April 14, 2024
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April 14, 2024
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Linking Northern and Central NJ, Bronx, Manhattan, Westchester and CT

NJOP Celebrates 26th Anniversary

NJOP, formerly National Jewish Outreach Program (www.njop.org), celebrated 26 years of achievement at its recent annual dinner at the Grand Hyatt in New York City. Former Chief Rabbi of Israel, Rabbi Yisrael Meir Lau, spoke and took guests on an imaginary journey around the world with Socrates, Julius Caesar and Moshe Rabbeinu, each experiencing a short-term return to earth and respective country of origin.

Socrates and Caesar arrived at their present-day destinations only to discover that the languages, landmarks and icons of their time have entirely vanished into history. Moshe alone finds he can easily communicate with the first contemporary person whom he encounters in the language that he speaks, about the traditions and practices he holds dear… and that Israel awaits him, teeming with Jews and Judaism still very much alive. This tale served as a powerful parable underscoring NJOP’s critical mission.

The dinner provided an opportunity for NJOP to honor several prominent community members who passed away this year. Ulo Barad, Elli and Israel Krakowski, and Martha Melohn, z”l, each dedicated their lives to enhancing Jewish life and supported NJOP’s mission of bringing positive, joyous, Jewish experiences to thousands of Jews every year. Shimon Peres, President of the State of Israel, sent a special written message, displayed on screens throughout the room, expressing gratitude for the contributions of each of the esteemed honorees. Family members of the honorees spoke lovingly, mournful of recent losses, but hopeful and dedicated to carrying on the missions of their parents and grandparents.

Also honored were Amy and Seth Litzenblatt with the Carl and Sylvia Freyer Award. The Leslie Nelkin Special Service Award was given to NJOP’s social media professional Susanne Goldstone Rosenhouse, the voice behind the group’s highly influential social media platform @JewishTweets.  Rabbi Ephraim Buchwald also paid tribute to Sam Domb, long-time NJOP supporter.

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