson Jack.)

For the loved ones of the nearly 600,000 victims of the pandemic, the loss is immeasurable. No one can take the place of these beloved people. But these have not been the only losses, not by far.

Each of us has lost precious time with family. Whether it’s a grandchild we’ve yet to meet, a simcha (joyous occasion) we’ve missed, or simply one or more of the life cycle events or holidays that we and our loved ones looked forward to, the losses are incalculable. And irreplaceable.

Among the greatest beliefs of humanism is its insistence that this life is the only one we get. This comes with the mandate to appreciate every moment.

I’ve tried very hard to do that, even in the face of the ongoing fears and doubts presented by this moment in history. Some of this appreciation has taught me more about myself. Some of it has reminded me how lucky I am to have someone in my life with whom I could spend almost every minute of 474 days and feel fortunate during every one of them. I hope that each of you have had a chance to reflect upon the things that have sparked gratitude for you during this time.

The pandemic has also been a source of fear and anxieties for many people. I know that there were moments when I thought that I might never see my family again. Even as the rational side of my brain told me that this was unlikely, that fear arose from time to time.

Every single one of us who has come through this has learned the lessons of resilience, the ability to adapt to new and frightening situations. We may not have always felt strong, but we somehow managed to find sources of strength, from within and without, to fortify us.

In one way or another, each of us has been transformed by this experience. We have undergone losses both great and small. We have learned to cope with uncertainties and tension. And we have discovered reservoirs of strength in us and around us that we may not have even realized were at our disposal.

Even as I imagine my reunion with my daughters, playing with my grandson, and meeting (and squeezing the delicious cheeks of) my granddaughter, it all still feels a little bit unreal. The last time I was excited to see them was March 11, 2020, two weeks from a planned and then canceled visit and loss has a way of restraining excitement. 
That aside, I know that within 60 hours of writing this I’ll be embracing them again (or for the first time). And I expect that the humanistic lessons of the pandemic will help me to cherish it even more as I remember that accepting the reality of loss enhances our appreciation for every precious moment of our lives.

I hope that you, too, will soon reunite with whatever and whoever were taken from you by the pandemic.

L’chaim! Here’s to life appreciated anew!
ZOOM REQUIRES A PASSWORD!
The password was sent under separate cover. Please contact rabbi@birminghamtemple.com if you need it.
ONGOING CLASSES / PROGRAMS

RABBI FALICK'S SATURDAY CLASS ("REBBE'S TISCH")
Join him for a historical look at Jewish texts throughout the ages.
ONLINE @ 10AM, SATURDAYS
NO CLASS THIS SATURDAY: APRIL 24
Dial-in Meeting ID: 759 671 597

NEW CLASS! UNROLLING JUDAISM
A deeper look at Jewish customs, traditions, and historical events ... from ancient times to today! See above for more information.
ONLINE @ NOON, MONDAYS
BEGINS MAY 10
Dial-in Meeting ID: 214 102 965

JEWISH HISTORY CLASS WITH NATAN FUCHS
"From Baghdad to Sepharad and Ashkenaz: The Jewish Diaspora in the Early Middle Ages"
ONLINE @ 10:30am, SUNDAYS
Dial-in Meeting ID: 840 703 07256

SOCRATES CAFE
On Zoom!
ONLINE @ 10:30AM, EVERY TUESDAY!
Dial-In Meeting ID: 182 488 428
*REFU'AH SHLEIMAH (SPEEDY RECOVERY)
Best Wishes for a Speedy Recovery to:

Rob Lasker, Brina Broder, Ruth Moltz, Joe Gadon, Julie Eliason, Karen Tremper Harris, Myron Tink, Peter Schweitzer

Please inform us if you know that someone is ill or in need.
*ONGOING CLASSES & PROGRAMS
ADULT CLASSES
See above for regular adult classes online.

YOGA
Suspended for now.

ONLINE VIDEOS OF PROGRAMS & CLASSES
Visit LibrarySHJ.com and our YouTube page for videos of services, classes, lectures, and more!
*THIS WEEK'S CARTOON
By Marilyn Rowens, ז״ל
*BT COMMUNITY NEWS