Israel and the Square

I hope that everyone had a meaningful Yom Kippur and will have a wonderful and healthy 5776. I apologize in advance for a shorter than usual Marc’s Remarks, but I have been doing my best to enjoy and reflect during this holiday period.

The Jewish Federation has started its 100 Days of Impact for our Annual Campaign. Our goal is that by the end of the calendar year we will have raised 95% of our campaign total (last year we reached a new high of 89%). We can only do this with everyone’s support – please give generously.

To date, our campaign already stands at $700,000 – an impressive beginning since we really just started our efforts. Lauren Goldstein, our Campaign Chair, and her team are working hard to make this campaign even more successful than last year. One incredible opportunity we have is a matching challenge grant for all gift increases of 10% or more AND all new gifts from an anonymous donor (this is their fourth year). Help us maximize this grant so our community can receive an additional $198,000.

I am pleased to announce that the Jewish Federations of North America is coordinating an exciting national LGBTQ Mission to Israel scheduled for May 26 – June 2, 2016. The Jewish Federation of Greater Portland was one of the first communities to sign-on to participate on this trip. We have a wonderful organizing committee that includes Aaron and David Douglas, Liza and Beth Milliner, and Ted Nelson and Curt Shaffstall.

The Federation wants to maximize the opportunity for Portland’s participation, so we are offering a subsidy of $750 off the cost of the trip to the first ten people who register. Click here to learn more and for highlights of the trip. A more complete itinerary will be available soon.

We will be hosting a mission information meeting on Thursday, October 22 at 7:00 p.m. in a private home. If interested in attending the meeting (further details will be provided), or know of anyone who may be interested in this trip, please reply to this email.

In addition, this Sunday afternoon is Out on the Square. As we did last year, the Jewish Federation is joining the Q Center and dozens of LGBTQ and allied community organizations and businesses at Pioneer Courthouse Square. Founded in 2009 as ‘Gay Fair on the Square’, this event highlights a diverse myriad of non-profits and businesses that support Oregon & SW Washington’s LGBTQ communities. Moreover, this event provides a safe and supportive space for all – especially those who are newly out, curious, and questioning, or may be new to the Pacific Northwest. We feel it is important for the Jewish Federation to seek outreach opportunities to meet Jewish people wherever they may be. So, if you are participating in the day, please look for the Jewish Federation table.

Sunday night we begin my favorite Jewish holiday – Sukkot. I look forward to building our family sukkah and, if the weather holds out, sleeping in it each and every night. I find it a special experience and one way to celebrate my Judaism. Feel free to learn more about Sukkot programming across the community including the PJ Library Harvest festival this Sunday for young families.

Shabbat shalom.



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