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April 21, 1967 - Image 30

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1967-04-21

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.

30—Friday, April 21, 1967

THE DETROIT JEWISH NEWS

Shaarey Zedek Elects Rabbi Groner;
Samuel C. Kovan Chosen President

At the annual meeting held Mon-
day, Congregation Shaarey Zedek
elected Rabbi Irwin Groner as its
-piritual leader to fill the post
vacated by the death of Rabbi
Morris Adler.
Rabbi Groner's election was re-
( ommended unanimously by the
.vnagogue's board of trustees.
Samuel C. Kovan was elected
president of the synagogue. Other
officers chosen Monday are Dr.
Samuel Krohn, vice president;
Mandell L. Berman, treasurer, and
Hyman Safran, secretary.
Leonard E. Baron, Dr. Davis
Benson, Gerson Bernstein, Walter
L. Field, Morris Karbal and Dr.

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Max Lichter were elected members
of the board of trustees.

Kovan succeeds Louts Berry to
the presidency.

Rabbi Groner received his BA
degree at the University of Chi-
cago, where he did post-graduate
work in psychology and counseling.
He was ordained by the Hebrew
Theological College in Chicago.
His previous pulpit was at Con-
gregation Agudath Ichim in Little
Rock, Ark. Ile is a member of the
education division of the Jewish
Welfare Federation; serves on the
board of the Midrasha and the
llillel Day School; has been nomi-
nated to serve on the executive
committee of the Jewish Commun-
ity Council,
He has recently been appointed
to the board of overseers of the
Jewish Theological Seminary of
America. He serves on the board
of the Detroit Chapter of the Jew-
ish National Fund; the board of
the Zionist Organization of Detroit;
and the Michigan Regional Cabinet
of the Anti-Defamation League. He
is consulting chaplain of Childrens
Hospital.
Since 1961, he has been chair-
man of the youth commission of
Central Region United Synagogue
Youth, an organization which in-
cludes approximately 2,000 teen-
agers in Michigan, Ohio and neigh-
boring states.
Rabbi Groner is married and has
three children.

Detroit Rabbis Agree in Magazine Article:
Parties 'Submerge' Meaning of Bar Mitzva

ssonty
‘N1ailtuzve as cbof Y:heto csetrreem
he religious
NEW YORK (JTA)—The spiri- Congregation, told the news-
weekly.
tual meaning of the Bar Mitzva
The report said that neverthe-
In New York City, "wealthy
ceremony "and the years of train-
ing that precede it" are "virtually Jews rent lavish hotel ballrooms, less most rabbis "recognize a prac-
benefit in bar mitza parties."
tical
submerged by the celebration that complete with orchestras and
follows," Newsweek magazine re- borsht-belt entertainers to divert They use the desire for the cere-
of even secular Jews to
ported in a survey of Bar Mitzva their guests," the article reported, mony
adding that last year, a celebration draw children to religious schools.
practices in the United States.
Said Rabbi Noah M. Game
in Washington,' D.C., "mounted as
Jewish parents were pictured as magnificently as a royal ball, cost
of Detroit's Downtown Synago-
increasingly ignoring the solemnity
gue,
"the Bar Mitzva ceremony
$55,000."
of the rite and "prodded by prey-
is rather like a bribe. We say to
For the Bar Mitzva boy, the ar-
ing caterers, turning it into a
a boy 'You want a Bar Mitzva,
gaudy spectacle." The article quot- tide remarked, "the affair is as
he don't you? You want a nice par-
ed a number of rabbis as deeply fruitful as it is fun: the gifts
don't you? Then go to He
as
ty,
collects
can
be
worth
as
much
disturbed and seeking to deal with
rew school.' "
the party costs."
the problem.
Another approach is that
Valley

"All the excitement leaves an
impression on the boy that his
responsibility as a Jew is merely
social," Rabbi Benjamin Gorre-
lick of Detroit's Beth Aaron

Three Witnesses,
Silver Pointer
at Tora Reading

BY RABBI SAMUEL J. FOX

(Copyright. 1967, JTA, Inc.)

It is required that a minimum
of three people stand near the
Tora at the altar when it is being
read.
In handing over the tradition
and the Tora to the people of
Israel through Moses, the Al-
mighty is reported as saying "I
call Heaven and Earth to witness
against you this day . . . " (Deut.
Kovan, a native Detroiter, is a
graduate of old Central High 4:26). It thus became a matter of
School and the Detroit College having the words of the Tora
of Law. He has practiced law in pronounced while two witnesses
Detroit for 30 years and is a stand by. Similarly, at the public
member of the Detroit, Michigan reading of the Tora in the syna-
and American Bar Associations. gogue, which many consider a
He is one of the founders and facsimilie of its original presenta-
former president of Harry B. tion to the people of Irael, the
Tora is read by the reader and two
Keidan Lodge, Bnai Brith.
Kovan has served Congregation people stand there with him (one
Shaarey Zedek at the top level for on either side of the altar) as if
the past 15 years as chairman of to bear witness. This gives us our
the membership committee, chair- minimum of the three who must
man of the ritual committee, co- stand near the Tora while it is
chairman of the ways and means being read. Others claim that the
and budget and finance commit- basis for requiring three people to
tees, and as chairman of the nego- be present at the altar w hen the
tiating committee and many ad hoc Tora is being read is that the
committees. He has served as vice- number three is prevalent in the
president, secretary and treasurer events involving the revelation at
as well as a member of the boarfl Sinai. There were three principal
factors involved: The Almighty,
of trustees.
Mr. and Mrs. Kovan are the par- the Tora and the people of Israel.
ents of Charles Kovan and Mrs. It was revealed on the third day
after they were told to be ready.
Jon Meyer Robins.
The people of Israel had three
Patriarchs (Abraham, Isaac and
Jewish National Fund
Jacob). They are divided into
three basic classifications (Kohen,
Outlines New Budget
Levi and Israelite). Since the
JERUSALEM (JTA) — The new reader is only substituting (or re-
fiscal year's budget for the Jewish presenting) the individual who is
National Fund amounts to called down before the Tora (and
$18,000,000, which is $800,000 under it was the individual who is called
last year's budget, it was an- to the Tora who originally read
nounced here by Yaacov Tsur, the portion), this already requires
chairman of the JNF.'Debt repay- four people to be present. Further-
ments will take up a large part of more, since the one who already
the new budget, he said, so that completed his benedictions over
the operating budget will amount the Tora must not leave until the
reading and benediction of the
only to $11,300,000.
Tsur reported that contributions next one have been completed,
to the Jewish National Fund re- this means that most of the time
, mained "steady" last year at there are really five people at the
$7,000,000, but income from real altar when the Tora is being read,
estate the fund owns in Israel de- although the basic requirement is
clined, due to the economic reces- for three people to be present.
sion here. Planted trees in Israel,
The reader uses a silver point-
he said, now account for half of the
er to guide him as he reads the
total of 800,000 dunams (200,000
Tora.
acres) of trees in Israel.
The silver pointer has two
During the new fiscal year,
functions.
While it hangs on one of
he said, the fund will give work
to 7,000 Israeli unemployed work- the spindles outside the Tora cover
ers, who will be used for affore- as it is standing in the ark or
station. The basic pay will be pro- being carried, it is an adornment
vided by the government, while of the Tora and it is traditional to
adorn our holy objects as a means
the JNF will finance transporta-
tion, tools, services and the of honoring them. Holding it in
hand while reading the Tora is a
salaries of foremen.
The projects, Tsur said, will be means of preventing one from
financed by a bond issue of $2.3 actually touching the bare parch-
million, guaranteed by the Israel ment with one's own hand, an act
which is strictly prohibited (Tal-
government.
More than $4,000,000 will be spent mud Bavli, Megila 32a; Shul-
on reclamation work in 150 settle- chan Aruch Orach Chayyim 147:1).
ments. Other projects will include The use of the silver pointer thus
preparation of ground for new allows the reader to keep his place
settlements, the building of dams and helps the one who is called
in the Negev Desert to halt the loss to the Tora to follow the reader
of rainwater, and the support of during the reading of his particu-
lar portion.
border farms settled by Nahal.

of Rab-

Rabbi Moshe Rabin of

Beth Shalom Synagogue in San bi Hillel Silverman of Sinai Temple
Fernando Valley asserted that "the in West Los Angeles, who believes
vulgarity of bar mitzas is worse in Bar Mitzas should be delayed
southern California than anywhere until age 18.
Other rabbis would like to make
else. Some affairs feature skimpily
clad female dancers or comedians Bar Mitzvas conditional on par-
ental pledges to continue their
telling off-color jokes."
Some rabbis try to keep the cele- son's religious education to age 16.
bration in the synagogue, "where These and other proposals "are
the atmosphere will temper the now being studied by a commis-
festivities." Rabbi Seymour Siegel sion of Conservative rabbis for the
of the Jewish Theological Seminary United Synagogue of America.'
suggests that local rabbis should However, most rabbis feel 13 is
put a ceiling on the amount of the proper age and that many cele-
money parents can spend on the brations will continue "to lean to-
celebrations and that "wealthy ward the lavish." Rabbi Herschel'
Jews might use the funds usually Saville of Chicago's Cong. Bnai
spent on ostentatious parties to David Budlong summed it up: To
send their children on a pilgrim- educate Jews in the meaning of
age to Israel." the rite, "we would have to have
Cong. Rodfei Zedek- in Chicago an exhaustive program of adult
holds seminars for parents of Bar education."

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From The Entire Staff
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