THE JEWISH NEWS
Incorporating The Detroit Jewish Chronicle commencing with issue of July 29, 1951
Member American Association of English—Jewish Newspapers, Michigan Press Association, National Editorial
Published every Friday by The Jewish News Publishing Co., 17100 West Seven Mile Road, Detroit 48235 Mich.,
trE 8-9364. Subscription $6 a year. Foreign $7.
Second Class Postage Paid at Detroit, Michigan
Editor and Publisher
CARMI M. SLOMOVITZ
Sabbath Scriptural Selections
This Sabbath, the fifth day of Sivan, 5725, the following scriptural selections will
be read in our synagogues:
Pentateuchal portion: Num. 1:1-4:20; prophetical portion: Hos. 2:1-22.
Shavuot Scriptural Selections
Pentateuchal portions: Sunday, Exod. 19:1-20:23, Num. 28:26-31; Monday, Dent.
15:19-16:17, Num. 28:26-31.
Prophetical portions: Sunday, Ezek. 1:1-28; 3:12; Monday, Habak. 3:1-19.
Licht benshen, Friday, June 4, 7:45 p.m.
VOL. XLVII, No. 15
June 4, 1965
Shavuot: Its Current Lesson for Our Time
Shavuot is the festival of the Giving of the Law. It is therefore the festival of the
Receiving of the Law.
The acceptance implied by the Giving and the Receiving represents learning. It calls for
teaching. Out of it develops a dedication to Torah Judaism that demands priority for the
spread and acquisition of knowledge.
Shavuot is one of the great festivals on our calendar. It is the link of the Jewish people
with its ethical teachings, with its sacred traditions, with the Torah and the very roots of our
status as a religious folk.
In our own time it has a special lesson for us—one that carries with it a serious chal-
lenge in an era when we speak of survival and of the retention of the interest of our youth
in their sacred heritage.
Book With Rare Illustrations
Especially on Shavuot, it is almost sacrilegious to doubt survival. The Torah festival is a
constant reminder of the indestructibility of Israel. We may lose in numbers, some in our
ranks may falter, there are always spiritual casualties. But the people lives to perpetuate its
teachings, to continue its moral codes, to retain an identity that cannot be defiled.
Nevertheless, in our consideration of the basic needs for the perpetuation of Torah
Judaism, we must think in terms of a knowledgeable Jewry, of a people that knows and
understands its inherited spiritual and cultural values. It is on this score that Shavuot reminds
us of our basic problems, of the major needs to create the media which will assure the
continuity of Jewish dignity.
Because its basic ideal is learning, which requires the best in teaching, Shavuot's chal-
lenge today is on the score of the schooling we give our children, of the assurance we have
that our houses of learning will be conducted according to the highest standards.
We normally think of Shavuot as the festival that marks commencements and graduation
from schools, consecrations and confirmations. While we inevitably also ask: what of the
morrow? will our children continue their studies after confirmations and graduations?; we
must face the issues more earnestly to provide answers to these questions.
For positive results, we must face the existing problems frankly and we must be prepared
to provide the proper means to solve problems involving education whenever they arise—and
Discussions inaugurated in our columns in recent weeks regarding the status of our
schools vis-a-vis the teachers have brought numerous interesting comments. Educators em-
phasized the need we pointed to: that of elevating the status of our teachers, of recognizing
their work with an increasing measure of respect and honor, of providing for them financially
in a manner that will retain them in our school system's, thereby also encouraging our youth
to enter the Jewish teaching profession.
The basic reply thafis awaited to the questions that have been posed is from the ranks:
from our young men and young women who could render valuable service by enrolling as
teachers. Are we prepared to offer them the same status, the dignity that goes with teaching
in our public schools and in our universities? Are we able to provide for them collegiate status
when we ask them to become the teachers of our children in Jewish lore?
'Ben-Gurion's Israel' by Appel
Enhanced by Rare Illustrations
To the numerous books published about Israel has been added
another—"Ben-Gurion's Israel," by Benjamin Appel, published by
Grosset and Dunlap (51 Madison, NY 10). This one differs from most
others in that its emphasis is on Ben-Gurion and may well be con-
sidered a biography of B-G.
Extensively illustrated with impressive photos, Appel's book, ap-
parently intended for younger readers, will be welcomed by many
young adults who are in search of information about Israel's early
story, the events that preceded the establishment of the Jewish State—
the pogroms in Russia, the stifling atmosphere of Europe, the holocaust
—as well as the events in Palestine which forced a showdown with the
The plight of Jews at the turn of the century, the love for and
the craving to see Zion redeemed, gave impetus to Jews to seek an
end to the humiliating conditions under which they lived. Ben-Gurion
—born David Green—became a pioneer. Describing the pioneering
spirit and those who commenced Palestine's resettlement, Appel
links the future Israeli prime minister with the names of other noted
men who played important roles in Israel's redemption.
The great men who played important parts in Israel's establish-
ment — Balfour, Brandeis, Weizmann, Jabotinsky, Ussishkin— are
among the heroes of this book. It tells the story of the Jewish Legion
and later on it deals with the Haganah and with Israel's successful
battle for independence. The role of Ben-Gurion in all these Zionist
developments is constantly emphasized.
Bringing the story up to date, .Appel's account also describes the
Concluding with comments on "the future," Appel's historical
account expresses the view that "perhaps new cities will flourish again"
to mark the realization of many aims — peace, cooperation among
nations, desalination. The author concludes his story by asserting: "Man
and land, past and future — they can be summed up in one word:
"Ben-Gurion's Israel" is beautiful printed, in large format, with
rare illustrations that enhance the contents.
In a sense, the community already has given the answer: the sentiments are in favor of
giving priority to Jewish education and we should not doubt that there will be good response
to the requests for communal support for our school systems. But there must also be wider
support from individuals. In the course of time we shall have to build new schools and that
will require larger sums than have been available until now. Soon the communities will be
called upon to finance our day schools. Their existence is an established fact. Their need is
now less debatable: from the day schools we expect the emergence of a large group of highly
trained youth who, by virtue of greater emphasis on their Jewish studies, will be fortified with
an acquired knowledge that should assure better informed leaders and a culturally powerful
element in Jewry.
The problems are not insoluble. But they must be recognized. We must acknowledge Imaginative Writing
the existence of day schools and be prepared to support them. We must continually elevate
the standards of our teachers and we must encourage able youth to enter the teaching pro-
Already reviewed in these columns by Nathan Ziprin, editor
Indeed, we must give priority to our cultural and educational needs—and that must be
attained with a full appreciation of the basic needs for Jewish communal functioning that is of Seven Arts Feature Syndicate, "The Book of Paradise" by Itzik
published by Hill and Wang (141 5th, NY 10), deserves added
rooted in knowledge and in the establishment of an intellectual aristocracy in American Manger,
Manger's 'Book of. Paradise'
The eminent Yiddish writer had the good fortune of a splendid
translation for his stories by Leonard Wolf. There are five illustrations
The day schools' needs may call for major consideration in communal planning in the by Mendel Reif. The jacket design by the eminent artist, Ben Shaul,
years to come, and the developing situation in this country which acknowledges the status is impressive.
of private and religious schools indicate new thinking that evolves as a result of new ac-
What makes this book of short stories, relating "the wonderful
knowledgments of the preferences by parents. The day schools will not and can not predomi- adventures
of Shmuel-Aba Abervo," is the author's ability to convey
nate in American society, but they need no longer be viewed as peripheral: they are now a theme with a fine sense of humor, the splendid narrations, the ex-
factual and as such are vital elements in Jewish life, just as the parochial schools of other cellent dialogues.
faiths are elemental to certain forces in American life. But the day school idea involves
In "At the House of the Angel Zaidl," the dialogue between
greater financial responsibility, and that requires philanthropic investments on a scale much Ham and Japheth as they play a trick on their drunken father Noah,
higher than those previously allocated to our educational needs.
Thus, an expanded school system will call for greater effort to encourage young Jews
All the tales in this fine collection of short stories are enter-
to enter the teaching profession. Only time can tell whether that can be accomplished, but taining, and their author's dedication of them "to myself as a
the needs are great, and priority will have to be given in our vocational guidance programs memento of the lonely days and nights when I wandered the streets
to induce the youth to think in terms of adopting receptive attitutes in their leaning to- and boulevards of Paris"—he had been "driven from Romania," his
birthplace—will find a ready response from readers who will en-
wards Hebrew studies that are to lead to pedagogical pursuits.
This is the lesson of the Shavuot as we see it for our time. May this great Festival of the courage him to complete his planned trilogy of short stories.
"The Book of Paradise" attests to good and most imaginative
Giving of the Law serve also as an Acceptance of the Law and as a reaffirmation of the
spiritual dignity of the People of Israel.