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Bar Mitzvah

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By Mary Gail Hare, The Baltimore Sun | January 26, 2011
Many teens associate a 16th birthday with wheels and the first chance to drive, but for Alexander E. Hill, that milestone means tools and the chance to build a home for a needy family. When Alexander turns 16 in two years, he will be eligible to build a house with Habitat for Humanity, an international nonprofit organization that makes homeownership possible for low-income families. In the meantime, the 14-year-old Owings Mills teen who plays baseball and the harp and excels in academia, woodworking and karate can add fundraising to his accomplishments.
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NEWS
September 9, 2013
The annual French film series presented by McDaniel College and the college's foreign languages department continues Thursday, Sept. 12, with "La Chat du Rabbin" ("The Rabbi's Cat"). A discussion facilitated by McDaniel faculty members will follow the free screening, which is open to the public. The movie begins at 6 p.m. in Decker Auditorium, Lewis Hall of Science, 2 College Hill, on the Westminster campus. The 89-minute film won the 2012 Cannes Festival C├ęsar Award for Best Animated Film.
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NEWS
By Melissa Harris and Melissa Harris,Sun reporter | December 19, 2007
A former bar mitzvah lessons teacher in Baltimore's Orthodox Jewish community has been charged with sex offenses against two boys that are alleged to have occurred more than a decade ago, according to the city state's attorney's office. The boys were learning to chant passages from the Torah at Israel Shapiro's home on Olympia Avenue on separate occasions in September 1988 and June 1994 when the offenses are said to have occurred, according to court documents. Shapiro was charged Dec. 4 with felony child abuse, second-degree assault and a fourth-degree sex offense in both cases.
NEWS
By Mary Gail Hare, The Baltimore Sun | January 26, 2011
Many teens associate a 16th birthday with wheels and the first chance to drive, but for Alexander E. Hill, that milestone means tools and the chance to build a home for a needy family. When Alexander turns 16 in two years, he will be eligible to build a house with Habitat for Humanity, an international nonprofit organization that makes homeownership possible for low-income families. In the meantime, the 14-year-old Owings Mills teen who plays baseball and the harp and excels in academia, woodworking and karate can add fundraising to his accomplishments.
FEATURES
By Winifred Walsh and Winifred Walsh,Evening Sun Staff | October 9, 1991
GRANDPARENTS squabble over the lighting of ceremonial candles. A father expounds on the virtues of his young son while the boy eagerly counts the checks in the gift envelopes. A waiter carries in a tray of lobsters for the hungry guests but a grandfather hastily takes them back to the kitchen. "They are not kosher," he declares.These are among the amusing incidents that form "Bernie's Bar Mitzvah," a new audience participation piece premiering tonight and playing through Dec. 15 at the Fell's Point Cabaret Theatre.
FEATURES
By Winifred Walsh and Winifred Walsh,Evening Sun Staff | October 24, 1991
A very entertaining simulation of a Jewish bar mitzvah is being celebrated at the Fells Point Cabaret Theatre tonight through Dec. 15.In "Bernie's Bar Mitzvah," written, produced and directed by Howard Perloff, there are 34 performers (including the musicians and female vocalist) working the show.Although it is very theatrical the work is not a play. It is a "happening." The action takes place at the extravagant festivities following the solemn bar mitzvah ceremony in the synagogue in which the boy of the hour, Bernie Bernstein, 13, takes his first step into the adult world of Judaism.
NEWS
By Frank P. L. Somerville and Frank P. L. Somerville,Sun Staff Writer | December 9, 1994
Floyd L. Herman has had a 30-year career as a Jewish teacher and clergyman, as a chaplain in the Air Force, as a rabbi in Texas, Iowa, Illinois and Maryland, and as a lecturer at three colleges. But he never had a bar mitzvah.Tonight, Rabbi Herman, 58, spiritual leader of the 630 families of Baltimore's historic Har Sinai Congregation, will change that.He will chant verses from the Book of Genesis and perform the other rites in the ceremony, which is known by the Hebrew for "Son of the Commandment" and usually marks the religious maturity of 13-year-old Jewish boys.
NEWS
By Joan Jacobson and Joan Jacobson,SUN STAFF | July 7, 2001
Marian Klein of Stevenson doesn't know how to throw a small, intimate party. First, she decided to celebrate her husband Chuck's 80th birthday, her son Stanley's 50th birthday, and her grandson Jake's bar mitzvah - on the same day. Then she turned it into a fund-raiser for St. Joseph Medical Center in memory of her sister, Rita Helzner Silverman, who died of colon cancer there three years ago. Then she invited 400 of her closest relatives and friends...
FEATURES
By Eileen Ogintz and Eileen Ogintz,LOS ANGELES TIMES SYNDICATE | November 10, 1996
Tell the Schnalls' story the next time anyone gripes about spending a vacation with the in-laws. "There are so few times in your life that you have a wonderful occasion," explained Rena Schnall, the mother of four from Queens, N.Y. "We wanted to share it."The Schnalls wanted their relatives with them for their son David's bar mitzvah. (In the Jewish faith, the bar mitzvah -- for girls, the bat mitzvah -- ceremony marks the passage at age 13 from childhood to adulthood.) And they wanted to honor this important religious event with something more meaningful than a big party.
NEWS
By Jarrett Carter and Jarrett Carter,SUN STAFF | February 17, 2003
While some families make their child's bat or bar mitzvah memorable with grand meals and large gifts of money, a 13-year-old from Pikesville will remember his transition to adulthood for another reason: bringing joy to others. Evan Reisberg used money from his bar mitzvah to help purchase and donate 40 Build-a-Bear teddy bears to children with cerebral palsy at the Delrey School in Catonsville. The idea started months before Evan's bar mitzvah, the Jewish religious ceremony that marks a boy's 13th birthday and his passage into religious maturity.
NEWS
By Melissa Harris and Melissa Harris,Sun reporter | December 19, 2007
A former bar mitzvah lessons teacher in Baltimore's Orthodox Jewish community has been charged with sex offenses against two boys that are alleged to have occurred more than a decade ago, according to the city state's attorney's office. The boys were learning to chant passages from the Torah at Israel Shapiro's home on Olympia Avenue on separate occasions in September 1988 and June 1994 when the offenses are said to have occurred, according to court documents. Shapiro was charged Dec. 4 with felony child abuse, second-degree assault and a fourth-degree sex offense in both cases.
NEWS
By Liz F. Kay and Liz F. Kay,SUN REPORTER | February 20, 2007
It wasn't until the sixth grade that Michael Durst decided he wanted to become a bar mitzvah, but his parents didn't belong to a synagogue. These days, that's not a problem. The Fallston family hired a freelance tutor who taught the 12-year-old his Torah passage and officiated at the ceremony marking Michael's journey into Jewish adulthood, held in the hall of a Methodist church. Bar mitzvah ceremonies like Michael's - without years of Hebrew school, without a congregational membership, without a traditional sense of Jewish community - worry some area rabbis so much that they're rethinking their congregations' approach to the rite of passage.
NEWS
By LAUREN SCOTT and LAUREN SCOTT,SUN REPORTER | March 17, 2006
Four years ago, Yoni Grossman-Boder began thinking about what charity project he could do to complete his bar mitzvah requirement at Beth Shalom Congregation in Columbia. He found the answer on television. "Most kids collect jackets or put together food baskets, but I saw on TV, in Israel ambulances were being attacked," Grossman-Boder said. "Terrorists were shooting up the ambulances so they couldn't get to the victims, and I realized I wanted to somehow help." The 16-year old Columbia resident has raised $68,000, enough to buy a $62,000 ambulance and its supplies for Magen David Adom (MDA)
BUSINESS
By Andrea K. Walker and Andrea K. Walker,SUN STAFF | February 4, 2005
Super Bowl XXXIX isn't all about football. Reebok International, for one, will wine and dine its clients and celebrity endorsers - from rapper Jay-Z to Ravens star Ray Lewis - in a pimped-out suite in Jacksonville, Fla., that boasts mini-lounges, a 21-foot mahogany bar, an Xbox video-game station, flat-screen televisions and pool table. The company behind the hangout is Fandango Special Events, a small Baltimore event-planning firm that got its start arranging bar mitzvahs but has since gained fans among big corporations for its funky decor and off-the-wall ideas.
NEWS
By Rona S. Hirsch and Rona S. Hirsch,SPECIAL TO THE SUN | June 6, 2003
Lesley Robinson leaned over a Torah scroll partially unrolled on a dining room table as several women stood nearby. She recited two Hebrew blessings and then melodically chanted several verses in Exodus that included part of the Ten Commandments. When she finished, the women - congregants of the Reform Bet Aviv Congregation in Columbia - applauded and wished her mazel tov. The ritual was repeated eight times Tuesday evening, as each woman took her turn donning a white-and-blue prayer shawl and kippah, or skullcap, before reading a portion of the handwritten synagogue scroll.
NEWS
By Rona S. Hirsch and Rona S. Hirsch,SPECIAL TO THE SUN | May 9, 2003
When Isaac and Lisa Bankman looked for a synagogue to join nearly two years ago, they observed High Holiday services at Columbia's Bet Aviv Synagogue. It didn't take long for the River Hill couple to decide. The 5-year-old Reform congregation distinguished itself with its leadership, prayer service, adult education classes and social action program. "Bet Aviv has something going on all the time," Lisa Bankman said. "The rabbi is fabulous, so learned. The cantor is vivacious. And everyone made us feel welcome."
FEATURES
By Carl Schoettler and Carl Schoettler,SUN STAFF | April 21, 1997
Herb Kasoff pops into the cantor's office bearing wine for Passover and proclaims: "I was his first bar mitzvah!"Cantor Saul Z. Hammerman doesn't deny it. But he doesn't confirm it either."
NEWS
By Rafael Alvarez and Rafael Alvarez,SUN STAFF | January 18, 1996
When the black hat of Orthodoxy first settles upon the head of an adolescent Jew, the boy beneath the brim begins giving way to manhood."The mothers say they can't see their little boy anymore," says a rabbi who supplies hats to Baltimore's Orthodox community. "They want the smallest brim because they don't want the child to disappear beneath the hat."Though a symbol of strict adherence to Jewish law, the wearing of a black hat is custom and not law. In the United States, it was almost exclusively the domain of rabbis and yeshiva students until about 40 years ago.And it is no small statement of fashion, even among a people taught to value modesty and humility.
NEWS
By MICHAEL OLESKER | May 1, 2003
THAT WINTER, 3-year-old Eli Kahn had flu symptoms that would not go away. But the doctors, breaking the news to his parents, gave it another name: acute lymphocytic leukemia, the most common form of childhood cancer. A decade ago, the parents wondered if their world might be ending. Today their son sees it as a defining moment of his impending manhood. Next March, at the Baltimore Hebrew Congregation, Eli will celebrate his bar mitzvah, that ceremony in which a Jewish boy assumes the duties of a man. For years, many youngsters saw this primarily as a religious ceremony followed by a party.
NEWS
By Jarrett Carter and Jarrett Carter,SUN STAFF | February 17, 2003
While some families make their child's bat or bar mitzvah memorable with grand meals and large gifts of money, a 13-year-old from Pikesville will remember his transition to adulthood for another reason: bringing joy to others. Evan Reisberg used money from his bar mitzvah to help purchase and donate 40 Build-a-Bear teddy bears to children with cerebral palsy at the Delrey School in Catonsville. The idea started months before Evan's bar mitzvah, the Jewish religious ceremony that marks a boy's 13th birthday and his passage into religious maturity.
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