LET US CREATE
. . .
a guide to simchahs
ONE BITS Al A TIME
Custom benchers for any celebration.
eciting the grace
after meals, or
or explanations of the
prayers and practices,
such as the bencher
Lewis created for the
wedding of Aaron
Konvisser and Hailing
"Diana" Huang. While
the bride had converted
to Judaism, most of
her family members
were not familiar with
is a time-honored Jewish
custom, especially at cel-
ebrations such as wed-
dings and b'nai mitzvah.
Prayer booklets known
as benchers, from the
Yiddish word "to bless,"
have become common
accessories at these events, helping Jewish wedding customs, so Lewis
included explanations of the chup-
guests to follow the service and
serving as a keepsake of the occa-
pah (wedding canopy) and other
CliAAi rtipIt S( I CATERING
Joe Lewis, Oak Park resident and
lifelong scholar of Jewish tradition,
is known for creating customized
benchers through his home-based
company, the Singlish Publication
"certified Kosher available under the supervision of Kosher Michigan
KOSNE0. CERTIFICATION AGENCY
Lewis, who started his business
25 years ago, said he began mak-
ing his own benchers to accom-
Hold your next simcha at Beth Shalom!
modate family members who were
uncomfortable with the traditional
books because they did not read
"Sometimes you have people
coming to a Jewish experience, and
they feel out of place because they
0 0 11
don't know what to do," Lewis
said. "We show them what to
expect and what to do."
His prayer books feature a three-
column format with Hebrew, stan-
dard transliteration, and an English
translation written by Lewis.
"The translations make the
prayers sing-able, so everyone can
follow along," he said.
Some books include footnotes
is the One!
Our beautiful social hall can
seat up to 350 comfortably.
Adjacent patio suitable
for chuppah or cocktail hour
Reasonable rental fees
Friendly, flexible staff
14601 Lincoln Road • Oak Park, Michigan 48237
Grace After Meals •
"It was a perfect way to blend
the two cultures in a book that
everyone could understand,"
said the groom's mother, Zieva
Konvisser of West Bloomfield, "and
the way he translates things is
really so beautiful."
Marcia Tilchin, the cantor at
Congregation B'nai Israel in Tustin,
Calif., had no time to spare when
she contacted Lewis one month
before her daughter Sheindl's bat
Grace After Meals • 1itn711777
Sing Psalm 126 on Shabbat, festivals and other festive occasions
All kosher caterers welcome
Call (248) 547-7970 to arrange a visit!
"You want to welcome your
guests, and you don't want to
leave them scratching their heads
and feeling out of place," Lewis
The bencher for the Konvisser-
Huang wedding included childhood
photos of the bride and groom,
words of devotion written by the
couple, and greetings from both
sets of parents, translated into
English and Chinese. The cover
artwork, designed by an artist in
San Diego, was also used on the
In mourning though they sow their seed,
In happiness they'll reap their yield.
To sow the seed, bowed with grief
Haloch yelech uvacho
The plowman plods his weary way;
no'se meshech hazara,
His heart will surely feel relief
bo yavo verina
Bringing in the sheaves on harvest day.
"Then will-be-filled with joy our mouth, and our tongue with joy."
shade Added sometimes I
thr Prayer I ing ti 71 Scripture 1- 1 t77.177 Torah
Portions of a bencher page showing the Hebrew, English and transliteration.
C 4 4
celebrate! I March 2014