Issue # 105 - August 2016 / Tamuz-Av / 5776.
 WUPJ supports communities
One of the main vocations of the WUPJ is to support the communities and create conditions for an inclusive practice for Reform Judaism. In a joint initiative with Confederação Israelita do Brasil (CONIB) and Congregação Israelita Paulista (CIP-SP), Rabbi Rubén Sternschein visited the communities in the Northeastern region of Brazil in June.

"From CIP to CIP"

Sternschein spent a weekend at the Centro Israelita de Pernambuco (CIP-PE), to conduct religious services of Kabalat Shabbat, Shacharit and Havdalah. "We want to thank CIP/SP, WUPJ and CONIB for their support, which helped to materialize these events, and say that the whole Jewish community in Recife is very happy with this initiative. We hope that we can strengthen the bonds and conduct more activities like this one", stated Centro Israelita de Pernambuco president's Saul Jacobovitz Bogater.


At the Sociedade Israelita do Ceará, in Fortaleza, Sternschein had meetings with the institution's directors, focusing on the development of educational activities. The rabbi also spoke with member families and offered a lecture. He concluded that "it was a pleasure to visit them as part of this project to join forces between WUPJ, CIP, CONIB and the other communities that may need our support. You can always count on us".


WUPJ-LA wants to know your opinion on the future of the Jewish Community and how we can work to help our affiliated congregations.

Please help us answering this survey (Portuguese or Spanish – takes you 5 minutes).

 ARI opens its door to the participants of the Rio-2016 Olympics

Thousands of Jews from all over the world are awaited in Rio de Janeiro during the Olympic Games, which will be held form August 5th to 21st .

The Associação Religiosa Israelita (ARI-RJ) invites athletes, members of the coaching staffs and tourists to the religious services at the synagogue.

Tel: +55-21-2156-0444

 Guatemala - Adat Israel Community receives Sefer Torah

On the eve of Purim, the holiday filled with joy and merriment, we added to the holiday spirit with a wonderful gesture from Anshei Emeth in Pine Bluffs, Arkansas to Adat Israel in Guatemala: the donation of a Torah scroll from a congregation that is closing to a WUPJ community that is still emerging. Adat Israel's president Jeannette Orantes said the following when the Torah donation was announced: "We, as community have seen how, step by step, we have walked, getting closer 'to the land that I will show you.' (Genesis 12:1.) We see miracles in all that happens." The Torah will be delivered to Adat Israel by Rabbi Gene Levy of Little Rock, Arkansas, who has been Anshe Emeth's part-time Rabbi, and he will be met by Adat Israel's volunteer Rabbi, Rabbi Elyse Goldstein, and representatives of the WUPJ, at a special dedication service in February 2017.

 AMIA brings together artists to sing in honor of the victims of terrorist attack

Over one hundred singers from various musical genres and generations participated in an act at the Asociación Mutual Israelita Argentina (AMIA) to remember the 22 year anniversary of the terrorist attack that left 85 dead and over 300 wounded on July 18, 1994 in Buenos Aires.

The song "La Memoria", by Leon Gieco, asks for justice and that the tragedy never be forgotten.

Watch the video posted on AMIA's official page on YouTube:

 Against Terrorism
The WUPJ Latin America repudiates the recent news of attacks against civilian targets in various regions of the world, including Israel, France, Bangladesh, Germany, Japan, Afghanistan, Iraq, Syria and Somalia.

Terrorist attacks with religious, political or motivations of any other nature are unacceptable.

All of the losses of lives are tragic, devoid of meaning and offensive to the commandments of God. However, the murder of Father Jacques Hamel, age 86, while leading a mass in his church in Normandy and the murder of 13-year-old Israeli youth Hallel Yafa Ariel, while sleeping in her bed, exceed all measures. Islamic terrorism imposes a gigantic threat on the world and its leaders are not even able to overcome the phase of comprehension, not to say of a solution.

The congregations affiliated to the WUPJ Latin America are open to all those who wish to recite the Kaddish in memory of the victims of terror, from all nationalities and religions.

 Mazel Tov, Rabbi Adrián Fada!

After concluding his rabbinical studies at the Seminário Rabínico Lationamericano, and also concluding the same at the Machon Schechter, in Israel, Adrián Fada returned to Argentina to be reincorporated into the local community.

We shared in his joy at receiving the Tekes haSmachah (rabbinical ordination) on July 21st, and his first Kabalat Shabbat ceremony as rabbi of the Judaica Belgrano.

We are very proud that a person like Fada, with his warm personality and commitment to the community, may continue to spread his knowledge and to work as he had been doing in the past few years at the Fundación Judaica. We wish our Rabbi Fada all of the best.

Mazel Tov!

  The meaning of the 9th of Av (this year August 14)
Rabbi Ari Bursztein - The 9th of Av is the day in which we celebrate the anniversary of the biggest disasters in the history of the Jewish people, except the Shoah, for which we dedicate a special day of remembrance. The most resounding examples of these disasters are:

1. Tradition symbolically set the day of the 9th of Av, when, as is told in the Torah, the spies sent by Moses to Canaan return and soon after reporting what they saw, plant despair in the people, telling them that the land could not be conquered.

2. 586 BCE: the First Temple of Jerusalem is destroyed.

3. 70 BCE: the Second Temple of Jerusalem is destroyed.

4. 132 BCE: the city of Betar falls.

5. 1290: the Jews are expelled from England.

6. 1492: the Jews are expelled from Spain.

7. 1994: the terrorist attack on the headquarters of the AMIA occurs the day after the 9th of Av.
On this day of mourning, we come together as a community to pray and read the Book of Lamentations in a special mode. The most distinctive characteristic of this day is fasting from sunset to sunset, only day during the year that is like Yom Kippur. This fast has been questioned in the last decades, since the 9th of Av binds together tragedies of different times, the most singular of all being the loss of the national independence of the Jewish people who thus were left at the mercy of the people and rulers of the different countries in which they dwelled.

Therefore, the question we should ask ourselves today is regarding the meaning of the 9th of Av within a context of a Jerusalem more rebuilt than ever and an unprecedented flourishing of a sovereign Jewish State. Rabbi Tuvia Friedman (father-in-law of rabbi Marshall Meyer) proposed, using the Halakhic sources of the 9th of Av, that taking into account the new circumstances, the fast should be only until noon after minchah, when according to tradition the signs of mourning already begin to decrease.