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June 13, 2003 - Image 73

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 2003-06-13

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Divine Connections

Hillel education helps nurture a relationship with God.

illel Day School and its
teachers help to fulfill
God's hope each and
every day. Both secular
and Judaic studies are infused with
biblical concepts and core Jewish
values. The curriculum and pro-
gramming encourage students'
development into dedicated Jews
and messengers of the Torah's wis-
JONATHAN
dom.
WARSH
Fundamental Jewish values are at
Special to the
the center of all Hillel program-
Jewish News
ming. Programs such as the siddur
[prayer book] and Torah parties for
first and second grades lay the
groundwork for lifelong involvement in the Jewish
community. As my classmates and I stood on the
bimah, proudly, with our siddurim in hand, we were
excited because we were connecting with the rest of the
Jewish world through prayer.
We did not know it then, but the simple celebration
of our siddur party would become an important
underpinning for the development of our personal
relationships with God. We have evolved into educated
Jews who not only can read the words of our tradition,
but also lead whole congregations in prayer. At the
same time, we understand the meaning behind these
words that adds to our daily prayer experience.
The development of a strong Jewish identity is the
hallmark of a Hillel Day School education. Israel and
its people, our people, are at the heart of our Hillel
curriculum. As students and American Jews, we learn

to process world events in relation to their impact on
Israel.
Signs of Israeli support adorn the walls of Hillel
hallways. We have been encouraged to attend rallies,
to buy Israeli goods and to learn about our Jewish
homeland. Many of our teachers are Israeli, and we
are the beneficiaries of their firsthand knowledge of
our Holy Land. Their personal experiences have been
our textbooks as they share perspectives on modern,
historical and biblical Israel.
At Hillel, community outreach is an ongoing
emphasis of the curriculum. Rabbi Hillel taught Al
tifrosh min hatziboor — "Do not withdraw from the
community." As Hillel students, we learn about the
responsibility that we have as Jews to each other.
Through the Dor L'Dor (Generation to Generation)
program, we reached out to the elderly. I visited a very
special friend at the Fleischman Apartments. Each
time I saw her, she had a story to tell or valuable advice
to give.
As Hillel students in the seventh grade, we also par-
ticipated in the JARC program, visiting a residential
home for Jewish developmentally challenged adults. It
was clear that these residents cherished the time we
spent together as we sought to engage them in our
Hillel family.
At Hillel, I also learned that students can effect
change. We petitioned for a student government and
this year saw the first Student Congress for the upper
school. Our administration was very receptive to this
idea, understanding that all students would benefit
from learning about the democratic.process and leader-
ship first hand. I had the honor of serving as the first
Student Congress president.

Scene
Happen

For college age through 30-something.
This calendar is published the second
Friday and the last Friday of each
month.

June 18 Wednesday, 6 - 9 p.m. Hillel
of Metro Detroit sand volleyball at
Beech Woods Recreation Center, 22200
Beech Road, Southfield. Light refresh-
ments. For information, contact Lesley
Weiss, (313) 577-3459 or
hillelpd@wayne.edu

June 20 Friday, 7:30 pm. Hillel of
Metro Detroit Shabbat in the Burbs,
hosted by Ted Rodgers. Shomer
Shabbat housing is available. RSVP to
Lesley Weiss, (313) 577-3459 or hil-
lelpdvvayne.edu

We planned several events that not only contributed
to our own budget, but also to an important charity,
Mishpacha Achat, "One Family" — a charity that helps
victims of homicide bombings in Israel. All the upper
school students gained understanding of this leader-
ship experience and its value to the Jewish community
at large.
Core Jewish values are timeless values that have led
Jewish people out of times of adversity and into eras of
hope and possibility all throughout Jewish history.
Through programming and the devotion of Hillel
teachers, these values have been instilled into Hillel
students for the past 45 years. Students have taken
these values and made them the centers of their lives.
Because of the foundation of a Hillel education, many
have been prepared to lead our Jewish community.
Through the gift of Torah and the support of a
Hillel education, my classmates and I are ready to par-
ticipate and be leaders in our community. God utilized
the Torah to teach the children because He had faith
in its abilities to educate and instill principles.
Hillel Day School has taught us, the children, love
of Torah, commitment to our people and the leader-
ship skills to go forward into our community with
confidence. E.

Jonathan Warsh, 13, is an eighth-grader at Hillel
Day School of Metropolitan Detroit in Farmington
Hills. This is an abridged version of the speech he gave
at Hillel's annual dinner, June 3. Jonathan is the son
of Deborah and Richard Warsh of Bloomfield Hills.
This fall, he will join his brother, Daniel, 17, at
Groves High School in Beverly Hills.

Where Are You Now?

June 22 Sunday, 5 pm. Hillel of
Metro Detroit BBQ and Jazz Festival.
Cost: BBQ $5; JCC jazz festival is free.
Rothstein Park, behind Oak Park JCC.
Barbecue includes soccer, football, ulti-
mate Frisbee, and kickball. Festival:
Neil Alexander and Klezmer Fusion.
RSVP to Brent Yarkin,
hilleljcsc@wayne.edu

June 26 Thursday, 7 p.m. YAD cock-
tail reception, annual meeting and sum-
mer party at the home of Doreen
Hermelin. No charge. RSVP to
Jonathan Goldstein, (248) 203-1471 or
goldstein@jfind.org

O

ut of college for a few years and
haven't stayed in touch? Why
not tell your old world what you've
been doing in your new world.
The Jewish News will publish brief
Where Are You Now announce-
ments for Detroiters, Ann Arborites,
and former residents of this area
who are in the 22-32 age range.
The announcement should include
your name, age, city where you now
live, marital status (and names of
spouse and children), job title and
company where you work, high
school and coJlege you attended and
year you graduated, and up to 25
words about yourself
If yOU wish, include your address,
i)hone number or e-mail address

where old friends can contact you.
Your address, phone number and
e-mail address must accompany your
announcement, but will not be pub-
lished unless you request it.
We also want you to include a
recent photograph of yourself (only
you, please, and photos will not be
returned). Photos can be electronic,
but should be 170 dpi or higher in
jpg format. If mailing a photo: Put
your name on the back and mail to
Alan Husky, the Jewish News,
29200 Northwestern #110,
Southfield, Mi 48034.
E,-mail your announcement to
ahitsky@thejewislinews.com
Alen f•itsky, associate editor

6/13
2003

73

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