May 1, 2014
Rosh Chodesh Iyar 5774
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In This Issue
Shabbat Emor
Youth and Family Activities
Learning Opportunities
Shabbat Emor

Words often conceal the origins of the idea they denote.

Etymology and meaning diverge and thus confound. A good example relates to a halakhic fragment in this week's parashah. I refer to the verb "to glean." The word denotes minimal gain through hard work. Basically an agricultural term, it conjures up an image of beggars at harvest time gathering whatever remains in the field after reaping. From there the meaning expands to any activity, physical or mental, that involves collecting painstakingly individual items of the same order from disparate quarters.

The etymology of the word "glean" may be medieval English or even Celtic, but the idea itself hails directly from the Torah, but one of many scattered throughout the fabric of western civilization. Without the biblical context, the social value that inheres in the word remains unilluminated. The practice of leaving gleanings in the field for the poor is adramatic example of the extent to which faith is a seedbed for charity in Judaism and later in Christianity.

In our parashah, we read an abbreviated version of a law first enunciated in last week's parashah. "And when you reap the harvest of your land, you shall not reap all the way to the edges of your field, or gather the gleanings of your harvest; you shall leave them for the poor and the stranger: I the Lord am your God" (Leviticus 23:22). Omitted is the parallel injunction pertaining to the harvesting of your vineyard: "You shall not pick your vineyard bare, or gather the fallen fruit of your vineyard"(19:10).

Bearing the Plight

The spirit of both verses is identical: at the very moment when we are overcome with a sense of entitlement, we should bear the plight of others less fortunate in mind. No matter how hard we labored and worried to bring in this harvest, it does not belong wholly to us. Our personal blessing carries a measure of social responsibility. God forbids us from harvesting our crop down to the last stalk or shoot. There are first some withholding taxes to be paid.

According to the Mishnah, they take three forms: leqet, shikheha and peah. Leqet consists of gleanings dropped while harvesting. Shikheha comprises that which is inadvertently left behind in the field when the crop is transferred indoors, a sheaf of wheat or a bundle of hay. Both leqet and shikheha then pass into the public domain, irretrievably. As for peah, it is a portion of the field, at least one-sixtieth, not to be harvested at all, but left standing for the indigent. In sum, the Rabbis render concrete the ethical impulse that engendered the biblical injunction.

Two other features of that injunction are noteworthy. First, it is largely unenforceable. Compliance is a matter of personal choice. There is no provision for a horde of bureaucrats to sweep through the fields to exercise oversight. Much of what is expected is in fact beyond measure because it is utterly subjective. The ordinance projects an ideal of mutual responsibility attainable only if internalized by each landowning member of the community, which is why the 


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for additional insights on this week's parsha and others, visit The JTS Torah Commentary archive:

May Their Memories Be For a Blessing 

May Yahrtzeits 

5/2/2014 (2 Iyar)                   Avraham Gershon Wygoda, Devorah Leah Wygoda

5/3/2014 (3 Iyar)                 

Anne Altshuler

5/5/2014 (5 Iyar)                  

Allen Charlupski, 

Lillian Ruth Levin 

Lillian Sonenshein 

Aaron Wineberg

5/6/2014 (6 Iyar)                  

Max Nusbaum

5/7/2014 (7 Iyar)                  

Irving Victor 

5/8/2014 (8 Iyar)                  

Imre Erdos

Sarah Kurland Fridenberg

Edith Miller 

5/9/2014 (9 Iyar)                  

Robert Perry Schloss

5/10/2014 (10 Iyar)              

Gabor Fenyes

Marc Silverman

5/11/2014 (11 Iyar)              

Avrum Greenbaum

Gertrude Greenbaum

5/12/2014 (12 Iyar)              Evelyn Graub

5/15/2014 (15 Iyar)             

Marilyn Soverinsky 

5/18/2014 (18 Iyar)              

Sylvia Isaacs

5/19/2014 (19 Iyar)              

Rabbi Moshe Funk

5/20/2014 (20 Iyar)              

Pearl Mirkin

5/21/2014 (21 Iyar)              Abraham Joseph Kleinbard

5/23/2014 (23 Iyar)             

Jean Rappaport 

5/26/2014 (26 Iyar)              Maurice Gordon

5/29/2014 (29 Iyar)              

Ralph Levin

5/30/2014 (1 Sivan)             

Sarah Hurvich

5/31/2014 (2 Sivan)             Esther B. Goldenberg

Sandra G. Rose

To make a donation to commemorate a yahrtzeit, please click here.  If you are a member of the synagogue and a yahrtzeit for your loved one is not on the list, please contact the synagogue office so we can update our records.

   Please click here if you wish to permanently memorialize a loved one by purchasing a yahrtzeit plaque.  

Caring Community Information

Refuah Sh'leimah/Wishing a Speedy Recovery.  

Please e-mail Michael Golob or call the synagogue: 248-432-2729 to add a name to our communal mishebeirach list.   


Shiva assistance: To assist in providing a shiva meal for BI member families and/or if you are able to lead a shiva minyan, please e-mail the synagogue.

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phone:  248-432-2729
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Shabbat Emor
Friday, May 2nd
6 p.m. Minha/Kabbalat Shabbat/Maariv,
Saturday, May 3rd
9 a.m. Services, Sanctuary
10 a.m. Supervised Youth Room, lower level 
10:30 a.m. Shabbat Children's Workshop with Hillel Buechler
11 a.m.  Teen D'var Torah Cocoa Cafe, Social Hall 
Kiddush Lunch is sponsored by Chuck and Marcia Seigerman in honor of Chuck's 60th birthday, and by Jan and Henry Citron in honor of Jeff Lupovitch and Alissa Citron's 18th Wedding Anniversary.*
Interested in learning or polishing up on birkat  
hamazon? just click here! 
Click here to help with Kiddush Lunch
*Kiddush Lunch is available through donations to the Kiddush Lunch Fund, the generosity of weekly sponsors, and volunteer efforts of our congregants and regular attendees.  Please
e-mail or call the synagogue office if you would like to sponsor a kiddush lunch.To sponsor as part of a "group," please e-mail Joanna Abramson or Mindy Shuback. You may also make a donation to the Kiddush Lunch Fund by clicking here.To sign up to help prepare Kiddush Lunch please use the "volunteer spot" button above.
To Barbara and Irvin Kappy, Brandon and Michelle on the death of Barbara's father, Max Fischel.
To Leonard and Sharon Rosen on the death or Leonard's brother, Dr. Paul Ruza.
Baby Blocks
To Cheryl and Mitch Parker on the birth of a new grandson.  Mazel Tov to parents, Jonathan and Rina, and to big brother Adin.
SNL:  Saturday Night Learning.  
May 3rd, 8 p.m. at the home of Mitch and Cheryl Parker.  Text learning, light refreshments and havdalah.  Host homes will rotate weekly.  Please e-mail Mitch Parker if you plan to attend.
Community Opportunities

Macabbi 2014.  Registration is open for Artists/Athletes, Coaches, Host Families, Volunteers and Sponsors.  JCC Maccabi Hotline:  248-432-5500,

Walk for Israel 2014
Walk For Israel
Sunday, May 18th
Celebrate Yom Ha'Atzmaut (Israel Independence Day) with the greater Detroit Jewish Community.  Events include 5K Family Fun Run, Community Walk, free Jerusalem Pizza lunch.  Click on: for more information.

JVS Job Fair
Jewish Community 
Job Connection Event
Wednesday, May 14th
Oak Park JCC
7:30 a.m. - Noon.
Visit www.ActNow.Jobs to register for the event, review and apply for jobs with participating employers, and view schedule of upcoming workshops.

Bookstock 2014 
Sunday, April 27-Sunday, May 4th
Laurel Park Place, Livonia
 Used Book and Media Sale, Supporting the Need to Read  
Click for complete information.  
Special Event:  
Annie's Ghosts Annie's Ghosts:  A Journey into a Family Secret
Beth Luxenberg was an only child, or so everyone thought.  Six months after her death, the secret emerged . . . Annie.
Sponsored by Jewish Family Service and Jewish Federation
Monday, May 19th 
Intimate Eventing with author, Steve Luxenberg
Wednesday, May 21st
Afternoon Lunch and Learn with the author, JCC West Bloomfield.  Click here for event flyer.
For more information, visit or call 248-592-2301, or e-mail:

JTS Metro Detroit Gala
Thursday, May 29th, 5:30 p.m.
Adat Shalom Synagogue
B'nai Israel Synagogue honorees:  Ruth and Mark Webber.  Please call the JTS office:  248-258-055 for more information or register online:

Israel/JerusalemJerusalem, the IMAX movie
Sunday, June 1st, 2:50 p.m.
Henry Ford IMAX Theater 
Group ticket pricing available for B'nai Israel Synagogue members.  Please send your reservation directly to the synagogue by May 14th to receive group price of $9.00/ticket.  Meet at the Henry Ford IMAX at 2:15 p.m. to pick up your tickets.
Upcoming Youth and Family Activities
Family Night at Minyan, 
One Sunday/month.  
Bring your family to help make minyan at 5 p.m. and enjoy pizza dinner in the social hall following services. MARK YOUR CALENDAR:  6/1.

Upcoming Shabbat Youth Activities 

SHABBAT CHILDREN'S WORKSHOP DATES for youth ages 7-12. 30 minutes of tefilla and parsha fun. 

11-11:45 a.m., ROOM 9


for ages 13-17, 
 May 3rd. 11:00-11:45 a.m., Social Hall 
Listen to the D'var Torah in the main sanctuary, then give your take over cocoa and cider.  Kiddush lunch following, with Spirited singing and Birkat Hamazon led by teens. e-mail for more information.  FUTURE DATE:
To stay current on all youth and family activities, contact Ilana Glazier to join the B'nai Israel Families Facebook Group.
Learning Opportunities
Adult Education
"Reflections on the Siddur," with Dr. Mitch Parker
Saturdays, 11-11:45 a.m.
May 10 and 24    June 7 and 21
Mitch will focus on Ashrei, Aleinu, the Kaddish, Adon Olam, Yigdal, Hallel and Birkat Hamazon. 
Class meets in the lower level, Room 9.

Lunch and Learn Series 
with Hillel Buechler, Ramah Fellow lunch and learn
First Tuesday of every month
Next session:  12:15 p.m., May 7th.
Meet at Barnes and Noble on Orchard Lake Road Bring your own lunch.  There is no charge to attend.   Please e-mail Hillel Buechler if you plan to attend.

Shabbat Shiur Series
Shabbat Afternoons, last Saturday of the month following lunch and prior to minha. Shiur (class) will meet in the chapel.  All our welcome.  There is no charge to attend. 
Future Dates: May 10th, June 21st.  Click here for schedule and list of presenters. 
Want to brush up on your prayer skills, tropes or birkat hamazon? Click here.
Mazel Tov 
Happy Birthday!

Birthday Cake


1 Joe Rose

4 Rebecca Kaufman

Ilana Wolf

Gertrude Kershenbaum

6 Susan Knoppow

 6   Roy Rosen

 8   Geri Feigelson

 8   Howard Rosenberg

10  Jay Abramson

10  Armando Duer

10  Casey Ginsberg

11  Rhonda Duer

11  Paula Glazier

11  Rachel Jacobson

15  Marilyn Lantor

16  Trudy Jacobson

18  Gloria Ruskin

20  Linda Foster

21  Louise Lazarus

21  Megan Victor

22  David Feber

22  Karen Lovinger

23  Shai Ohana

26  Robin Rosen

27  Jay Kozlowski

28  Susan Birnholtz 

28  Hilda Hamburger

30  Jordan Rosen

31  Irvin Kappy 

31  Marlene Myers


Jewish Wedding

  4   Warren & De-De Robinson

  5   Herb & Marilyn Lantor

  6   Sandy & Sue Birnholtz

 20  Jay & Joanna Abramson

 25  Michael & Shelli Dorfman

 26  Jeffrey Lupovitch & Alissa Citron

28  David Saperstein & Susan Knoppow

29  Oscar & Adele Band

30  Ed & Fran Chudnow

30  Steve & Linda Jacobson

To make a donation in honor of someone's birthday or anniversary, please click here.

If your birthday or anniversary information is not listed, please email the synagogue so we can update our records.
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B'nai Israel Synagogue is affiliated with USCJ, United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism.