Community Highlights for November 2023
Flatbush Jews Unite for Asifah to Help Eretz Yisrael
Thousands of men and women came together on Sunday, October 22 to participate in an outdoor asifah with divrei chizuk and recitation of Tehillim on behalf of the danger facing acheinu Bnei Yisrael in Eretz Yisrael, two weeks after the barbaric Hamas massacre of 1400 Jewish civilians in Israeli communities on the southern border next to Gaza. The asifah showed the unity of the Flatbush community as Jews from all segments of Klal Yisrael came together for a program that began with a Minchah service outside Landau’s shul on Avenue L that was led by Rabbi Eliezer Ginsburg. Rabbi Yisroel Reisman served as emcee, introducing the various community Rabbanim who participated in the asifah that was endorsed by most major Flatbush organizations and shuls. Both Rabbi Elya Brudny and Rabbi David Ozeri delivered divrei hisorirus. Tehillim was led by Rabbi Hillel David, Rabbi Yakov Ben Haim, Rabbi Meyer Yedid, Rabbi Eli Mansour and Rabbi Yosef Frankel. Rabbi Moshe Tuvia Lieff concluded the asifah by leading the crowd in singing Acheinu. Organizers of the event expressed their appreciation to both the NYPD and Flatbush Shomrim for their efforts in securing the event that left a lasting impression on all who participated in asking Hashem to help our brothers and sisters in the Holy Land.
Thousands of Talmidim and Mispalilim Mourn Petirah of Rabbi Shimon Alster, Zt”l
The petirah shortly before the onset of Shabbos Parshas Noach of Rabbi Shimon Alster, zt”l, has saddened thousands of talmidim and mispalilim who were inspired for more than a half century by the legendary Rosh Yeshivah and Mara d’Asra. Born in 1935, his family managed to escape from the Nazis before the outbreak of World War II. At the age of 11, the future Rosh Yeshivah suffered the loss of his father in a plane crash in 1946. He went to Eretz Yisrael where Rabbi Alster learned in Yeshivas Kol Torah where he was greatly influenced by Rav Shlomo Zalman Auerbach, before returning the to the U.S. where he studied at Yeshivas Chasan Sofer. For many decades Rabbi Alster taught hundreds of talmidim at the Mesivta of Long Beach, before opening the yeshivah of Cliffwood in New Jersey. He also served for decades as the Rav of Bais Medrash Torah U’tefillah. May his children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren be comforted amongst the mourners of Zion and Yerushalayim.
Dave Seymour at JCON Real Estate Networking Event
On October 24, dozens of real estate professionals attended a special three-hour Evening of Real Estate Networking presented by JCON at 230 5th Rooftop Bar. Dave Seymour, CEO of Private Equity Firm from the popular A&E TV series Flipping Boston, opened the event, which segued into networking along with drinks and refreshments.
JCCMP’s Annual Challah Bake to Be Held at the Kingsway Jewish Center
The JCC is proud to host the annual Mother-Daughter Bake at the Kingsway Jewish Center on Thursday, November 2, hosted by Charlene Aminoff, founder and CEO of Gali’s Couture Wigs and renowned public speaker. The evening is an opportunity for inspiration and the chance to perform a mitzvah with music and dancing. May it serve as a zechus for all.
Senator Felder Honors Mrs. Fraidy Nachman as Woman of Distinction
State Senator Simcha Felder announced his selection of Mrs. Fraidy Nachman as one of the State Senate’s 2023 Women of Distinction. Mrs. Nachman graduated from Beth Jacob Hebrew Teachers College, Hunter College, and the Brooklyn Law School. Currently, she serves as vice president and board member of the Council of Jewish Organizations of Flatbush. She also manages a grant from the Conference on Jewish Material Claims against Germany to help Holocaust survivors.
Leon Freund and Yehuda Schoenfeld Join Chevra Hatzalah Emergency
Ambulance Response Team in Israel
Two members of the Flatbush Hatzalah, Leon Freund and Yehuda Schoenfeld, have been selected as two of the first 11 volunteers being sent by Chevra Hatzalah to Eretz Yisrael last month with other teams from the Hatzalah Emergency Ambulace Response Team (HEART) that is expected to follow in the coming weeks. The group will be led by Michael Vatch of Queens and Yoshi Hagler of South Florida. Other selected Hatzalah volunteers in the group are Elon Rosenrauch (Boro Park), Natan Mandelbaum (Crown Heights), Moishe Wajchman (Staten Island), Elimelech Ravitz (Monsey), and Moshe Bauman (Lakewood).
Checking Out What’s New at the JCC Library?
Fueled by popular demand, Baruch Hashem we have now begun our Shabbos Reading Room Program, which is open for two hours every Shabbos afternoon to everyone, EVEN non-library member. All are welcome to come in and enjoy the space by escaping in a good book, engaging in an intense board game, having fun with our many toys, or simply meet and interact with others from the neighborhood! Thank you to Ita Yankovich who supervises this program for us every Shabbos!
During this week’s library hours, we hosted a card making event where kids were busy coloring, drawing, and writing inspiring messages to our IDF soldiers who are currently serving on duty. Our members were busy letting their creative juices flow as they designed cards, traced pictures, glued on letters and stickers and wrote sweet messages letting our IDF soldiers know how much support they have from the JCC. Thank you Aviva Rand and Rechyl Weg for spearheading this activity. Cards are available during library hours all week for those who still want to make a card.
Registration for guitar classes opened this week. We had a feeling this class would be popular, but we did not anticipate the classes to be sold out over just one weekend! We now have guitar classes for boys twice a week. We can’t wait to see what our budding musicians will create. We have plans for classes for girls to start as well.
The library is growing in leaps and bounds. In the three months since we’ve opened, we have over 150 new memberships and a total of 500 members using the library on a weekly basis. We now have over 2500 books and more coming in each week. We are constantly ordering the newest releases in our efforts to keep up with the 100 new titles published each month! Aside from books, our library visitors are enjoying our virtual reality centers, toys, board games and arts and crafts centers. We also have a popular Mommy and Me program, which meets every Tuesday morning. It will only be a matter of time before these cute babies will be checking out books too.