2020 Virtual Celebration Journal Journal 2020 Final - Page 22

P R E S ENTING I DA N IRELAN DER AS R A B B I AN D TEACHER I N I S R AEL I DA N I R E L A N D E R /iusb okugv cuycu 'vbu,b ,uarvu 'hupm kfv /vagnv cr hpk kfvu Presented by Rabbi Karen Landy Everything is foreseen, yet free will is given. The world is judged with goodness, and all is according to the majority of deeds. R abbi Shefatya said that Rabbi Yochanan said: Concerning anyone who reads from the Torah without a melody or studies the Mishna without a song, the verse states: “So too I gave them statutes that were not good, and judgments whereby they should not live” (Ezekiel 20:25), as one who studies Torah through song demonstrates that he is fond of his learning. Furthermore, the tune helps him remember what he has learned. ~ Megillah 32a:12 Idan fills his heart and soul with music and joy. I first met him when he and I were in the beginning of our careers. Idan would light up the room with song and with his soulful con- nection. And his connection is ageless….you can find his presence in the preschool, Hebrew school, services, and with the seniors. Everyone seems to gravitate to his ability to include and connect. Idan exuberates joy and brings others in. What a gift it is to enter into a sacred sanctuary and exit with a heart filled with song. He exemplifies the words of Havah Nagilah….Havah nagilah v’nismehah…Let us rejoice and be glad. And song is just one part of his passion. Idan’s curiosity and his depth of knowledge of Jewish text, combined with his innate desire to pass that on, make him a natural teacher…a true Rav. He excites his learners by bringing in text that may have been written centuries ago but which can be translated into today’s world. To do this with twelve- and thirteen- year-olds is truly a gift. The learning path that Idan has been on is a natural one. His love of transmitting Judaism through song is now embedded in a depth of learning that has brought him a sense of excitement and joy. There is nothing better and sweeter than welcoming him as a colleague and a beloved teacher. BEIT DIN Rabbi Jeff Hoffman - Somekh Rabbi Matthew Goldstone Rabbi Len Levin 20 AJR 2020 ~ Pirkei Avot 3:19 J udaism and music have always played major roles in my life. My mother was a high school teacher. For over 40 years, she taught Bible Studies and Hebrew Literature. I’m a believer that there’s a reason for everything. And while I never thought I’d follow in my mother’s footsteps, by standing here today, there’s no doubt my mother’s vocation had a huge effect on my professional life. From a young age, I studied music and performed with different singers and bands, a path that brought me all the way from Israel to Boston and to Berklee College of Music. While at Berklee, I searched for a job to support my family. That’s when I stumbled upon the opportunity to be a music director at a local synagogue. The position felt so natural. It enabled me to combine both of my passions, music and Judaism. After earning my Bachelor’s degree, instead of starting a career as a film composer, which is what I had previously envisioned myself doing, I followed my heart and continued my spiritual growth as Jewish clergy. I was captivated by the magic of cantorial art and so I enrolled in the Cantor- Educator program at Hebrew College in Newton, MA, where I earned my Master’s of Jewish Education and became ordained as a cantor. I’ve since been honored to fulfill roles as cantor, spiritual leader, music director, song-leader and educator. Judaism has been integral to my musical aspirations. I wanted to instill passion and knowledge into my congregants so they too could deepen their Jewish identity and have a more meaningful relationship with our tradition. But, I needed to build on my skills to get that done. I’m so grateful that I found AJR’s warm and welcoming community. I’m thankful to my professors and the staff. You helped me to reach this milestone. You are amazing. A special thank you to Dr. Ora Horn Prouser for her abundant support and guidance. The steps I’ve taken to become a rabbi have not only made me a better cantor and educator, but more importantly, a better human being. I share this achievement with my wife and best friend, Einat. Thank you for listening to my chanting practices while at cantorial school, for proofreading my rabbinic papers, and for always being there. My children, Yahli and Ilahy, you are the essence of my existence; thank you for bringing so much light into my life. I’m grateful to my parents, Moshe and Michal z”l, for instilling a rock solid Jewish identity in me, and to my sisters, Einat and Ilit, for their unconditional love and support. I’m fortunate to have called Temple Emanuel my spiritual home for so many years. It’s a place that allowed me to grow and become the cantor and rabbi I am today. And to my close friends here and in Israel, thank you all. I am so blessed to have you in my life. AJR 2020 21