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Viewpoints

The Viewpoints Committee celebrates the rich diversity of the Jewish community. Viewpoints presents a wide variety of programs that help the congregation grow and learn together about different segments of our family, especially the interfaith, Jews of color, and the LGBTQ communities. These programs involve speakers, films, readings, and performance artists who hail from a wide spectrum of backgrounds. The one recurring program that Viewpoints sponsors is our Pride Shabbat in June. At that Shabbat there are special readings and speakers that highlight the LGBT Jewish experience.

 

The Viewpoints Committee offers programs to the Temple Emeth community both online and in person.

 

Our short film series included such movies as: Hannah Cohen’s First Communion; From Man to Man; The Outer Circle; What We Left Behind; Through the WindowThe Love Letter; and Black Hat. In addition, we've offered a two-program discussion on Unconscious Bias and a tour of LGBTQ sites in New York City from the Museum Of the Living Heritage. We have held a discussion with the director of the film A Question of Survival and a presentation about the Vilna Project. We joined with other synagogues to sponsor a panel of Jews of Color.

As part of our efforts to raise awareness of the minority, LGBTQ, disabled, and interfaith communities, the Viewpoints Committee is currently sponsoring a program of DEI groups. The Diversity, Equity, Inclusion (DEI) groups are small discussion groups, whose purpose is to enable us to understand how others experience life at Temple Emeth. Reading and assessment materials are used to facilitate the discussions.

Programs for 2023-24

Sunday, October 29, 2023 at 11:00 a.m.
The Viewpoints and Adult Ed Committees will present Felice Cohen, author of What Papa Told Me. The book is the story of Felice’s grandfather, Murray Schwartzbaum, whose courage and sheer will to live helped him survive eight different labor and concentration camps in the Holocaust, start a new life in America, and keep a family intact in the aftermath of his wife's suicide. 

 

 

 

 

Viewpoints To Present the Movie Torn
Sunday, January 14, 2024 at 11:30 a.m.
Can one be a Catholic priest and an observant Jew at the same time? Twelve years after he was ordained as a Polish Catholic priest, Romuald Waszkinel discovers that he was born to Jewish parents, and that his name was Jacob Weksler. The film follows his amazing journey from conducting mass in a church in Poland to life as an observant Jew in a religious kibbutz in Israel. Romuald is torn between two identities. He is unable to renounce either, and therefore is rejected by both religions and the state of Israel. He is required to choose

 

Disability Shabbat
Friday, February 23, 2024 at 8:00 p.m.

Making Teaneck a More Inclusive Community
for People of All Ages and Abilities

Elizabeth Davis, LCSW, CALA, founder and executive director of The Bright Side Family, will present about Community Begins at Home, a new demonstration project that will offer home-safety assessments and increase advocacy on behalf of Teaneck residents aging with disabilities. About 45 percent of Teaneck residents living with a disability are over the age of 65, but the vast majority of Teaneck homes were built before the advent of accessible design strategies, making aging-in-place a challenge for many. The goal of this new effort will be to address the in-home and other challenges that too often prevent people from being able to fully participate in community life in Teaneck. 

The Bright Side Family is a closely affiliated group of non-profit organizations that have been developed in response to the evolving needs of older adults in Teaneck and Bergen County.  The organization's mission is to provide affordable housing and support services that respond to the changing needs and preferences of older adults, offer choice, promote dignity and ensure safety and comfort. The Bright Side Family is partnering on the Community Begins at Home project with the Township of Teaneck and Heightened, Independence and Progress. It is being funded by an Inclusive Healthy Communities grant from the Division of Disability Services, New Jersey Department of Human Services.

Pride Shabbat
Friday, June 14, 2024

Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Queer (LGBTQ) Pride Month is celebrated each June to honor the 1969 Stonewall Uprising in Manhattan, which was a tipping point for the Gay Liberation Movement in the United States. The purpose of the commemorative month is to recognize the impact that lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender individuals have had on history locally, nationally, and internationally. Temple Emeth celebrates each year with a special service.

Keep visiting our website for updated information about new programs for 2023-24!

The Viewpoints Committee welcome your suggestions about future programming. Email viewpoints@emeth.org.

The Bright Side Family and Age Friendly Teaneck have launched a new initiative on behalf of Teaneck residents aging with disabilities called Community Begins at Home. To better inform this work, they are conducting a survey to learn more about the challenges some residents encounter in their homes and neighborhoods. If you are a Teaneck resident over age 50 and have a disability, or are a caregiver of someone who is, please complete the survey. Click here to access.

​​​​​​​​​​​​Elaine Barrett of PFLAG (center), spoke on "I'm Good if They're Happy," a talk about the joys and challenges of parenting LGBTQ children, at one of Temple Emeth's Annual Pride Shabbat Service, coordinated by the Viewpoints Committee. Also pictured, Karen Rappaport, committee chair, and Rabbi Sirbu.

Sat, March 2 2024 22 Adar I 5784