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BHS Congregants Attend Rally

Members of the Brooklyn Heights Synagogue joined thousands of New Yorkers showing support for Israel on the 27th of July 2014.



BHS Women's Israel Trip

April 26 - May 5 2014

Led by Rabbi Molly Kane 

Joining us: Vice President, Karen Gordon, Executive Director, Sue Gold, and Linda Feldman 

View Itinerary 

Email Paz at  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Let’s build on the incredible vibrancy of our BHS women’s community by experiencing Israel together in 5774! We will spend time at some of the traditional sites, at some that are off the beaten path, and in women-focused venues. Whether it would be your first trip to Israel, your return trip after many years, or on the heels of a recent visit, travel to Israel on this unique journey as a community of women focused on creating individual and collective lifelong memories. Read more 

Israel Independence Day

Celebrating Israel at Events Across Brooklyn
Visit for more details.

Featured at BHS this Fall

iENGAGE: A Video Lecture Series

Engaging Israel
Foundations for a New Relationship

In partnership with the Shalom Hartman Institute, BHS presents iENGAGE, an in-depth look at the moral, political and historical forces that have shaped Israel. In this multi-part series that includes screenings, readings and guided discussions, Rabbi Serge Lippe and Rabbi Molly Kane will lead us through an exploration of issues that have inspired, challenged and engaged American Jews.


Why does Israel matter? What values should a Jewish state embody? How should a Jewish state exercise military power ethically? How do we create and maintain a Jewish democracy?

Wednesdays 7pm-9pm |Oct 16, Nov 13, Dec 18, Jan 8, Feb 5, Mar 19, Apr 23, May 14, June 11
Sundays 1-3pm | Oct. 20, Nov. 10, Jan. 12, Feb. 9, Apr 27, May 18

Price including materials:
Members: $75
Non-Members: $125 REGISTER ONLINE
Questions email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Attendees are welcome to take all or one of the classes. While this is a series and you benefit most from taking all Lectures we understand not all schedules can accommodate and welcome all to attend as you can. 

iEngage Calendar
Each lecture is presented on Wednesday evenings, and often repeated the following Sunday afternoon.

Lecture 1: From Crisis to Covenant
October 16th, 7:00-9:00pm OR October 20th, 1:00-3:00pm

Lecture 2: Religion and Peoplehood
November 10th, 1:00-3:00pm OR November 13th, 7:00-9:00pm

Lecture 3: Sovereignty and Identity
December 18th, 7:00-9:00pm

Lecture 4: Power and Powerlessness
January 8, 2014, 7:00-9:00pm OR January 12, 2014, 1:00-3:00pm

Lecture 5: War and Occupation
February 5, 2014, 7:00-9:00pm OR February 9, 2014, 1:00-3:00pm
Additional reading: War and Occupation, David Hartman, Noam Zohar, Walzer

Lecture 6: Morality on the Battlefield
March 19, 2014, 7:00-9:00pm

Lecture 7: Jewish and Democratic State
April 23, 2014, 7:00-9:00 pm OR April 27, 2014, 1:00-3:00pm

Lecture 8: Religious Pluralism and Human Rights
May 14, 2014, 7:00-9:00pm OR May 18, 2014, 1:00-3:00pm

Lecture 9: Values Nation
June 11, 2014, 7:00-9:00pm

More about iEngage: State of Israel for contemporary Jews worldwide. The political, economic, and cultural success of North American Jewry has diminished the compelling nature of the post-Holocaust survival narrative especially for our young people.

The Engaging Israel course elevates the North American conversation about Israel by rooting it in Jewish values and ideas rather than in a response to crisis. Engaging Israel will equip participants with a quintessentially Jewish values-based vocabulary to define and articulate why Israel and Zionism can and should be fundamental to our Jewish identity.

Each session includes text study and discussion led by either Rabbi Serge Lippe or Rabbi Molly Kane, a video lecture, and a video dialogue between our Rabbis' and other top scholars and experts.

Join us for this wonderful opportunity to learn from great scholars, from our own local rabbis, and from one another as we engage in thinking about the meaning that Israel can have in our lives and what our role might be in envisioning and building the future of the Jewish State.

Engaging Israel: Foundations for a New Relationship Video Lecture Series
Witnessing growing disenchantment with and disinterest in Israel among an ever-increasing number of Jews worldwide, the Shalom Hartman Institute launched the Engaging Israel project in 2011 to foster a new conversation regarding the significance of Israel for Jewish life. Also known as iEngage, the project is helping communities across North America open dialogue around a new Israel narrative that can serve as a foundation for a new covenant between Israel and world Jewry, elevating the existing discourse from one with a crisis-based focus to one rooted in Jewish values and ideas.

The core feature of the "traditional" Israel narrative was the precariousness of Jewish survival. In this narrative, Jewish existence, both in Israel and around the world, was viewed as threatened by inevitable and sometimes imminent danger. One of the long-lasting effects of the Holocaust generation and that following it was the shaping of a consciousness deeply suspicious and fearful of the world. This inspired the creation of a Jewish identity in which the survival and perpetuation of the Jewish people and the defense of Jews in danger became central values.

Political, economic, and cultural success among North American Jews, coupled with a growth in their own Jewish vitality and creativity, have diminished the compelling nature of the narrative of crisis in the lives of most North American Jews. At the same time, there is the success story that is Israel. Without denying the dangers that Israel still faces on a daily basis, its military power and prowess render a narrative of crisis less meaningful. When one adds to the equation the economic vitality of modern Israel, it becomes increasingly difficult to portray Israel as a weak country in dire need of help from Jews around the world.

Now, with the Engaging Israel project from the Shalom Hartman Institute, Jews from around the world are engaging in thinking about the meaning that Israel can have in their lives and how they can be enriched and positively influenced by the reality of a Jewish nation. The Engaging Israel project generates this conversation, which celebrates Israel for what it is and, more importantly, for what it will become. This process in turn engenders a commitment to taking part in building such an Israel.

The Engaging Israel: Foundations for a New Relationship lecture series features nine lectures by Rabbi Dr. Donniel Hartman, followed by an interview with an Engaging Israel team member or leading expert on the issue at hand. The package comes with a source book containing all relevant study materials—including Biblical, Talmudic, philosophical, and contemporary sources—and background readings, as well as a leader's guide for the rabbi/educator.

5th annual Israel Talking @ the Movies

Four moderated film viewings and discussions about day to day Israeli life. How are the Jewish challenges of identity, diversity, and responsibility reflected in Israeli films? Viewing segments of these entertaining and challenging films creates a springboard for learning and conversation. Grapple with issues and how they effect our views as American Jews through a dynamic discussion following each screening, facilitated by Isaac Zablocki, Executive Director of the OTHER ISRAEL FILM FESTIVAL.

All discussions will be facilitated by Isaac Zablocki
Isaac Zablocki is the director of film programs at the Jewish Community Center in New York, where he is also the director and a founder of the Israel Film Center, and the executive director and a founder of REELABILITIES: Ne York Disabilities Film Festival. Isaac grew up in Israel and served in the IDF as an educational filmmaker. He graduated from Columbia University. Isaac recently completed his first feature film "Reality Lost.” Isaac Zablocki is executive director of the OTHER ISRAEL FILM FESTIVAL, now in its 6th year. Founded in 2007, The OTHER ISRAEL FILM FESTIVAL uses film to foster social awareness and cultural understanding. Their goal is to promote awareness and appreciation of the diversity of the state of Israel, provide a dynamic and inclusive forum for exploration of, and dialogue about populations in margins of Israeli society, and encourage cinematic expression and creativity dealing with these themes.

Learn More, Click here

BHS Member cost:
$5 each film, $20 for series

Nonmember cost:
$10 each film, $30 for series

RSVP to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

2014 Dates to Save

March 9 11am: "Do You Believe in Love"

March 13 7:30pm: "The Woman Pioneers" 

March 23 11am: "Dove's Cry"

April 3 7:30pm: "Mom, Dad, I'm a Muslim" 

Click here for more information on upcoming films. 

Israel Talking @ The Movies is grateful to the Avram Family Fund for its generous underwriting support.

Israel Engagement at BHS

It's time to get to know Israel up close and personal. BHS hosts a variety of events focused around Israel, which are great opportunities to learn about many aspects of the Jewish homeland - everything from history, to politics, culture, and day-to-day life in a young country so full of meaning and hope. We also host a 9th Grade trip to Israel yearly supported by the the Puccio Fund. Come get involved with our Israel Engagement Committee and help further enrich our synagogue's offerings. Contact Myriam Bucatinsky ( This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. ) to learn more.

BHS will be participating in an exciting year-long program which will bring Shinshinim – abbreviation for Service Year Shlichim [emissaries from Israel] -- into our BHS community. This program is in sponsored by the Jewish Agency for Israel and UJA Federation, and brings four (4) recent Israeli High School graduates to Brooklyn Brownstone as informal educators.
The shinshinim will be more broadly supervised by a Senior shaliach – named Orly Daboosh Nitzan – who will coordinate all of their activities.

Who are the Shinshinim? From an original pool of over 400 applicants our shinshinim have been selected for this program. Previous experiences in group work, leadership skills, and English language capability were just a few of the criteria. The selection process is a rigorous one. These talented young people have made the difficult decision to defer their army service for a year, and instead, to offer themselves as ambassadors of their country.

They will serve as informal educators at a synagogue, at a Day School, often at a youth movement and/or supplementary school. They will teach about Israel and Israeli culture, about Jewish identity and Jewish celebration. They will prepare community-wide programs about Israel. They will help with the synagogues’ youth groups, teen groups, and will touch virtually every part of the synagogue congregational life. They will work in the classrooms of the Day School, and participate in extracurricular and school wide programming. They will be a real living bridge between the community and Israel, bringing back their experiences here in Brooklyn to their communities in Israel.

Click hereto read more about our Shinshinim.


Maccabia Games

The Melmed Cohen Family, our BHS members, attended and participated in the Maccabia Games!

The Maccabiah Games are the world’s largest Jewish athletic competition in the tradition and values of Maccabi, emphasizing the centrality of the State of Israel in the life of the Jewish people. The Maccabiah takes place every four (4) years in Israel - "the Jewish Olympics" as they are often called, are Maccabi World Union's largest and most famous enterprise.

Within the Maccabiah there are four separate competitions that take place; Open, Junior, Masters, and Paralympics. Junior games are open to any qualifying athlete aged 15-18. Masters are divided into a number of different age categories mostly to accommodate older competitors and the Open division is generally unlimited in age, subject to the governing international rules in each sport, and is intended for the best athletes from each delegation. In order to participate in the Maccabiah, athletes must represent a delegation. For more information, visit


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