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Poltava/Odessa Committee

Supporting Our Sister Congregations in Ukraine:
Congregation Beth Am of Poltava and Shirat Ha-Yam of Odessa

The Poltava Committee has expanded its support of emerging Progressive communities in the Former Soviet Union (FSU) to include Odessa in addition to Poltava. Rita Fruman, Director of Programs and Operations of the FSU for the World Union for Progressive Judaism (WUPJ), created a shidduch (a match) between Congregation Beth Am of Poltava and Shirat Ha-Yam of Odessa. After discussion with Rabbi Jeremy Morrison and Rabbi Sergio Bergman, President of the WUPJ, Beth Am will begin this new partnership. Rabbi Julia Gris is the dynamic leader of the Shirat Ha-Yam community in Odessa.

The Poltava Committee is renaming itself to reflect a joint commitment to both Poltava and Odessa. We shall be called the Poltava/Odessa Committee, a collaborative venture under the auspices of Congregation Beth Am, Los Altos Hills and the WUPJ.

As the situation in Ukraine continues to unfold, we are concerned about the military action and the resulting loss of life, as Ukraine’s fragile democracy is threatened. Please visit our Crisis In Ukraine page to learn how Congregation Beth Am is taking action to make a positive difference.

Congregation Beth Am of Poltava
Various political and economic challenges have reduced the membership of Congregation Beth Am of Poltava. Congregation Beth Am of Poltava leadership has been and continues to be strong for this small but powerful community. Recently, they were able to halt construction on Poltava City land of apartment buildings that would have concealed a killing field where an atrocity had taken place. They have since planted trees in honor of the people who perished there and in celebration of Lag b’Omer.

Visit Congregation Beth Am of Poltava on:

Shirat Ha-Yam of Odessa
Rabbi Julia Gris has been the spiritual leader of Shirat Ha-Yam for 6 years. During that time, Rabbi Julia has grown the community by creating year-round family-oriented programs that celebrate our Jewish heritage. There are approximately 200 members of Shirat Ha-Yam with the potential of enlarging community engagement from among the almost 45,000 Jews in Odessa.

Visit Shirat ha-Yam Congregation Odessa on:
Facebook  |  YouTube

Netzer, the WUPJ’s Youth Group, has a very energized program that instills a progressive Jewish lifestyle. The Beth Am Poltava/Odessa Committee looks forward to help build this relationship while continuing to support our friends in Poltava.

Visit Netzer-Odessa on:
Facebook  |  Instagram

The Poltava/Odessa Fund supports our sister congregations in Ukraine: Congregation Beth Am of Poltava and Shirat Ha-Yam of Odessa. Please consider making a gift to this fund to help us carry out our vision.

Sun, June 4 2023 15 Sivan 5783