Tag Archives: Jewish

71st Kosher Dinner another success

By Tracy Simmons
SpokaneFAVS.com

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Temple Beth Shalom drew its usual large crowd of about 2,000 people Sunday for its 71st annual Kosher Dinner.

Diners enjoyed Kosher relishes, Challah, beef brisket, potato knishes, carrot tzimmes, Mediterranean spiced apples and chocolate rugalach while listening to live Jewish music. A gift shop was also set up, which included jewelry, decorations and baked goods.

The pictures say it all. View our Kosher Dinner Flickr album here.

Kosher dinner expected to draw thousands

Tracy Simmons
SpokaneFAVS.com

Challah,the traditional bread eaten on Shabbat, will be served at the Kosher Dinner/Contributed Photo from Lisa Lowhurst

It started 71 years ago as a way to reach out to the gentile community, and it’s been a hit ever since.

The annual Temple Beth Shalom Kosher Dinner will be Sunday from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Last year, like in previous years, 2,300 people feasted on roast brisket, Carrot Tzimmes, Challah and other Jewish delicacies.

“It pretty much started as a way to familiarize people with the Jewish faith, with the practices and customs,” said David Williams, event chairman. “It was a way to get people from other cultures to recognize that we’re really no different from them. Yes, we have different holidays and such, but we’re all of the human race.”

Jews were a minority in the area seven decades ago, and they still are today. According to the Association of Religious Data Archives, there are approximately 1,500 Jewish adherents in Spokane County.

The Kosher Dinner is a fundraiser for the temple and will feature Mediterranean spiced apples, Rugelach, potato knishes and Kosher meat (which has to be shipped from the East Coast). It will also feature live entertainment, including an appearance in the late afternoon by the Spokane Community Gospel Mass Choir.

“There will be everything from Jewish folk music to Klezmer music to soloists,” Williams said.

The gospel choir, Williams added, was invited because the choir is made of people of all faith backgrounds.

He said the dinner’s been successful for 71 years because the Spokane community has proven to be supportive of other faiths.

Tickets are $16 for adults and $9 for children ages 3 to 11 and can be purchased at the door or online. Takeout will also be available.

Jewish Film Festival coming to local theater

Tracy Simmons
SpokaneFAVS.com

A movie about Ruth Gruber will be shown at the Jewish Film Festival/Wikipedia Photo

The annual Jewish Cultural Film Festival is just a few weeks away.

Movies about notable Jewish academics, entertainers and events will be featured beginning March 22 at The Magic Lantern. On March 24 at 7:30 p.m. a reception will be held to celebrate the festival’s eighth year.

Rabbi Tamar Malino, executive director of Jewish Area Family Services, will facilitate a discussion following the final film on March 25.

The event is sponsored by Jewish Area Family Services. Tickets for each movie are $10, or $7 for seniors and children. They can be purchased at the Lantern or online.

Ahead of Time,” 7:30 p.m., March 22

This film documents the life of Ruth Gruber, who became the world’s youngest Ph.D. recipient at the age of 20.

Mahler on the Couch,” 8 p.m., March 24

This film is about the real-life marriage of Gustav Mahler and his tempestuous wife Alma Schindler Mahler.

Viva Espania: A Tale in Four Octaves,” 6:30 p.m., March 25

This film explores the life of Israeli singer Hanna Aharoni.

Degania: The World’s First Kibbutz Fights its Last Battle,” following the first film.

This is a documentary about the privatization of the world’s first kibbutz, Degania.

Parting the sea of 2 faiths, the language that separates Messianic Jews

By Contributor Lace Williams-Tinajero

Lace Williams-Tinajero

One day Rabbi David D’Auria found a red Nazi swastika painted on the sign of his synagogue. Regardless, he answers with a firm “no” when asked if he has ever been targeted or persecuted for being a Messianic Jew. The leader of Kehilat HaMashiach, a Messianic congregation in Spokane Valley, says that anti-Semites, people who hate Jews, target all Jews. Even some of his fellows Jews are suspicious of him. For Christians the rabbi has to prove himself a true follower of Jesus. For Jews he has to prove he’s still Jewish.

At times, such “gross display of ignorance” makes living in Spokane difficult, D’Auria said. Larger metropolitan areas like Philadelphia, Miami and Fort Lauderdale have higher populations of Jews and Messianic Jews. Not so in Spokane, which is mostly homogeneous.

“Spokane is not this international community with many different cultures,” D’Auria said. “When you have interactions between different cultural groups, you have more openness. Spokane feels resistant and non-accepting of different groups.”

One word sets all Messianic Jews apart, Yeshua (Hebrew for Jesus). The call for Messianic Jews is obedience to Yeshua while maintaining their Jewish identity. Yeshua is the center of their worship. Yeshua is also the eye of a storm of controversy that swirls around them.

“We are not part of what is traditionally considered Christian or Jewish because of our unique call; yet, we desire the unity in both groups of people — Christians and Jews,” said D’Auria.

As with any religious journey, it is difficult to walk a straight path. The difficulty for Messianic Jews is, “staying to the center of the road when there are two sides pulling you apart, Jews pulling you to be non-Yeshua, and Gentiles pulling you to be less Jewish,” he added.

Yeshua is the most descriptive word for Messianic Jews. It evokes hatred from some non-Yeshua believing Jews. D’Auria indicates for nearly 1,000 years, some ultra-Orthodox and Orthodox Jews refuse to utter the name Yeshua. Instead, they spit on the ground and shorten it to Yeshu, interpreted as false one or traitor. Non-Messianic Jews regard Yeshua as a blasphemous word. They disregard Yeshua because of the harm that has come to Jews in the name of Jesus. In defense of Yeshua, D’Auria rejects this conclusion as sinat hinam (hatred without cause), stemming not from theological reflection but from emotional reaction.

To move forward, more open dialogue in place of emotionally charged reactions is needed. D’Auria answers “yes” to the question of whether it is possible to understand one another’s beliefs based on language.

“From a Messianic Jewish standpoint, belief in Yeshua breaks down some points of compatibility,” he said.

He stands firmly in his belief that Yeshua is God’s promised Messiah to the Jewish people. His sincerity and courage give insight into his character and why he continues on a path that others find so suspicious, even if it comes in the form of a red swastika.