Dear Members and Friends,
We are welcoming the New Year, Rosh Hashana with great hope in our hearts that this past year 5780/2020 that brought so much pain and despair will soon leave us and we pray and hope for a better year ahead in 5781/2021.
This year of anguish was a test for all of us, it forced us to slow down and examine our lives, our relationships with family and friends and the routine of our daily lives which were turned upside down. We have learned what is most important in our lives and how much family really matters. Things we have taken for granted we no longer do and we think long and hard how we affect others by our actions especially if we are careless and inconsiderate.
More than ever this year the High Holidays are special, it is a time of faith, prayer and of reflection for our community. Under different circumstances, this year we are praying apart but are united by our traditions including praying for redemption from even the smallest of sins we might have committed this past year. Our Rabbi Stephen Texon has taken a lot of care to prepare and provide us with videotaped services so we can pray in unison with him and our community. We thank him for his efforts and time in this endeavor. We thank our volunteers and office staff for their devotion and efforts during the hardship of this year.
With all of the above, the trials and tribulations we have endured this past year the loss of family, illnesses and change of life style which through no fault of our own has befallen us, we must always remain hopeful for better days ahead. Once the Holy Days are behind us it is a new beginning for all us and a clean slate. Let’s put our hearts and minds into becoming better “nishomas”, better souls to one another and to our community.
We thank the community for the unbelievable support and for remembering their relatives at this time, family is everything. The response to our Yizkor Book has been incredible. We will always remember our family and friends and how they filled and enriched our lives. We also thank everyone for their support of our beautiful synagogue which G-d willing when the virus is over will be back in all its beauty and alive with prayer and celebration. Your support is indispensible to our success spiritually and financially. We appreciate that you believe and honor our heritage.
Recently we received great news from Eretz Israel regarding establishing relations with Arab nations. We pray that this positive direction continues and will pray for it as we enter this New Year 5781/2021. We are encouraged by the news and hope this will tamper some of the anti-Semitism we have been experiencing in greater proportions throughout the world. “Hope spring eternal”.
With a hopeful heart and with gratitude to all of our community, I wish everyone a Happy New Year, a happy Rosh Hashana, and easy fast during Yom Kippur. Let’s all unite in prayer even if apart for blessings, a better world and for Peace. Like the songs says “what the world needs now is Love, sweet Love…”. May G-d bless all, our country and Eretz Israel.
Shana Tovah U’metukah
Ketivah V’Chatima Tovah – A good inscription in the Book of Life
A Gut Gebentsht Yohr
President, Cuban Hebrew Congregation
Temple Beth Shmuel
Gay Pride or LGBT Pride is the promotion of self-affirmation, dignity, equality and increased visibility of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people as a social group. Pride is opposed to shame and social stigma.
HISTORY OF PRIDE MONTH
In New York on June 28, 1969, police raided the Stonewall Inn, a gay club in Greenwich Village, which resulted in bar patrons, staff and neighborhood residents rioting. Among many leaders of the riot were black, Trans, bisexual, gay men and women. This lasted 6 days, the message was clear, protesters demanded the establishment of places where LGBT and people could go and be open about their sexual orientation without fear or arrest.
Pride Month is largely credited as being started by bisexual activist Brenda Howard, known as “The Mother of Pride.” Brenda organized Gay Pride Week, this eventually morphed into what we know now as the New York City Pride March. Today the biggest International Gay Pride Parade is in Telaviv, Israel. Miami Beach is the host to the world known Gay Parade with weeklong activities.
The famous rainbow flag came about when gay politician, Harvey Milk asked a talented designer friend, Gilbert Baker, to design an all-encompassing symbol to take to the San Francisco Pride March in 1978. This flag is used today universally as a welcome sign.
Bill Clinton was the first US President to officially recognize Pride Month in 1999 and 2000. Then, from 2009-2016 Barack Obama declared June LGBT Pride Month.
In getting ready to re- open for Shabbat services we have complied with City of Miami Beach ordinance, Miami Dade County Emergency Order 23-20, Faith Base Task Force and CDC. We will be opened Saturday, May 30, 2020 for Shavuot.
• Implement procedure to ensure all participants remain 6 feet apart
• Facial covering MUST be worn by congregants or they may NOT enter building.
• Provide alcohol base hand sanitizer.
• Provide disinfected wipes
• Provide gloves
• Sanitize bathrooms
• There will be NO hugs, kiss, shaking hands or moving around during services.
• Participants must reserve in advance by phone or email in order to attend. This will allow us to limit the number of attendees.
We will start with 10-12 people. If you have not reserved you will not be let in. We will not open to the Public at this time.
• Comply with 50% occupancy restriction as we move forward
• Refrain from gathering before and after services including food service.
• There will be NO sit down Kiddush time. The Women’s League has prepared Kiddush To Go bags.
• There will be NO touching of the Torah except for the Rabbi while conducting service.
• Aliyots will be given and done by standing up directly from your seat.
No one will approach the bima except for the Rabbi.
• All prayer books used during services will be placed in the back table to be sanitized.
• After services Tallits and Kippot are to be dropped in a green box to be sanitized.
• No challah bread will be offered. A symbolic blessing will be said
• For the wine, disposable mini cups will be used. After drinking they are to be disposed in a no touch waste bin.
• There will be an orderly entrance and exit of service.
Doors will open at a certain time and they will close at a certain time. Doors will NOT open once services have started.
If anyone has symptoms of fever, cough, sniffles or weakness they should not leave their home to attend services. They will be asked to leave. The Rabbi will follow up with them at a later time.
Dear Members and Friends,
These are challenging times for all of us and the rest of the World. Our condolences to anyone who suffered a loss in their family due to the virus or otherwise. To anyone recovering we wish them a Refuah Shlema and our thoughts and prayers are with you.
We have reached the point in this terrible ordeal in which we realize that we have to reclaim our lives back from this “invisible enemy” while still observing the guidelines as outlined by the CDC and our government leaders. We will start reopening our Temple slowly and carefully for anyone who wants to attend Shabbat services. No hugging or kissing yet and with masks and gloves we can still greet and love each other while social distancing.
Through these difficult times we have remained strong and determined to overcome this terrible plague and have adjusted our lives. If we continue to adjust and adapt we will be successful and some day hopefully sooner than later go back to more normal lives.
We must remain optimistic and hopeful that we will overcome this terrible challenge in our lives. We have received good scientific news this week and pray for its success. Hope reigns eternal and that’s how we should continue to live our lives with Faith, Hope and Determination. We are strong!
We appreciate all the help and support spiritually and financially we have received during these trying times, we are very grateful and ask for your continued support and love.
Shabbat Shalom, Hag Shavuot Sameach,
Rachel Dubelman, President
Fla. Coronavirus Hotline 24/7
You can track the virus through zip codes find the hot spots visit;
Emergency Order 2020
Persons working in or visiting grocery stores, restaurant’s, pharmacies, construction sites, public transit, vehicles for hire and location where social distancing measures are not possible shall wear facial covering as defined by the CDC. Effective April 9, 2020
Covid Testing for Miami Beach Seniors
As of Monday, April 13, the City of Miami Beach will offer in home COVID-19 testing for homebound Miami Beach seniors that are 65yrs and older and are experiencing systems’ associated with the coronavirus. Testing is by appointment only. Call the city’s customer service center (305) 604-2489 between Monday and Friday from 8:00am to 6:30pm
Free Health Care
To prevent any further spread of coronavirus the CDC recommends using telehealth as a first line of defense. Baptist Health is now offering online doctor visits for FREE. Download their app, Baptist Health Care on Demand and have a virtual visit anytime day or night.
Use code: CARE19 for a free visit.
Meals for Seniors
If you are 65 yrs or older and are having problems and need meals, please call Miami Dade County’s 311 Call Center between the hours of 7:00am and 7:00pm. You will be connected to get meals delivered to your home.
Jewish Community Services has a program called Meals on Wheels. If you would like free Kosher foods to be delivered to you , you may contact them at (305) 576-6550
Drive – Thru Food Distribution (Free)
Miami Dade County has partnered up with Farmshare and your local commissioners. To get a list of dates, times and location go to farmshare.org or you may call (305) 250-5300
Feeding South Florida
Coronavirus food distribution across the county for information call (954) 518-1818
Thanks to Medical Professionals and First Responders
We salute and give thanks to the Doctors, Nurses and other medical professionals in our country and worldwide who are working tirelessly to take care of the afflicted during this difficult time and at the risk of their own health safety. We are very grateful to them and our first responders. We have them and the afflicted in our prayers daily. We wish a Refuah Shlema, a speedy recovery to all afflicted by the virus.
Almighty G-d we beseech you to give added strength, wisdom and courage to all of the Physicians, Nurses and health care professionals who are on the front lines working tirelessly to treat and care for those afflicted as they fight valiantly to preserve life while working to find a cure and to stop the spread of this horrible plague and to eradicate it!!
Blessed are You O G-d who hears prayer!! Blessed are You O G-d who heals the sick!! AMEN!
Rachel Dubelman, President
2020 Board of Directors
As the President of Cuban Hebrew Congregation I must comment on the recent headlines and articles that were circulated among many Jewish publications regarding the state and future of Cuban Hebrew Congregation.
A reporter who seems to be quite negative in her view of our Congregation called our Rabbi out of the blue and showed up on our doorstep on a Saturday while we were conducting our Shabbat services. She showed up late but sat for the remainder of the services, she also took part in our kiddush following services. At the end of services she was quite insistent and "pushy" about an interview right there and then and proceeded to turn on her recording device which she manipulated on and off at will. My protestations of it being Shabbat and she can come during the week fell on deaf ears. She claimed this is the only opportunity she had available as she was leaving town and was expected someplace else. By the way she never interviewed the Rabbi which we thought was her purpose for contacting him in the first place.
Little did we know and now after publishing her infamous headlines that her intentions were less than honorable. I requested that she send us the article prior to publication which she did not do and which we find unprofessional and untrustworthy. This conduct on her part should have been an indication that she was not upfront about her purpose for coming to our Temple and she meant to do us harm.
Let me assure our friends and Jewish community that the headlines of our "struggling" and "future in jeopardy" and of our “premature demise” are greatly exaggerated and unfounded. It is true that at one time under different leadership we were suffering but NOT NOW. The truth is that our Congregation is doing better than ever. Under this current Administration and Board of Directors we are moving forward and finally are starting to see the "light at the end of the tunnel".
After doing many improvements to the Temple and together with our new exclusive world renowned Chef and Kosher Caterer Shaike LLC, Venue2020 we are proud to say that we are again booking weddings, bar mitzvahs, conferences, tours, concerts and other major events with maximum participation and success. Not everything is about membership numbers or if our congregation has still many elderly congregants. They are people also and deserve respect and not the condescending and dismissive attitude exhibited in the article.
The NEW Cuban Hebrew Congregation is moving in a new direction and expanding our horizons. We are focusing on becoming a Learning Center and we have much interest developing in this direction. Our facilities are perfect for it.
I want to reassure our friends and members that the "State of the Union" of our beloved Congregation is in great shape. Our finances are finally solid and our future looks bright. The finances of our Temple were never discussed with this reporter so where she got this information must be from parties who do not believe in our Congregation.
Let me further assure everyone that Cuban Hebrew Congregation is NOT FOR SALE now or in the near future. If that ever becomes something the Board of Directors wants to entertain we will let our community know.
All the rumors and innuendos as a result of the headlines and this article are just plain “Lashon Hara”. It is propagating unpleasant and harmful facts which is forbidden and a serious sin in the Jewish tradition. Please think before you speak and if you have any questions related to the article or our status, feel free to call the Temple office at 305-534-7213 but do not speculate on what is going on. You can speak with myself, Becky or any Board Member.
Join us for Shabbat Services and our Kiddush, we promise you will enjoy it.
Have a Blessed Shabbat. Shabbat Shalom,
With much love, Your President
Cuban Hebrew Congregation has just acquired 10 cemetery lots in the beautiful Mount Sinai Cemetery located at 1125 N.W. 137th St. [Opa-Locka Boulevard], Miami, FL 33168.
These lots will not be available for long.
If you would like to purchase a cemetery lot please contact Becky Cohen @ 305-534-7213
Cuban Hebrew Congregation of Miami, Inc.
Cuban Hebrew Congregation of Miami, Inc. 1700 Michigan Avenue Miami Beach, FL 33139 US
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