Jewish Center of Northwest Jersey

March 2016 Message from President Howie Hirsch

On February 8th, 11 members of our congregation visited the Mt. Pisgah AME (African Methodist Episcopal) church in Washington to worship with them. This is the beginning of outreach that we plan to do in the community.

It was a smaller congregation than ours and they welcomed us with open arms. Reverend Terrilisa Bauknight gave a wonderful sermon.

The highlight to me was when their 93 year-old member Alice was giving the announcements. It was almost like I channel her when giving my announcements. She was lively, communicative and requested help from the congregation to make sure she didnít forget anything. But the best part was when she was saying that she was 93 and the oldest person there, and our own Edythe Herson was quick to correct her that she was not the oldest person there. After the service concluded, Alice and Edythe got together and seemed to really hit it off.

The sight of the elders of the our congregations embracing a new found friendship was wonderful to see.

For me, the important lessons that were either learned or reinforced were:

1) Religion should be used to bring people together.
2) In spite of some fundamental differences regarding Jesus as the messiah, the teaching of Christianity and Judaism are very similar.
3) we are all members of the human race and we need to be able to get along with people regardless of the color of their skin or any other differences we may have.
4) I am very proud of the showing we made at the church, and,
5) we will be reciprocating and inviting the church to worship with us, look for the date in an upcoming newsletter and do your best to be at that service.
And lastly, the Purim Shpielers will be putting on an evening performance of the spiel the night before our annual Purim festival (Saturday March 19th) at the Sunday School (Sunday March 20th) , to be followed by a Rock and Roll dance. I hope that you are able to come to this performance/party and have a really good time. The cast would like to make this an annual party, so letís make the first one a lot of fun.

Love to you all,
Howie Hirsch

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Last updated: March 6, 2016