Community Briefs: Local Organizations to Commemorate Tree of Life and More


Congregation Leyv Ha-Ir-Heart of the City Rabbi to Go on Sabbatical

Rabbi Julie Greenberg of Congregation Leyv Ha-Ir-Heart of the City will go on sabbatical after the High Holidays.

Rabbi Dayle Friedman will be accompanying Greenberg — who is in her 19th year with the congregation — as a cantor during the holidays, then serving as interim rabbi in Greenberg’s absence during 2019-’20.

Friedman was the founding director of Hiddur: The Center for Aging and Judaism at the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College. The center provides education, spiritual resources and scholarship for elders and their caregivers.

#ShowUpForShabbat Planned Again

The Philadelphia/Southern New Jersey Region of American Jewish Committee and Philadelphia City Council are teaming up to promote #ShowUpForShabbat for the evening of Oct. 25 and morning of Oct. 26 in commemoration of the first anniversary of the massacre at the Tree of Life Congregation in Pittsburgh.

AJC Philadelphia/SNJ is urging people of all faiths to join the Jewish community in synagogues for Shabbat services that weekend.

“The murderous attacks on Jews, amidst a rise in anti-Semitic incidents across the United States, challenge our sense of Jewish security,” AJC Philadelphia/SNJ Regional Director Marcia Bronstein said. “But the widespread empathy, demonstrated in the mass participation in #ShowUpForShabbat last year, and continuing joint efforts to combat hatred of Jews, is inspiring and reassuring. People of good conscience recognize that anti-Semitism of any kind threatens not only Jews, but American society in general.”

A briefing is slated for 9 a.m. on Oct. 24 in the Mayor’s Reception Room at City Hall. Councilmen Allan Domb and Curtis Jones Jr. will speak and share a resolution they are submitting to City Council.

The #ShowUpForShabbat initiative first occurred on Nov. 2-3, 2018, with more than 250 million people engaging with the hashtag on Facebook and Twitter and millions attending services worldwide.

Lower Merion Synagogue to Participate in OU Women’s Initiative Simchat Torah Program

Lower Merion Synagogue in Bala Cynwyd will be one of more than 40 synagogues nationwide participating in the Orthodox Union Women’s Initiative Simchat Torah Program.
The program is designed to make the observance of Simchat Torah more meaningful for women in North America. It will provide shiurim for women on Simchat Torah morning during aliyot.

This will the second year for the program.

Board of Rabbis, ADL, Jewish Federation to Honor Tree of Life

The Board of Rabbis of Greater Philadelphia, ADL Philadelphia and the Jewish Federation of Greater Philadelphia will sponsor “Honoring the Tree of Life: A Yahrtzeit Commemoration Exploring Personal and Communal Response to Trauma” at 7 p.m. on Oct. 27 at the National Museum of American Jewish History.

Members of the Philadelphia Jewish community will share remarks and memorial prayers. That will be followed by a presentation by Michelle Friedman, the founder and Sharon and Steven Lieberman Chair in Pastoral Counseling at Yeshivat Chovevei Torah Rabbinical School, about personal and communal responses one year after the shooting that left 11 dead.

Register for the free event at


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