LETTERS TO THE EDITOR
Rick and I would like to subscribe your newsletter to be send to our home. As you know I am the president of Congregation Bene Shalom and the administrator of Hebrew Seminary of the Deaf and we currently are your subscribers. I find your newsletter very informative and newsy especially about us Jewish people. I knew that my husband would enjoy it too, so instead of bringing the newsletter home to give it to Rick, we want it to be sent to our home.. We decided to subscribe your newsletter as Rick is an avid reader of any deaf publications and subscribes them all. It is nice that we have an additional Jewish newsletter to Steve Brenner's newsletter [JDC Quarterly] as well.
Keep up the good work you have done on the JDCC newsletter. Shalom
Nona & Rick Balk
I hope all is well with you and your family and that as we enter the Pesach season you and your family be blessed with health and happiness.
Recently I was given a copy of your JDCC Newsletter from February I believe it was. In it was an article written by Barry Strassler which describes a difficult and emotional issue for Lee Brody (alav hashalom). What is clear is that Mr. Strassler was intending to pay honor to Mr. Brody by offering an insight into an event which allegedly had tremendous impact in his life.
However, the article also explains that Mr. Brody did not wish any mention of the subject for it brought him some measure of distress. By writing the article, and agreeing to print it I am afraid you have violated one of Judaism's precepts with regard to honoring our dead.
The notion is of course Kevod Hamet, which prescribes the responsibility of a swift and timely burial, but also can be understood to mean honoring the wishes of the deceased--as long as they don't run contrary to other Jewish law. If Mr. Brody did in fact wish that this story not be printed, or retold in any fashion, doing so after his death is not honoring his memory or giving him the respect with which he is due. Further the very fact that it was printed after his death challenges the validity of the story itself which is a violation of another Jewish precept against trafficking in heresay or gossip. I am not questioning Mr. Strassler's integrity, or the content of his article, just pointing out the slippery slope upon which he stands and which Judaism has wisely cautioned against.
Although I am not very familiar with your organization or its goals, I am certain that violating a well known component of our tradition is not done intentionally or maliciously. I hope that some follow up will be offered to your community.
Our children Francis (age 10) and Phyllis (age 7 1/2) have been attending to Tifereth Israel called Simon Tov program for 3 years. There are 4 other students. We would like to encourage more Jewish deaf in the program to make it successful & grow, too.
We went on field trip to BJE (Bureau of Jewish Education) in Rockville, MD to make mikvah.
There is no adult program to teach hebrew like myself. I hope to learn how to speak Hebrew someday because I'd like to have bat mitzvah. I had confirmation and did not understand my religion well. Thank you.
Mazel Tov! You are making successful to have a better Jewish Deaf Community. I'm working on to make one in St. Louis with a new assistant Rabbi who came along since last July. Andrew has been teaching Rabbi Jay sign language once a week and Jay has a good common sense of deaf culture and understands quickly. Kids love him and we are glad that he's our rabbi in St. Louis. St. Louis has about 25 Jewish deaf people, but they (mostly) are not active in Judaism.
I would like to know if you know how many Jewish deaf kids in the U.S.? Andrew went to Boys' camp in Baltimore, MD last summer (orthodox) one. He had a blast time, but it was too long and he wanted 2 weeks mixing both boys and girls. Maybe we can work out something. Thanks.
Thank you very much doing your great job with the newsletter. I read that was very fascinating. Very interesting with the newsletter. (Los Angeles Jewish Deaf Community Jan/Feb Issue) I got several people to let me know about my life with my mother doing the Sunday school and Temple history. They didn't know about my life with Jewish cultural in L.A. in the past years. You did a great job doing with the newsletter. Shalom.
This is a wonderful newsletter, I will send a check to subscribe and get back issues.
JDCC PASSOVER COMMUNITY SEDER
It was our first time attending the JDCC Passover Seder and we wish to express how much we enjoyed the entire evening. Mazel tov for the outstanding job you performed! Our hats off to you! Keep up the fine work for the future Seders!
I am writing this note to tell you how much I really enjoyed the Passover Seder on April 21st. Our table leader Jeff Dichter did a remarkable job with his beautiful sign language.
I was amazed that we listened to the leader and signed together. It was a smooth service. Ira Rothenberg told us a brief history about Passover. This Passover Seder was special to me because my caring friends Don Rosenkjar and Khai Nguyen joined us to celebrate a special Jewish Holiday.
I would like to tell you briefly about them. We have been friends for a long time. When they found out that I was not very involved with my own religion, even though Don & Khai are Catholic and Church goers, they are concerned about me. They encouraged me to be part of Judaism and bought me Jewish books, a Mezuzah, a Menorah and sent me Jewish Holiday cards.
Also met people that I haven't seen in a long time, it was nice to see them and catch up on news. That's why it was a special day for me.
L-R (Back): Daniella Dichter,
Shula & Jeff Dichter, Ira Rothenberg, Jonathan Weiss, Khai Nyugen
L-R (Back): Ken & Patti
Goulston, Marlee Grandalski, Margaret Zinner, Patricia Schwartz
"TBS does not tend to draw a younger crowd because of its location in the valley...They are Reform and don't know much about Judaism."
I do not believe that Joyce Linden actually said that. You owe a lot of people an explanation.
Joe Slotnick, President
A misimpression at the end of the summary on Joyce Linden's lecture which ran in the March/April 1997 issue of JDCC News raised an objection from Joe Slotnick, President of Temple Beth Solomon of the Deaf, who claimed that Joyce did not make these comments. Upon further investigation by viewing a videotape of the lecture and after checking with writer Dina Dror, JDCC News wishes to clarify as follows:
Joyce said, " TBS members tend to be older, we are losing many of them. The Temple population is getting smaller. JDCC tends to attract younger people and seems to have more social events attracting them. It may be growing. I'd hate to see either of them disappear for lack of members. I think it's great that we have those options. Both in some ways are very different organizations even though they serve the same community."
The three sentences which followed: "TBS doesn't tend to draw a younger crowd because of its location in the valley. Most people are located in the city. They are Reform and don't know much about Judaism" seemed to be attributed to Joyce Linden when it was actually the opinion of the writer, Dina Dror.
JDCC News apologizes for this incident and is currently reviewing procedures to ensure that such incidents do not occur in the future.