Dallas Doings

Visiting Holocaust survivor to share stories of survival

Holocaust survivor Joe Klein of Cleveland, Ohio, will share his bitter memories and the atrocities he experienced as a 14-year-old child during the Holocaust on Thursday, April 1, from 5 until 6 p.m. at Congregation Shearith Israel. Mr. Klein is visiting with his daughter, Mona Allen, and her family. Mona is the program director at Shearith Israel. Mr. Klein was interned in Auschwitz, Theresienstadt and other labor camps before being liberated. Often called upon to speak to groups, he has been recognized by many organizations for his sensitive approach to educating others, especially teens, about this sad time in his past. His impact on public, private and religious school communities is immeasurable. He often speaks to teachers, conducts training seminars on the Holocaust and is sought out to speak to students in their classrooms. While his experiences are profound, the lessons he shares for future generations are even more so.
His talk, open to the community, is suitable for teenagers and adults.

Elaine Barenblat, Beth Torah Junior Congregation leader

Elaine Barenblat, Congregation Beth Torah’s new Junior Congregation leader, comes to the position with vast understanding of the needs of the youngsters who attend services on Saturday mornings. Enthusiasm, ruach, service expertise and knowledge about children all stand her in good stead as she connects with the wide range of service participants who have come over the course of the months she has been in her position.
A member of Congregation Agudas Achim in San Antonio, Elaine has learned how to experience the joy of Shabbat through many years of Junior Congregation participation at her synagogue. Rabbi Leonardo Bitran, who stands as her model, connected with her and the children. “That standard — being personal, relishing Saturday morning services, sharing the excitement of the experience, knowing the prayers — guides how I relate to the students who come weekly to Congregation Beth Torah.”
Elaine’s background prepared her solidly for success as the Junior Congregation service leader. Her parents were active Jews with strong family values. Whether spending special time together experiencing and living Jewish values or seeing the examples set by her involved parents, the path was mapped out and followed for Jewish learning and growth. Her participation as a camper and counselor in the Camp Young Judaea programs prepared her to understand what attracts and supports youngsters as they identify with and grow their skills as practicing Jews.
Currently a student at the University of North Texas in Denton, majoring in Early Childhood Special Education, she also brings to her position sensitivity to student differences and a knowledge base for supporting students in meeting the challenges they may face. It is that spark of caring that constantly emanates from her.
The congregation has responded warmly to Elaine’s presence. Whether it is Rabbi Adam Raskin, Learning Center Director Ruth Schor or the myriad of parents who have offered her positive support and feedback, Elaine has been embraced wholeheartedly. “It is a pleasure to watch her weave her spell as she works with our youngsters,” said congregant Aki Shane. “My children respond to her leadership with enjoyment and satisfaction. They want to attend services — what a testament to her skill in working with them.”
Saturday morning Junior Congregation services are offered from 10:30 to noon at Congregation Beth Torah, 720 Lookout Drive in Richardson. Adult services are conducted from 9:30 a.m. to noon. Call the synagogue office at 972-234-1542 to get further information. Both members and non-members are welcome and encouraged to attend.

Simcha Kosher Catering offers Passover food

Instead of closing for the week of Passover, Lowell Michelson, owner of Simcha Kosher Catering, continues to offer kosher-for-Passover food as a service to the community.
Not only does Simcha Kosher Catering service the local Dallas Jewish community, but for several years they have provided kosher-for-Passover food for the soldiers at various military bases, Fort Hood and Fort Sill; Medical City Hospital; alcohol and drug treatment centers; the elderly in retirement communities; and many others.
A percentage of proceeds from Passover meals will go to military bases. It will also provide kosher-for-Passover meals for students at St. Mark’s School in Dallas. People can order food for the seder or for the entire week. Food can be shipped throughout the state.
Michelson said, “Passover is one of the most popular Jewish holidays and this is a service needed in the community.”
For more information, call 972-620-7293.

MS Walk to take place March 27 in Addison

Waldman Bros. Insurance Agency sponsors a team for the Multiple Sclerosis Walk every year, and is again in first place for fundraising for the 2010 Walk. Recently, Steve and Jackie Waldman hosted a dinner at Zinsky’s Deli. More than 200 people attended and total sales were $2,000; $1,400 will be donated to MS on behalf of Team Waldman and the MS Walk. An extra $500 was raised from additional funds donated that evening.
The Dallas 2010 presented by Subway will be held this Saturday. Registration and check-in are at 7 a.m., and the walk begins at 8 at Addison Circle Park.
For more information, contact Michael Waldman at 972-458-8700.

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