April 15, 2024
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Local Shuls Celebrate ‘Israel at 68’

On Wednesday, May 11, the Orthodox shuls of the Metrowest area invite the entire community to a Yom Hazikaron observance and Yom Ha’atzmaut celebration. This year’s event, “Israel at 68: Remember & Rejoice,” will feature Elliott Brandt, AIPAC Managing Director for National Affairs and Development. The event will be held at Synagogue of the Suburban Torah Center in Livingston, in conjunction with Congregation Etz Chaim, also of Livingston, AABJ&D and Congregation Ohr Torah of West Orange, and Congregation Israel of Springfield, as well as Jewish Federation of Greater Metrowest and AIPAC. According to Rabbi Elie Mischel of Suburban Torah, the emphasis of this event, which is being held for the third time, is to encourage unity among Jews near and far. “When I was growing up, I remember attending large Yom Hazikaron and Yom Ha’atzmaut events that attracted a wide array of American Jews, from across the religious spectrum,” says Rabbi Mischel. “Today, unfortunately, support for the people and State of Israel is no longer de rigueur for much of American Jewry; Israel has become, for too many non-Orthodox synagogues, a politicized and controversial topic that is best avoided. Given the current climate, it is more important than ever that we publicly and enthusiastically demonstrate our love for, and identification with, the State of Israel.” The program will begin with a Yom Hazikaron observance, paying respect to fallen Israeli soldiers and Israeli victims of terrorism. Guests will then hear from Mr. Brandt, a 20-year veteran of AIPAC who oversees all 18 of AIPAC’s offices as well as a number of the organization’s departments and initiatives. Finally, the evening will conclude with a dessert reception and celebration in honor of Yom Ha’atzmaut, commemorating the Israeli Declaration of Independence in 1948. Throughout the evening, separate youth programming will be offered for children ages 5-11. This event is free and open to the community, but for security purposes kindly RSVP to Jackie Kelly at [email protected] or (646) 360-1513. Wednesday, May 11, Mincha at 6:45 pm followed by program at 7:00 pm. Synagogue of the Suburban Torah Center, 85 W. Mt. Pleasant Avenue, Livingston.

By Rachel Jager

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