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April 6, 2018     Heritage Florida Jewish News
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April 6, 2018

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N Editorials 4A Op-Ed 5A Calendar 6A Scene Around 9A Synagogue Directory 11A JTA News Briefs 13A WwW.HERITAGEFLCOM YEAR 42, NO; 311 Annual Yom HaShoah commemoration at CRJ this Sunday The Holocaust Memorial Resource and Education Center in Maitland invites the community to its annual com- memoration of Yom HaShoah, A Day of Remembrance on April 8, at 2 p.m. at the Congregation of Reform Judaism. The event commemorates the millions of Jews who suffered during the Holocaust and honors the liberators who fought to defeat Nazi Germany. Each year, the Holocaust Center hosts Yom HaShoah, A Day of Remembrance, to remember the six million Jews who perished during the Holocaust. On this special day, we stand with our local survivors and remember the families they lost. We also honor the brave liberators whose heroism continues to inspire us today. This year's program will feature a moving performance of songs that were once performed by the Women's Orchestra at Auschwitz. Performed by renowned violinist Matitiahu Braun, these songs remind us of our duty to carry the lessons from this tragic history forward. Other program highlights include a survivor-led candle lighting, responsive reading, and presentation of awards for the Creative Arts Contest. This family-friendly event is free and open to the public. CRJ is located at 928 Malone Drive, Orlando. For more information, contact Terrance Hunter at thunter@holo- 21 OR NDOi FLOR!DA SINGEE COPY Sam Friedman DELAND--Sam Friedman has been selected to be Stetson University's first Hillel direc- tor. In this position, Friedman will help shape Hillel as the center of Jewish student life on campus and engage stu- dents in Jewish life, learning and Israel. "We are thrilled to have Sam join us at Stetson Uni- versity," said Joel Bauman, vice president of Enrollment Management and Interim Hillel adviser. "He is a na- tionally recognized leader at Hillel International and in the wider Jewish community in Florida. Having helped grow the national stature of Cen- tral Florida Hillel, Sam will be well positioned to support the development of Stetson's aspirations to be among the highest quality Hillel pro- grams in the country." The Hillel director is re- sponsible for ensuring the strategy and execution of engagement and program development, and helping the Office of Spiritual Life in creating meaningful and diverse opportunities for Jewish expression, cultivating student leaders and consis- tently promoting awelcoming and lively pluralistic Jewish community. "I am honored to have been selected for this position and excited to start working at Stetson," said Friedman. "I look forward to working with Stetson students, staff and faculty to nurture and build Jewish engagement and community on campus, and to turn Stetson into the premier private school for Jewish life in the south. Prior to coming to Stetson, Friedman worked as director of Community Relations and then as assistant director for Central Florida Hillel. In that position he oversaw all marketing and branding for Friedman on page 14A JNS is proud to partner with the Embassy of Israel in Washington, D.C to cel- ebrate 70 of the greatest American contributors to the U.S.-Israel relationship in the 70 days leading up to the State of Israel's 70th anniversary. (JNS)--Rabbi Menachem Mendel Schneerson was with- out question a great Jewish figure, and one of the greatest g "' Z O D Jewish leaders of the 20th century. A talented and charismatic scholar, he was known across the world as simply "The Rebbe." As the seventh Rebbe of the Chabad-Lubavitch sect of Chassidism, he exponen- tially increased the move- ment's influence and size. In an unprecedented flurry of Jewish outreach campaigns, he sent emissaries around the world, establishing thousands of Chabad centers in cities, remote locales and on col- lege campuses that continue to serve the spiritual and physical needs of Jews of all backgrounds. Even inan erabefore the In- ternet, the Rebbe had a global reach, with followers all over the world. In addition to guid- ing his own immediate flock of Lubavitcher Chassidim, he expressed great concerns for the status of global Jewry. As such, he took a special interest in the success and welfare of the State of Israel. Given his myriad of lectures and writ- ings about Israel, many are surprised to discover that the Rebbe never personally visited the country. Nevertheless, Israeli leaders of all stripes continually sought out his advice and blessing. Many of these moments Rabbi Menachem Mendel Schneerson, "The Rebbe" were captured on camera and can today be viewed online. For example, in one record- ing from 1988, Benjamin Netanyahu approaches the Rebbe for a blessing, and the Rebbe offers him a fascinat- ing combination of religious guidance, alongwithpractical political opinions and insight. Similarly, when Ariel Sharon was considering retiring from the military, he consulted with the Rebbe, who con- vinced him to remain as one of Israel's top generals. Rabbi Schneerson often faced disdain and derision from "mainstream" haredi Judaism for stubbornly con- tinuing to praise Israel and its military, and pray for its continued success. Many major rabbinic figures of the haredi establishment tended to negatively view any aspect of Israel connected to its mostly secular government (more so in the early years than today). In response, the Rebbe occasionally suggested that God acts through the courageous soldiers of the Israel Defense Forces, as in the case of the 1967 Six-Day War and"Operation Entebbe" in July 1976. Through his steadfast lead- ership, the Rebbe steered the Chabad movement into em- bracing a pro-Israel attitude, writing to David Ben-Gurion "that Eretz Israel in all as- pects, both present and future, should constitute a factor uniting Jews everywhere, both Orthodox and non-Orthodox of all trends." Not surprisingly, many of his emissaries are among the most fervent supporters of Is- rael in their communities. The Rebbe continues to serve as a light of inspiration for Jews around the world, with his heartfelt dedication to Israel remembered and cherished by all who encounter his teachings. (JNS)--The White House published a proclamation by U.S. President Donald Trump honoring the memory of the Lubavitcher Rebbe, Rabbi Menachem M. Schneerson, stating that March 27 is rec- ognized as "Education and Sharing Day, U.S.A." An event was scheduled on March 27 in the Oval office with Chabad-Lubavitch rep- resentatives. The date marks the Jewish calendar birthday of the Rebbe on 11 Nissan, which fell on Tuesday. Israeli Prime Minister Ben- jamin Netanyahu also marked the day, posting on Facebook a link to a Hebrew article (Eng- lish version here) describing his relationship and interac- tions with the Rebbe. "Today, we honor the life and legacy of Rabbi Men- achem Mendel Schneerson. The Lubavitcher Rebbe was a widely respected scholar and leader of faith who believed in the potential of all persons and sought to empower young people through education, character development and civic pride," said Trump's statement released by the White House. "Throughout his long and distinguished life, Rabbi Schneerson inspired millions of people, across multiple gen- erations, through his example of compassion, wisdom and courage in the face of op- pression. He recognized that access to education, paired with moral and spiritual de- velopment, could transform the world for good, and he devoted his life to these prin- ciples," it said. "His commitment to invest in the lives of the next genera- tion led to the establishment of academic and outreach centers to help grow and engage young minds and pro- vide them with spiritual and material assistance. Thanks to his drive and dedication, these educational and social service centers can be found in every state and throughout the world." It continued: "The Lubavitcher Rebbe believed that even in the darkest place, ,the light of a single candle can be seen far and wide.' His life is an example of the power of one person to influence the lives of many. May we strive to be that light for future generations, instilling in them the value of education and the virtues of courage and compassion that can impact our communities and the world for the better."