Adath Israel Brotherhood Website

Brotherhood Shabbat is Scheduled for March 4th, 2012

Bob Cohen is in charge. 

Please contact him if you are interested in a part.

Shabbat Shalom.  In the Etz Hayim discussion of today's Haftarah it is mentioned that Ezekial wrote this Haftarah after the destruction of the first Temple in 586 bce.  The Jewish people were then exiled into Babylon.  Approximately 70 years later construction was begun on the second Temple.  The Temple was destroyed, but it was rebuilt.  After a tremendously destructive act, hope survived and this hope was put into action.  Approximately 70 years ago, our world was destroyed in Europe.  Since that time, much rebuilding has been done.  While large events such as the creation of the State of Israel are very prominent, the real rebuilding is being done at the local level. So what are we as a Brotherhood doing to participate in the local efforts to rebuild, to create a vibrant Jewish society?  Since the Menorah in the ancient Temple had 7 branches, I'll tell you about 7 ways that Brotherhood is participating in the rebuilding effort.


Our First rebuilding project is remembrance.  The destruction of the Temple is still remembered on Tish-a B'Av.  In our time the horrible events of the last century are remembered on Yom Ha-Shoah.  Next month on April 19th we will observe Yom Ha-Shoah.  As part of this day of remembrance Adath Israel Brotherhood will send out to every member of the synagogue a yellow candle.  This candle, similar to a yourtzite candle is intended to be lit the night before and burn for the entire day.  This year under the leadership of Joel Kling, Morrie Weiner and Buzz Widlansky, we are expanding this program so that parents can have the Brotherhood send a yellow candle to college students or other out of town relatives.  We use the yellow candle program as a fund raiser to benefit Holocaust Education through the Center for Holocaust Humanity Education here in Cincinnati, but more importantly, it is part of our mission statement of involving Jewish men in Jewish life.  Just as Ezekial used his words to inspire the Jews of his time, Brotherhood is inspiring our members in our time.  We are not inspiring just by sending out things, but by doing deeds.


Our Second rebuilding project is Feeding the Hungry.  Through the leadership of Kathy Wise from Sisterhood and Scott Reis from Brotherhood Adath Israel feeds over 300 people at the Over the Rhine Soup Kitchen multiple times throughout the year.  My family, including my children, have had the opportunity to volunteer there several times.  Doing this does sacrafice a Sunday morning, but it is an amazing experience to feed those in need.  Most of the people there are people just like you and me.  It humbles me to realize that but by the grace of G-d, I could be on the other side of the counter.  While we worked there the buzzer on the back door kept ringing and more and more people dropped off food to feed the hungry.  These people are rebulding the basic humanity of those in need.  IHN is another opportunity to help those less fortunate.  For some it is uncomfortable to be face to face with people who have had bad thing happen in their lives.  Mitzvah's are not intended to be easy, but they are very fulfilling.


Our Third rebuilding project is education.  Every week I send my kids to Hebrew School.  I occasionally hear from them that they do not wish to go.  Sometimes my response is that I went to Hebrew School and so should you, but when I think about it, my response should be that I still go to Hebrew School.  I attend class with Rabbi Wise at Bible and Beer chaired by Josh Lisman.  This is an opportunity to look at some of the more adult aspects of a Torah portion with Rabbi Wise at a local restaurant with some food, some drinks and a lot of discussion with some good friends.  It is much better to influence your children by example.  Don't tell them that education is important, show them. But it is not just kids that you have the potential to influence.  How many of our friends have allowed their Jewish education to stagnate, as Rabbi Wise says "the Torah is not a child's book", but you only know this by experiencing it as an adult.  By your example you can help them rebuild their knowledge.


Our Fourth rebuilding project is Shomrie Ha-aretz.  Several years ago Brotherhood build a charitable garden.  Along with the physical building of the garden, there was a movement at the religious school level to integrate into the 5th grade religious school curriculum themes about caring for the land, Shomrie Ha-aretz.  The students not only perform the knowledge based classroom work to develop a sense of ecological awareness, but they are putting their bodies into it as well.  At Lag B'Omer the 5th graders and other congregants plant the garden, during the spring and summer they care for the garden and in the late summer and fall the produce is harvested and donated to area food banks.  Howard Goldwasser and Gary Blachman ensure that everything is in order so that all goes smoothly.  The first year we were so successful that we expanded the number of planting beds.  This last year we won a Torch award at the Federation of Jewish Men's Clubs international convention for an outstanding Shomrie Ha'aretz project.  Our garden project is now being reproduced throughout the nation. 


Our Fifth rebuilding project is religious. One of the ares that we sometimes take for granted is the existance of religious services.  They do not just happen.  In Judaism we can pray alone, but it is encouraged to pray as a group.  Brotherhood recognizes that if we do not pay attention and support the religious aspect of our synagogue then we will all be the poorer for it.  We have some one day events such as today, Brotherhood Shabbat, organized by Bob Cohen.  Many of the men davening and reading Torah today have learned their skills under the expert tutelage of Alan Weiner.  3 years ago I myself began relearning the basics from Alan.  Honestly, I began with Ba-Ba-Ba Va-Va-Va. I don't read Torah well, but I read Torah.  If I can do you, you can do it.  There is nothing more satisfying than practicing and reading a section of torah.  Give it a try.  Another one day event, the World Wide Wrap, organized by Steve Claybon, where on Superbowl Sunday we wrap tefillin with the 6th and 7th graders. Last month we had our biggest wrap ever with over 50 participants.  But we also have weekly opportunities, Monday Minyan chaired by David Gershuny, Joel King, and Steve Claybon.  This is Monday Mariv services every week where we have Brotherhood members who have committed to attend services so there is always a Minyan.  If you can not attend Monday night, consider coming just once a month, or even once per year to help support our congregation's Minyan.  You will find friends that you never knew you had.

Our Sixth rebuilding project is hearing men's voice lead by Gary Smith and myself.  This is an inter-generational discussion among men on issues that we all find challenging and engaging.  It is private, confidential, enlightening and meaningful.  Believe it or not men can talk.  Talking to one another in groups of 8-12 is an experience that many of us don't often get. We have had 3 successful programs so far this past year.  Reaction to this program here and nationwide has been very positive.  It is very nice to see men discus their different perspectives on deep issues such as: Do you define yourself by your job? If so, what happens when you retire? What values do you want to impart to your children?  How do you do that?  I highly recommend you come to a program, not so much to find the answers to these questions, but to be stimulated to think about the questions.


Our Seventh and final rebuilding project is social.  What would life be without some game time.  Monthly we have Poker and strategy gaming groups that meet.  This year we hosted a Father daughter dance organized by Michael Weisman that spanned multiple generations and was attended by over 30 people.  We also had a huge SuperBowl party attended by over 70 people. Congratulations to Michael Schwartz for winning the iPad 2.  Later this month we will have the second annual Wine Tasting at Piazza Dicepoli.  You can come.  I am inviting you to socialize with other people.  Studies have show that people who are connected to other people live longer and happier lives.  Sometimes it is so hard to "break" into some social circles, well we have created social circles for you to come and experience.


In this week's Torah portion we have the commandment for the Ner Tamid, the ever present light above the arc.  This light has been expanded to encompass the Jewish people.  We are encouraged to be a "light unto the nations".   A light leads the way, a light gathers people towards it, a light opens people's eyes to the endless possibilities of life. You can be that light, simply by being part of the activities that go on here. And there are so many more programs that I have not mentioned. Sukkah building project, Bar tending at synagogue events, cooking for the MLK program, supporting congregants in need with the L'Chaim fund, Keruv initiative inviting interfaith families to our shul, supporting outstanding young people with a scholarship fund, and having an expert speaker programs. None of these programs would be possible without our membership participating. Everyone at Brotherhood is shining the light so rebuilding can happen. In addition to the membership coming to events, there are so many people behind the scenes leading the events. More people to recognize include Jack Rubin, Michael Sullivan, Loren Israel, Rob Lowenstein, Brett Leonard, the entire Adath Staff especially Kathy, Marilyn, Pauline, and of course Rabbi Wise, last year's Brotherhood's Man of the Year. I'm sorry if I forgot to mention anyone.  I'd like to give a special thanks to Michael Mills who is the International President of the Federation of Jewish Men's Clubs and the reason why we have the beautiful Torah cover that we are using today.  You can read about it in the Shabbat Booklet. 

So, I have told you a lot of what Brotherhood does.  But my last point, and this is what it all really comes down to:  What are you doing to rebuild, how are you being the light?  If it is hard to answer that question, if you can't think of an answer, then I would suggest a very good answer.  Come by a Brotherhood event, join us.  Help us to rebuild our world, help us to bring light to others.  I would like to close with a quote from Pericles, an ancient Greek statesman,  he stated that "what you leave behind is not what is engraved in stone, but what is woven in the lives of others".  By participating in Brotherhood you can weave yourself inexorably into the lives of others.  Shabbat Shalom


The last thing I would like to do is to present this year's Man of the year award.  Historically, this award has gone to someone who has been involved in Brotherhood, who embodies the spirit of what Brotherhood stands for.  This year is no different.  This year our recipient is a man who stepped up when asked.  Joel Kling, please come up.  At a meeting with Rabbi Wise over 3 years ago, Joel was shown a need and filled that need and then some.  As the most recent past President of Brotherhood he took the time and effort for 2 years creating an infrastructure that would ensure that our Brotherhood was well suited not only survive but thrive.  As Pericles suggested Joel has woven himself into the lives of everyone he has touched.  Joel continues to be involved in Brotherhood activities as both a leader and participant.  It is with great pleasure that I present this plaque and gift to a most deserving Brotherhood member.  Mazel Tov.


Welcome     Upcoming Events    Links    Photos    InformationWelcome.htmlUpcoming_Events.htmlLinks.htmlPhotos.htmlInformation.htmlshapeimage_3_link_0shapeimage_3_link_1shapeimage_3_link_2shapeimage_3_link_3shapeimage_3_link_4