In This Issue
Rabbi's Message
December Education Program
Retreat in Ocean City
POWER Update
Member Birthdays
Member Yahrzeit
Looking Ahead
Salon Repeat Performance       
We're delighted that Marsha Hyman will be coordinating an encore Salon event, and that the Steel's are again graciously hosting this event. Those who attended last year's Salon can tell you what a lovely time was had by all. We hope to add more to this fundraising event with a Silent Auction/raffle to be coordinated by Evy Simon. Stay tuned for more information. 
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Leyv Ha-Ir Event Postings - will be posted by Beverly Hayden using the information on our web calendar.


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Contact Beverly or Bobbi if there are questions about the listserv.

Marking Lifecycle Events

Please remember Congregation Leyv Ha-Ir~Heart of the City when you have any occasion to send a greeting card to someone. 


While we are happy to receive contributions in any amount, for a minimum $10 contribution we will gladly send one of Marci Fleet's lovely art cards created for this purpose to the recipient of your choice.


Sue Frank will gladly send along either one of Marci's cards, or one she will customize based on your suggestions. Sue will also compose a note that carries your thought to the recipient.


Please use the 
contribution form on our website, which contains the mailing address for your contribution, PO Box 15836, Philadelphia PA 19103. You can also
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Be sure to join and visit Congregation Leyv Ha-Ir~Heart of the City's Facebook group


Jewish Exponent
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Voice Mail:

Dear Friend of Leyv Ha-Ir ~ Heart of the City,   


In the middle of the cold of winter it will benefit you even more to be warmed by community. And so we did in January. When Rabbi Julie's mother and Mike Meketon's father died, we rallied in great numbers to give support during memorial services. In return for being there we were given insights into these parents' amazing life stories and their inclusiveness and caring for others.


Now that the days are getting longer and the almond trees start blossoming in Israel, we look forward to another occasion of communal warmth. Our Retreat at the Shore, March 7-9, will be a great way to be with your LHI friends and stay warm!



Bobbi, Roby, Myrna Schlanger, Iris N. and Sandy 

Your Executive Committee


Saturday, February 1, 10:00 AM, Shabbat Morning Service

Join our lay-led minyan for a Shabbat morning service, Torah discussion and pot-luck veggie/dairy lunch.  

Location: Ethical Society, 1906 S. Rittenhouse Sq., second floor front.


Sunday, February 2, 11:00 AM - 1:00 PM, Engaging with Prayer:  Learning More, Leading More

Come for brunch and the first in our next education series with Rabbi Julie. See article below for more information. 

Location: Kennedy House Community Room, 1901 JFK Blvd., 30th Floor 

Members - $10, Guests - $15  

Pre-registration requested (not required) by contacting Evy Simon at or 215.561.7474


Monday, February 10, 7:00 PM, Council Meeting

All members are invited to our Council meeting.

Location: Pat Wisch's home. Call 215-563-1894 or email for exact location.


Friday, February 14, 6:30 PM, Home Shabbat Service and Dinner 

Join us at the new home of Frann Shore for a lay-led Friday night service followed by a pot-luck veggie/dairy dinner. Contact Frann at or 267-614-4012 to RSVP and to let her know what you'll be bringing, and to get her new apartment number.


Friday, February 21, 7:30 PM, Kabbalat Shabbat Service Honoring our Founding Members 

Rabbi Julie Greenberg will lead our Friday night service, with Cantorial Soloist Jessi Roemer and the Leyv Ha-Ir Choir. A special Generation to Generation ceremony will honor our Founding Members.
Location: Ethical Society, 1906 S. Rittenhouse Square, 1st Floor Auditorium     

Take a complete look at Congregation Leyv Ha-Ir upcoming activities. 

Rabbi Julie Official Photo

Dear Chevre,      


I've been appreciating what a gem our little congregation is at the heart of the city. Some current highlights are the wide range of learning, prayer, and social options available on our calendar; the excellent management and financial wellbeing of the congregation; and the community's sense of purpose in caring for our own members as well as for what needs to be healed in the world.


That sense of caring purpose is the essence of a Jewish community. We speak about the Jewish religion being a "practice" and that is because human beings literally have to practice being good to each other. Judaism offers us experience in holy community to help us develop the precious skills of menschlikeit/being good human beings.


If it were easy to always treat each other well, we would not need to practice these skills. But it is the opposite of easy. When you factor in different backgrounds, different levels of mental health and physical need, different levels of engagement, different needs and desires, different personalities, different strengths and weaknesses, you can see why we need to work at being kind, patient, forgiving and generous.


Being in community is a gift that can grow us all. Let's allow the strength of our community as a whole, to strengthen each one of us, to grow us, stretch us, mobilize us, inspire us, hold us and nurture us in growing Jewishly as good human beings.


With Love and Blessing,


Your Rabbi, Julie

Led by Rabbi Julie

Have you ever wondered what Jewish prayers mean or what the organizing principles are behind the order of the prayer service? Have you ever fantasized about leading your community in prayer? Wherever you are in relation to prayer, we have a class that offers a next step in understanding prayer and making it your own. This class will take you deeper into the special flavor of Shabbat, Purim and Passover. Join your community members in delving deeper into prayer with Rabbi Julie. Please bring a siddur/prayer book to class if you have one and bring them to share if you have more than one! Looking forward to learning together.

Engaging with Prayer:  Learning More, Leading More

Mark your calendars now for the first Sunday of the next 3 months:

Sunday, February 2 - Kennedy House Community Room
Sunday, March 2 - Kennedy House Community Room
Sunday, April 6 - Laura Jacobs' home

11 am - 1 pm

Members - $10;  guests - $15

Brunch included

Pre-registration requested (not required) to Evy Simon at or 215.561.7474.
Friday, March 7 - Sunday, March 9, 2014.   




Experience a spiritual, intellectual, and emotional adventure at this beautiful location at the seashore.


What will be happening?

  • Arrive at Port-O-Call after 3 pm Friday 
  • Candle lighting and Friday night dinner
  • Friday Kabbalat Shabbat services with Rabbi Julie
  • Evening Session: LIVING STORIES
  • Saturday morning breakfast
  • Saturday Shabbat services with Rabbi Julie
  • Saturday lunch
  • Afternoon workshop: LIVING STORIES
  • Purim Shpiel preparation
  • Free time
  • Dinner on your own
  • Saturday Havdalah service
  • Evening activities: comedy hour, biblio-drama, movie, singing, games, etc.
  • Sunday sunrise on the beach
  • Sunday breakfast
  • Closing activity
  • March Council Meeting
Together our community will explore what it means to participate and delight in Jewish Storytelling. After our Kabbalat Shabbat services Friday night, Evy and Daniel will lead us as we listen to some of our individual Jewish-related or secular stories.  The Saturday afternoon workshop, continuing on the retreat theme "Living Stories" will include classic Jewish tales, and a structured way to share a story of our own. It will be facilitated by master storyteller Daniel Johnson with the guidance of Rabbi Julie Greenberg.

Registration, including everything listed above:


~ LHI Members $215  

~ Guests          $240


To register, please send a check payable to Leyv Ha-Ir and with a note saying "Retreat" to:

Leyv Ha-Ir

P.O. Box 15836

Philadelphia, PA 19103  


Hotel rates per night, per room:


Ocean view room with 2 double beds  $115 + tax

"Bay View" room with 2 double beds    $95 + tax


Room amenities: balcony, mini fridge, single serve coffee maker, and hair dryer


Call Port-O-Call Hotel for reservations at 609-399-8812 or 1-800-334-4546 and mention that you with the Leyv Ha-Ir group. Hotel room payments are made directly with the hotel. 


Contact Evy at 215-561-7474, or Sandy at 215-561-5149, with your questions and to join the Retreat Planning Committee.
Film Screening at Ethical Society

The Ethical Humanist Society of Philadelphia invites members of Leyv Ha-ir to join us for a film and discussion led by Operation Understanding.

The first in our series of Ethics Through Video Classes "Understanding the Impact of Oppression" will be held on February 9, from 6 to 8:30 PM. The class will include a showing of "Nothing But A Man," a highly acclaimed independent film originally released in 1964, which the Washington Post called one of the most sincere and sensitive pictures ever made about the struggles and hardships of Black life in the segregated South. Michael Roemer, the director and co-writer of the film, is a Holocaust survivor, who, as an eleven year old, was one of the German Jewish children evacuated to England as part of the "kindertransport." Roemer has said that his understanding of the impact of race discrimination in the United States was informed by his experience as a child in Nazi Germany.

A post screening discussion will be led by members of Operation Understanding, a program which educates young Afro-American and Jewish leaders to be knowledgeable about each other's histories and cultures.

The class is free, but registration is required. To register email and state the names of all persons who will be attending.

Hope to see you there.

Sharon Wallis

Rabbi Julie Recognized for her Education Work 


 Power Logo






What a splendid event! POWER's very first fundraiser lifted the roof at Congregation Rodeph Shalom. 


The walls of their beautiful sanctuary were vibrating with the sounds and rhythms of ten different musical and speaking groups of every denomination. The afternoon began with our very own Jessi Roemer leading her group, Sonic Theology (photo below).


Our leader, Rabbi Julie Greenberg, has been very involved with POWER, almost since its inception.  It was no surprise that Rabbi received the "School Crusader" award for her hard work and commitment to this organization. (See photo)


Leyv Ha-Ir was so well represented at the concert. Almost half of our members were in the audience to cheer everyone on. We are certainly "the little synagogue that could."




















Members of the Leyv Ha-Ir community joined with members of other congregations affiliated with the Philadelphians Organized to Witness, Empower, and Rebuild (POWER) in a meeting to discuss voter engagement and turnout, held at New Vision United Methodist Church in North Philadelphia, on Monday January 21st, 2014.


The Reverend Greg Holston, Pastor of New Vision, welcomed people attending and staff members' spoke of their participation at the PICO training conference in Atlanta.


Wes Lathrop, POWER organizer, spoke about engaging members of POWER congregations to vote in the May, 2014 primary elections, which will include elections for the primary candidate for Governor of Pennsylvania. A key piece of legislation, which will appear on the May ballot, will be a referendum question that would authorize City Council to raise the minimum wage for contractors and sub-contractors that receive city subsidies. The new minimum would be $10.88 per hour.  A registered voter can vote solely the ballot questions without having to declare as a Republican, Democrat or Independent. 


It is essential that POWER get out the primary vote to ensure that this ballot question passes. In order to do this POWER will be organizing phone banks, door to door canvassing and presentations to inform the voters. Leyv Ha-Ir has been asked to estimate how many votes we can guarantee for the May primary. Since we are so small, LHI members might consider making presentations in the condo/coops we live in to educate residents about the importance of turning out to vote for the minimum wage ballot question. 


In addition, POWER has been meeting with gubernatorial candidates to assess their position on supporting a full and fair funding formula for public schools throughout the state. Voters need to turn out on May 14 to make sure that the gubernatorial candidate that is chosen supports such a formula.


If you are interested in working on any of these campaigns, please email Susan Thompson at


We will keep you informed of ongoing voter engagement projects. For now, please note that the 2014 Civic Engagement Public Campaign Launch is Feb. 11th, 7-9 p.m., location will be announced soon.


Submitted by the LHI POWER Team - Bev Hayden, John Mason and Susan Thompson



ALLIES (A Lively Library in Every School)
An interfaith community campaign of  
Leyv Ha-Ir, Rodeph Shalom, Saint Paul's & POWER  


Thanks to your wonderful support and generosity, Leyv Ha-Ir was able to supply many books for 2013 summer reading to the students at Spring Garden school. We are hoping to initiate the same program for Summer 2014.

Won't you help?  Please send your donation to Leyv Ha-Ir, P.O. Box 15836, Philadelphia, PA  19103, designating BOOK DRIVE. Contact Beverly Hayden, with any queries. Thanks, in advance, for your help.  

Happy Birthday
Please join us in extending birthday wishes to these members:

February 7 - Iris Cutler
February 7 - Claire Dubin
February 15 - Joan Steel
February 15 - Larry Finkelstein
May This Soul be Bound in the Book of Eternal Light: yahrzeit
Joan Rumberg