Sun Lakes Jewish Congregation news and events

Cantor Ronda Polesky at Passover

Cantor Ronda Polesky at Passover

Allan Levy

The Sun Lakes Jewish Congregation (SLJC) is an established reform congregation that meets at the Sun Lakes Chapel at 7:30 p.m. on the second Friday of the month. Services are a great opportunity to meet new people, connect with Judaism and learn. Rabbi Weiner is our leader and has guided the congregation for the past ten years.

Last month the congregation celebrated Passover with a wonderful Passover Seder; over 70 people attended. The Seder was held at Sun Lakes Country Club. Rabbi Wiener interpreted the Plagues in Egypt in a modern context. Each plague was read by a different congregant. For the children a search for the afikoman, meaning “that which comes after” or “dessert,” is a half-piece of matzo which is broken in two during the early stages of the Passover Seder and set aside to be eaten as a dessert after the meal.

In some families, the head of the household hides the afikoman for the children to find and rewards them with money or candy. In other families, the children “steal” the afikoman and ask for a reward for its return. Either way, the afikoman has become a way to engage children and keep them interested and alert during the Seder proceedings, until the time it is needed for dessert.

This month is the Yom HaShoah Remembrance, for the six million Jews killed in the Holocaust, including an estimated one and a half million children. There will be a candle lighting, including a candle to honor the Righteous Gentiles. ‘Righteous Gentiles’ is the phrase used for those non-Jews who risked their lives to save Jews during the Holocaust. At Yad Vashem Museum in Jerusalem, over 11,000 ‘Righteous Gentiles’ are honored. The movie Schindler’s List commemorated one of these Righteous Gentiles. The film is based on the life of Oskar Schindler, a German businessman who saved the lives of more than a thousand mostly Polish-Jewish refugees during the Holocaust by employing them in his factories. He died on October 4, 1974 in Hildesheim, Germany and was buried in Jerusalem on Mount Zion, the only member of the Nazi party to be honored in this way.

On April 19, the congregation hosted the Southeast Valley Commemoration and Remembrance of the Holocaust.

The celebration included temples and churches from Sun Lakes, Chandler and Tempe.

On May 8, the regular services will be held.

On May 12 Shalom Hadassah will host High Tea and Fashion Show at Oakwood at 11:30 a.m. Marilyn is the contact at 480-895-7750.