June 21, 2024
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June 21, 2024
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Linking Northern and Central NJ, Bronx, Manhattan, Westchester and CT

Chidon Adult Finals Open to Community in Manhattan

Audience participation is actively encouraged, but RSVP is required!

The International Chidon HaTanach/Bible Quiz for Adults finals U.S. interactive competition event and dinner is open to community members this year on June 23, 2024. It will be held at the Spanish & Portuguese Synagogue on 2 West 70th Street, New York, NY 10023, from 4:00 to 6:00 PM (Doors will open at 3:45 PM). RSVP is required.

Tanach, which is often used interchangeably with the word Bible, is an acronym composed of Torah (“Teaching,” also known as the Five Books of Moses, or the Pentateuch), Nevi’im (“Prophets”) and Ketuvim (“Writings”). It contains the canonical texts that comprise the Hebrew Bible and includes 24 books. Sponsored by the State of Israel, the Israeli Ministry of Education and the World Zionist Movement, Chidon is run for both adults and youths.

The Bible Quiz was first introduced by Israeli President David Ben-Gurion, starting as a televised adult competition in 1958 to celebrate the tenth anniversary of the Jewish State’s founding. The immensely popular USA Chidon HaTanach has been run for youth since 1960. Since 1963, both have been a multinational project of the Jewish Agency. In recent decades the multinational student chidon gained so much popularity that it eclipsed the adult event. The adult chidon returned, however, in 2010, and has been going strong ever since.

Dr. Chananel Malka, director and content manager for Bible Quizzes for youth and adults, works at the Israeli Ministry of Education. He was also the 2014 winner of the adult chidon. He shared with The Jewish Link the importance of the Chidon this year, which was delayed after the Oct. 7 war began, having originally been scheduled to occur at the end of October. “The importance of this year’s Bible Quiz in the diaspora stems from the sensitive situation Israel has been in since October 7th. The Bible reminds us of the truths regarding our right to the land and the values we so desperately need in these times: Solidarity, mutual responsibility, partnership, the value of human life, and the pursuit of victory.”

Malka added that not only will participation from attendees be allowed this year, it will be encouraged. “For the first time this year, the audience will participate in the initial stage, which will be based on AI-generated picture riddles,” he said.

When Silvio Joskowicz, who is the Head of the Zionist Enterprises Department at the Jewish Agency was asked why he leads and the relevance today of the International Bible Quiz for Adults, he replied: “It may seem anachronistic, but for me, today’s world cannot exist without the Biblical heritage. This is not only true for us, living in Israel and speaking the language of the Bible. I believe it can be learned and spoken anywhere in the world. In my opinion, the foundations of human behavior lie within the pages of the Bible. I think the Biblical narrative defines the moral codes of our lives here in the 21st century! And I say it as a zionist and secular Israeli, the bible belongs to everyone, everywhere.

“Especially in these times, it is our responsibility to connect the values and messages of the Bible with the younger generation. We must engage in dialogue with the text, challenge it, raise questions and doubts, and encourage the search for answers,” Joskowicz said.

The 2024 finalist contestants include David Landerer, Rabbi Nathan Dweck, Lawrence Kauffman, Barry J Saffern, Alan Goldman, Naomi Suberi-Busany, Adena Burnstein Saperstein and Charles Safdieh.

Aure Ben-Zvi Goldblum, Rabbi Andy Dubin and Rabbi Shnayor Burton will serve as judges.

See the opposite page (34) for information on how to register to attend the event and dinner free of charge, or visit www.biblequiz2024.com to sign up. Due to security, there will be no walk-ins allowed.

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