A place of Jewish worship...learning...and assembly.

Our focus is to cultivate a caring, inclusive community

in the spirit of liberal Judaism.

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What has PRS been doing?

We at PRS believe in putting our faith into action.  We look for ways to build and strengthen our community while reaching out with acts of tzedakah.  We are always looking for those who may wish to join us!

In November, PRS in conjunction with Our Lady of Loretto and St. Mary’s, sponsored a community Thanksgiving meal for those unable to make their own, for 250 families in Philipstown.  It was fun, and meaningful.

 

In December, we held an adult oriented Hanukkah party, lighting our family menorahs and enjoying homemade latkes and more!  Rabbi Helaine shared some special prayers.

 

In January we again  celebrated a tu b’ish v’at  seder, celebrating the “birthday of the trees”, the world’s oldest environmental holiday, that acknowledges our connection to and interdependence with nature.

 

We continued our education sessions with Rabbi Helaine, reading As a Driven Leaf, a novel  by Rabbi Milton Steinberg.  As always,  these sessions were stimulating and fun.

And more recently, 

 

PRS responds to the war against Ukraine

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PRS HELPS AN AFGHAN FAMILY IN COLD SPRING

In conjunction with other local volunteers and under the guidance of Ossining for Refugees, a HIAS partner, PRS members have been assisting a young Afghan family settling in our community.  Volunteers have helped them arrange health care, visits to our local food bank, and many other actions designed to assist the family in achieving independence as soon as possible and to introduce them to all Philipstown has to offer. The parents are wonderful, outgoing individuals, with two early little children.  PRS is proud to be part of this community effort.

PRS CELEBRATED PURIM ON ZOOM

PRS continues to hold some shabbat evening services on zoom which helped us to keep connected during the worst of the pandemic.  We celebrated Purim this year with a zoom service featuring a funny parody, and some of us even sang along and a few indulged in the Purim tradition of drinking a little hard liquor…

 

If you have not yet joined us for our virtual services we welcome you.  Bring some wine and your candles if you like.  To receive a zoom invitation just contact Cathy Duke at 914 450 4188 or cathye95@aol.com a day prior to any of our services.

 

PRS OBSERVED HOLOCAUST REMEMBRANCE

 

PRS led a unique Holocaust remembrance service in which the synagogue took the lead in a zoom community program with the big assistance of the Fish Library and Butterfield Library.  Thanks to the terrific planning of co-President Adele Stern and Karen Thompson of the Fish Library, PRS presented a program about Jewish life in Ukraine past and present.  With the help of a film of Dr. David Fishman, an expert on Russian and Ukranian Jewry, and moving poetry readings by Elie Wiesel and our own Kathy Gonick, and capped off by the remembrances of our dear Henry Stern, a Holocaust survivor, Rabbi Helaine wove together the connections between the past and present.  It was a moving evening for all.  

 

And what’s next?

PRS will be holding a zoom shabbat service beginning at 6 PM on Friday, May 27.  We hope you can join us!  Just request your zoom invitation by Thursday please.  

And on Monday, May 30, PRS will again have a presence at the wonderful Memorial Day parade!  Thanks to the kind invitation of Father Steve of St. Mary’s Church, Rabbi Helaine will be speaking at 9 AM at the memorial on St. Mary’s great lawn.  We hope you will join us to honor our veterans.  If you wish to have a veteran in your family remembered with a star of David on the great lawn, please contact Cathy Duke as soon as possible!  She will also request a small donation to St. Mary’s Church for their efforts in putting up crosses and stars of veterans. You can reach her at 914 450 4188, or cathye95@aol.com.  

In June, a zoom service on June 10 at 7 PM.  And on June 12 at 5 PM, PRS will hold its annual meeting for members at 5 PM in the parish hall.  We will be having a pizza party following our brief meeting.  

Rabbi Helaine Ettinger

Rabbi Helaine invites you to join her book discussion 

 

Rabbi Helaine will again be leading us in a lively adult education opportunity. We will be reading "As a Driven Leaf,” a novel by Rabbi Milton Steinberg. If you would like to participate please contact Cathy Duke at cathye95@aol.com.

WHAT ELSE HAS PRS BEEN UP TO RECENTLY?
We had the privilege of participating in our
community’s ecumenical Thanksgiving dinner. Together with our faith partners from St. Mary’s Church and Our Lady of Loretto we helped to prepare and serve more than 185 delicious Thanksgiving dinners for those who
were unable for reasons of health, finances or other circumstances to prepare their own. What a great act of tzedakah!

We held an adult oriented Hanukkah party held with safety and fun In mind. The homemade latkes were yummy and matched with homemade applesauce. The wine was delicious. But it was the company that made
the party. We all enjoyed lighting our family menorahs, and enjoyed the lights that cheer us at this time of year.

 

The event was made meaningful by some special prayers that Rabbi Helaine Ettinger offered.

In January in addition to our Friday evening Shabbat service we celebrated with a tu b’ish

v’at seder.  This celebration of the “birthday of the trees”, the world’s first environmental holiday, acknowledges our connection to and interdependence with nature.  And we all had fun besides!  

If you would like to make a donation to PRS to support our efforts please send your gift by snail mail to:  Philipstown Reform Synagogue, PO Box 94, Cold Spring, NY 10516