Around the Town
By Amy Wolff Sorter

Last week’s column included a discussion about Beth-El’s Rabbi Ralph Mecklenburger’s suggestion that we consider Shabbat our mini vacation away from the stress and grind of life. This time, another local rabbi, Andrew Bloom, who leads Congregation Ahavath Sholom, added his words of wisdom to the mix of summer, the focus being summer vacation from school.
In his discussion, Bloom points out that school might be out for a handful of months, but the studying shouldn’t just stop.
“Studying is a lifelong pursuit and not just something we do 10 months of the year,” he writes. “Education is year-round; it’s important that all of us remember that.”
Prayer and study, the rabbi says, create a “personal dialogue with God” and also help pass that dialogue — and teachings — are passed to our children.
There are different types of learning, too. Fort Worth offers a wealth of locations (such as the Museum of Science and History and its many art museums) that combine fun for the kiddos with learning opportunities. For older kids, many libraries have summer reading programs. In short, while summer is about relaxation and fun, it can also introduce some new learning as well.

Congrats to Bernie Appel …

… who, about a month ago, told me he is the newest member of the University of North Texas’ Jewish Studies Program’s advisory board. I apologize to Bernie for being so late in mentioning his appointment when I was first made aware of it (we had a long email exchange about it in early May and, as sometimes happens with me, it didn’t go into the right folder in the right time or the right place).
Bernie joins the two other advisory board members from Fort Worth, Morty Herman and Dick Abrams.
For those of you who don’t know Bernie, the guy has an impressive resume. He served in the U.S. Coast Guard, is a graduate of Boston University and eventually became chairman of Radio Shack and senior vice president of Tandy Corp.
These days, he heads up Appel Associates, a marketing consult service, is president of Safe City Commission Crime Stoppers and is very active in the Fort Worth community, serving on many boards (including Congregation Ahavath Sholom’s board of directors). He’s also received numerous awards and honors (including an induction into the Consumer Electronics Hall of Fame).
Now, a word about UNT’s Jewish Studies Program — it’s the only one at a public university in the Dallas-Fort Worth area and it offers 48 courses on Judaism. The program offers a minor in Jewish studies, and the board and faculty are working toward establishing a master’s degree in the field. Bernie’s background and dedication to his faith and community will mean good things for this program.

News From Colleyville

The good folks at Congregation Beth Israel have launched their “CBI Summer of Learning.” This is a series of Sunday classes, beginning at 11 a.m. Topics range from the changing role of women, to an understanding of the Pirkei Avot, to a “Bible Belt Survival Guide” which might be a good one to have, given where we all live.
These Sunday sessions are open to anyone ages 13 and older. They run through Aug. 19 and take place at CBI, 6100 Pleasant Run Rd. in Colleyville.
Financial contributions are welcome; suggested contribution is $18. For information, call CBI’s office at 817-581-5500.

Mazel Tov to…

…Nancy and Michael Finfer on the birth of their grandson, Micah Asier Finfer. May the new addition to your family bring much nachas.
And mazel tov to those celebrating wedding anniversaries this month

  • Jerry and Ruth Berkowitz
  • Ed and Eleonora Bond
  • Scott and Ann Cobert
  • Irwin and Lea Ann Blum
  • Elliott and Patty Garsek
  • Aleksandr & Lyubov Gershengoren
  • Jeffrey and Barbara Gilbert
  • Chad and Martis Herman
  • Richard and Terri Hollander
  • Gary and Cookie Kaftan
  • Michael and Patricia Linn
  • Walter and Vanessa Listig
  • David and Idelle Luskey
  • Henry and Jeanie Luskey
  • Lawrence and Susan Margolis
  • David and Elisa Nudleman
  • Don and Judith Peska
  • Don and Emily Rosen
  • Neil and Pat Rosenzweig
  • Jack and Marilyn Rubin
  • Arnold and Ethel Schectman
  • Dennis and Barbara Schuster
  • Michael and Debra Schwanz
  • Irwin and Myra Schussler
  • Mike and Ina Singer
  • Mitchell and Annette Smith
  • Mark and Yvonne Ulrich
  • Marvin and Sara Wolin

Kol Ami and the story of a house

Congregation Kol Ami in Flower Mound has teamed with three other religious organizations (Islamic Association of Flower Mound, Grace Community Assembly of God and Creekwood Christian Church) to build a home from the ground up this fall in Lewisville, courtesy of Habitat for Humanity.
Volunteers will begin building the house in September with the idea of having the selected family move in before the December holidays. Those interested in donating (or in helping) can contact the synagogue by calling 972-539-1938.

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