CHJ's annual Yom Ha' Shoah program was very moving. In addition to hearing Lou Reens talk about his experience of being sent away from his family in order to survive the Nazi occupation of Holland, Zelig told us a new story--one about recently meeting a Polish nurse in the hospital who told him about all the non-Jewish Polish tradesmen who had worked at Oswiecem (Auschwitz) and were then slaughtered so they could not go home and tell anyone about what they had seen. Then Manny Lobel, a survivor we had not met before, told about leaving Berlin for Shnghai when he was four and then celebrating his bar mitzvah on a ship from Shanghai to San Francisco. These are the stories of the past and the present. One of CHJ's mitzvah students, Scotty Luntz, talked about his bar mitzvah project (The Warsaw Ghetto) and then read a poem he wrote about the Holocaust. He is the future. Our prayer is that his generation does a better job of "never again." Read his poem here. Until next year, Gail Ostrow
Thank you to photographer Joyce Laitman and the Westport Minuteman for the wonderful photos.
A special Friday evening program was held May 20th . Who knew so many members were artists... for instance, that Jeff Greenberg was making lovely turned wood bowls and Gordon Leibowitz and Doug Dudfield were sculptors.? The setting -- the Gray's beautiful home filled with Barbara's art-- was special to begin with. The variety and quality of art were amazing.
Best of all were the remarks by the artists and the conversations, all encouraged by the casual "mingling" format. Maybe because we are a "family," there was none of the phoniness one often hears when people talk about their art work.
Thanks to Marilyn Brownstein for her appreciation.
An articulate, warm and knowledgeable feminist, Yasmin Kahn shared her views about being a Muslim in America with CHJ on April 29th.She showed a segment of a UK Channel Four Shariah TV series in which she appeared, where young Muslims discussed their take on being Muslim and American. Yazmin responded to the many questions asked by the engaged CHJ audience thoughtfully and candidly.
In her own life, feminism and Islam coexist peacefully. Following graduation this year from UConn-Stamford, Yasmin intends to pursue a career in government. She worked two years at Teach for America and has studied in India and Spain.
Thanks to Lucy Katz for arranging Yazmin's appearance.