Institutional Preparedness Alone is Not Enough, Say Jewish Gun Owners

Written by Rachel Kohn on . Posted in Community News

CORRECTION (5.23.19 2:15 p.m.): A Utah concealed carry permit is honored in 36 states, not 38; and it is not recognized by Maryland and DC, only Virginia. Before traveling with firearms, one should check relevant public safety websites for any updates to regulations.


On May 30, the Secure Community Network (SCN) is partnering with The Chesed Fund & Project Ezra (two Baltimore-based safety and security organizations) for an inaugural regional security planning and preparedness conference for Baltimore and the Greater Washington area. SCN was established in 2004 as the first national nonprofit organization exclusively dedicated to homeland security initiatives on behalf of the American Jewish community.

Jewish Community Takes Precautions Against Measles

Written by Rachel Kohn on . Posted in Community News

UPDATE 4.17.19 1:12 PM: The Maryland Department of Health and the Montgomery County Department of Health and Human Services, in conjunction with local health providers, will provide a free MMR clinic for adults between the ages of 30 and 62 on Monday April 22nd from 4 p.m. to 7p.m. in the social hall of Congregation Young Israel Shomrai Emunah (1132 Arcola Avenue in Silver Spring).

Rabbinical Council of Greater Washington President Yosef Singer expressed gratitude to Rabbi Ariel Sadwin [of] Agudath Israel of Maryland "for his tireless efforts and consummate skill in making this clinic possible." 

UPDATE 4.12.19 3:57 AM: Baltimore City Health Department will provide a free MMR clinic Friday April 12 from 10 a.m ot 5 p.m. at Congregation Shomrei Emunah (6221 Greenspring Avenue) for adults between the ages of 30 and 62 in conjunction with and sponsored by Sinai Hospital.

On April 9, the Vaad HaRabbonim of Baltimore and other Jewish community institutions issued a letter banning unvaccinated adults and children from public spaces and group settings, following confirmation of a case of measles in the Jewish community by the Maryland Department of Health (DOH) on April 5.

IsraVote’s Mock Election Taps into the Community’s Passion for Israel

Written by Editor on . Posted in Community News

On April 8, the evening before the elections in Israel, members of the Jewish community came together to celebrate Israeli democracy with a panel of experts and a mock election of their own at The Jewish Federation of Greater Washington’s offices in North Bethesda, Maryland. People cast their ballots on site, but the final tally included votes cast at area shuls over the course of the month.

JCRC to Welcome Rabbi Abbi Sharofsky as Rabbi in Residence and Director, Intergroup Relations

Written by Kol HaBirah Staff on . Posted in Community News

On April 3, the Jewish Community Relations Council (JCRC) of Greater Washington released a statement on Facebook welcoming Rabbi Abbi Sharofsky as the new director of intergroup relations and JCRC Rabbi in Residence. Starting July 1, 2019, “Abbi will serve as our representative to other faith, ethnic, and minority communities throughout the Greater Washington, D.C., region,” the statement said.

Gaithersburg Community Celebrates Opening of Local Mikvah

Written by Kami Troy on . Posted in Community News

On May 10, 80 women attended the dedication ceremony for Mikvah Be’er Rachel, the new mikvah (ritual bath) in Gaithersburg, Maryland. For Chabad Lubavitch emissaries Rabbi Sholom and Chana Raichik, the event also marked the achievement of a personal goal they’ve had since they first moved to the community 29 years ago.

It’s Called Good Deeds Day, But the Deeds Resonate Long After

Written by Rachel Kohn on . Posted in Community News

On April 7, over 8,000 volunteers mobilized at sites across DC, Maryland, and Northern Virginia for The Jewish Federation of Greater Washington’s eighth annual Sara & Samuel J. Lessans Good Deeds Day. More than 50 organizations partnered with Federation to provide nearly 75 sites for volunteers to roll up their figurative and literal sleeves to make a tangible impact in their community.

HerTorah Inaugural Women’s Learning Event Explores Storytelling in the Haggadah

Written by Malka Goldberg on . Posted in Community News

Writer and speaker Rachel Sharansky Danziger wove together the biblical exodus from Egypt with her family’s contemporary exodus from the former Soviet Union at the inaugural HerTorah event. “HerStory: Making the Exodus Our Own,” was held April 2 at the Gwendolyn Coffield Community Recreation Center in Silver Spring, Maryland. The event attracted 110 women and girls from across both the Greater Washington area and the Jewish denominational spectrum.

JCC of Northern Virginia Announces $300K Matching Gift Challenge

Written by Kol HaBirah Staff on . Posted in Community News

The 2017 Greater Washington Jewish Community Demographic Study reported that the Greater Washington area is home to the third largest Jewish community in the U.S., and 41 percent (121,500) of those Jews live in Northern Virginia. Community institutions at all levels have been taking this data and running with it to engage more Jews than ever before in communal life, and private donors are getting involved as well.