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December 27, 2002 - Image 43

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 2002-12-27

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

A New Home

Congregation Chaye Olam and its school
move to Farmington Hills.

SHELLI LIEBMAN DORFMAN

Stair Writer

4

I

f the success of a synagogue
can be measured by the knowl-
edge and Jewish identity it
provides its children, Rhonda
Shink believes she has found a per-
fect match for her daughters at
Congregation Chaye Olam.
"I want my girls to end up being
very happy, self-assured Jewish
women who will participate and
practice their religion," says Shink of
West Bloomfield.
In the four months since the new
synagogue was formed by Cantor
Stephen Dubov, Shink and more
than 100 other new members have
seen it go from a hope and a dream
to a full-fledged synagogue — with
weekly services, a religious school
and now, a move into a more perma-
nent home.
A Shabbat service at 7:30 p.m.
Friday, Jan. 3, will mark the official
move of the congregation to the
International School of Arts and
Languages in Farmington Hills.
Preceding the service, a dinner will
be held at the Sheik restaurant in
West Bloomfield.
An entire new wing — six class-
rooms and a chapel-sanctuary area
— at the International School will
be used by the synagogue.
Classes and services were previ-
ously held at Green Elementary
School in West Bloomfield.
Eighteen religious-school stu-
dents, kindergarten through sixth-
grade, have been meeting since
October. Enrollment is under way
for grades 7-12, with classes begin-
ning the first week of January. Both
of Skink's daughters, Kyra, 9, and
Hannah, 6, are students in the
school.
"I spent all of last year learning
for my [adult] bat mitzvah," says
Shink, who studied with Cantor
Dubov while they were both at
Temple Beth El. "Kyra met with
him there on Sunday mornings for
prayer services and also was in the

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Cantor Stephen Dubov outside Chaye Olam's New Home.

choir with him." Both Kyra and
Hannah are now in the Chaye Olam
choir.
"The minute we read that he was
opening up the new temple, I told
my husband, David, we had to go
wherever the cantor was going,"
Shink says. "At first Kyra did not
like the idea of switching schools,
but now that she's there, she couldn't
be happier."
It was important for Shink that
her children's Jewish education was
something they wanted. "I didn't
want them to go to religious school
because their parents tell them they
have to go, but rather because they
love our religion. I think Chaye
Olam has achieved that."
Both the cantor and his wife,
Christine, teach at the religious
school. "Our entire Hebrew school
will know how to read Hebrew by
the end of the year," Cantor Dubov
says.

The Jan. 3 Shabbat service,
"Shabbat Salaam (Arabic for peace)"
is intended to bring together Jews
and Arabs to foster peace for the
new year. The speaker for the
evening will be congregant Asa
Shani, board member of Seeds of
Peace, an international organization
that fosters understanding among
teens from areas of conflict such as
the Middle East.
The name Chaye Olam, meaning
"eternal life was given to us all," sig-
nifies that "every human being is
created b'tselem Elohim [in God's
image]," says the cantor. ❑

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For information about
Congregation Chaye Olam at the
International School of Arts and
Languages at 28555 Middlebelt,
Farmington Hills, or reservations
for the Jan. 3 dinner ($15/adults,
$7.50/youth), call (248) 752-6669.

(new contracts only)

Phone (248) 960-6121 1480

www.detroitjewishnews.com

Find
out
before your mother!

12/27

2002

43

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