7701 16th Street, NW
Washington, DC 20012


Shalem | Challenges to World Jewry 2016


Saturday, April 16th
 Kiddush after Services, and Shalem at 1:15 p.m.

We welcome Mr. Alan Ronkin from AJC

Guest speaker Alan Ronkin will talk about anti-Semitism in Europe and challenges to Israel in the international arena. This will include some survey data and thoughts about how European governments can have a positive impact.

Alan Ronkin is an accomplished advocate and career Jewish professional who has been involved in Israel and community relations for over 20 years. As Director of AJC’s Washington Region, Alan focuses on advocacy and relationship building to advance AJC’s goals of fighting global anti-Semitism, supporting a safe and secure Israel, and stopping the Iranian nuclear threat.

Before coming to Washington in 2013, Alan served as Policy Adviser and Constituent Manager for Congressman Joe Kennedy III; and from 2000 to 2011 was Deputy Director of Boston’s Jewish Community Relations Council, leading success­ful campaigns to defeat anti-Israel ballot initiatives and other efforts including numerous tours of Israel for prominent non-Jewish leaders. As a Jewish communal leader, Alan has worked at Jewish Federations in Los Angeles, Cleveland, and Seattle.

A native of Bridgeport, CT, Alan has a B.A. from Yeshiva University, a Master’s in Public Administration from the University of Southern California, and a Master’s in Jewish Communal Service from Hebrew Union College, Los Angeles. He is married to Elizabeth Sternberg and has a son, David, and a dog, Lily.

Sponsored by TI Adult Education

Questions? Please contact
Jessica Weissman at TIShalem@Tifereth-Israel.org


Social Action Shabbaton

Martin Luther King Weekend

Join us for a Fair Showing off our Current Social Action Projects
Plus a History of Social Action at TI

Jan 15th Friday Evening / Services, Dinner, Rabbi Abramowitz will speak.  Sign-up

Jan 16th Saturday Morning, A featured speaker:   The featured speaker during the January 16 Shabbaton will be Patty Stonesifer, the President and CEO of Martha’s Table, a D.C. institution focused on providing less fortunate D.C. residents nutrition, clothing and educational opportunities. For more than 20 years, TI has been participating in the organization’s van run program, in which TI members and friends have been delivering hot meals, sandwiches, desserts, and beverages to the homeless at two locations in downtown D.C.

Stonesifer joined Martha’s Table in 2013. She spent 10 years as the co-chair and Chief Executive Officer of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. Before that, she spent two decades working in the technology industry, particularly for Microsoft.

In an interview with the Washington Post right after she was hired by Martha’s Table, Stonesifer recognized the value of volunteers like TI. “The strength of Martha’s Table is in the thousands of small donors and volunteers that ensure we deliver services every day. I don’t want my coming here to make people step back in any way,” she said.

At the Shabbaton, Stonesifer will discuss the role that Martha’s Table plays in the community and will generate additional interest in the important role the organization plays.

Jan 16th Saturday Afternoon Panel Discussion:  Moderated by Rabbi Seidel. Among those participating will be Schroeder Stribling, Executive Director of the N Street Village, founded by members of the Luther Place Memorial Church, Jack Ventura, immediate past president of the Chesapeake Region of B’nai B’rith International and an active member of its Project Hope, Cynthia Prather, co-director of the Early Readers program at Shepherd Elementary School, which she developed with the assistance of TI members Margie Odle and Carolivia Herron, and a representative from Martha’s Table.

Jan 16th Saturday Afternoon Booth Fair: Featuring a Social Action Fair, which will be open during Shabbat and on Sunday morning. Plan to stop by the booths to learn about current and proposed social action projects. We are particularly pleased to announce a program to share the stories of Jews of Color from Africa, Latin America, and Asia.

Sponsored by Social Action at TI


Movie Night at TI

Gevarim at Tifereth Israel sponsors a Jewish-themed movie series for the enjoyment and enhancement of the TI community. Features range from dramas to comedies to documentaries, from the newly released to the silent, and from made-for-theaters to made-for-TV.

Most are produced in the U.S. or Israel. All non-English-speaking films have subtitles.

Typically, one movie is shown one Sunday a month at 7:30 p.m, or otherwise noted. Each movie is followed by discussion of 20-30 minutes.

The movie is free and snacks and drinks are available for a $4 donation.

Upcoming Movies

  • December 24   Chinese Food and Movies

5:00 PM: Hava Nagila (The Movie) is a documentary romp through the history, mystery and meaning of the great Jewish standard. Featuring interviews with Harry Belafonte, Leonard Nimoy, Connie Francis, Glen Campbell, Regina Spektor and more, the film follows the ubiquitous party song on its fascinating journey from the shtetls of Eastern Europe to the kibbutzim of Palestine to the cul-de-sacs of America. High on fun and entertainment, Hava Nagila (The Movie) is also surprisingly profound, tapping into universal themes about the importance of joy, the power of music and the resilient spirit of a people.

7:30 PM: Duck Soup (Marx Brothers)
8:45 PM: The Producers (Zero Mostel, Gene Wilder, directed by Mel Brooks)

An Israeli woman (Ronit Elkabetz) seeking to finalize a divorce (gett) from her estranged husband finds herself effectively put on trial by her country's religious marriage laws, in this powerhouse courtroom drama from sibling directors Shlomi and Ronit Elkabetz.  In Israel, there is neither civil marriage nor civil divorce; only Orthodox rabbis can legalize a union or its dissolution, which is only possible with the husband's full consent. Trapped in a loveless marriage, Viviane Amsalem has been applying for a divorce for three years but her religiously devout husband Elisha (Simon Abkarian of CASINO ROYALE and PERSEPOLIS), continually refuses. His cold intransigence, Viviane's determination to fight for her freedom, and the ambiguous role of the rabbinical judges shape a procedure where tragedy vies with absurdity and everything is brought out into the open for judgment.  Discussant: Rabbi Ethan Seidel

Nazis, Jews and Hollywood -- The Early 1940s: Evolving from Silence to Voice. A look at a succession of Hollywood efforts to describe Nazi persecutions.

  • February 21: The Great Dictator    1940   124 mins
    • A political satire-drama--Charlie Chaplin plays both Tomanian despot Adenoid Hynkel (the film’s Hitler surrogate) and a Jewish barber who, after years in a military hospital post-WWI, returns home only to discover that he’s now living in a brutal, anti-Semitic police state. 
  • March 6: To Be Or Not To Be     1942   99 mins
    • A comedy directed by Jewish emigre Ernst Lubitsch, about a troupe of actors (led by Jack Benny) in Nazi-occupied Warsaw who use their abilities at disguise and acting to protect the underground resistance from the occupying troops.
  • April 10: Casablanca     1942   102 mins
    • Directed by Jewish emigre Michael Curtiz and written by Jewish-Americans Julius and Philip Epstein and Howard Koch. An American expatriate, Humphrey Bogart, must choose between his love for Ingrid Bergman and helping her Czech resistance leader husband, Paul Henreid, escape Vichy-controlled Morocco to continue his fight against the Nazis.
  • May 8: Hangmen Also Die!    1943   134 mins
    • Directed by Fritz Lang based on a story by Bertolt Brecht about the assassination of Reinhard Heydrich, "The Hangman of Prague," number-two man in the SS, and the chair of the Wannsee Conference that formally organized the Final Solution.

Hollywood and Anti-Semitism: The Late 1940s

  • June 5: Crossfire (1947) 86 minutes
    • "Stark, claustrophobic thriller about an anti-Semitic soldier who kills a Jewish war veteran, evading detection because of his loyal friends' protection. However, a detective is determined that the crime will not go unsolved and sets about laying a trap for the murderer."
  • July 17: Gentleman's Agreement (1947) 118 minutes
    • A 1947 drama about a journalist (Gregory Peck) who poses as a Jew to research a report on anti-Semitism. Best Picture winner.


Prior Movie Schedule for 2015

Jan   A Serious Man    Comedy-Drama    U.S.    2009    106 mins

Feb   Caesar's Writers   U.S.   1996   116 mins
            Short: "Gallipacci" (Caesar's take on "Pagliacci"), 1955, 14 mins

Mar   Conspiracy

Apr    Hitler's Children

May   The Gates Opened    U.S.    2005    20 mins

Jun   Jerusalem: Center of the Universe    120 mins

Jul      Above and Beyond  

Aug     Nicky's Family     Documentary     2013

Sep      One Day After Peace   

Oct    Arguing the World     1998       106 mins

       Nov The Dybbuk     1937    Yiddish with subtitles    108 mins

Prior Movie Schedule for 2014

Jan    The Band's Visit (Bikur Ha Tizmoret)    Comedy-Drama    Israel    2007    87 mins

Feb    Sholem Aleicheim: Laughing in the Darkness    Documentary    U.S.    2011    93 mins

Mar    Footnote (Hearat Shulayim)    Drama-Comedy    Israel    2011    103 mins

Mar    Advent of Talkies
          The Night Court    Comedy-Musical    U.S.    1927    10 mins 
         The Jazz Singer    Drama-Musical    U.S.    1927    88 mins

Apr    Imaginary Witness:  Hollywood and the Holocaust    Documentary  U.S.  2004    92 mins   

May    Yiddish Theater
          A Cantor on Trial    Comedy-Musical    U.S.    1931    11 mins
          Yosl Cutler and his Puppets    Performance    U.S.    1935    18 mins
          Schmud    Semi-Documentary    Israel    2010    56 mins

Jun    Focus    Drama    U.S.    2001    106 mins

Jul    When Jews were Funny    Documentary    U.S.    2014    89 mins

Sep   Sister Rose's Passion    Documentary    U.S.    2004    39 mins

          Constantine's Sword    Documentary   U.S.    2007    96 mins

Oct    Ushpizin  (in conjunction with Sukkot)  Drama    Israel    2004    90 mins

Nov    The Golem     Germany    1920    91 mins

Dec      Broadway Musicals: A Jewish Legacy    Documentary

Dec    The Big Lebowski    Comedy-Drama   U.S.    1998    117 mins

Prior Movie Schedule for 2013

Nov   Fill in the Void (Lemale et ha'ala)    Drama    Israel     2012    90 mins

Dec    The Gatekeepers    Documentary    Israel    2012    101 mins






Talmud Study with Rabbi Seidel


Talmud Trachate Brachot, In English

Twice (mostly) Monthly, Saturday Afternoons, 1:00 – 1:45 p.m.

This is a continuing course - future dates:
Dec 19, Jan 9, 30, Feb 13, 27, Mar 12, 26, Apr 9, May 7, 21, Jun 4, 25

Tractate Brachot is the first tractate of the Talmud, and also one of the most accessible. In addition to the normal “talmudic” discussions of halachah, there are also many enchanting stories and fables. Starting last spring, Rabbi Seidel, who has studied this entire tractate, has been teaching large pieces of it to those who are interested, approximately twice a month after lunch on Shabbat afternoons.

Even if you’ve never studied Talmud before­—especially if you’ve never studied Talmud before—you might enjoy dropping in on our ongoing reading of the last chapter of Tractate Brachot. We read the text in English (photocopies are provided, although folks are encouraged to buy the book, an English translation published by Koren), and discuss. We’ll probably spend much of the fall relishing a fascinating passage about dream interpretation which is, of course, about much more than dreams.

Sponsored by Gevarim

Questions? Please contact
Rabbi Ethan Seidel at Eseidel@Tifereth-Israel.org

TAWC Torah Art Writing Collective

Let's TAWC (Torah Art / Writing Collective)

7 - 8:30 p.m. Every other Monday night
Oct. 19, Nov. 2, Nov. 16, Nov. 30, Dec. 14.
Always check the calendar for any date changes

Image Hebrew Letters

Come TAWC - TI style. We invite you to join us in creating our own individual writing and art projects based on and directly from the Torah. Whether you are going parsha by parsha or letter by letter, whether you are writing or creating artwork or both, join us to work on and discuss our projects and gain a deeper insight into the Torah and others' perspectives. No experience or expertise necessary to TAWC.

Our every-other-week meetings are on Monday nights. We will take a short break to participate in the minyan.

 Bring your own notebook, pad, fabric, pens, markers, or whatever.  We will supply newspaper so we do not ruin any TI furniture.

Questions? Contact Sheryl Gross-Glaser at grossglaser at gmail dot com


Fall Holidays, Connect or Disconnect for Jewish Families

Thanksgiving, Hanukkah, and Christmas
Yours, Mine and Ours

Sunday Mornings, November 22nd, December 6th
and December 13th at 11:15 a.m. thru 12:05 p.m.

By Rabbi Avis Miller

Sign-up now and reserve your place

The fall holidays give us the opportunity to explore the connection (or disconnect!) between our identities as Americans and as Jews.  Together we will discuss the Jewish roots of Thanksgiving, and what Jews can bring to the table service; Jewish/rabbinic themes in Jesus’ birth narrative as presented in the Gospels; and the Hanukkah story as a Rorschach for contemporary Jewish concerns of assimilation and Jewish unity.

Rabbi Avis Miller is Rabbi Emerita of Adas Israel, and President of Open Dor Foundation, Inc.

TI Members - $15 per class, $40 for all three
Non-Members: $18 per class, $50 for all three

Sponsored by TI Adult Education






The Economics of Alternative Israeli-Palestinian Scenarios | Brunch and a Talk

Gevarim Food for Thought Series

Join us on Sunday, January 10 at 10:00 a.m.

Sign-up - for brunch and reserve your place

Presenter: C. Ross Anthony, Director, Israeli-Palestinian Initiative, RAND

Moderator: TI Member Howard Sumka, Former USAID Officer for West Bank-Gaza and Former CEO of OneVoice

Dr. Anthony will present findings of a recent study that estimates the net costs and benefits over the next 10 years of five alternative trajectories for the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. The five trajectories are:

• Two-State Solution
• Coordinated Unilateral Withdrawal
• Uncoordinated Unilateral Withdrawal
• Nonviolent Resistance
• Violent Uprising

Dr. Anthony will compare these trajectories with the costs and benefits of a continuing impasse that evolves in accordance with present trends. His work:

The Costs of the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict (2015)
Costs of Conflict Calculator (web tool)

Sign-up - for brunch and reserve your place

$10 Gevarim and Kol Nashim members / $12 all others

Sponsored by Gevarim

Questions? Please contact
Andrew Reamer at TIGevarim@Tifereth-Israel.org


The 2016 Presidential Primaries: A Look Ahead | Brunch and Talk

Gevarim Food for Thought Series

Join us on Sunday, February 14th at 10:00 a.m.

With TI member and political analyst Bill Galston,
Senior Fellow, Governance Studies, The Brookings Institution

Sign-up - for brunch and reserve your place

Renown political analyst and TI member Bill Galston will give his views on the results of the Iowa caucuses (February 1) and the New Hampshire primary (February 9) and what we may see in the slew of state contests coming up in late February and early March.

Sign-up - for brunch and reserve your place

$10 Gevarim and Kol Nashim members / $12 all others

Sponsored by Gevarim

Questions? Please contact
Andrew Reamer at TIGevarim@Tifereth-Israel.org


Games People Play

Saturday, January 30 • 7:30 p.m. • For all Ages

board game image    Chess Board image 

Please Sign-up by 1/25 (we don't want to run out of snacks)
Not signed up - pay at the door

We’ll have games on hand plus bring your favorites

New this year — Charades!

Poker players - come with your chips!

Not a game player?
Knitters and crocheters will be in attendance to assist with your project.

Crunchy, Sweet, Salty and Healthy Snacks, and Drinks Provided
Hot cider, plus much, much more
$5 / person for Nosh $15 max per family

Questions? Email TIKolNashim@Tifereth-Israel.org

Sponsored jointly by
Kol Nashim and Geverim

Shalem | Writing Bathsheba's Story


December 12th, Kiddush and Shalem at 1;15 p.m.

We welcome author and scholar, Dr. Ann Saab

After a long Midrashic engagement with the story of Bathsheba and David, Dr. Saab recently finished her novel "Bathsheba's Book."  The novel fills in the gaps in II Samuel to tell a nuanced story of family drama, politics, and prophetic manipulation, with Bathsheba moving from naïve country girl to powerful Queen Mother.  The talk will focus on the interpretive decisions Dr. Saab faced, and how she used her imagination, her experience of living in the Middle East, and her historical research to create a striking novel.

Dr. Saab is Professor Emeritus of History at UNCG. She has served as Associate Dean of the UNCG Graduate School and Head of the History Department. Her research interests focus on cross-cultural understanding and misunderstandings.

Sponsored by TI Adult Education

Questions? Please contact
Jessica Weissman at TIShalem@Tifereth-Israel.org