Cropped Logo Or Chadash Newsletter
 January 2012 
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In This Issue
URJ Biennial Highlights
2011 Tax Year Tips
Kids at School Hanukkah Package
Blanket Mitzvah
Service Schedule
NFTY in Israel
Rabbi's Message
President's Message
Educator's Message
Message from the Student Cantor
Important Upcoming Dates
URJ East District Shabbaton
Hunterdon Jewish Film Festival
In Our Community
Hanukkah Celebration Pics
Bar/Bat Mitzvah Bios
OCTY Clothing Drive
Jewish Life Series
Jewish Family Services
Registration Quick Links
URJ Biennial Highlights
Click here to see highlights from the URJ Biennial held December 14-18, 2011.

Helpful 2011 Tax Year Tips
* Charitable contributions for 2011 must be postmarked by 12/31/11.

* Letters listing your gifts to OC during 2011 will be mailed by January 31, 2012. 

* You may be entitled to a federal income tax deduction for the amount of any unreimbursed, out-of-pocket expenses you incurred during the year in performance of any duties as a volunteer on behalf of OC. 

* OC accepts contributions in the form of cash, check, credit card or shares of stock. 

* You are able to make a donation or a payment on your account through the website.  

* Please consult your tax advisor concerning the specific kinds of donations you claim on your Federal Tax form. 

* Your generous gift to OC benefits your congregation and may lower your Federal Tax liability. 

* Please consider a gift to any of our other worthwhile funds before the end of 2011.

Kids at School Hanukkah Package: Edible Menorahs

Blanket Mitzvah


Shabbat and Holiday 

Service Schedule

Shabbat Window 
January 6: 7:30 PM Shabbat Service 
January 7: 10:00 AM Bar Mitzvah - Jacob Berg
January 13:
7:30 PM Naming Shabbat Service
January 20:  7:00 PM Shabbat Service with 6th Grade Participation
January 21: 10:00 AM Bat Mitzvah - Mei-lin Sloan
January 27: No Shabbat Service at Or Chadash
February 3: 7:00 PM  Shabbat Shira/Music Service with 5th, 6th and 7th Grade Participation
February 4: 10:00 AM Bar Mitzvah - Daniel Tiber

Educational Enrichment Fund

David Sheydwasser


General Contribution

Joe Fuhrman, in appreciation of Student Cantor Kathy Gohr, Liz Tracey, Rabbi Forman and Betsy Zalaznick; in honor of Annie Fuhrman becoming a Bat Mitzvah


Oneg Fund 

Ray Blumenfeld & Audrey Hackel, in honor of Thuy Blumenfeld becoming a Bat Mitzvah on 12/3/11

Vladislav & Alla Fishbeyn, in honor of Michelle becoming a Bat Mitzvah on December 3, 2011



Neil & Nancy Altshuler, in memory of Marilyn Altshuler 


Ner Shel Tzedakah

Larry & Beatrice Abrams

Steve & Susan Albert

Chris & Leslie Hann

Alan Hecht & Maria Jose De La Hoz

Randy Price

Stephen & Diana Propper

Gary & Debbie Weiss

Bruce & Betsy Zalaznick 

Eric & Naomi Zwerling

yahrzeit photo

Upcoming Yahrzeits

May the memories of the following individuals be for a blessing:

January 6
Julius Antelman
father of Doug Antelman
Harry Hackel
father of Audrey Hackel
William Schwartz
father of Donna Zubek 

January 13
Samuel Alpert
father of Evelyn Hersch
Jay Antelman
brother of Doug Antelman
Abraham Boll
father of Maxine Boll-Hughes
Morris Fetner
uncle of Bruce Zalaznick
Joseph Sandler
father of Jeff Sandler

January 20 
Suzanne Bacal 
sister of Jane Stein
Max Eisenberg 
grandfather of Gary Brodsky
Frieda Eisler 
mother of Connie Smith
Harry Mayer Hirsch 
great grandfather of Betsy Zalaznick

January 27 
Hannah Blumenfeld 
mother of Ray Blumenfeld 
Beth Gold Soodik 
mother of Harvey Gold
Albert Leon 
great grandfather of Betsy Zalaznick
Pearl Marder 
mother of Susan Blaicher
Carolyn McAllister 
mother of Rachel and Jordan Strauss
Rae Weil 
grandmother of Paul Weil
Leonard Weiss 
father of Gary Weiss

February 3 
Gwendolen Barrow 
mother of Ruth Crawford
Leonard Hendler 
uncle of Yevette Hendler
Myra Rascover 
great grandmother of Susan Albert
Isaac Sacks 
cousin of Carolyn Sansevere
Ralph Sacks 
father of Carolyn Sansevere

February 10
Anthony Mazzocchi
brother in law of Sherrie Mazzocchi
Margaret Mazzocchi
mother in law of Sherrie Mazzocchi
Julie Speizer
sister of Louis Speizer
Sidonia Wolf
grandmother of Susan Albert

NFTY in Israel


Teen summer programs in Israel are recognized not only as spectacular opportunities for fun and friendship but as defining and transforming Jewish growth experiences as well. All those who care deeply about ensuring a vibrant Jewish future appreciate the impact of a substantive Israel program on young people.

What can you expect your children to accomplish during their summer in Israel? What are the benefits of this wonderful opportunity?

Click here to find out!


Rabbi's Message


Dear members of Or Chadash, 


I hope all of you have been enjoying the holiday season in health and with family or friends. This is typically a quiet time for Or Chadash, but as you can see from the Newsletter, much has been happening at OC. In fact, the Reform Movement has been pretty busy this month, as well. More on that in a bit. 


I hope you will take some time to read the articles from our president, educator and student cantor. I am excited that we have a team of dedicated individuals who help make OC such a vibrant community. As they work toward strengthening our Jewish living, they have each shared a bit of their own Jewish thoughts and experiences. Liz Tracey, our Religious Practices chairperson, and I are particularly excited that this month we begin our explorations of and introduction to a new prayerbook for our worship services. This month 30 copies of Mishkan T'filah: A Reform Siddur, the newest prayerbook published by the Reform Movement's Central Conference of American Rabbis, arrived at OC. We hope you will consider dedicating one or more of them. I will be offering a class in the new year on the prayerbook, its history and development, and we will examine how this new publication is a remarkably different kind of prayerbook. We will not be using it every week, but I will keep you informed so you can join in our shared discoveries.


And now back to the Union for Reform Judaism, the congregational arm of our Reform Movement. For nearly a week, over 6000 Reform Jews gathered for the Biennial, held this year just outside Washington, D.C. President Barak Obama spoke, as did Ehud Barak, past president of Israel. Rabbi Eric Yoffie gave a magnificent retirement address, and Rabbi Rick Jacobs was installed as the new president, sharing his vision for the future. So many of the workshops, addresses, and programs are available to watch on-line. Click here for some of the Biennial highlights. I encourage you especially to watch President Obama share his deep respect of Reform Judaism and his daughter Malia's connection to Judaism as she attends Bar and Bat Mitzvah services and celebrations each week!


Again, thanks for all that each of you does to enrich our wonderful congregation. I wish all of you a happy and healthy secular new year.



Rabbi Joseph M. Forman 

President's Message

Jeff BergOr Chadash, the Reform Temple of Hunterdon County, offers a caring and inclusive congregation that prays together, builds Jewish community through acts of Tikkun Olam, shares life's events and provides education for all ages.


Recently the Board of Trustees approved an updated mission statement for Or Chadash which you see above.  I want to thank Caryn Tomljanovich, our Vice-President,and the full Board for their thoughtful effort here.  Our mission statement says a lot about who we are as a congregation, and I believe this updated version succinctly captures the essence of what we are all about.


I hope you reflect on our new mission statement and find it resonates with you.  Its message is that prayer, community, sharing and lifelong-learning are the key ingredients that make Or Chadash special.   

My wife, Christine, and I are preparing - along with our son, Jacob - for a Bar Mitzvah celebration.  Having a child of Bar Mitzvah age highlights to me how all four components of our mission statement gel around one singular event, which the new mission statement so vividly captures.  Becoming a Bar or Bat Mitzvah is a milestone event for both the child and the family, as well as for the congregation as a whole.  It highlights years of education and asks the child to commit his/her self to the study of Torah and to perform acts of Tikkun Olam.  Lastly, and most importantly, it is a call on the congregation to pray together in celebration.  

Please consider joining me and my family
at Or Chadash at 10:00AM on January 7, 2012, as my eldest becomes a Bar Mitzvah -- or attending any upcoming B'nai Mitzvah.  I know the B'nai Mitzvah families would be honored to see their congregational family in attendance as they celebrate this wonderful event.


Jeff Berg


Educator's Message

Betsy NYC.jpg

At our monthly Board of Trustees meeting, a Board member volunteers to deliver the D'var Torah (literally, words of the Torah) about that week's Torah portion.    


I wanted to share with you some of the thoughts I prepared for the the December 13, 2011 Board meeting--which fell, a few weeks post Thanksgiving and a week before Hanukkah, a perfect time for thinking of gratitude and dedication.  

I feel very grateful for the opportunities I have had and feel thankful for what I have achieved.  Some days more so than others.  


On Sunday I learned that one of our tenth graders, Aiden Lewy is taking a course at Hunterdon Central called Leadership and Philanthropy---which is very similar to the Teen Philanthropy program, under the direction of the URJ'sYouth Engagement Initiative we are piloting with our 8th, 9th and 10th grade classes. Aiden thought this was totally cool.   Me too. It turns out Central's curriculum is completely aligned with what we are doing at Or Chadash.


Click here to read the rest of the D'var Torah.  


Best wishes for a 2012 filled with good health and happiness.



Betsy Zalaznick


Message from the Student Cantor

Kathy Gohr

It's hard to believe that I have served as student cantor at Or Chadash for six months already. It feels as if I have been here for much longer than that.  In that time I have assisted in eight B'nei Mitzvah, reassembled the community choir and become a presence in the Religious School.  I have been a part of the Hanukkah celebration weekend where we kindled the lights of the hanukkiah .  The warmth and welcome this congregation has extended to me over this brief time has touched me deeply; I have been blessed to become a part of a community that feels more like an extended family. 


As many of you know, I live in Allentown, PA, so I thought I would use this opportunity to give you a glimpse of my life across the Delaware.  I moved to Allentown from West Michigan six years ago after losing my secular position as a field representative, a fate shared by many others in my area. It had been my dream to become more involved in synagogue music, so at the suggestion of some good friends in this area I moved eastward and have never regretted the decision. 


As some of you may know, I share my home with a variety of furred and feathered creatures.  Accompanying me in my move were three parrots and a dog.  They have served as my constant companions, each with their own personalities and peculiarities.  I also have taken to raising finches in the last couple of years, and they fill my home with song.  Having offered Torah tutoring over the internet, those who have met with me via webcam have had the opportunity to meet some of my feathered friends.


As each future Temple Newsletter is published I hope to continue to give you a glimpse of who I am outside of Temple, as well as keep you informed of my activities within the community.  Once again, I feel totally blessed to have become a part of such a warm, growing congregation. May the new year bring blessings, health and spiritual prosperity to us all.



Kathy Gohr

Important Dates to Remember
Sundays, January 22 and 29: OCTY Clothing Drive

Saturday, January 28: 8:45 AM - URJ East District Shabbaton

Sunday, January 29: 4:00 PM - First of Three Screenings of the Hunterdon Synagogues Jewish Film Festival.  Showing 3 short Israeli Films at Or Chadash.
URJ East District Shabbaton, Saturday, January 28
East District URJ Shabbaton
January 28, 2012

Congregation B'nai Jeshurun
1025 S. Orange Avenue
Short Hills, New Jersey 07078
$36 for this day of food for the body, mind & soul  (includes a 3% donation of our food costs to MAZON)

Click here for more information and to register to attend.


Hunterdon Synagogues Jewish Film Festival
The Synagogues of Hunterdon County, co-sponsored by the Sara and Shimon Birnbaum JCC in Bridgewater, are having a Jewish film festival.  Each location will be showing a Jewish film (or films) on the following dates:

Or Chadash: Sunday, January 29 at 4:00 PM

Chabad in Clinton: Wednesday, February 8 at 7:30 PM

Flemington JCC: Thursday, February 23 at 7:00 PM

At the first screening, Or Chadash will be showing 3 short Israeli films.  We hope to see you there!



In Our Community

Refuah Sh'leima (Get well) to...
Evelyne Hersch 
Don Corey, father of Faith Fuhrman
Cathy Peckman, mother of Gary Peckman 

Todah Rabbah (Thank You to)... 

Cindy Stoter for organizing the December 16th special Hanukkah oneg.


Everyone who brought latkes to the December 16th Hanukkah oneg.  Thank you for making it such a success and wonderful time for all.


Our Guitarists on Friday night, December 16 and Sunday morning, December 18: Dave Lewy, Ross Weinick and Josh Tracey. 


Ira Breines for his delicious homemade applesauce.  It has become a beloved Or Chadash tradition!

Darren Loew and the brotherhood for cooking latkes at the Sunday, December 18th Hanukkah celebration.

The Erkkila Family for carrying on the tradition of edible dreidels at the Sunday, December 18th Hanukkah celebration.

David Orlans for injectible sufganiyot (jelly donuts).

Joshua Witzling, Jack Weiner and their families for ushering at the Saturday, January 7 morning service.


B'ruchim HaBa'im...We welcome our newest members and RSO families


Edward and Renee Tyler: Edward and Renee join us from Pottersville, NJ with their children Danielle (10th Grade) and Ethan (8th Grade).      


John and Maria Gendelman: John and Maria join us from Flemington, NJ.  


In order to help us be a more caring community, please share your lifecycle events with Rabbi Forman


Feel free to click on a hyperlink to send a note and let someone know you are thinking about them.


Hanukkah Celebration Pics Up on Web!

Click here to see more photos from our
Hanukkah celebration!
Winners of the "Guess How Many Dreidels" Game

Congratulations to our winners of the "guess how many dreidels are in the jar" game:
Nadia Belkin
Fox Shreiber
Matthew Lifshitz
Evan Tomljanovich
Jacob Berg - Bar Mitzvah
Jacob Berg will become a Bar Mitzvah on January 7. He is the son of Jeffrey and Christine Berg and an older brother to Jonatha and Dylan. Jacob is a seventh grader at Clinton Public School where his favorite subjects are math and gym. He loves sports and plays soccer and basketball for the school team as well as football for the Junior Lions. For his Mitzvah Project, Jacob enjoyed teaching little kids enrolled in the Flag Football League at the YMCA. His Torah Portion, Vayachi, contains part of the story of Joseph, who was sold into slavery by his brothers. Jacob is looking forward to celebrating his Bar Mitzvah with friends and family.
Mei-lin Sloan - Bat Mitzvah

Mei-lin Gong Sloan will become a Bat Mitzvah on January 21. She is the daughter of Victor S. Sloan and Sandra Gong and the older sister of An-lin Sloan.  Mei-lin is a seventh grader at J.P. Case Middle School.  She loves reading, science, going on dinosaur digs, visiting museums and playing the piano.  She is a second Dan black belt in Tae Kwan Do.  Mei-lin's Mitzvah project was collecting donated bicycles and sewing machines for Pedals for Progress (, which sends them overseas for transportation to jobs, markets and schools, and for economic development. Mei-lin's Torah portion, Va-era, from the book of Exodus, includes the first 6 plagues.  She is looking forward to celebrating her Bat Mitzvah with her friends and family. 

OCTY Clothing Drive - January 22 and January 29
OCTY Nov 2011OCTY (Or Chadash Temple Youth) was hard at work in November having fun and coming up with ideas for more community service and fun for the upcoming year.

The next event they will be sponsoring is a clothing drive.

January 22 and January 29
9:00 AM to 12:30 PM

at Or Chadash

They will be collecting gently used clothing including coats, scarves, gloves, pants, dresses and tops. All donations will be going to the Salvation Army in Flemington.

For more information or questions, contact Erika Lewy.
Lifelong Learning
Jewish Life
JCC Place to Be






Falafel & Films, Thursday, January 26, 6:30 p.m. at the Birnbaum JCC in Bridgewater. Our first Falafel & Films night was enjoyed so much we're doing it again! Join us for a Falafel dinner and view three films presented by Ma'Aleh School of Television Film & the Arts in Jerusalem: Willingly, A Jeru­salem Tale and Luz. Details on each film are available on the JCC website: Fee: $10/person in advance and $15 at the door. Call the JCC at 908-725-6994 x201 to register.


Save the date...Mary Zamore, author of The Sacred Table: Creating a Jewish Food Ethic Thursday, February 9, 7 p.m. at the Birnbaum JCC in Bridgewater.


Jewish LIFE
Click on the Jewish LIFE page or call the JCC 908-725-6994


Click here for the complete season guide. 


Jewish Family Services

Jewish Family ServicesJFS is a non-profit, non-sectarian social service agency whose mission is to preserve and strengthen the quality of individual, family and community life based on Jewish values. We provide our services to a diverse socio-economic client population that includes individuals, children, young adults, families and the elderly.

 Click here for information on additional services.