A California synagogue asked movie star Mel Gibson for a donation, suggesting it would remedy his reputation regarding Jews. The president of Congregation Beth Shalom in Corona sent the filmmaker and actor a letter asking for help to prevent the synagogue from losing its building, the Hollywood gossip site TMZ reported last Friday.
A one-story structure nestled beneath the mountains 25 miles north of Los Angeles, Congregation Beth Shalom looks a bit like those temporary schools on blacktop that dot the Southland. But it is in fact spiritual home to 220 families, 150 of whom were involved in the focus groups to choose the new rabbi and cantor: Rabbi Ira Rosenfeld and his wife, Beth Wasserman Rosenfeld, the latter a former stage actress and singer. The pair began their tenure on July 1, though they were not officially "installed" until Aug. 24.