Social center

Gathering of Seniors at Cvi Park

Gathering of Seniors at Cvi Park

Our seniors in the Lithuanian Jewish Community Social Center program gathered one July afternoon recently at the park across the street from the LJC building in Vilnius, Petras Cvirka Square. They chatted, shared news and sampled an assortment of treats from the Bagel Shop Café, also located across Pylimo street on the first floor of the LJC, with a separate entrance

Jewish Summer Camp Update

Jewish Summer Camp Update

Additional registrations are being accepted for young people aged 13 to 17 to attend the Amehaye Jewish summer camp with overnight stays from August 2 to August 6. The cost is 140 euros per person. For more information call +37060146656 or send an email to amehaye2021@lzb.lt

Faina Kukliansky Re-Elected Head of Lithuanian Jewish Community

Faina Kukliansky Re-Elected Head of Lithuanian Jewish Community

ELTA, July 8, 2021

A general meeting of the members of the Lithuanian Jewish Community held Wednesday voted for a third time to elect Faina Kukliansky the chairwoman of the organization. Twenty-six members of the LJC’s executive board were elected at the same time.

The chairperson of the Community is elected for a four-year term by a majority of the regional Jewish communities and associate members constituting the LJC. Of the 32 organizations under the LJC umbrella, 31 representatives took part in Wednesday’s ballot. Kukliansky received 30 votes out of the possible 31, according to a press release from the LJC.

Kukliansky said her most important task as chairwoman is to inspire unity among the different Jewish communities in Lithuania. She said the LJC’s other priorities haven’t changed, but life is changing: the generation which experienced the horrors of World War II is growing old and dying, and so caring for them is becoming even more crucial.

“We are continuing to strengthen the activity of our social center, taking care of those requiring support, employing people with disabilities and engaging them in Community activities. Another important priority is preservation and putting to use the surviving Jewish cultural heritage: we have wonderful examples of restored synagogues being used as cultural activity centers,” Faina Kukliansky said.

Jewish Scouting Camp This Summer

Jewish Scouting Camp This Summer

The camp is for children and young adults aged 13 and above. In order to participate, applicants need permission from their parent, parents or legal guardian(s) and proof of payment by electronic transfer of funds. Please note that payments for the camp will not be refunded (although for unavoidable reasons beyond the power of the parents or applicant to stop, LJC will consider reasonable requests).

Payment information:

Recipient: Lithuanian Jewish Community
Corporation code: 190722117
Bank: SEB Bank
Account: LT097044060000907953
For: Scouting Camp 2021, child’s name and surname and which specific fee is being paid

For more information contact Viljamas at viljamas@lzb.lt or by telephone at+370 67250699

Registration form: https://forms.gle/66KHQmVpUXJJV9WbA

Amehaye Summer Camp Coming Soon

Amehaye Summer Camp Coming Soon

The Lithuanian Jewish Community is pleased to announce the our annual Amehaye summer camp for 2021:

June 28-July 2 Children aged 7-10 (day camp), register here;
July 5-July 9 Ages 10 to 13 (including overnight), register here;
August 2-August 6 Ages 14 to 17 (overnight), register here;
July 18-July 23 Jewish scouts (overnight).

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For more information send an email to amehaye2021@lzb.lt or call +370 601 46656.

Happy Birthday to Sulamit Lev

Happy Birthday to Sulamit Lev

Union of Former Concentration Camp Prisoners member Sulamita Lev celebrates her birthday June 7. She has been an employee of and volunteer at the Lithuanian Jewish Community and the LJC Social Center for many years.

We wish her a happy birthday, much happiness and good health, strength of spirit and joy. We wish you many meaningful years to come and that you would always remain as you are, young at heart.

Mazl tov!

The newspaper Šiaulių Kraštas published the incredible story of Sulamit’s life and rescue from the Šiauliai ghetto two years ago. The text is available in Lithuanian here.

Camp Counselor Training

Camp Counselor Training

The Lithuanian Jewish Community is offering training at our 2021 Madrich School for young people with Jewish roots who want to take part and become qualified camp counselors and supervisors for LJC camping and children’s events.

The curriculum includes:

* Knowledge of Judaism
* Educational activities
* Training on setting up camps
* Training for working with children
* Conflict resolution
* Many new topics

The training is intended for young people aged 15 and up.

Registration required by May 17, 2021. For more information, call +370 6788 1514. To register, click here.

Small Children, Small Troubles

Small Children, Small Troubles

Kleiner kinder — klein zorgn, groise kinder — groise zorgn.

This Jewish saying means small children pose worries and bigger children bigger problems.

Natalja Cheifec invites you to her third lecture on the subject, “Raising Children in the Traditional Jewish Family,” in Lithuanian.

The lecture will teach you about innate features children have and how to encourage them, and why Jewish children end up learning their entire lives. The issue of whether children should pay attention to the opinions of others and which way to choose–to act like everyone else, or to go one’s own way–will be addressed.

Together with Natalja you will learn how to turn an enemy into a friend, how to teach children to behave morally and the effects loneliness and a bad environment have on children.

The lecture is free and will be held on the Lithuanian Jewish Community’s Zoom page from 5:30 P.M. to 7:00 P.M. on April 22.

The lesson will be repeated in Russian a week from now, on April 29.

To register, go to http://bit.ly/3arwHRn

#NataljosPaskaitos

Children’s Event on Sunday

Children’s Event on Sunday

Dear children,

We invite you to come meet medical expert Arina Kaganovič who will tell you all about the monster called Corona. We’ll meet at 1:00 P.M. on Sunday, February 28 on the internet. Register and receive URL by sending an email to sofja@lzb.lt

Purim at the Ilan Club

Purim at the Ilan Club

The Lithuanian Jewish Community and the Ilan Club invite parents and children to spend Sunday morning with culinary chef Andžejus Žukovskis. We’ll bake hamentashen, the traditional Purim treat, together. It all begins at 12 noon on Sunday, February 21, via Zoom. To register send an email to sofja@lzb.lt and together with the Zoom code we’ll send you a list of ingredients needed. For more information you may also call Sofja at +370 601 46656.

Minsk and Vilnius Jewish Communities Celebrate Sabbath Together via Internet

Minsk and Vilnius Jewish Communities Celebrate Sabbath Together via Internet

Belarussian progressive Jewish Community Beit Simha’s Rabbi Grigoriy Abromovich created an international project to link up cities in Lithuania, Belarus and Israel and Lithuanian Jewish Community social programs director Žana Skudovičienė was an important part of the project on the evening of Friday, February 6, when more than 40 families celebrated Sabbath together via internet.

“We know and love the Jerusalem of Lithuania Jewish Community and we love visiting there [Vilnius]. New technology allows us to be closer together despite distance in time and space,” Rabbi Abromovich said.

Lithuanian Jewish Community chairwoman Faina Kukliansky said we all miss communication and support because of the difficult period of the viral pandemic, and the Sabbath has the unique ability to bring us all together.

Michailis Segalis, LJC executive director, said: “During Passover we say to one another: next year in Jerusalem. Today I’d like to rephrase that wish and say to all our virtual Sabbath participants: next year in Minsk, Vilnius and, perhaps, we will all celebrate Sabbath in Jerusalem.”

A big thank you to all who made the virtual Sabbath possible and participated. Thank you for your kind words and smiles.

Ilan Club to Teach Sabbath History

Ilan Club to Teach Sabbath History

The Ilan Club and the Lithuanian Jewish Community are inviting children to come together and celebrate the Sabbath this January 15 at 5:00 P.M. on Zoom. We will read the history of the Sabbath together with the children. Please register by sending an email to sofja@lzb.lt or by calling +370 601 46656.

Primary School Students and Parents Invited to Emotional Literacy Workshop

Primary School Students and Parents Invited to Emotional Literacy Workshop

Primary school students and their parents are invited to attend an emotional literacy workshop at 1:30 P.M. on Sunday, January 17. This time we’ll use reading therapy which connects literature with psychology to talk about self-confidence, fun and boredom. Parents are also invited to spend quality time together and to get to know one another better. The workshop will be held on Zoom. Please register by sending an email to sofja@lzb.lt or by calling *370 601 46656.

Condolences

Michail Špiz passed away December 30. He was born in 1955. We extend our deepest condolences to LJC board member Ela Gurina on the loss of her brother, to his mother and to his son as well as his many friends and relatives.

Interview with Simas Levinas, First Principal of the First Post-War Jewish School, Chairman of Lithuanian Jewish Religious Community

Interview with Simas Levinas, First Principal of the First Post-War Jewish School, Chairman of Lithuanian Jewish Religious Community

by Ilona Rūkienė

The entire Lithuanian Jewish community knows Simas Levinas as the head of the Lithuanian Jewish Religious Community, which includes two Jewish religious communities in Kaunas and the Klaipėda and Vilnius Jewish Religious Communities. Mr. Levinas was the first principal at the post-war Jewish school in Vilnius and has also served as the head of the Lithuanian Jewish Community’s Social Center.

Vilnius has only one working synagogue [excluding Chabad Lubavitch House], the Choral Synagogue on Pylimo street. How are prayer services conducted there?

Prayer services are held three times daily. There are sufficient numbers of those who come to pray. Judaism is complicated, people come to prayer in the morning, afternoon and evening. Life is structured by coming and going to synagogue. They only come once during Sabbath. There are a lot of people in attendance during the summer and famous rabbis come, the followers of the Vilna Gaon. People are frequently proud of their Lithuanian roots, because being Litvak means the continuation of the Gaon’s school, meaning that their parents or ancestors came from the Lithuanian Grand Duchy, many of them from [the smaller ethnically-defined nation-state of] Lithuania. They dedicate an entire day to prayer, then travel on to Volozhin, where Chaim of Volozhin [1749-1821], a disciple of the Vilna Gaon, taught the Gaon’s method of textual analysis at the yehsiva he [Chaim] established especially for that purpose. During the Jewish holy days the synagogue is packed, at least before the pandemic, and it’s not just Jews who come, many Lithuanian guests do as well. Ambassadors from many countries resident in Vilnius also participate.

Condolences

Ilja Cenz passed away December 13. He was born in 1929. We will always remember Ilja’s friendliness, energy and wonderful sense of humor. Our deepest condolences to his wife, children, grandchildren and many friends and relatives.

Sabbath on Last Day of Hanukkah on Zoom

Sabbath on Last Day of Hanukkah on Zoom

The Lithuanian Jewish Community and the Ilan Club invite all children to log on and keep the tradition of celebrating the Sabbath together this Friday, December 18, at 4:00 P.M. on the last day of Hanukkah. We will wish one another well and real Jewish nakhes! Sholem Aleichem ORT Gymnasium Jewish traditions teacher Algirdas Davidavičius will lead the Sabbath celebration. The virtual meeting will take place on Zoom. Please register by sending an email to sofja@lzb.lt or by calling +370 601 46656

Ilan Children’s Club Offers Emotional Literacy Class

Ilan Children’s Club Offers Emotional Literacy Class

The Ilan Children’s Club at the Lithuanian Jewish Community invites children aged 7 to 11 and their parents to spend some time together attending a lesson on emotional literacy from Kamila Gold, a therapeutic education expert and child and young adult mentor. Children who attend will receive an emotional-literacy workbook and parents will receive an autographed copy of the book “Drąsa būti savimi” [Courage to Be Oneself].

Number of participants is limited. The event will be held on Zoom at 1:00 P.M. on December 20. Please register by sending an email to sofja@lzb.lt or by calling +370 601 46656.

With One Hand the State Comforts Jews, With the Other It Points Them to the Street

With One Hand the State Comforts Jews, With the Other It Points Them to the Street

by Vytautas Bruveris, lrytas.lt

The country is marking the end of the ceremoniously declared Year of the Vilna Gaon and Litvak History, while the Lithuanian Jewish Community is looking at its front door and thinking it might have to leave its home. Because disagreements with state institutions are driving the Community from its longtime building in the center of the Lithuanian capital, located near the remains of Jewish Vilna and the city’s working synagogue.

Bailiffs and bricklayers in broad daylight have walled off one of the corridors in the building housing the LJC. This is the grotesque turn of events these days resulting from continuing disagreements between the LJC and the Vilna Gaon Jewish History Museum along with the Lithuanian Ministry of Culture. And even before this there were also episodes which seem rather odd, for example, letters from the museum to the members of the executive board of the LJC with accusations against the latter’s leadership, attempting to put political pressure directly upon the ethnic community/

With the new wall built, the LJC is now deciding on its future course: whether to dive headlong into legal battles, or simply pack its bags and hit the street. So why is all this happening? Because of disputes on how to share the courtyard which both the museum and the LJC, housed in the same building, claim. Instead of trying to act as moderator and as a moderating force, the Lithuanian Ministry of Culture has done the opposite. The neighbors are there next to each other, but separate.