Bagel shop

LJC Celebrates Tolerance Day with Darna Event

LJC Celebrates Tolerance Day with Darna Event

The first Darna event was held in 2020 during the corona virus panic. Despite many restrictions that time we were able to do more than we had expected, creating an entire virtual festival to mark the International Day of Tolerance. We tried to show during that tough time what diverse and interesting things we have right here in Lithuania, and how these differences are not only interesting, but complement one another perfectly. Today we are very happy to announce we can continue this event for its third year in a row, only this time we can meet face-to-face at the Lithuanian Jewish Community in Vilnius. Everyone of all religious, ethnic and other backgrounds and of all views is invited to come have a cup of tea or coffee, listen to live music and sample Israeli street food from our Cvi Park kiosk starting at 7:00 P.M. on Wednesday, November 16, at the LJC. Note: please disregard earlier announcements which stated the event would be held at the Choral Synagogue. It will be held on the third floor of the LJC at Pylimo street no. 4 in Vilnius.

The event program is available here. Musical performers, cooking workshops and meaningful conversations from the first Darna festival can be found here. More information about this iteration of the celebration can be found here.

#InternationalDayOfTolerance

Thank You, Rabbi Nathan Alfred

Thank You, Rabbi Nathan Alfred

The Lithuanian Jewish Community thanks Rabbi Nathan Alfred for three meaningful and fascinating days spent with our community.

We took some snapshots of the Kabalat Shabbat on Friday and the Shacharit prayer service last Saturday morning, below.

Romany Language Day

Romany Language Day

November 5 is celebrated as International Romani Language Day by UNESCO, Croatia and by Roma and friends around the world. One’s mother tongue is an important element of identity maintaining community cohesion and the sense of belonging. The Lithuanian Jewish Community and partner organizations including Padėk Pritapti will hold a celebration of the international day at 5:30 P.M. on November 8 this year at the Bagel Shop Café at Pylimo street no. 4 in Vilnius. There will be readings from the Lithuanian Roma oral history archive and traditional song and dance. Participants will also receive postcards created by children containing a short Romany-Lithuanian vocabulary. The event is free and open to the public.

More information available here.

Three Days with Rabbi Nathan Alfred

Three Days with Rabbi Nathan Alfred

Lectures:

“Raising Children in the Jewish Family,” 7:00 P.M., November 3, Conference Hall, Lithuanian Jewish Community, Vilnius.

“Sabbath for the Whole Family” under the tenets of Progressive Judaism, 6:30 P.M., November 4, prayer upstairs followed by kiddush at the Bagel Shop Café. Cost is 10 euros, young people 16 and under enter free.

Morning Prayer Service:

Shakharit, 10:30 A.M., November 5, at the site of the former Great Synagogue, Vokiečių street no. 13A, Vilnius.

To attend any or all of these events and for more information, please register by contacting Viljamas at viljamas@lzb.lt or by calling +37067250699.

Yom Kippur at the Choral Synagogue

Yom Kippur at the Choral Synagogue

Yom Kippur at the Choral Synagogue, Pylimo street no. 39, Vilnius:

Monday, October 3:

6:30 P.M. Preparations for Yom Kippur, lesson on the holy day, kapparot ritual

Tuesday, October 4:

5:30 P.M. Supper before fast
6:10 P.M. Kol Nidre
6:30 P.M. Fast begins

Wednesday, October 5:

10:00 A.M. Shacharit morning prayer
12:00 noon Izkor
5:30 P.M. Mincha prayer
7:30 P.M. Niila prayer
7:38 P.M. conclusion of fast, dinner

Kabalat Shabat on September 30

Kabalat Shabat on September 30

A Kabalat Shabat ceremony and dinner according to the tenets of progressive Judaism will be held at 6:30 P.M. on September 30 with the main ceremony the third floor of the Lithuanian Jewish Community in Vilnius and kiddush downstairs at the Bagel Shop Café. The price is 10 euros, children and minors 16 and under are free. For more information and to register, contact Viljamas by writing viljamas@lzb.lt or call +370 672 50699.

Recent Workshops and Events

Recent Workshops and Events

We are pleased to share some snapshots from the dance class held on the last Sabbath of summer at the Cvirka Park space next to our Israeli street food kiosk. Julia Patašnik led the dance group. Also, we have snapshots from the gefilte fish workshop and the opening of seniors’ club Abi Men Zit Zich’s 25th season.

Snapshots from European Days of Jewish Culture Events in Vilnius

Snapshots from European Days of Jewish Culture Events in Vilnius

Our annual series of events to mark the European Days of Jewish Culture saw a good turnout all day Sunday, which turned out to be sunny but framed by clouds. There was cantorial song at synagogue, a tour of Jewish Vilna, a panel discussion on echoes of Jewish culture in modern Lithuania’s cultural scene, we baked challa and slowly cooked the legendary floimen tsimes and there was singing, playing and dancing for all. For some snapshots from different events, concerts, workshops and lectures, see below.

Lost Shtetl Museum Takes Part in Blue Family Picnic in Šeduva

Lost Shtetl Museum Takes Part in Blue Family Picnic in Šeduva

On the last weekend of summer we participated in the Blue Family Picnic which has been held in the Šeduva city park for seven years now. The Blue Family Picnic is intended to strengthen community, reduce social inequality and carry on family traditions.

We came up with all sorts of activities for attendees, including recognizing Jewish religious regalia, teaching them to write their names in Hebrew, a puzzle made up of period photographs of the town/shtetl, how to make traditional Sabbath challa and how to set the Sabbath table. Younger attendees made models of the shtetl, learned how to arrange food items on the plate for Passover seder and spun and taught other children to spin the dreidl. We treated everyone to traditional Litvak dishes as well.

So many friendly and eager to learn families came to the picnic. We wanted to share with them in a fun way the culture and traditions of the Jewish community of Šeduva and to remind them of the town’s not-so-distant past, the shtetl of Šeduva where Jews and Lithuanians lived peacefully together. Two special guests attended, two women from Šeduva for whom the shtetl isn’t lost in the mists of time. They spent their childhoods in the shtetl and have shared their memories with us numerous times.

European Days of Jewish Culture in Vilnius

European Days of Jewish Culture in Vilnius

This year will be the seventh the Lithuanian Jewish Community is holding events for the European Days of Jewish Culture. This year’s theme is renewal.

Renewal is woven into almost all aspects of Jewish life. Jewish life is continually building on the past in new ways, bringing a sense of constant change along with a reassuring sense of continuity. The Jewish New Year opens with the festivals of Rosh Hashana and Yom Kippur. These holy days through their traditions and prayers present an opportunity to reflect on and acknowledge our past actions while looking ahead with new resolutions, optimism and determination. During this period we reconcile personal and communal differences within ourselves and with others as we actively strive to renew our aspirations for the coming year, and beyond.

We invite you to attend the events, all of which are free and open to the public.

Register here, space is limited.

Program:

Last Summer Sabbath Dance

Last Summer Sabbath Dance

Come to celebrate the last sabbath of the summer at the Cvi Park Israeli food kiosk with Israeli dancing. The event starts at 6:00 P.M. on Friday, August 26. The event is free and open to the public.

Arkadijus Vinokuras’s Discussion Club on Wins at World Maccabiah Games

Arkadijus Vinokuras’s Discussion Club on Wins at World Maccabiah Games

The #ŽydiškiPašnekesiai discussion club moderated by Arkadijus Vinokuras will meet on August 10 to discuss the recent victories by Lithuanian Makabi Athletic Club athletes at the World Maccabiah Games in Israel.

The Lithuanian team made one of its best showings ever, winning 6 medals last month.

The club was active in interwar Lithuania from 1920 to 1940. It was originally founded in 1916. In 1926 the club had 83 branches throughout Lithuania, encompassing 4,000 members. It published a newspaper twice per month and had its own sports stadium. The club was reconstituted on January 8, 1989, at a general meeting at the calculator and business machine factory in Vilnius.

Speakers will include Lithuanian Jewish Community chairwoman Faina Kukliansky, Lithuanian Makabi Athletics Club president Semionas Finkelšteinas, table-tennis medal winner many times over Rafael Gimelštein and others.

The panel discussion will be held in Lithuanian at the Bagel Shop Café at 5:00 P.M. on August 10.

Discussion “Judaism and Christianity: Attitudes towards Morality”

The #ŽydiškiPašnekesiai discussion club invites the public to attend a panel discussion called “Judaism and Christianity: Attitudes towards Morality” at the Bagel Shop Café at 5:00 P.M. on Thursday, July 14. Arkadijus Vinokuras will moderate the discussion which will address Christian and Jewish positions on abortion and Lithuanian views of Russia’s war in the Ukraine. The discussion will take place in Lithuanian.

In Petras Cvirka’s Place, Falafel

In Petras Cvirka’s Place, Falafel

The web-based Vilnius city guide 1323.lt (1323 is the nominal year of the founding of Vilnius) has reviewed the Cvi in the Park Israeli street food kiosk organized this year and last in the park across the street from the Lithuanian Jewish Community headquarters in Vilnius.

Their review is titled “In Petras Cvirka’s Place, Falafel,” a reference to the name of the park still used by almost all Vilnius residents despite the municipality’s decision a few months back to remove its trademark statue to Soviet-era Lithuanian poet Petras Cvirka.

“For the second season now the Cvi Parkas Jewish street food kiosk had been luring passers-by to have a snack (and not only that). It debuted last year when the statue to Petras Cvirka, which caused so much discussion, still stood by.

Free Tango Lessons at Israeli Street Food Kiosk

Free Tango Lessons at Israeli Street Food Kiosk

The Cvi in the Park Israeli street food kiosk is hosting free tango dancing lessons open to everyone at the park across the street from the Lithuanian Jewish Community at Pylimo street no. 4 in Vilnius at 7:00 P.M. on July 5. The vocalist Eudardo will perform tango music from Latin America and the Argentine.

Program:

7:00 P.M. – 7:45 P.M. Public tango lesson
8:00 P.M. First portion of concert (Argentine and Latin American tango music)
8:30 P.M. Milonga (tango dances)
9:00 P.M. Second portion of concert
10:00 P.M. Finale.

Guided Tour of Gedimino Prospect Followed by Sabbath Ceremony

Guided Tour of Gedimino Prospect Followed by Sabbath Ceremony

Jewish tour guide Mark Psonic will lead a walking tour of Vilnius’s main street, Gedimino prospect, on June 17 as part of a larger event being held by the Lithuanian Jewish Community’s Gesher and Kaveret Clubs.

Those wishing to take the tour will assemble at the bell tower of the Cathedral in central Vilnius at 6:00 P.M. Friday. The walking tour will conclude at the Cvi in the Park Israeli street food kiosk located in the former Petras Cvirka square across the street from the LJC, where the Sabbath will be ushered in in the traditional manner.

The cost per person is five euros with registration by internet till June 15 and no later. Send an email to zanas@sc.lzb.lt to register.

Discussion Club #ŽydiškiPašnekesiai with Arkadijus Vinokuras

Discussion Club #ŽydiškiPašnekesiai with Arkadijus Vinokuras

Back in the time of King David, 3,000 years ago, the king was considered the best singer, and under his reign the professional musicians dynasty of the Levites from the tribe of Levi began. Music schools were established for singers of hymns and players of instruments. Hymns and instrumental music accompanied rituals for the offering of sacrifices at the Temple in Jerusalem built by Solomon in 959 BCE. During sacred rituals the priests blew 120 trumpets at the same time.

Of course we won’t go that deep into history. We’ll just discuss the period of Jewish music from Smetona’s Lithuania till today, discussion club #ŽydiškiPašnekesiai initiator Arkadijus Vinokuras promises.

The next discussion is called “Jewish Music: What Is It, and Why Doesn’t It Ever Grow Old?” on June 14, 2022.

The club will meet outside this time at the site of the former statue to Petras Cvirka where the Cvi in the Park Israeli street food kiosk is operating for the summer. The meeting will take place inside the Bagel Shop Café due to rain at 5:00 P.M. It’s open to everyone and will be live-streamed on the LJC facebook page.

Participants are to include Leonidas Melnikas, Boris Traub, Boris Kizner and Masha Dushkina, moderated by Arkadijus Vinokuras. The discussion will likely take place in Lithuanian.

Students from Miami University Visit Community

Students from Miami University Visit Community

Students from Miami University in Ohio recently visited the Lithuanian Jewish Community to learn more about the Jewish community in Lithuania, our history and Jewish life in the country. We baked bagels together at the Bagel Shop Café, gave them a tour of the recently opened Saul Kagan Welfare Center and invited them to our Israeli street food kiosk Cvi in the Park.

#OurCommunitiess #MūsųBendruomenės EVZ Foundation

Shavuot Brunch and Ice Cream Celebration for Children and Parents

Shavuot Brunch and Ice Cream Celebration for Children and Parents

The Dubi, Dubi Mishpoha. Ilan and Kaveret Clubs of the Lithuanian Jewish Community invite you and your children to a Shavuot holiday brunch at 12 noon on June 5 at the Cvi in the Park Israeli street food venue in the park across the street from the Lithuanian Jewish Community located at Pylimo street no. 4 in Vilnius. There will be ice cream as well as food. Prior registration is required by sending an email to julija.lipsic@gmail.com indicating the number of adults and children and their names and surnames.