Weekly Bulletin: March 9

How To Participate in Virtual Gatherings

Participation links for upcoming events are sent out twice a week in an email titled "How To Participate." If you haven't received that email before, we will gladly add you to the list - simply hit "reply" and let us know!

Upcoming Gatherings

To receive participation links, subscribe to our "How to Participate" email!
Visit our Website Calendar!

Family Shabbat Circle

Friday, March 12, 5:30 PM: Shabbat with kiddish, Hamotzi, and candles. Sing shabbat songs, and say goodbye to friends to further explore the hospitality theme.

The Zoom link for this event will go out in an email to our Families list. If would you like the link and you're not on that list, or you're not sure, email

Community Story Circle & Havdallah

Saturday, March 13, 7 PM: Modeling ourselves after a storytelling project launched by the US Department of Arts and Culture, we invite the TIG community to take part in a story circle. Story circles are often understood to derive from indigenous traditions, and take many forms. Come share a story, five minutes or less, evoking this time in our lives:
  • A time when the arts played an essential role in your life.
  • A time when you creatively connected with someone while remaining socially distanced.
  • How you and your community have been affected by the government response to COVID-19.
  • About the future you envision for all of us this year. What do our communities look like? What has changed?

Don't have a story? Come celebrate Havdalah and cheer on your fellow TIG members. Please note that this event will be taped and posted on our own TIG YouTube channel. For the Zoom link or to reserve a time Questions about the event can be sent to christinebenvenuto(@)

The Lost World of African-American Cantors 1915-1953

Sunday, March 14, 10 AM: Join us for a talk by Henry Sapoznik, award winning record and radio producer, author, ethnomusicologist in the fields of Yiddish and American popular and traditional culture.

The history of Black-Jewish cultural interaction primarily focuses on how Jews adopted and adapted Black vernacular music -- ragtime, jazz, swing, R&B and blues, etc. --as performers, promoters, managers, club owners and record labels. However, what has never before been explored were the African-Americans who performed Yiddish and cantorial music in and for the Jewish community, in theaters on record, radio and in concert between the World Wars. The talk wil lhonor the memory of now forgotten Black cantors - Mendele der Shvartzer Khazn, Reb Dovid Kalistrita, Abraham Ben Benjamin Franklin, Thomas LaRue Jones and Goldye di Shvartze Khaznte the first - and only -- Black woman cantor. The talk will feature dozens of historic graphics and translations of period Yiddish newspaper previews, ads and reviews and the playing of the one known 1923 Yiddish and Hebrew recording of Thomas Jones LaRue.

Participation link will be shared in How to Participate. Suggested donation: $5-10 TIG members; $10-18 non-members; donate using this link or via check.

Film Watch and Panel Discussion: To Right the Wrong

Monday, March 15, 7-8:30 PM: TIG is a co-sponspor on this film watch and panel discussion hosted by Jewish Activists for Immigration Justice Western MA.
To Right the Wrong*, By Richard Barber
Panel Discussion:
Melanie Nezer, HIAS ( Hebrew Immigrant Aid Society)-Opening 
Charlene D’Cruz, Lawyers for Good Government, Project Corazon
Sergio Cordova, Team Brownsville
Eddie Calderon, Arizona Jews for Justice
Click here for FILM LINK

Even as immigration policies change, immigrants continue to experience hardship and trauma. Learn how you can join with others to make a difference and advocate for a just and compassionate asylum system. 
to register for virtual event
Click Here for more Info!

PJ Library Passover Packs

Join PJ Library Western Massachusetts and partner agencies for a "Passover Pack" for kids of all ages (through 7th grade)! This Passover Pack includes a wooden seder plate and mosaic craft, a "finding the chametz" kit, a set of activity cards, a printed (screen-free!) escape room activity for the entire family, and access to the JKids Radio Passover Seder (to watch any time)!

The kits are free to families. All community members are invited to sponsor this project by selecting a sponsorship. Your donation in any amount is deeply appreciated and will support the ongoing mission of PJ Library Western Massachusetts.

For more information and to signup, please visit:  

Also on Facebook:

Refugee Support Action via JAIJ and HIAS

Jewish Activists for Immigration Justice Western MA are participating in a petition organized by HIAS to send a statement to Congress regarding support for refugees and asylum seekers. You can view and/or sign this petition here: If you wish to sign, choose MA: Jewish Activists for Immigration Justice of Western MA from the dropdown.

Matzah Gift from Brattleboro Chabad

Chabad Jewish Center of Brattleboro is offering hand baked Shmurah Matzah as a gift this year. To sign up, visit this link and fill out the form.

Community News/Events

Essence of the Omer Online Class with Rebecca Golden

Essence of the Omer is an online 8 week course exploring the Jewish Ritual of Counting the Omer using Sephirot Meditation and Reflection, Flower Essences, and Art to help us count the omer and journey towards revelation. This journey will be guided and facilitated by Rebecca Golden, herbalist and Jewish meditation and mysticism learner and lover.
We will meet on Thursdays from 6:30-8pm March 25-May 13 on zoom. Together, we will do meditations, circle sharing, and have teachings on the sephirot and flower essences connected to them. During the week in between participants are invited to make art reflecting the sephirot of the week and their relationship to it, as well as take a flower essence picked especially for the energetics of sephirot of that week. 

Contact Rebecca at for more details about cost and content, to register, and to receive the zoom link. You can also check it out on the facebook event page.

Ecological Passover Studies & Seders with Rabbi Ellen Bernstein

Rabbi Ellen Bernstein is offering several opportunities to learn how the story of our liberation on Passover weaves together with the story of our relationship with the earth. All are free and open to the public.

March 3, 2021 12 Noon EST Ecological Roots of PassoveHazon REGISTER HERE
March 9, 2021   7 PM EST  Discussion of The Promise of the Land  JCAN  REGISTER HERE

March 10, 2021 8 PM EST Leading an Earth Seder Hazon 

March 18, 2021 8 PM EST Ecological Roots of Passover Shoresh

On April 1, Rabbi Ellen will be hosting a Zoom Earth Seder with Rabbi Cantor George Mordecai and many friends.  Please join us for a festival of text, music and earthy delights. 

To learn more about Earth Seders, click HERE

Thursday, March 11, 10-11:30 AM: Forgotten Dreams: Tapping into the Power of Sleep and Dreams for Self Care

Join Jewish Family Service for a a special presentation by dream expert and author, Tzivia Gover. Tzivia will share her own story, along with easy to follow tips and techniques for self-care and caregivers. Pre-register and more information: or call 413.737.2601

Saturday, March 13, 6:45 PM: Space Havdallah with PJ Library

PJ Library invites kids to Space Havdallah, 6:45pm March 13th.  Short Havdallah followed by a presentation on space and recent Mars news by Rabbi Ben Weiner's astronomer cousin.  Here is the link to register:

Sunday, May 2, 12:30 PM: 18th Annual Connie Spear Birnbaum Memorial Lecture & Chai Celebration

The Synagogue Council of Massachusetts is honored to join lecture founder, Dr. Herbert Birnbaum and the Birnbaum family, in presenting the Connie Spear Birnbaum Memorial Lecture. This year’s program features noted journalist and author, Yossi Klein HaLevi in conversation with Benjamin Birnbaum addressing the important and provocative topic, “Holding the Jewish Center.” An award-winning journalist, Ben is also Connie and Herb’s son. For more information, visit

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