Shalom Chaverim (Dear Friends),
I hope you all enjoyed the long Memorial Day weekend. For me, it was an opportunity to pay homage to my uncle, my hero and namesake Private Martin Haberer. He gave his life during the battle of Bastogne so that we could go on to win the war against Nazi Germany and live in the freedom we have come to enjoy here in our beloved America. Uncle Martin was a paratrooper in the 101st Airborne Division, 327 Glider Infantry, better known as the Screaming Eagles. He was only 19 when he died and he had already served more than two years before he was killed. He would be 95 this year had he lived. What a sacrifice he, and all the men and women who serve in our military, make for each one of us.
On a separate note, Federation recently launched our Pride initiative, which aims to create an inclusive and welcoming Jewish community for LGBTQA individuals. Our first event, a Shabbat dinner, was held May 10 and was attended by nearly 20 individuals. They connected as a little community within our larger Jewish community, enjoying company and conversation over a traditional Shabbat meal.
Our next event features transgender activist, author, blogger, model, and speaker, Abby Stein on September 18. She is the first openly transgender woman raised in a Hasidic community and her story has been covered in the national media including the New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Jewish Daily Forward, on NBC and more. Please mark your calendars and for more information about upcoming events or how to get involved, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
This week’s Torah portion is Bechukotai (My Statutes) in Leviticus. In it, G-d promises that if the people of Israel will keep his commandments they will enjoy prosperity and be secure in their promised land.
It is the heroic service of people like my Uncle Martin, z”l, and so many brave men and women like him, that keeps us safe and maintains our freedom, liberty and dignity. I am proud of them all. And, I am proud that our Federation has recognized the importance of welcoming the LBGTQA community into our Federation family.
Let us all continue to stand up for what is right, as well as the rights of others, so that we can continue to strive to be a light onto nations.
President & Chief Executive Officer
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