In This Issue
Rabbi's Message
Education Program
Retreat in Ocean City
Passover Seder
Chesed Reminder
Honoring Our Founders
Member Birthdays
Member Yahrzeit
Looking Ahead
Passover Community Seder See the article below on the right for the details of our annual seder on April 15.

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.  SAVE THE DATE for Saturday evening, May 10, and stay tuned for more information. 
Donate via PayPal
Leyv Ha-Ir Listserv

To Post a Message - just send an email to


Leyv Ha-Ir Event Postings - will be posted by Beverly Hayden using the information on our web calendar.


Other Postings - You can post information about other events or information of interest by sending an email to


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
Join Our List
Join Our Mailing List
Find us on Facebook!

Be sure to join and visit Congregation Leyv Ha-Ir~Heart of the City's Facebook group


Jewish Exponent
Contact Leyv Ha-Ir
Voice Mail:

MARCH 2014
Dear Friend of Leyv Ha-Ir ~ Heart of the City,   


This past month, as part of our Home Shabbat Service in a member's new condo, we affixed a mezuzah to the doorpost leading into the apartment. First we studied the God-name Shaddai on the encasement, meaning gatekeeper. We read the kosher scroll words of the Shema, and the v'Ahavta out-loud in Hebrew and English. The mezuzah was affixed, and we chanted the proper blessing, then sang Oh Lord Prepare Me to be Your Sanctuary, a popular song at LHI (relating to the Torah portion of building the Mishkan-Ki Tissa). A question was asked how to properly kiss the mezuzah, going out and coming in (answer: touch the mezuzah and then kiss the hand that touched it).


May all our goings-out and comings-in this coming month be blessed with good health, no snow problems, falls, hardships, power outages, floods or leaks. AND LET US BE HAPPY THAT IT IS ADAR!




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

Your Executive Committee


Saturday, March 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, March 2, 11:00 AM - 1:00 PM, Engaging with Prayer:  Purim

Come for brunch and the second in our next education series with Rabbi Julie. You are welcome even if you missed the first session. 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


Friday, March 7 - Sunday, March 9, Retreat at the Shore

We'll be at the Port O' Call in Ocean City, NJ for a relaxing, Spiritual and fun weekend. All are welcome. 

Contact Evy Simon at or Sandy Brown at for more information.


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

Join us in a member's home for a lay-led Friday night service followed by a pot-luck veggie/dairy dinner. Check your listserv messages for the location or contact us at or 215.629.1995 to RSVP.


Sunday, March 16, 2:00 - 4:00 PM, Purim Party

Join us as we retell the story of the Book of Esther, led by Rabbi Julie and Jessi Roemer. Laugh at our Spiel. Always a fun time. Bring your own costume or wear ours. Please bring your choice of liquor, other beverage, hamantaschen or other snacks to share. 

Location: William Penn House Community Room, 1919 Chestnut Street, 1st Floor  


Friday, March 28, 7:30 PM, Kabbalat Shabbat Service  

Rabbi Julie Greenberg will lead our Friday night service, with Cantorial Soloist Jessi Roemer and the Leyv Ha-Ir Choir.
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,      


On Yom Kippur, many people in congregations around the world take on the practice of fasting. Yet even as people engage in an intense fast, the traditional text that is read from Isaiah 58 challenges us to go way beyond fasting and praying in our practice of spirituality.


Isaiah speaks for God, "Is this the fast I desire, a day for people to starve their bodies? .... Do you call this a spiritual practice? No, this is the fast I desire: To unlock fetters of wickedness, and untie the cords of the yoke. To let the oppressed go free; To break off every yoke. It is to share your bread with the hungry, and to take the wretched poor into your home; When you see the naked, to cloth him, and not to ignore the need of the world."


Now our congregation's social justice / Tikkun Olam committee is asking us to join POWER's voter engagement drive by helping get low frequency voters to the polls on May 20. In our neighborhood high rise buildings, there are startling voting statistics such as these: 524 people are registered to vote, but only 200 actually vote in a given election. This spring there are good reasons to vote: there is a living wage referendum on the ballot and there is an opportunity to choose a candidate who will champion fair, full funding for Pennsylvania public education.


Our work is bi-partisan. Everyone can vote in the primary on May 20 whether you are Democratic, Republican or independent. Please see the box below on ways to get involved. This month we challenge ourselves to live up to the spiritual mandate of Yom Kippur. Spirituality is more than prayer. Spirituality is also about being God's partners in making a good world.


Many Blessings,            

Rabbi Julie


Here's how to get involved:

  • Talk with your friends and neighbors about the importance of voting on May 20. Studies show that three conversations are needed to actually move infrequent voters to the polls. Get contact forms from Susan Thompson so we can track who is being reached.
  • Join us, bringing your cell phone and charger, for phone banking, at these times and places:

March 11 - Home of Susan Thompson, The Philadelphian, 2401 Pennsylvania Ave., 7:30 p.m  Call (215-923-4040) or email ( to RSVP and get apartment number.

March 20 - Home of Bev Hayden, Penn Center, 1900 JFK Blvd, 1:30 p.m  Call (215-557-3777) or email ( to RSVP and get apartment number.


There will be training, a script and great company!



Led by Rabbi Julie

The Purim Service is fun, funny and a little puzzling.  The book of Esther is quite a dramatic story!  The Purim schpiel as done by our members is always hilarious.  At Purim we put on strange outfits, make noise and drink booze.  What is all that about?  Rabbi Julie is going to make sense of the nonsense! Attend this class and come away with understanding, appreciation and new ways to participate in this delightful Jewish holiday. (Plus you get a delicious brunch.)

Engaging with Prayer:  Learning More, Leading More
Mark your calendars now for the first Sunday of the next 2 months:

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

11:00 am - 1:00 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    


It's not too late...there's still time -- Be part of a very special retreat weekend at Port-O-Call Hotel in Ocean City, NJ.




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


What will be happening?

  • Arrive at Port-O-Call after 3 pm Friday
  • Candle lighting, Kiddish, Challah, and Friday night dinner
  • Comedy with Karen
  • 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, movie, singing, games, etc.
  • Sunday sunrise on the beach
  • Sunday breakfast
  • Closing Circle
  • March Council Meeting - all are welcome 

All meals, workshops, and activities will be in the beautiful 10th floor Penthouse. Services will be in the lower level Meeting Room.


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

To register, please contact Evy or Sandy to let them know you are sending 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.
Save the Date!

Please plan to share the Passover holiday with us at our annual Community Seder:

Tuesday, April 15 at 6:30 p.m.
The Philadelphian, Social Room
2041 Pennsylvania Avenue, Philadelphia

Rabbi Julie and Jessi will be leading us, along with the LHI choir. A full dinner and Passover wine is included along with camaraderie and fun for all. Entree choices include fish or vegetarian. Guests are welcome at the member rate.

Cost: $55 per adult, $20 per child ages 3-12

Reserve now by clicking here, printing and mailing the reservation form. It must be received by April 8.

We will need a few people to help set up on April 15.  If you can help out, please contact Susan Thompson at 215-923-4040 or
A reminder that we have a Chesed (acts of loving kindness) committee who will do their best to offer assistance to LHI members in need. If you find yourself in that situation please call and we'll see how we can be helpful.

Joan Goldberg. 215-561-5193
Pat Wisch 215-563-1894
Rabbi Julie with (from left) Iris Newman, Roby Jacobs, Iris Cutler, Beverly Hayden
LHI Honors Our Founding Members


Six founding members of Leyv Ha-Ir~Heart of the City were honored at Shabbat services on Friday, February 21, 2014: Beverly Hayden, Iris Newman, Sol Volk, Roby Jacobs, Iris Cutler and Polly Gussman. New member Claire Dubin, representing the vibrancy of Leyv Ha-Ir~Heart of the City's future, had spent hours interviewing our valued elders, known in Hebrew as "Vatikeem," and planning the presentation of "M'Dor L'Dor ~ From Generation to Generation" certificates.


In their interviews with Claire, each of the founders spoke about discovering in Leyv Ha-Ir ~ Heart of the City a meaningful Judaism in which they were truly welcome. Iris Newman spoke of seeing a woman carry the Torah for the first time, Beverly spoke of attending her first congregational meeting and having a pen thrust into her hand with the message, "You're the Secretary now!" Many of the founders remembered learning together to prepare for their B'not Mitzvah ceremony and of parading with the Torah from one early synagogue space to another. They found purpose, friendship and community in Leyv Ha-Ir.


Rabbi Julie spoke about how the Torah portion of the week VaYekhel describes the making of the mishkan/sanctuary in very specific detail. The ancient requirements included three layers of roof, 48 gold paneled walls, 100 silver foundation sockets, as well as the ark, the cherubim / statues of angels, copper mirrors, an altar table and menorah. Rabbi Julie equated these items with the very specific contributions that our leaders make: show up at 6:30 with juice for the oneg, bring the 15 siddurim to the community room for the teaching, discuss this important issue at Council meeting.


Our honored founders have taken on multiple roles over the years including being Council Member, Secretary, Treasurer, President, Vice President, Ritual Chair, Retreat Chair, High Holy Day Chair, Hospitality Chair, Choir Co-ordinator and Social Justice Liaison. Creating the vessel for a sacred community takes a lot of work! Most of all, they created a community is welcoming, home, and a family.


At the service, founders received artisan chocolate shaped into hearts and a special hamsa key chain to carry with them. They were honored with the songs "L'Dor va'Dor/From Generation to Generation Forever" and "Kaddish D'Rabbanan/For Our Teachers." With immense gratitude and appreciation, Leyv Ha-Ir~Heart of the City celebrates its founders.

Host Locations Needed

Our monthly Friday night home Shabbats have become a popular mainstay of Leyv Ha-Ir community life. Hosts are needed for upcoming months.

Host responsibilities are minimal and support is available to guide you every step of the way. Attendance averages 10 to 18 people.

For more information or to volunteer as a host, please contact Marsha Hyman at 610-733-6652 or  You'll be glad you did.
Happy Birthday
Please join us in extending birthday wishes to these members:

March 22 - Eric Penn

May This Soul be Bound in the Book of Eternal Light: yahrzeit
Morton Beck