Today is December 10, 2017 -
The Fair Lawn Jewish Center Sisterhood , an affiliate of The Women’s League for Conservative Judaism, strives to help our congregation evolve from a synagogue to a community. If the goal of our synagogue is to be a home away from home, then the goal of Sisterhood is to offer the membership of all ages, friendship, support, and caring (and, of course, food!). How do we do this?
The Sisterhood Board is the nucleus of all of our activities. Following is the 2016-2017 Board:
President: Lisa Urbanski
Executive VP: Jennifer Mendelsohn
VP Ways and Means: Donna Pasternak
Co – VP Programming: Leslie Frucht, Elisa Hirsch, Ilene Laufer, Gail Rottenstrich
VP Adult Education: Tzivya Kraus
Co-VPs Membership: Ann Golick and Robin Bae
Treasurer: Fran Laniado
Recording Secretaries: Beth Perlman and Myra Rosenblatt
Corresponding Secretary: Robin Epstein
Religious School Liaison: Lily Shinkar
Social Action Liaison: Nina Gold
Torah Fund: Gerry Kessel
Scholarship Fund: Andrea Pass
Member at Large: Ellie Weiner
Past Presidents: Fran Kessler, And Carol Marcus
Purim Carnival Coordinator: Lisa Urbanski
Sisterhood Shabbat Coordinators: Jennifer Mendelsohn and Tzivya Kraus
B’nai Mitzvah Gift Coordinator: Lily Shinkar
Each year we sponsor, along with The Mens Progres Club, the decorating of the Succah, a synagogue-wide Hanukkah Hagigah, complete with live entertainment, sufganiot (jelly donuts), latkes, dreidels, and Chocolate Hanukkah Gelt. On Purim, we amass a cast of thousands to put together the Best Purim Carnival west of the Saddle River. No one leaves without a goldfish! We, also, provide gifts to all our B’Nai Mitzvah youngsters, as we all kvell when a congregant celebrates this important milestone. During the High Holy Days, we provide snacks for Junior Congregation, and offer traditional candy apples on Simchat Torah.
We beautify and decorate
Each year, Sisterhood decorates the Bima for the High Holy Days with fresh flowers. We, also, send fresh flower arrangements to our Rabbi and Cantor’s homes. The flowers on the Bima during the year are maintained by Sisterhood. Last year, Sisterhood has made a sizeable donation toward replacing the flooring on the Activities Level. Of course, our creativity is shown every Succoth when we decorate the Succah. Our children, as well as, their parents participate with great enthusiasm.
On a Sunday in September, Sisterhood sponsors our annual synagogue-wide “Back-to-Shul BBQ. Everyone enjoys dancing to “Our House Band”, the great food and games; and, of course, the camaraderie with fellow members and friends
Our Paid-Up Membership Meeting is scheduled in October. Your dues are the admission.
We hold an annual Café Night with “Our House Band” playing and light refreshments served. Throughout the year Sisterhood sponsors programs that are open to all members, and are of interest to everyone.
Sisterhood is one of the sponsors of the annual Women’s Seder, held before Passover, at the Washington Township Y.
We have a learning experience at most every event that we sponsor. Each year, on a Shabbat in January, the women of Sisterhood participate in conducting services. Sisterhood Shabbat provides the opportunity to practice and showcase our synagogue skills. Every year, the Bima is overflowing with women reading Torah, receiving aliyot, and offering the congregation insights through a D’Var Torah. To top off the experience Sisterhood serves a sumptuous Kiddush after services. Last year we were very excited and honored to be hosting the Womens League Regional Torah Fund Conference on Sun. Nov. 22. We are planning Special Adult Education programs, like our annual Sisterhood Shabbat in the Winter, or our Book/Author breakfast in the Spring.
We raise funds
We hold various fundraising events throughout the year. The largest, our Shalach Manot baskets, distributed on Purim, provide the opportunity to fulfill a mitzvah, enjoy the goodies and raise some money. For Passover, we run a Passover Candy Sale. For Hanukkah, we hold a Holiday Boutique to purchase special gifts for your loved ones. All proceeds of our fundraising activities go directly to future programming, supporting synagogue activities, and funding special projects within our shul or the community at large. Our Sisterhood maintains the most active and lucrative Torah fund program throughout New Jersey; this program raises money to support the Jewish Theological Seminary to ensure the education of future conservative rabbis, cantors and teachers.
Sisterhood can only offer these programs through the dedication of our many members. Committed volunteers can always be relied upon to lend a hand to provide the little extras that make our synagogue our second home. Won’t you join us? There is always something to do and a friend to be made. New Center members receive free membership in Sisterhood, their first year. Sisterhood, also, has a Junior Member category for daughters of members. For more information, please contact, Fran Kessler, Sisterhood President, through the Center office. We look forward to meeting you!