Membership

There is a place that shares your ideals–a place where women believe in their heads and in their hearts that things can and should be better. It is the National Council of Jewish Women.For over 120 years, NCJW has been at the forefront of social change– championing the needs of women, children, and families–while taking a progressive stance on issues like child welfare, women’s rights, and reproductive freedom. And now, with progressive ideals facing their greatest challenge in a generation, it’s even more important that courageous, compassionate women find a place to come together and take a stand. NCJW embraces women of diverse backgrounds and temperaments, thinkers and doers who want to play a part at the local, national and even global levels.What unifies our 90,000 members and supporters around the country is a belief in what NCJW stands for–the belief that progressive ideals put into meaningful action can improve the world. NCJW is the most potent, most effective, most satisfying place where you can take that action and become a positive force for change.   We invite you to join us.   Why should you join? To have a real impact on the lives of women, children, and families of all backgrounds and to have a strong voice in public policy. Membership is a rewarding experience, and your tax-deductible membership dues will help us turn our beliefs into action.   We are a volunteer organization that works through research, education, advocacy, and community service to improve the quality of life for all woman, children, and families. Membership is open to you regardless of your race, religion, or gender. You will find something to learn and contribute no matter what your interests, needs, age, or availability. Reach outside of your busy daily life and serve others alongside friendly people with similar interests. Your membership in and support of NCJW enables us to provide financial and volunteer assistance to our many community service programs, as well as advocate for and empower those who are disadvantaged, abused, or who cannot speak for themselves. Your generosity is very much appreciated not only by us but also by the many whose lives are improved through our efforts.


Membership

As a member of the West Morris Section, you will have the opportunity to:– Make a difference in your community, country, and Israel. – Volunteer in community projects. – Serve as advocate for those who cannot speak for themselves. – Study in areas of Jewish thought and learning. – Research, educate, and be educated in the needs of the community. – Build friendships and support. Your Membership Has Benefits – Daytime and evening participation opportunities. – A strong voice on important public issues. – Professional and personal leadership development. – Programs that keep you informed and entertained. – Provocative, insightful newsletters and magazines.   Your Membership Counts Strong membership numbers give us a Strong Voice when advocating on issues important to us all. We appreciate all levels of involvement. Together we can make a difference!  $35.00 gives you all this and more! Send your membership to NCJW, PO Box 533, Mt. Freedom, NJ 07960


DOWNLOAD MEMBERSHIP FORM HERE: 

NCJW Membership


Welcome to Our Tribe

It was better when it was really bad.” This is graffiti painted on a wall in Sarajevo twenty years after the war. What does it mean? Author Sebastian Junger posits that when we come together in times of crisis, it re-creates the ancient social norms of being part of a tribe. We work together to support and comfort each other. Junger reports that suicide rates drop significantly during these times, when we feel part of a greater good. He writes in his new book Tribe, “Self-interest gets subsumed into group interest because there is no survival outside group survival, and that creates a social bond that many people sorely miss.”

In American Jewish culture, we often speak about being a Member of the Tribe. We feel a universal bond with other Jews here in the United States, around the world, and in thousands of years of our collective past. I felt just as much at home in High Holy Day services at my father-in-law’s nursing home this year as I do at my regular shul in Morristown, as I did many years ago in an ancient shul in the Venice Ghetto, and as I do in my tiny shul in Vermont. All have different traditions, but the same core words are spoken from the heart. And these words are expressions of faith written by diverse people over thousands of years.

I feel very strongly that our own West Morris Section is a subset of the broader tribe of our traditions and values. It is a place where we hold a huge open tent in the tradition of Sarah and Abraham, welcoming everyone from our smaller community and also from the broader community of people of all faiths and traditions. Our Rabbis Series attracts people from all religious backgrounds who are curious to learn more about Jewish thought. Our community service projects support people of all faiths, whether addressing prejudice or hunger, or offering comfort with our Feelie Hearts.

Most important to me, our Section is a small tribe that welcomes everyone who would like to join and participate at any level. Inspired by Jewish values, we strive to attain tikkun olam one person at a time. Please feel at home in our tribe, and join us in any way that you choose.

Susan Neigher, for the NCJW, West Morris Presidents

Dinner & a Movie: The Frisco Kid

We hosted a dinner and a showing of the late Gene Wilder’s terrific movie The Frisco Kid, on Saturday, December 10, beginning at 6 p.m., at a private home in Morris Plains. We schmoozed, ate dinner (everyone who came brought something to eat--a salad, a main course,...

read more

Finding Peace Through Mah Jongg

K aren Gooen, one of our life members and the author of two books, gave an insightful talk at our Paid-up Membership Brunch on Sunday, Nov. 20, at 10:30 a.m., at a private home in Mendham. The title of her talk was “The Psychological Benefits of Mah Jongg, featuring...

read more

‘JEWISH VIOLINISTS’ PROGRAM NOV. 8 IN MENDHAM

Cantor Bill Walton presented a lively program on "Jewish violinists" for our Paid-Up Membership Brunch on Sunday morning, Nov. 8, at 10 a.m., at a private home in Mendham. The event was free to all paid-up members. Cantor Walton spotlighted the musicality of Jascha...

read more

Jewish Meditation at Our Oct. 7 Board Meeting

On Wednesday, Oct 7th, we were led in a very special Jewish meditation session by Pat Stein at a private home in Morristown. Pat offers meditation sessions at Atlantic Health, for the general public, and also for people trying to cope with various health problems. He...

read more

In the Kitchen with Chef Danny

At our hands-on “Kosher Lite” workshop, at the ShopRite of Greater Morristown, Chef Danny Arturo, an executive chef certified by the American Culinary Federation, led an interactive class on how to make knishes, health salad, and tzimmes. All the participants had a...

read more

Free Poetry Workshop May 21 in Denville

Do you Haibun? Gail Fishman Gerwin of Morristown does. With Gerwin, a published poet, leading the way, members and prospective members of NCJW, West Morris Section took part in a free poetry workshop, looking at examples of this form--prose poetry (sometimes stanza...

read more

Calling All Book Mavens

If you’re passionate about books, an inveterate reader, and a person who enjoys sharing her love of the written word with others, our NCJW, West Morris Book Club is perfect for you! Led by Sharon Feigin, this monthly gathering of book lovers offers a wonderful venue...

read more
There is a place that shares your ideals–a place where women believe in their heads and in their hearts that things can and should be better. It is the National Council of Jewish Women.For over 120 years, NCJW has been at the forefront of social change– championing the needs of women, children, and families–while taking a progressive stance on issues like child welfare, women’s rights, and reproductive freedom. And now, with progressive ideals facing their greatest challenge in a generation, it’s even more important that courageous, compassionate women find a place to come together and take a stand. NCJW embraces women of diverse backgrounds and temperaments, thinkers and doers who want to play a part at the local, national and even global levels.What unifies our 90,000 members and supporters around the country is a belief in what NCJW stands for–the belief that progressive ideals put into meaningful action can improve the world. NCJW is the most potent, most effective, most satisfying place where you can take that action and become a positive force for change.   We invite you to join us.   Why should you join? To have a real impact on the lives of women, children, and families of all backgrounds and to have a strong voice in public policy. Membership is a rewarding experience, and your tax-deductible membership dues will help us turn our beliefs into action.   We are a volunteer organization that works through research, education, advocacy, and community service to improve the quality of life for all woman, children, and families. Membership is open to you regardless of your race, religion, or gender. You will find something to learn and contribute no matter what your interests, needs, age, or availability. Reach outside of your busy daily life and serve others alongside friendly people with similar interests. Your membership in and support of NCJW enables us to provide financial and volunteer assistance to our many community service programs, as well as advocate for and empower those who are disadvantaged, abused, or who cannot speak for themselves. Your generosity is very much appreciated not only by us but also by the many whose lives are improved through our efforts.
MEMBERSHIP
As a member of the West Morris Section, you will have the opportunity to:– Make a difference in your community, country, and Israel. – Volunteer in community projects. – Serve as advocate for those who cannot speak for themselves. – Study in areas of Jewish thought and learning. – Research, educate, and be educated in the needs of the community. – Build friendships and support. Your Membership Has Benefits – Daytime and evening participation opportunities. – A strong voice on important public issues. – Professional and personal leadership development. – Programs that keep you informed and entertained. – Provocative, insightful newsletters and magazines.   Your Membership Counts Strong membership numbers give us a Strong Voice when advocating on issues important to us all. We appreciate all levels of involvement. Together we can make a difference!  $35.00 gives you all this and more! Send your membership to NCJW, PO Box 533, Mt. Freedom, NJ 07960

DOWNLOAD MEMBERSHIP FORM HERE: 

NCJW Membership

__________________________________________________________________________________

Welcome to Our Tribe

It was better when it was really bad.” This is graffiti painted on a wall in Sarajevo twenty years after the war. What does it mean? Author Sebastian Junger posits that when we come together in times of crisis, it re-creates the ancient social norms of being part of a tribe. We work together to support and comfort each other. Junger reports that suicide rates drop significantly during these times, when we feel part of a greater good. He writes in his new book Tribe, “Self-interest gets subsumed into group interest because there is no survival outside group survival, and that creates a social bond that many people sorely miss.”

In American Jewish culture, we often speak about being a Member of the Tribe. We feel a universal bond with other Jews here in the United States, around the world, and in thousands of years of our collective past. I felt just as much at home in High Holy Day services at my father-in-law’s nursing home this year as I do at my regular shul in Morristown, as I did many years ago in an ancient shul in the Venice Ghetto, and as I do in my tiny shul in Vermont. All have different traditions, but the same core words are spoken from the heart. And these words are expressions of faith written by diverse people over thousands of years.

I feel very strongly that our own West Morris Section is a subset of the broader tribe of our traditions and values. It is a place where we hold a huge open tent in the tradition of Sarah and Abraham, welcoming everyone from our smaller community and also from the broader community of people of all faiths and traditions. Our Rabbis Series attracts people from all religious backgrounds who are curious to learn more about Jewish thought. Our community service projects support people of all faiths, whether addressing prejudice or hunger, or offering comfort with our Feelie Hearts.

Most important to me, our Section is a small tribe that welcomes everyone who would like to join and participate at any level. Inspired by Jewish values, we strive to attain tikkun olam one person at a time. Please feel at home in our tribe, and join us in any way that you choose.

Susan Neigher, for the NCJW, West Morris Presidents

__________________________________________________________________________________

Finding Peace Through Mah Jongg

K aren Gooen, one of our life members and the author of two books, gave an insightful talk at our Paid-up Membership Brunch on Sunday, Nov. 20, at 10:30 a.m., at a private home in Mendham. The title of her talk was “The Psychological Benefits of Mah Jongg, featuring Wisdom from Bubbe Fischer.”

The event was free for all paid-up members. Members were also able to pay their dues ($35 a year) at the brunch.

Karen said prior to the lecture, “My lecture will explore three major psychological benefits of mah jongg, as well as some of Bubbe’s most valuable hard-earned wisdom. I will also (try to) answer any and all questions on mah jongg strategy, etiquette, and history.”

Karen’s first book, Searching for Bubbe Fischer, is nonfiction—a combination of a memoir and a manual. “The first half covers my quest to find a mah jongg mentor, tracing my journey from being a rookie to a skilled player and instructor,” she points out. “The second half includes some of my best lessons for players at all levels of experience, so that every reader can ‘be (her) own Bubbe.’ ”

Karen adds, “Bubbe is the book I wish I could have read when I was starting out. It took me years to pick up these tips, and I know that any motivated player would want to have a shortcut or two. It’s been very popular with both newcomers and seasoned veterans, and is generally mentioned as part of the ‘Mah Jongg Canon,’ along with works by the two top American mah jongg writers, Tom Sloper and the late Elaine Sandberg.”

Karen’s second book, Small World, is a novel. The first book in the “Mah Jongg Table Talk Tale” series, it’s the story of a mother and her middle-aged daughter in suburban New Jersey. The novel features tales of rekindled friendships, lost loves, and lots of mah jongg stories.
“I wrote 
Small World because my readers kept telling me they loved the stories and wanted to hear more. It’s been well received, and I am currently touring the US, speaking about both books. I recently had my first international appearance, in Hamilton, Ontario,” Karen notes.

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Dinner & a Movie: The Frisco Kid

The Frisco Kid

The Frisco Kid

Join us for dinner and a showing of the late Gene Wilder’s terrific movie The Frisco Kid, on Saturday, December 10, beginning at 6 p.m., at a private home in Morris Plains.

We’ll schmooze, eat dinner (everyone who comes has to bring something to eat–a salad, a main course, side dishes, dessert–kosher/dairy or pareve), and then watch the movie.

Here’s a synopsis of this wonderful comedy:

Rabbi Avram Belinsky (Gene Wilder) lands in Philadelphia intending to travel to San Francisco, where he plans to start a synagogue. Quickly relieved of his belongings by a group of con artists, Avram optimistically sets out alone on foot toward the Wild West. He gets into one scrape after another until he is rescued, in a way, by a compassionate horseman named Tommy Lillard (Harrison Ford). Unfortunately, Tommy may not be quite as heroic as he seems, and it is still a long way

to California.

There’s no charge for this NCJW, West Morris membership event, and spouses and significant others are welcome and encouraged to come.
RSVP to stellahart@optimum.net with the dish you’d like to bring so we have a nice complement of food.

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‘SEASONAL LATKES’ LATKE-MAKING PRESENTATION NOV. 29

Beth Fields, a member of our Section, presented a special latke-making program using “real food” on Sunday morning, Nov. 29, at 11 a.m. at a private home in Dover. Called “Seasonal Latkes,” the program was free and open to all members and prospective members. Among the ingredients Fields used—depending on what was available at her local farmer’s market—were carrots, sweet potatoes, zucchini, beets, and even apples. Participants had a chance to sample the seasonal latkes, which are traditional for Hanukkah.

Fields loves to cook. And she loves to eat. But she loves to cook and eat real food, as distinguished from so-called “edible food-like” substances. So she seeks out the produce and products of local purveyors at local farmer’s markets and local farms. Because she is concerned about the sustainability and health of our bodies and our planet, seasonal, local produce is always her first choice.

The presenter, who holds degrees in chemistry and law, spent many years working as an intellectual property attorney in areas as diverse as agricultural chemicals, food technology, pharmaceuticals, and genetically modified organisms. Her background has convinced her that many common chemicals are best avoided. She has also spent the past year as a Greenfaith Fellow, learning how to bring this message to her faith community. “We each only have one body and one planet. Let’s work to keep them as healthy as possible,” she says.

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‘JEWISH VIOLINISTS’ PROGRAM NOV. 8 IN MENDHAM

Cantor BIll Walton

Cantor BIll Walton

Cantor Bill Walton presented a lively program on “Jewish violinists” for our Paid-Up Membership Brunch on Sunday morning, Nov. 8, at 10 a.m., at a private home in Mendham. The event was free to all paid-up members.

Cantor Walton spotlighted the musicality of Jascha Heifetz and Itzhak Perlman, as well as other Jewish violinists, in his animated talk, punctuated by wonderful recordings for solo violin, chamber music and major violin concertos. Attendees savored selections by Bach, Mozart,  Beethoven,  Brahms, and Tchaikovsky. The cantor discussed these violinists’ musical style and their careers.

Cantor Walton served for 10 years as cantor at Temple Israel of Union. He is presently the cantor for High Holiday services at Temple Israel in Binghamton, New York. For the past five years, the cantor has performed with his son, Alex, a pianist, in the father-son duo Montclair Musicale, specializing in the Great American Songbook. Cantor Walton has issued a CD, called A Song Goes ‘Round the World, an eclectic blend of songs in six languages.

The cantor wrote and performed a segment on Hanukkah for public television. The multicultural special, “Winter: Season of Darkness–Season of Light,” was produced by Kentucky Educational Television, a PBS affiliate. He toured Israel and Europe as a soloist with an Israeli chamber choir and performed with the Israel Sinfonietta and on Kol Yisrael, the national radio of Israel. He has sung with the Opera Company of Boston, Amato Opera, and the Boston Symphony Orchestra under Leonard Bernstein.

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Jewish Meditation at Our Oct. 7 Board Meeting

On Wednesday, Oct 7th, we were led in a very special Jewish meditation session by Pat Stein at a private home in Morristown. Pat offers meditation sessions at Atlantic Health, for the general public, and also for people trying to cope with various health problems. He has led wonderful Jewish meditation programs at Morristown Jewish Center–Beit Yisrael. He has years of experience guiding meditation sessions in the community and his programs at the shul were enthusiastically received.

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We Harvested Produce for Those in Need – and Had Fun Doing It!

On Sunday, September 20, at noon, we harvested farm-fresh produce at America’s Grow a Row in Pittstown, NJ. All produce we harvested was given to those in need. This event was open to spouses and significant others, children, and grandchildren interested in doing a mitzvah. It was a NCJW Family Day.

Grow a Row produce is delivered throughout the state of New Jersey to food banks, food pantries, soup kitchens, Free Farm Market℠ programs, faith-based pantries, and more. If there is a need for fresh, healthy produce, Grow a Row does its best to meet that need. Among the recipients of the food harvested at Grow a Row are the Interfaith Food Pantry of Morris County, the Community Food Bank and the Morristown Community Soup Kitchen and Outreach Center.

The farm is in beautiful country and we had a fun day in the outdoors in lovely surroundings. While what is available for picking varies, the range could be apples, peppers, green beans, cabbage, corn and more.

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In the Kitchen with Chef Danny

At our hands-on “Kosher Lite” workshop, at the ShopRite of Greater Morristown, Chef Danny Arturo, an executive chef certified by the American Culinary Federation, led an interactive class on how to make knishes, health salad, and tzimmes. All the participants had a chance to chop, mix, and put the dishes together. Everyone had great fun and learned how to make some wonderfully tasty side dishes.

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Free Poetry Workshop May 21 in Denville

Do you Haibun? Gail Fishman Gerwin of Morristown does.

Gail Fishman GerwinWith Gerwin, a published poet, leading the way, members and prospective members of NCJW, West Morris Section took part in a free poetry workshop, looking at examples of this form–prose poetry (sometimes stanza poetry but mostly prose), combined with Haiku–on Thursday, May 21 at Panera, Shoppes at Union Hill, Route 10 West, Denville.

Gerwin read a few of these poems she’s written, and participants left Panera with a Haibun draft of their own.

Said Gerwin, “It’s spring. Let’s write. Let’s share.” She offered the following sample of Haibun:

Green around us
Frames a May Tableau
Women write their lives

The workshop leader has authored two poetry collections. She is widely published in literary journals, and presents writing workshops and readings at venues from synagogues to poetry centers, libraries, schools, and private homes. The poet, essayist, and playwright is currently developing a third collection.

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Calling All Book Mavens

If you’re passionate about books, an inveterate reader, and a person who enjoys sharing her love of the written word with others, our NCJW, West Morris Book Club is perfect for you! Led by Sharon Feigin, this monthly gathering of book lovers offers a wonderful venue for exchanging ideas about an array of terrific tomes. Check out each month’s Prism for a list of upcoming books the Book Club is reading.

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Highlighting our Paid-Up Membership Brunch this year was Kimberly McCreight, the New York Times bestselling author of Reconstructing Amelia, which was nominated for an Edgar Award for Best First Novel as well as an Alex Award.

Called Entertainment Weekly’s Favorite Book of the Year, Reconstructing Amelia was one of CNN’s McCreight_Kimberly_ap1_credit_Justine_CooperReader Favorites for 2013, a finalist for Goodreads Best Mystery of the Year and a Book Club pick for Target, Books-a-Million and Indigo. Reconstructing Amelia has also been optioned for film by HBO and Nicole Kidman’s Blossom Films. Kimberly lives in Park Slope, Brooklyn with her husband and two daughters.

About Reconstructing Amelia

Litigation lawyer and harried single mother Kate Baron is shocked when her daughter’s exclusive Brooklyn private school calls to tell her that Amelia–her intelligent, high-achieving fifteen-year-old–has been caught cheating. But when Kate arrives at Grace Hall, she’s blindsided by far more devastating news: Amelia is dead. Despondent, she’s jumped from the school’s roof. At least that’s what Grace Hall and the police tell Kate. It’s what she believes, too, until she gets the anonymous text: Amelia didn’t jump. Now, Kate is going to find the truth—no matter where it leads. Sifting through Amelia’s e-mails, text messages, and Facebook posts, Kate reconstructs the pieces of her daughter’s life and the people in it, uncovering why she was on Grace Hall’s roof that day–and how she died.

 Reconstructing Amelia is a story of secrets and lies, friends and bullies. It’s about how well any parent really knows their child and how far one mother will go to vindicate the memory of a daughter whose life she could not save.

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Poetic License

poetryAmong those attending our latest Poetry Workshop are, seated from left, Lee Nowikas Landau, Stella Hart Grayson, and Sandy Greenbaum; and, standing from left, Mim Willinger, workshop leader Gail Gerwin, holding a proof of her latest poetry collection, called Crowns (Kelsay Books, Aldrich Press), and Ada Rosen. Gail’s new book, with cover art by Hadassa Zusman of Netanya, Israel, is available on Amazon.