Here’s what’s happening in Jewish STL

Doctor to discuss cancer risk

Washington University School of Medicine Director Dr. Jennifer Ivanovich will speak at B’nai El Congregation, 11411 North Forth Dr., on Friday, Feb. 17, about the increased risks of certain types of cancer found in women (and some men) of European Jewish descent.

Ivanovich’s presentation will start immediately after Kabbalat Shabbat services that begin at 7:30 p.m. For more information call 314-432-6393.

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Interfaith group will meet

Breaking the Cycles of Prejudice and Racism, a collaborative sponsored by St. Alphonsus Rock Church and Congregation Shaare Emeth, will meet from 3 to 6 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 18, at the Rock Church, 1118 North Grand. For more information contact Paula and Norman Hertel at [email protected] or 636-227-4967.

Series focuses on psalms

Rabbi Ze’ev Smason will give a presentation on pleas to Hashem, found in the Book of Psalms, and will give some background on the authors of these prayers. Smason will speak at 11 a.m. Feb. 19 at the Joe Rothman Auditorium at Nusach Hari B’Nai Zion. Upcoming classes for this three-part series include: Sunday, Feb. 26 — an in-depth look at certain individual prayers; and Sunday, March 5 — the laws, customs and outlook on the saying of Tehillim. This class is open to both men and women and is free of charge. For more information call Chaya Pinto at 314-591-9140 or Rabbi Smason at 314-991-2100.

School sponsors lectures

Torah Prep School is holding two free-of-charge, weekly lectures. Rabbi Yissocher Frand is speaking on issues relevant to the weekly Torah portion every Thursday at 8 p.m. Rabbi Yisroel Reisman conducts a Navi (Prophets) class at 8:45 p.m. every Saturday in February. Times will change for this class only. Both lectures are at Torah Prep Boys’ School, 609 North and South Road. For more information, call 314-569-2929.

Workshop on marriage

The Helene Mirowitz Department of Jewish Community Life at the Jewish Community Center is offering “The Aleph Bet of Marriage: Journeying Toward Commitment,” a workshop for engaged and newlywed couples. Class will meet seven Thursdays, Feb. 23-April 6, 7-8:30 p.m. at the JCC Carlyn H. Wohl Building. The cost is $150 per couple for JCC members and $175 per couple for non-members. To register or for more information contact Jeremy Weiser at 314-442-3180 or [email protected]

Shaare Emeth hosts scholar

Professor Howard Schwartz will address the meaning of Kabbalah and other topics as the Fred and Elsie Deutsch Scholar-in-Residence at Congregation Shaare Emeth, 11645 Ladue Road, on Feb. 24-26. Schwartz is professor of English at UM-St. Louis. On Friday, Feb, 24, Schwartz will discuss essential Kabbalistic concepts. At 9:30 a.m. Saturday, Feb. 25, he will be guest teacher at Torah study. On Saturday, Feb. 25, Schwartz will discuss mythological themes in Judaism. Reservations are required. On Sunday, Feb 26, 9:30 a.m., Schwartz will trace Jewish legends. All events are free and open to the public. For more information, contact Susan Scribner at 314-569-0010 or [email protected]

Protocols of Zion to be shown

The second film in the Holocaust Museum’s monthly series will feature Protocols of Zion at 2 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 26, at the Jewish Federation Kopolow Building. The program is free.

The 2005 documentary uses the 19th century forgery The Protocols of the Elders of Zion, which claimed to be the record of a meeting of “international Jewry plotting world domination,” as a jumping-off point to discuss the rise of anti-Semitism in the United States after Sept. 11, 2001. For additional information, call 314-442-3714.

Preschool to host fundraiser

Shirlee Green Preschool at Congregation Shaare Emeth will host a Casino Night at 7 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 25. The event includes casino-style games, a dinner buffet, a Pot of Gold raffle and a silent auction. The fundraiser will be held at Congregation Shaare Emeth, 11645 Ladue Rd. Proceeds will go toward purchasing a new awning for the preschool entrance. Tickets are $22 per person. For more information call Shirlee Green Preschool at 314-569-0048.

Women’s circle to meet

The Jewish Women’s Chai Circle will meet at 7:30 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 26, at 2122 Park Forest Dr. in Chesterfield. The meeting will begin with a brief class on the story of Esther and will include baking and tasting hamentashen. For further information about events, times and locations or to join The Jewish Women’s Chai Circle, visit the website at www.ChabadOfChesterfield.com, call 636-778-4000, or e-mail [email protected]

Brunch to benefit JNF

Na’Amat USA will sponsor a pot-luck brunch at 11 a.m. Sunday, Feb. 26, to benefit the Jewish National Fund. Admission cost is one JNF tree purchase ($12) plus a dairy dish to share. Call Norma Geerlof at 314-993-3033 for directions.

Blood drive scheduled

Solomon Schechter Day School will a blood drive from 1 to 5 p.m. March 1, 2006 from 1-5 p.m. at the school, 348 South Mason Road. Call 314-576-6177 for more information.

Cultural Leadership Evening

BSKI’s Adult Education Committee will sponsor a Cultural Leadership Evening on Friday, March 3, featuring black and white Jewish teenagers from the Cultural Leadership Program, which builds bridges and fosters understanding between the races.

The community is invited to enjoy a Shabbat dinner and share the evening with these young people.

Dinner will begin at 6 p.m. and the program will follow from 7 p.m.- 8:30 p.m. The cost for dinner is $12 (less for young children). The program is appropriate for all ages and families are welcome. BSKI is at 1107 Linden Avenue. Please call the office at 314-725-6230 to RSVP by March 1.

Cultural tour scheduled

The Missouri Historical Society announces the launch of “History Happened Here: A Virtual Tour of St. Louis’ Cultural Communities” at www.historyhappenedhere.org. The website will allow visitors to navagate through our region’s cultural landscape beginning with St. Louis’ Jewish Community.

To celebrate the unveiling of the website, the society will hold a reception at 7 p.m. Thursday, March 2, at the Missouri History Museum at Lindell and DeBaliviere in Forest Park. The event is open to the public.

Guided by the research of Dr. Walter Ehrlich, author of Zion in the Valley, the society and an advisory board of community leaders chose more than eighty noteworthy sites to trace the history of Jewish life in St. Louis. Call 314-746-4599 for more information.

JCC to present Purim Palooza

The Jewish Community Center will present Purim Palooza from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Sunday, March 5, at the JCC’s Carlyn H. Wohl Building. This event will include traditional carnival games, inflatables, music, arts and crafts, mask making and costume contests. Kosher lunch and snacks, including hamantaschen, will be available for purchase. Call Rachel Plotkin at 314-442-3421 or [email protected] for more information.

NCJW plans leadership session

The National Council of Jewish Women will hold a leadership symposium on Monday, March 6. The session, called Leadership Symposium: Speaking Out for Women in the Religion-State Debate, will be held at the Westin Michigan Avenue Hotel, 909 North Michigan Ave., Chicago.