Come join your Jewish community for loads of fun at the Purim Carnival. This year's celeration will occur on Sunday, March 16 from 12:30 to 2:00 PM at Temple Emanuel immediately following UJS. The carnival is sponsored by the Jewish Federation of Grand Rapids, Congregation Ahavas Israel, Chabad House of Western Michigan, Temple Emanuel and the United Jewish School.
The 16th Annual Jewish Film Festival of Grand Rapids has announced the lineup of films to be screened from Sunday, May 4 through Thursday, May 8 at Celebration! Cinema North. This year's offerings, ranging from family entertainment to Holocaust themes, once again promise to whet the appetite of all interested in Jewish films.
The Festival is bracketed by a free musical reception and the traditional community dinner, this year of Eastern European fare. Great thanks is owed to the Film Festival Committee for their tireless work in bringing our community this annual feast of films.
To support the Jewish Film Festival, please complete this sponsor sheet. To learn more about the films, programs and costs to attend, please click here or contact Sari in the Federation office at firstname.lastname@example.org or (616) 942-5553.
New Program for Young Families in the Grand Rapids area
The PJ Library is an innovative program that offers the gift of free, high quality Jewish books to children 6 months to 8 years old. These books help to celebrate important aspects of Jewish culture, values and tradition. We are grateful to the Ravitz Foundation, the Rosenzweig-Coopersmith Foundation and the Harold Grinspoon Foundation for underwriting this new initiative of Federation.
Information about PJ Library and how to sign up, along with a sample book, is coming by mail during the High Holidays. Parents can also sign up their children by clicking here and, if you live in our Regions Covered, primarily Kent and Ottawa Counties in Michigan, simply click on the 'Sign up in this Community' button.
The Cultural Council of the Jewish Federation of Grand Rapids is pleased to welcome LaVon Mercer to Grand Rapids. Please come to Temple Emanuel on Sunday, March 23 at 12:30 pm to meet Mr. Mercer and learn about his interesting professional basketball career in Israel.
The Jewish Federations of North America has established a Ukraine Assistance Fund to help the more than 300,000 Jews in the Ukraine caught in the cross-fire of the escalating situation. While not outright targets of violence, our fellow Jews' basic needs for food and other goods and services are growing rapidly. Our international partners, notably the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee (JDC), the Jewish Agency and World ORT, are on the ground providing support to the those in need.
Please click on Ukraine Assistance Fund to support this effort. Thank you.
Pew Study on American Jews
Survey of U.S. Jewish Population Sparks Debate
A copy of the study entitled A Portrait of Jewish Americans: Findings from a Pew Reseach Center Survey of U.S. Jews can be found here. While a lengthy read at 214 pages, its many summaries, charts and graphs can be easily reviewed as time permits. Also, the Jewish Federations of North America has linked to much of the media coverage, and an analysis from a Brandeis University researcher offers further reading. Finally, JFGR's new partners at PJ Library prepared a letter in response to the survey that may be of interest.
Please let us know your thoughts about the study and what local Jewish communal response to it may be appropriate. You may contact JFGR's executive director, Mike Presant, at (616) 942-5553, x207, or email@example.com.
The Cultural Council of the Jewish Federation of Grand Rapids is currently presenting its 2014 Spectrum Series. The four programs running from January to June offer a wide variety of events designed to broadly appeal to the Grand Rapids Jewish Community: Jewish bread baking; Klezmer music; an American-Israeli basketball player; and Jews in China.