Two of our recent adult Bnai Mitzvah, Barbara
Russek and Sydelle Weinberger, chanted Torah
on top of Masada.
At the Western Wall (left)
At the entrance to the Shrine of the Book, Jerusalem
Rabbi Dagan with group at Dalit el Carmel, Druze village on 10.20.12
Rabbi Hirsch and Israel Tour members at Caesarea on 10.19.12
Congregational Travel Opportunities
Talk to congregants from any synagogue who have joined a Jewish heritage tour with fellow members and/or clergy, and you will invariably hear rave reviews. There is something very special about investigating your roots or visiting Israel with your congregational friends, family and clergy.
CONGREGATIONAL ISRAEL TRIP WITH RABBI DEBORAH HIRSCH
OCTOBER 17-28, 2012
Rabbi Hirsch and Shaaray Tefila members are in Israel right now! New posts will be published as they are received . . .
On Thursday, October 25, Rabbi Hirsch wrote: An awesome service on top of Masada with Barbara Russek and Sydelle Weinberger chanting Torah!
On Tuesday, October 23, Rabbi Hirsch described their visit to Yad VaShem as "heartbreaking"
After visiting the Western Wall and the tunnels on Monday, October 22:
Seeing history come alive . . . Sydelle Weinberger
Our heritage . . . Sy Lerner
Emotional . . . Gary Newman, Irma Schechter
Connection to my roots . . . Barbara Russek
From Sydelle Weinberger on Sunday, October 21:
Another amazing day on our journey -- explored Safed, the city of Kabbalah and an artist colony. Had privilege to visit with artist David Friedman and see his art process and interaction of Jewish mysticism and spirit in his work. Then on to Golan Heights where we stood on the land won in the '67 war, feeling the sacrifices that have been made to gain this strategic location -- a sliver of land only 9 miles wide between Lebanon and Syria. Completed the day with lecture on changes and evolution of kibbutz life from socialist idealism in the 30s and 40s to modern-day realistic capitalism.
From Sydelle Weinberger on Saturday, October 20:An amazing day of cultures and complexities starting out with visit to Bahai Center whose world headquarters are on magnificent gardens overlooking Haifa Port, we then spent fascinating time in Druze Village, where Rabbi Gabby Dagan, of Ohel Avraham, gave us a walking tour, and we learned about customs and lifestyles of this enigmatic sect. The afternoon was spent exploring more culture of the Crusaders and Ottomans at ancient Acre (Acco) and walking through the twisting alleyways of present day Acre where Muslims still live today. Delicious dinner at Dan River (tributary of Jordan River) and readied ourselves for upcoming exciting week with joyful Havdalah service (and pungent cinnamon from the Acre shuk.)
Rabbi Hirsch wrote on the evening of Oct. 18:
Everyone except Gary and Esta Newman embarked this morning on a pre-tour tour. Our guide, Renee Goutman, led us on an excursion to Neve Tzedek, one of Tel Aviv's oldest neighborhoods and site of major gentrification. We visited the Shalom Tower, at one time, the spot that marked Tel Aviv's most northern border. We walked along Rechov Rothschild where we saw the amazing renovation of original Bauhaus Architecture style of buildings. Late in the afternoon we were joined by the Newmans and we went to Old Yafo (Jaffa) -- incredible! Cobblestone streets, archways, vistas, quaint and magical feel -- delicious burrekas -- all before dinner. And then, dinner at Maganda [see photo left] in the Yemenite Quarter...the best falafel ...delicious kebabs...wonderful feeling of Chevrah ... The group is gelling. Tomorrow, off to Rabin Square, Caesarea [see photo above] and on to Haifa. Shabbat with Congregation Ohel Avraham. Can't wait. And the weather -- upper 80s and no sign of rain!!!!