Celebrating freedom, LGBT pride & Tu B'Shvat in Sonoma County

Paul Munson lights the seven candles as everyone read, "As we share in the light of these candles, we rededicate the flame each of us carries within, that small reflection of the Creator's Light that is our to use as a beacon in our work of tikkun olam." A celebration of diversity, freedom, Jewish values and inclusion took place on Tu B'Shvat January 31, 2010 at Congregation Shomrei Torah in Santa Rosa. Paul Munson and Shirley Liberman, members of Congregation Shomrei Torah, envisioned an LGBT Jewish celebration in Sonoma and they volunteered to orchestrate and design the evening that welcomed 85 LGBT Jewish Sonoma County residents, their families, friends and supporters.

Andrew Ramer, the author of the Haggadah originally used at Congregation Sha'ar Zahav and recently adapted for the members of Congregation Shomrei Torah, led the service along with Paul Munson and Shirley Liberman. Congregation Shomrei Torah's Rabbi & Liturgical Soloist, Rabbi George Gittleman & Leira Satlof, along with Congregation Sha'ar Zahav President, Alex Ingersoll and Congregation Shomrei Torah, President, Marcy Pluznick-Marrin participated. Lisa Finkelstein, Director of the LGBT Alliance at the Jewish Community Federation also attended.

Each guest created a pin to represent reclaiming the image of homosexuals forced to wear a pink triangle in the work camps and Jews forced to wear a yellow star under the Nazis. Guests wore these pins as a symbol of the commitment for justice to all. They read aloud, "Blessed are those who have been marked, in all times and all places. May they always be remembered, through us and through our lives."

The beautiful photos are from the evening and taken by volunteer photographer, Ira Gelfman (irapooh@sonic.net). You can click here to see more of Ira's photos.

Categories: Events, LGBTQIA+, Seniors


February 02, 2010


The Federation