altMy fourth grade class at The Jewish Community Day School of Rhode Island (JCDSRI) just finished reading the historical fiction “Number the Stars” by Lois Lowry. This book provides a gentle introduction to the Holocaust as it tells the courageous story of a friendship between a Jewish girl and her non-Jewish friend in war-torn Denmark. In the past few years as I have read this book with my class, we had some thought-provoking discussions and writing assignments, and then the unit wrapped up. This year was different.


One of the Jewish orchestras in Nazi Germany.  /The Ghetto Fighter’s HouseInspired by a suggestion from the minister of Providence Presbyterian Church, the first Rhode Island Interfaith commemoration of the Holocaust, featuring Rabbi Irving Greenberg, took place in 1984. The program was held at Temple Emanu-El in Providence.

Thirty years later, the tradition continues on April 27 as six area choirs join together to present “Memory, Music and Hope,” with guest speaker Martin Goldsmith of Sirius XM Radio. Once again, this year’s event will be held at Temple Emanu-El. It is co-sponsored by the Rhode Island Holocaust Education and Resource Center and the Community Relations Council of the Jewish Alliance of Greater Rhode Island along with Temple Emanu-El.

/Kara MarzialiFour years into our marriage, my husband Adrien and I anticipated the birth of our first child. This was both terrifying and thrilling. While pregnant, I poured over every “what-to-expect-when” type of book I could get my hands on. I avoided raw foods, luncheon meats and caffeine. I took my prenatal vitamins and ate foods rich in folic acid. I kept stretch marks away with cocoa butter. When water retention was an issue, I elevated my swollen ankles. I did everything my ob/gyn told me to do. And yet, there would be no guarantees for that baby of mine.


Jacob BirnbaumJTA – May 1 will mark the 50th anniversary of the first Student Struggle for Soviet Jewry (SSSJ) demonstration on behalf of Soviet Jews. The man who inspired the demonstration and became the father of the movement, Jacob (Yaakov) Birnbaum, died April 9 at the age of 87.

Birnbaum founded the SSSJ and, together with others including Glenn Richter, developed the first national grassroots Soviet Jewry organization. But Birnbaum’s legacy was much greater than any organizational affiliation. He was a heroic, legendary figure.

Marguerite Duras is famous for her quote that mothers are the strangest people their children will ever meet. With Mother’s Day right around the corner, The Jewish Voice thought it would be fun to interview a few of the Alliance  JCC Early Childhood Center preschoolers about their moms.