May 2015 - 5774

Volume LXIII #8

Member of the Union For Reform Judaism


Congregation Shalom is a Reform Jewish community committed to education, spiritual growth, and Tikkun
Olam (healing the world).  We are proud to be an extended family of equals - welcoming, caring, and inclusive.
 Together, we engage in religious observance, enjoy social activities, and pursue life-long learning.
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Rabbi From our Rabbirabbi

Dear Friends:


Each May we have some very special Shabbat services and this year is no exception.  On May 1st at the 7:00 p.m. Family Shabbat, we will be honoring our wonderful teachers and madrichim as we do each year at Teacher Appreciation Shabbat. May 15th is our Graduation Shabbat and during this service several of our Chai School seniors will speak about their Jewish journeys as well as offering us their thoughts about moving on to the next stage of their lives.  On May 22nd, 14 of our tenth graders will be Confirmed. These teens have been working hard on creating a beautiful ceremony of Confirmation whose theme is "Growth". Each of these services is special and they really highlight how essential Jewish learning is to our community. We hope to raise our young members to envision a lifetime of Jewish learning. Our teachers are wonderful mentors and, as we hear our young adults speak about their experiences at Congregation Shalom, we have much to be proud of, and, most of all, to feel a sense of hope for the Jewish people.


Then, we offer a horse of a different color! Yes - on May 29th  at the 6:00 p.m. Sunset Shabbat, Congregation Shalom will be having its first ever "Sneaker Shabbat!". More details will definitely follow, but in short our community will gather (weather permitting) at our Chelmsford Community garden plot for a short Shabbat service and celebration. This is a kick-off to our members' efforts to once again grow food that can be shared with those in need. Please join us for this fun service and help us create new traditions. Again, more details will follow.


Warm regards,

Stephen Rodman's photoFrom our PresidentBarryTop    


Dear Friends:


Our Annual Meeting will be held this year on Sunday, May 17 at 4:30 in the afternoon. After the success of meetings the past couple of years, we will continue with the same format. From 4:30 until approximately 5:10, we will be holding a social gathering with refreshments. After the long winter months, this affords our members an opportunity to "catch-up" with each other, renew relationships, and simply to socialize.


Thereafter, we will get down to the business of Congregation Shalom. We will review our finances for the past year, vote on a budget for the 2015-2016 fiscal year, discuss issues and opportunities facing the congregation, and vote on a slate of officers and trustees.


We will continue to publish the agenda, minutes from the prior year's meeting, president's report and committee reports in the "members only" section of the temple website prior to the meeting so that all members can be properly informed of pertinent issues prior to the meeting.


I hope to see each and every member at the meeting, on Sunday, May 17th at 4:30.



From Our Education Directoreddir  


I am writing this article just one day before Yom Hashoah, Holocaust Remembrance Day and, while by the time this article is published, Yom Hashoah 5775 will be over, the invaluable learning that I witnessed in our Chai Holocaust class compelled me to write this article. Our students were not only focused on what happened during the Nazi era, but they also were engaged in the important exploration of lessons the Holocaust offers us today.


I could start and end my article by saying that when this class came to the end of their allotted class time and I said it is time to leave, no one moved and everyone asked for "just 5 more minutes." This in itself is amazing - teenagers who are so engaged that they do not want to leave a classroom is every educator's dream. I could also tell you that, at the first class, the teacher asked how many facts the students knew about the Holocaust and she recorded that the class knew 9 important facts. Words like six million Jews killed, Adolph Hitler, Nazis, other Victims (homosexuals, handicapped), swastika, Concentration Camps, Anne Frank, allies of Germany (Japanese, Italians), Germany's economic problems were all discussed. On the last day of class, the students listed over 30 concepts they had learned. But what stood out to me was not just that the words were important, but rather that the students felt obligated to reflect on their lives today and how the lessons of the past could influence their worlds as American teenagers. The students delved deep into the ideas behind prejudice and intolerance. They learned about greed, denial, deception, popularity, and propaganda and they learned how these words were central to the Nazi regime. Our class, under the amazing tutelage of Amy Degen, explored not just the facts but also the underlying reasons behind hatred and bigotry and they were able to connect this to the world today.


I could continue for a long time about the values that this Holocaust class offers our students, but I feel that their words are the best reflection of the learning that occurred. Amy asked the students what bystander behavior looks like and why people are bystanders in different situations. Amy made the clear and discernible link between what it was to be a bystander during the Nazi regime and how we could learn from this in our lives today. Our Chai Schoolers thought about why people may be bystanders and their words reflected the complexities that being a bystander suggests. The students explored what the implications of being a bystander would be. Once again the students' own words are the best reflection of their work. Concepts they expressed included: fear about being emotionally or physically hurt; lazy; unaware/oblivious; feel forced and/or afraid to tell anyone; not my problem; I am not doing anything; doesn't realize the extent it could go to; becomes the norm; nothing will change; can't make a difference; no one cares; blame the victim; benefit to being quiet - gain something from someone else's loss or pain. These observations serve to highlight the deep thinking that these students engaged in during this class.


Once again I am reminded of how lucky I am to be a part of a community of educators and students who bring the past history of the Jewish people into our present day lives in ways that resonate with our students, because they are the future teachers that will keep the past alive.
  Yael Signature


Please click here to read previous columns on our website. 

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Social Action Committeesocialaction


Successful March Diaper and Baby Goods Drive

Thank you to all our members who contributed to our March diaper and baby goods drive to benefit the Lowell Wish Project. Through your generosity, we donated 48 rattles that were used as Purim groggers, as well as over 500 diapers, articles of clothing, and baby care items to needy families in Lowell.


Red Cross Blood Drive at Temple on May 18

Congregation Shalom will once again host a blood drive on Monday May 18, from 2 to 7 p.m. Volunteers are needed to help set up, staff, and clean up the drive. If you are interested in volunteering, please email If you would like to donate blood, please sign up at and enter in Congregation Shalom's zip code (01863) to be directed to our location to sign up.


"Sneaker Shabbat" at Chelmsford Community Garden, Friday May 29, 6 p.m.

Come join us at the beautiful Chelmsford Community Garden at Sunny Meadow Farm for an outdoor Sunset Shabbat on Friday, May 29 at 6 p.m. The garden is located on Robin Hill Road in Chelmsford. We will have a service, followed by the chance to plant the first of our congregation's crops in our new plot location in the gardens. We are looking forward to showing the garden to members who may not have had the chance to visit yet, and to encouraging more members to join in the care and harvest of our crops this summer. Dress casual and come prepared to enjoy digging and planting!


Mitzvah Day is coming:  Sunday, June 7

The Social Action Committee is busy planning this year's Mitzvah Day, a congregation-wide day of social action. This year we are planning a day of offsite activities for all ages at the Paul Center in Chelmsford. Stays tuned for more details, but hold the date and plan to join us for a day of community and tikkun olam!


Monthly Food Donations for Middlesex Transitional Living Center

Congregation Shalom is collecting food for the Lowell Transitional Living Center (LTLC). It is easy to help out with this mitzvah. Donations of meatloaf, and/or brownies and/or salad are accepted each month. There will be a cooler chest located by the doors of Congregation Shalom. Simply place your donation in the cooler and know that you have done a good deed! The food will be collected and brought to the Lowell Transitional Living Center in Lowell, where our donations are greatly appreciated each month. You can leave your donations in the cooler beginning on Wednesday, May 13 through Thursday, May 14. June dates will be June 17-18 - mark your calendar now.


Volunteer at Table of Plenty in Chelmsford

Congregation Shalom is part of a team of volunteers at the Table of Plenty in Chelmsford, an organization that serves a free meal to all, no questions asked, every Tuesday from 5-6 p.m. at the First Parish Unitarian Universalist Church in Chelmsford Center. Our team serves every other month on the third Tuesday, and will next serve on May12. If you have time to volunteer during the afternoon on Tuesdays and would like to take part, please send an email to and put Linda Newhard's name in the subject line.


Questions? Need more information? Please contact


Fundraising Committeefundraising


It's up to you!

The proverbial ball is in your court.  Raffle tickets are in your hands and how much the winner takes home is up to you. The more tickets sold, the more the pot grows. The past few years, the winning ticket had a price tag of over $500.  Not bad for a $10 or $20 investment. And, if you don't win, that's okay too - you helped your synagogue.


We have an incredibly exciting event planned for the fall that includes kids, teens and adults. We need your services to help put this event together. It's fine if you want to help with this event but not be on the Fundraising Committee. Fundraising may not be your 'thing' but helping on a family 'affair' is, just say so. We accept all help.

Your Fundraising Committee


Blood Drive Volunteers Needed May 18thBloodDrive

No, I'm not asking for blood - someone else does that. I am asking for canteen volunteers (sitting at the refreshment table and monitoring those who donated blood). Also looking for Registration volunteers.


Donations start at 2 p.m. so canteen volunteers start 2:30 while Registration volunteers start at 1:45. Stints can run from one hour to several hours. Your choice - your decision.  Please contact with any questions or to volunteer your time.


Featured This Issue
Blood Drive
Choir Shabbat
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Save the Date


May 1  Teacher Appreciation Shabbat

May 17  Annual Meeting

May 18  Blood Drive

May 29  First ever Sneaker Shabbat

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QuickLinksQuick Links

Links to Our Website

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Choir Shabbat - Looking for Membersshabbat

Choir Shabbat will be June 12th at 8 p.m.


We have a new, energetic director who is going to lead the choir in an exciting program for Choir Shabbat on June 12th. Rehearsals begin in early May and all are welcome. No prior choral experience or ability to read Hebrew required, just enthusiasm. If interested, please contact Phyllis Howard at .

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thankyou ThankYou

Dear Friends,

It is with deepest appreciation that we thank so many of you who visited, sent cards or made donations following the passing of Colin's father. Even during a difficult time we are reminded how fortunate we are to have a community of friends around us.

Thank you.

 Colin, Riki, Rebecca and Jillian MacKillop


Thank you so much to our many friends at Congregation Shalom for the cards, phone calls, and donations due to the passing of Peter's mother and Liz's grandmother. We are blessed to be part of such a wonderful community!

  Peter, Liz & Brett Denly


Thank you to all our temple friends who made donations in memory of our mother, Alice Truitt. It was comforting to know so many of you were caring and thoughtful.

  Joanne and Mitch Hyatt


Thank you all very much for your condolences on the recent passing of my father, Morris Wyszogrod, of blessed memory, last month in Jerusalem. And thank you for all the donations in his honor. Marcia and I are very appreciative of your warm and supportive thoughts. My father was a Holocaust survivor, who turned a horrific and tragic youth into an amazing long lifetime of family, community, artistic creativity, Judaism and Zionism. As part of his commitment to "Zachor" (remember), he authored an autobiography about his Holocaust experiences entitled "A Brush With Death". Marcia and I are honored to donate a copy to the synagogue library. In addition, we are glad to be able to make our own donation to the temple in his honor.

  Barry Wyshogrod & Marcia Peisach


We appreciate all of the kind messages, generosity, and support following the passing of "Nana Pat", Paul's mother. It's so wonderful to be comforted by the CS community during challenging times.

With much gratitude,

  Paul, Toby, Hannah and Kylie Sedgwick

Good and Welfaregoodandwelfare

It is with a heavy heart that I write of the passing of Elizabeth Burke, mother of our member Debbie Notinger. Our deepest condolences go out to Debbie, Steve and their children.


It is with a heavy heart that I also write of the passing of Pat (Patricia) Sedgwick, mother of our member Paul Sedgwick. Our deepest condolences go out to Paul, Toby, Hannah, and Kylie, as well as their whole extended family.


It is with a heavy heart that I write of the passing of Shirley Grier, mother of our member Jim Grier. Our deepest condolences go out to Jim and Sharon as well as their whole extended family.


It is with a heavy heart that I also write of the passing of Carolyn Salus, mother of our member Shelly Toomey. Our deepest condolences go out to Shelly, Mark and David.


Newsletter Ads and You!


We are always looking for advertisers for the Temple newsletter. Ads can be placed at any time with special pricing for members. Ads need not be for a year so if you want to try us, we take ads for 3 months as well as six months. If you decide to continue your ad for a full year, we do pro-rate the price. As the saying goes, "Try us, you'll like us!"


Youth ScholarshipsYthScholar

Throughout the year, there are many enriching Jewish experiences available to our youth through our synagogue or the community. These include, but aren't limited to, summer camps and trips to Washington, New York, and Israel. Fortunately, there is some scholarship money available through the temple to those families in need of financial assistance for these opportunities. Please contact Margie Berenson at with any questions and/or for an application form. 

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Changed Your Address?

Notify us at and we'll make sure all the right organizations at the Temple are informed. Please include your full name in your request.

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Deadline for the

June Newsletter is

Thursday, May 21.


Please send articles to  


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Join Our Mailing List
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Sisterhood Newssisterhood


Sunday March 29th, several Sisterhood members carpooled down to Brookline and shopped for an assortment of Passover foods and supplies. We had lunch at Zaftigs and great conversation!


Over the weekend of April 10-12, 30 Sisterhood members gathered at Anchorage by the Sea in Ogunquit, Maine for the 16th annual Sisterhood Retreat. As always, an amazing time was had by all, with inspirational music played by Susan Horowitz and a program led by Rabbi Perry discussing Good Girls and Bad Girls in the Bible....or were they as they have been labeled? The theme was intertwined all weekend, challenging preconceptions. Thank you so much to Janet Dubner and her hardworking committee including Debbie McBride, Susan McHugh, and Becky Bronson.


Upcoming events:  Tuesday May 5th-Annual Meeting/Dinner with the Rabbi. 6:30 p.m., Congregation Shalom. Agenda includes Dinner, Program with Rabbi Perry, vote to update By-Laws and presentation of Slate of 2015-2016 Officers.


Year End Dinner to be held on Wednesday, June 10th 6:30 p.m. - location TBD.


Donna Upson, Sisterhood Board 


Click here to view the Sisterhood calendar at our Congregation Shalom website.


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Brotherhood Newsbrotherhood

The 2014-2015 fiscal year ends in June, so it is planning time for next year. The new slate is being developed and will be announced in mid-May and introduced at our Annual Meeting on Sunday May 3rd. Please come out and join us for this important and tasty event.


April has meant Brotherhood was busy creating a batch of temple brewed and home bottled beer. While we bottled the beer, we each had a small taste and it was of a very high quality. Special thanks to Jerry Lotto and team for heading up this two part event! Sampling will be available for all at the Annual meeting.


The Annual Brotherhood Cape Cod Retreat is going to take place May 15th to May 17th and Mel has the menu mostly worked out for this Brotherhood favorite. As a first timer, I am impressed by the entire group's energy and enthusiasm for what I assure you will be a memorable time!


Mark Burton has holstered his type writer, having authored this year's Brotherhood News segments. A heartfelt thank you to Mark for his passion and commitment to keep our membership informed!


David Ebersman, Brotherhood President
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Hello everyone!


In light of recent events, I'd like to thank all of the adults who have supported The Shalomites over the last few months, particularly those who assisted with the production of the Purim Carnival and NFTY Northeast's Spring Conclavette, two of our biggest events this year. Your help has been absolutely invaluable, and we look forward to closing out the 2014-2015 year just as strong as in years previous.


The slating process for next year's Executive Board has officially begun; details are available in our private Facebook group or in the email sent out by Rabbi Perry. We will be having an informational meeting for all parents and Shalomites interested in board positions or in the slating process on April 29th at 5:30 p.m. I am also available to talk anytime regarding personal questions or concerns.


Thanks to all who came to our Glow Bowling event! It was a huge success, and we had a great time with some friendly competition, as well as pizza and cake in our own private party room. We're looking forward to our next event, which will be spending a day trampolining and rock climbing at Altitude on May 1.


Thanks again for the incredible support, and I'm looking forward to a positive spring and summer in our youth group.



Hannah Muhlfelder, The Shalomites President 


Click here to view the Shalomites calendar at our Congregation Shalom website.


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Caring Yarns Yearlong ProjectCaringYarns   

Calling all knitters! We have a project for you that can be finished in one evening while watching TV. We have a pattern for making slippers for women that we will take to the Lowell Women's Shelter. The pattern comes in 3 sizes, requires size 9 needles, 2 stitch markers, a yarn needle and one skein of worsted weight (#4) yarn. You can make a few sets with this one skein.  Please click here for the pattern.

We will be working on this project through next summer. Thanks for joining us in this project.


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End of School Parties? Graduations?  


Or, if you are celebrating the sight of the green grass again and need to buy some groceries, just remember to help the temple at the same time!


Just look in the lobby on Sunday AMs during religious school or email Judy Beningson at and I will get you a card in whatever denomination you need: $25-$500! Hannaford, Stop & Shop and Donelan's all have programs to help us. THANK YOU.

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iGiveiGive for Congregation Shalom
Have you ever thought how great it would be to be able to shop online at 783 different well-known stores and still donate money to Congregation Shalom?  Well, you can do that!  It's free and easy so join those of us who have been sending donations to the synagogue for years simply by shopping by first going to the iGive website once you have established the link.  Click here to register for Congregation Shalom to automatically be the recipient cause.
If you make a purchase through iGive within 45 days of signing up, an extra $5.00 will go to Congregation Shalom.  If you have any questions, please contact Laura at


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May Yahrzeitsyahrzeits


Nettie Bernstein, Claire Goldie, Israel Helfman, James Lieberman, Max Rambach, Janice Riseman, Hyman Scolnick, Renee Zwerin



Doris Halpern, Esther Heckel, Norman Josett Sr. , Nancy Lev, Albert Picard



Edward Brown, Dorothy Caplan, Lillian Indorf, Linda Kaknes, Pearl Kurland, Ellen Muhlfelder, Alexander Salgo, Louis Shamesman, Frances Sudhalter



Martin Ames, Harold Goldstein, Philip Heines, Etta Kerzner, Beverly Matson, Irving Park, Faith Ward, Ida Weisberger

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ExtendedCommunityExtended Community

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Join in on the Jewish Camp Experience this Summer!




Please click here for a summary of Jewish Summer Camps in our area.  You'll find contact info for all of them.








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from the Merrimack Valley Jewish Federation ...


Family Film and Sundae Party

"An American Tail"

Sunday, May 3, 2015, 2:00 p.m.

Adults $10, Children $5, Under age 2 free

All children must be accompanied by an adult


Adult Double Feature

"Deli Man" and "Above and Beyond"

Sunday, May 31, 2015, 2:00 p.m.

$18.00 per person (2 films)

All films will be shown at Osgood Landing
1580 Osgood Street, No. Andover


Purchase tickets at

Questions, call 978-688-0466.

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Table of Plenty in Chelmsford

Free Dinner Served

Every Tuesday from 5:00 - 6:00 p.m.

at First Parish Unitarian Universalist Church in Chelmsford Center


All are welcome. No questions asked.

Also, if you know of someone who cannot get out,

but would benefit from a dinner being delivered to them, please contact us.


For more information contact:



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From the Visiting Nurse Association of Boston & Affiliates...


VNA Hospice Care needs volunteers! Hospice volunteers play a key role in helping to provide caring and compassion to patients and families facing life-limiting illness and loss. A volunteer may provide patients with company and emotional support, give the spouse, partner or other caregiver a needed break from care giving, and/or help caregivers run errands or get to and from appointments. A strong need exists for volunteers who can visit on weekdays. We also seek: musicians who would like to sing or play music quietly at the bedside of nursing home residents; Reiki practitioners who would like to offer Reiki to patients and/or caregivers; and people interested in visiting with their therapy dog. Volunteers who speak both English and a second language are also helpful. We provide volunteer training and ongoing support. Call 781-569-2888 and ask to speak to a Volunteer Coordinator for more information. Or email


Spiritual Poetry Journal


"Soul-Lit" is a new on-line spiritual poetry journal. A number of entries have been from Jews and have Jewish content. Writers are encouraged to submit their own poems which have a level of spiritual content to them. Two volumes have already been published.


To check out the website, please click here.


Please spread the word to members of the community who are writers / poets, and who may wish to submit their own writings.



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Please support our Congregation Shalom advertisers

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 new QPL ad Nov 2012
new Morse Bayliss ad
Dan Dubner new business card double
BethEl Cemetery
Sharon Grier Business Card 2011
Sky Meadow