Jewish Journal

Come Meet the Landsmen (and Women)!

by Rabbi Robin Podolsky

March 7, 2013 | 3:26 am

So I’ve been quiescent lately, what with school and thesis and flu and an internship at a real live synagogue.  The last year of rabbi school is b@t5hit nuts.

But now I can offer a chance to talk in person! (Yeah, I know, be still your heart.)

On this coming Sunday, March 10, at 3pm, three American Jews who have returned from trips to the Ashkenazi Old Country will be sharing our experiences at the Red Lion Tavern at 2366 Glendale Blvd. in Silverlake (why yes, it is a German bar—looks who’s back, taking over your space and drinking your beer!)

As you long-time readers know, last summer I visited Poland and Germany with other seminarians through FASPE, Fellowships at Auschwitz for the Study of Professional Ethics, sponsored by the Museum of Jewish Heritage.  (See the archive for some details.)  We toured the site of the concentration camps at Auschwitz, including the death camp, Birkenau.  We visited the living and growing Jewish community of Krakov.  In Germany we studied at the Topography of Terror Museum at the site of the old Gestapo headquarters and at the villa in Wansee where the “Final Solution” was discussed.  We also saw the Neu Synagogue, where Regina Jonas, the first Jewish woman to be ordained as a rabbi once served before she was taken to Theresienstadt and then to Auschwitz where she was murdered.  Just as importantly, we read the work of historians, eye witnesses, religious leaders and philosophers; and we talked profoundly, not only about how we had been impacted by what we saw, but also about how lessons from Shoah studies will inform our own work as clergy.  I will be sharing some personal writing and also, I hope, having a discussion with you about what we can learn from this history.

My friend, the poet Helena Lipstadt, had the chance to work with other artists in Poland on the restoration of synagogues.  Rob Peckerar works with the amazing organization Yiddishkayt to bring Yiddish culture to new generations.  They will be telling their stories and sharing pictures as well and they also are looking forward to talking with you.

Please join us if you can.  There will be snacks and tea and, of course, good beer.

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Rabbi Robin Podolsky is an Educator at Temple Beth Israel of Highland Park and Eagle Rock.  Before she became a rabbi, she worked as a press secretary to an elected official, a...

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