|Dr. Gail Bessler-Twerski and Rabbi Abraham Twerski|
Friday, February 27, 1998
Sexual abuse strikes at the Jewish community, too
By Ronnie Caplane
San Francisco Bulletin - February 27, 1998
Nine years ago, a 19-year-old religious woman came to see clinical social worker Gail Bessler-Twerski. The woman had the traditional shaved head and wig, but her husband reported she wore sheer stockings, listened to secular music and read mainstream magazines. She was about 100 pounds overweight and couldn't get pregnant.
Although she had sexual difficulties in her marriage, she had been meeting men in hotel rooms. The family's rabbi had referred her to Bessler-Twerski.
During treatment, it came out that between the ages of 9 and 16, the woman's father had sexually abused her. There was evidence that the father also had abused her two sisters.
Child molestation in the Jewish community? According to Bessler-Twerski, the typical Jewish reaction is, "This could not happen to us."
But the social worker knows all too well that it can.
A practitioner in Roslyn, N.Y., Bessler-Twerski was in the Bay Area for the ninth annual International Conference on Jewish Medical Ethics, sponsored by the Hebrew Academy. On Monday of last week, she addressed an audience of about 50 on the residual effects of childhood molestation among adults.
"Sexual abuse and incest exist in the general population, even in our community," said Bessler-Twerski, who sees substantial numbers of Jewish clients in her practice.
Unfortunately, she estimated, only one in six cases overall gets reported. And this means that a victim and the family fail to use the best defenses against the problem -- prevention, early detection and treatment. "The child is taught not to talk about it," she said.
Some of the reasons victims and other family members remain silent rather than report the crime or seek treatment, Bessler-Twerski said, are denial, fear, shame, feelings of responsibility and loyalty to the perpetrator. Even when a victim does seek treatment as an adult, the childhood episodes are not always reported.
Using examples from her own practice, Bessler-Twerski described some typical symptoms of hidden abuse, which include eating and sleep disorders, sexual dysfunction, depression, withdrawal, borderline personality disorders or even multiple personalities. She told the largely professional audience to look for a cluster of symptoms when making a diagnosis.
Although boys also are the victims of sexual abuse, Bessler-Twerski -- who serves the traditional Jewish community in her practice -- has only treated female victims.
Comparing the effects of childhood molestation to the post-traumatic stress disorder of Vietnam veterans, Bessler-Twerski said reactions are often delayed and may not emerge until triggered by some event.
Examples include being in a new situation, the death of the perpetrator, pregnancy, birth or having one's own child reach the age when one was abused.
While there is no evidence that abuse is higher in the Jewish community than in the general community, Bessler-Twerski said Jewish families are not immune from the cycle of abuse that passes from generation to generation. She described a religious man who had sex with seven of his grandchildren, both boys and girls. He had been abused as a child and was never treated.
In that family Bessler-Twerski tracked four generations of abuse.
"Offenders need treatment, too," Bessler-Twerski said.
She said the community needs to be educated about child molestation and the importance of getting a victimized child into a safe environment.
Bessler-Twerski's husband, Abraham Twerski, was in the audience. A rabbi, psychiatrist and author, he said the Jewish community is reluctant to acknowledge a problem in its midst. He told of getting a call from a woman who tried to buy a copy of Twerski's most recent book about domestic violence, "The Shame Born in Silence," at her local Jewish book store. The store told her that it refused to carry the book.
Twerski said one reason Jews are afraid to admit problems is out of concern that no one will want to marry into the family.
"Everything takes time," said Twerski, who has been speaking about alcohol and drug abuse in the Jewish community for 20 years.
Although sexual abuse can devastate a family, with treatment, there is hope, Bessler-Twerski said.
Recently the religious woman who had been sexually abused as a child came to see her. The formerly obese woman was bright-eyed, slender, well dressed and happy. She had divorced her first husband, remarried and was expecting her first child.
Tuesday, February 17, 1998
Case of Rabbi Mark A. Golub, LMHC
Rabbi - Woodbridge Assisted Living, Melrose, Massachusetts
Rabbi - Temple Sinai, Newport News, VA
South Viet Nam
Montreal, Quebec, Canada
(1979- 1983) Rabbi - Temple Israel, Akron, OH
Student - Tufts University, Medford, MA
Had his professional counseling license revoked after having sex with a female client, according to a state disciplinary order.
Even though he is no longer licensed, he is still allowed to provide "spiritual" counseling since he is an ordained rabbi. According to both the Reform and Conservative movement you can not "defrock" a rabbi, since ordination is considered the same as degree one receives in college.
Even though he is no longer licensed, he is still allowed to provide "spiritual" counseling since he is an ordained rabbi. According to both the Reform and Conservative movement you can not "defrock" a rabbi, since ordination is considered the same as degree one receives in college.
If you have a photograph of Rabbi Mark A. Golub, please forward it to The Awareness Center.
Rabbi Mark A. Golub:
- 1938 - Rabbi Mark A. Golub born around 1938. Grew up in Newton, MA
- 1961 - Graduated cum laude from Tufts University with a major in French Literature and minors in Psychology and Sociology
- 1967 - Ordained a Rabbi by the Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion in Cincinnati
- 1967-1969 - Chaplain in the United States Army (South Viet Nam)
- Early 1970s - Rabbi - Temple Sinai, Roslyn Heights, Long Island
- Late 1970s - Rabbi - Temple Beth Shalom in a Montreal suburb, Quebec, Canada
- 1979-1983 - Rabbi - Temple Israel, Akron OH
- 1990-1991 - Master's degree in education from the College of William and Mary
- 1990-1998 - Rabbi - Temple Sinai, Newport News, VA
- 1990-1998 - Jewish Chaplain at Langley Air Force Base
- 1996-1997 - Counselor Hampton-Newport News Community Services Board
- 1996-1997 - Adjunct professor at Christopher Newport College
- 2001-2004 - Rabbi - Temple Emmanuel, Wakefield, MA
- 2004-current - Rabbi - Congregation Agudas Achim-Ezrath Israel, Malden, MA
Disclaimer: Inclusion in this website does not constitute a recommendation or endorsement. Individuals must decide for themselves if the resources meet their own personal needs.
Table of Contents:
- Rabbi Mark A. Golub
- Jewish Services (01/05/1990)
- NN Rabbi To Get Degree (03/07/1990)
- Briefs (05/16/1992)
- School/Youth Notes (05/21/1992)
- Religious Briefs (12/15/1995)
- Religion Briefs (07/13/1996)
- NN Rabbi Disciplined On Sex Charge - Counseling Licensed Pulled By State Board (02/17/1998)
- Peninsula Rabbi Loses Counseling LIcense Over Sexual Charges (02/18/1998)
- Rabbi Resigns From NN Syngogue (02/18/1998)
- Lawyer: Golub To Step Down As Rabbi (02/18/1998)
- State Revokes State Counselors' License (02/18/1998)
- Rabbi Leaves Synagogue After Discipline By State (02/19/1998)
- Rabbi loses license over sex charges (02/19/1998)
- Jewish Congregation Surviving Without Leader (03/281998)
- Pastor/Counselors Walk Thin Gray Line/Separating Codes of Conduct Important To Providing Care (03/01/1998)
- Spirited Celebration As Sanctuary Hits 50 (03/27/2003)
- Casting Bread On The Water Nourishes A Congregation Symolic Act Helps In Readiness For Jewish Holy Day (09/23/2003)
- Meet The Rabbi (08/29/2004)
- The United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism - no background check needed (12/31/2004)
- Jewish Whistleblower (01/14/2005)
- Agudas Achim-Ezrath Israel (01/14/2005)
- Important Safety Alert Rabbi Allan Lehmann, Brandeis University's Jewish Chaplains (02/11/2005)
- Rabbi of ill repute recruits for unsanctioned text study (02/15/2005)
- A Rash Of Feminist Hate Speech (05/05/2005)
- The Case for CHA Education (07/01/2005)
Rabbi Mark A. Golub
Our new Rabbi, Mark A. Golub, graduated cum laude from Tufts University in 1961 with a major in French Literature and minors in Psychology and Sociology. He was ordained a Rabbi by the Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion in Cincinnati in 1967, where he earned Bachelor's and Master's degrees in Hebrew Letters. He served as a Jewish Chaplain in South Vietnam, where he received the Bronze Star, the Vietnam Service Medal and the U.S. Commendation Medal for meritorious service in a hostile war zone.
Rabbi Golub has served congregations in New York, Montreal, Ohio, Florida and Virginia. He received a Master's degree in Education and an Education Specialist degree from the College of William and Mary. He has been widely published in various Judaic and lay print media and has appeared on many television and radio programs dealing with sensitive issues in the Jewish and general communities. His special interests include interfaith relations, where he has led and founded many inter-religious organizations and fellowships, and Jewish education and youth, in which he has served as director and advisor to numerous Religious Schools and youth groups over the years.
At Temple Emmanuel, Rabbi Golub continues his career-long devotion to member needs, religious education and congregational development. He invites all those interested in Temple Emmanuel and its egalitarian approach to Conservative Judaism to stop by and meet him and learn about the fine congregation he leads.
Daily Press (Newport News, VA) - January 5, 1990
* TEMPLE SINAI, 11620 Warwick Blvd., Newport News
Tonight: Evening worship service at 8. Rabbi Golub will offer a D'var Torah (sermonic exposition on the Torah portion of the week).
Sunday: Religious School board meeting at 10 a.m. JOTSY program at noon.
Thursday: Temple Sinai board meeting at 8 p.m.
Rabbi Golub will teach "The Jewish Experience" at Christopher Newport College in Newport News during the spring semester.
The class is among the 171 across the United States and Canada underwritten by the Jewish Chautauqua Society.
Golub, who previously served congregations in Canada, Ohio, and Florida, is a graduate of Tufts University in Medford, Mass. He was ordained by Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion in 1967, receiving a master of arts in Hebrew letters. He is pursuing a doctorate in the School of Education at The College of William and Mary.
Caption: Mug (b&w) of Rabbi Mark A. Golub
From Daily Press reports
Daily Press (Newport News, VA) - May 16, 1992
RABBI HONORED. Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion honored five individuals for their achievements at graduation ceremonies Thursday at the College's Brookdale Center in New York City.
Honorees included Rabbi Mark A. Golub, spiritual leader of Temple Sinai of Newport News and adjunct professor at Christopher Newport College. He is the Jewish Chaplain at Langley Air Force Base.
In addition to Temple Sinai, Golub has served as spiritual leader at other congregations. He also served as a chaplain in the United States Army 1967-1969.
He was awarded a Bronze Star medal for meritorious service in a hostile war zone, the Vietnam Service Medal, the United States Service Medal, and the United States Army Combat Medal.
Golub holds leadership positions with a number of Jewish organizations and is active in communal affairs. He is on the Board of Trustees of the Human Rights Commission of Newport News and board member of the United Campus Ministries of Christopher Newport College.
Golub holds bachelor's degrees from Tufts University and a master's degree in education from the College of William and Mary.
He was ordained at Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion in 1967.
Daily Press (Newport News, VA) - May 21, 1992
Rabbi Mark A. Golub, spiritual leader of Temple Sinai, Newport News, and Jewish Chaplain at Langley Air Force Base, was recently awarded an honorary doctor of divinity degree in recognition of 25 years of distinguished service in the rabbinate at graduation ceremonies of Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion's New York School. Rabbi Golub is also adjunct professor at Christopher Newport College.
Prior to his affiliation with Temple Sinai of Newport News, Rabbi Golub was spiritual leader at other congregations and served as a chaplain in the Army from 1967 to 1969. He was awarded a Bronze Star medal for meritorious service in a hostile war zone, the Vietnam Service Medal, the United States Service Medal and the United States Army Combat Medal.
Golub holds leadership positions with a number of Jewish organizations and is active in community affairs. He is on the board of trustees of the Human Rights Commission of Newport News and board member of the United Campus Ministries of Christopher Newport College.
Golub has written numerous articles on interfaith relations and his experiences as a chaplain in Vietnam.
Golub received a bachelor of arts degree from Tufts University, Medford, Mass. He holds an education specialist's degree and a master's degree in education, counseling, from The College of William and Mary. He was ordained in 1967.
Daily Press (Newport News, VA) - March 7, 1992
Rabbi Mark A. Golub, senior rabbi at Temple Sinai in Newport News since 1986, will be awarded a Doctor of Divinity degree, honoris causa, at the Cincinnati campus of Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion, Wednesday.
Alfred Gottschalk, President of the College-Institute, will confer the degree at Founders' Day Exercises. Rabbi Golub will be observing the 25th anniversary of his ordination at the College-Institute.
Golub is secretary of the Mid-Atlantic Association of Reform Rabbis, vice president of the Tidewater Board of Rabbis and a member of both the Virginia Counselors Association and the Virginia Association of Clinical Counselors. Golub represented his congregation, the United Jewish Community of the Virginia Peninsula and the Mid-Atlantic Association of Reform Rabbis when he visited Soviet Jewish Refuseniks in the Soviet Union.
Golub is a trustee of the United Jewish Community of the Virginia Peninsula, the Human Rights Commission of Newport News and the Jewish Community Relations Council. A former president of the Peninsula Clergy Association, Golub has also served as an officer of the Peninsula AIDS Foundation, the National Conference of Christians and Jews and the Jewish Chaplains Association.
Caption: Mug (b&w)
Golub is senior rabbi at Temple Sinai in Newport News.
Compiled by JENNIFER VANHOOREBECK Daily Press
Daily Press (Newport News, VA) - December 15, 1995
NEW OFFICERS ELECTED. The Peninsula Chapter of the National Conference of Christians and Jews has elected new officers for 1995-1996.
Mark A. Golub, rabbi of Temple Sinai in Newport News, has been elected for a one-year term to serve as president. Norma Harvey, a counselor with the Business Assistance Center of Hampton University, and Michael Pleninger, of the Newport Hospitality Group, have been elected to serve as vice presidents. Harriet Storm, a community volunteer and co-chair of the Metrotown Institute, has been chosen to serve as secretary.
NCCJ is a human relations organization dedicated to fighting bias, bigotry and racism in America. For further information regarding NCCJ and its programs, contact Sharon Goldman Levin at (804) 359-2137.
Daily Press (Newport News, VA) - July 13, 1996
NEW OFFICERS. The Peninsula Chapter of the National Conference of Christians and Jews - a human relations organization dedicated to fighting bias, bigotry and racism in America - has elected new officers for 1996-97.
Mark A. Golub, rabbi of Temple Sinai in Newport News, has been elected to serve as president. Norma Harvey, a counselor with the Business Assistance Center of Hampton University, and Michael Pleninger, of the Newport Hospitality Group, have been chosen to serve as vice presidents. Harriet Storm, a community volunteer and co-chairwoman of the Metrotown Institute, has been elected to serve as secretary.
NN Rabbi Disciplined On Sex Charges - Counseling License Pulled By State Board
By Dave Schleck
Daily Press (Newport News, VA) - February 17, 1998
Newport News rabbi Mark A. Golub has lost his professional counseling license for having sex with a woman he was counseling, according to a disciplinary order from the board that regulates mental health counselors in Virginia.
Golub signed the order admitting the sexual relations and other inappropriate conduct, but now denies those findings.
``I am categorically innocent of everything,'' the 60-year-old rabbi said Friday during an interview at his synagogue, Temple Sinai. His lawyer is seeking an appeal.
The disciplinary order, unanimously approved Friday by the state licensing board, says Golub had inappropriate relationships with three of his clients, including having sex with one, offering money and jobs to two and making ``inappropriate'' comments about the physical attractiveness of all three.
Golub individually counseled the clients for different periods between February 1996 and July 1997, when he was employed with the Hampton-Newport News Community Services Board, according to the order. The counseling was unrelated to his position as rabbi.
The consent order came from the Virginia Board of Licensed Professional Counselors, Marriage and Family Therapists and Substance Abuse Professionals. The governor-appointed board develops and enforces rules of conduct for state-licensed counselors.
When called at their homes Friday, several Temple Sinai congregation members said they knew nothing about Golub's license being suspended.
``I'm totally in shock,'' Evelyn Adams-Ledford, president of the congregation, said on Friday. ``He has been a great leader in the synagogue and the community. That's the person I know.''
During another phone interview on Sunday, Ledford said members of the congregation discussed the allegations with Golub over the weekend. She said that the congregation continues to support Golub.
Ledford could not be reached for comment Monday.
Golub has been spiritual leader at Temple Sinai for 11 years. He regularly attends local interfaith functions and has appeared regularly as a guest columnist in the weekly Faith
He is an active member of several community organizations, including the local chapter of the National Conference of Christians and Jews.
The consent order states that Golub broke several state regulations in his counseling of the three clients, who were identified only as Clients A, B, and C:
- He, ``by his own admission, ... engaged in sexual relations'' with Client A, and called her at her home ``to discuss personal issues of his own, and talked to her in a provocative manner.''
- He made comments about the ``physical attractiveness'' of all three clients.
- He gave an undisclosed amount of money to Client A and Client B, and offered a job to Client B at his synagogue doing administrative work.
- He ``failed to maintain client confidentiality'' with Client B by discussing her mental health status with her former husband without her permission.
- He met Client C at a public library, ``where they discussed his offering a job to her.''
After receiving counseling from Golub, Client A became suicidal, abused drugs and experienced ``a renewed sense of depression and feelings of self-blame and worthlessness,'' according to the consent order.
During an interview with an investigator with the Virginia Department of Health Professions in October 1997, Golub said he was have problems with ``boundary issues'' with some of his clients, according to the order.
For the past three years, Golub has received individual counseling for ``issues related to sexual addiction,'' according to the order.
Golub said that he signed the consent order when it was mailed to him earlier this month.
But he said he did so because he thought it would put an end to the stress he has been feeling since the allegations arose last summer.
``I signed that document to get rid of all the pain and the grief of what had happened,'' he said. ``I signed it only because I wanted to put it behind me.''
Golub said that he was already aware of the allegations against him and that it was too painful for him to even read the consent order.
The order states that by signing the document, Golub ``admits the truth of the above Findings of Fact.''
The last sentence of the document, just above the signatures, states that the consent order ``shall be made available for public release, inspection and copying upon request.''
Howard King, a Hampton counselor who serves on the board, said he doesn't understand why Golub would sign a statement if he thought the allegations contained in it were false.
``I would say that any professional person who is in the mental health profession, and knows about these kinds of things, should know better not to sign something without reading it,'' King said.
Golub's lawyer, Robert Lawrence, concedes that Golub made a mistake by signing the order.
``It wasn't a wise move on his part,'' Lawrence said. Golub did not seek Lawrence's advice before signing the order.
Lawrence says that someone associated with the Virginia Board of Licensed Professional Counselors misled Golub into thinking that signing the document would bring closure to the situation.
Golub does not remember that person, Lawrence said.
Golub was especially concerned that drawing out the investigative process would harm his congregation, his family and his clients, Lawrence said.
Golub's wife, Rita Golub, is a public school teacher in York County. Golub and his wife have two sons who are away at college.
Golub's denial came in an interview with the Daily Press in his private office at Temple Sinai after Friday night services. Tears welled in his eyes several times.
He lead a Sabbath service for about 50 of his congregants earlier that night without any mention of the charges against him. He introduced the scripture readings and delivered a sermon about the contributions of Jewish women throughout the centuries.
Golub canceled an interview Monday and referred questions to his lawyer.
Lawrence said he will send a letter to the state licensing board this week asking to withdraw Golub's signature from the consent order and hold a hearing so Golub can defend himself.
It may be too late.
Golub already waived the right to an informal hearing on the matter by signing the consent order.
Lawrence said he wants to look into how Golub's case was investigated by the Department of Health Professions and the Community Services Board.
The director of the Hampton-Newport News Community Services Board could not be reached for comment Monday. Michael J. Kelly, chairman of the Virginia Board of Licensed Professional Counselors, also could not be reached.
Two members of the Virginia Board of Licensed Professional Counselors - Howard King and Eric Scalise, a licensed professional counselor in Williamsburg - said Monday that the consent order was clear and compelling enough to warrant the two-year suspension of Golub's license.
King gave a brief explanation of the investigative process.
When board members receive complaints about a specific counselor, they assign investigators with the Virginia Department of Health Professionals to look into the matter, he said.
``If they determine that the allegation is not founded, then they will drop it,'' King said. ``But if it is believed that there is enough evidence, they will go forward, complete the investigation and submit the information back to the board.''
Disciplinary actions include suspending or revoking a counselor's license. The board consists of 14 people, most of whom are licensed counselors.
The consent order forbids Golub from acting as a mental health provider, and suspends his license for at least two years. Golub would have to submit to a comprehensive psychiatric evaluation before the board would consider reinstating his license, according to the consent order.
THE FINDINGS OF FACT
This excerpt details one of three cases cited in the Findings of Fact section of the state regulatory board's order suspending Rabbi Mark Golub's license to practice professional counseling. Golub signed the order, which includes a statement that he ``admits the truth'' of the Findings of Fact, but he now says he was misled and denies those findings .
During the course of Mr. Golub's employment at Hampton-Newport News Community Services Board, Hampton, Virginia:
a. From approximately October 1996 to December 3, 1996, Mr. Golub provided individual counseling to Client A for issues relating to a history of depression, and sexual and physical abuse. During the course of, and subsequent to, therapy, he acted
unprofessionally and failed to maintain appropriate therapeutic boundaries, in that:
i. He failed to appropriately monitor transference/counter-transference and refer this client to another therapist when he became aware that her feelings towards him were of a sexual nature or when his feelings for her became sexual in nature.
ii. During therapy sessions, he made inappropriate comments to her regarding her physical attractiveness, asked her questions of a personal and sexual nature, and talked to her in a provocative manner.
iii. On divers [several] occasions, he telephoned this client at her home to discuss personal issues of his own and talked to her in a provocative manner.
iv. He entered into a dual relationship with this client in that, by his own admission, on or about December 21, 1996, and February 5, 1997, he engaged in sexual relations with this client.
v. By his own admission, on divers occasions, he gave this client money.
Subsequent to termination of therapy with this client, she became suicidal, experienced acting out with the use of alcohol and a renewed sense of depression and feelings of self-blame and worthlessness.
* Dave Schleck can be reached at 247-7430.
Caption: Mug (color) of Mark A. Golub
Peninsula Rabbi Loses Counseling License Over Sexual Charges
By Associated Press
The Virginian Pilot - Feb 18, 1998
NEWPORT NEWS -- Mark A. Golub, a local rabbi who has worked as a mental health counselor, was stripped of his professional counseling license for having sex with a female client, according to a state disciplinary order.
But Golub denied the findings in the order issued by the state board that regulates mental health counselors, even though he signed it. ``I am categorically innocent of everything,'' he said in an interview with the Newport News Daily Press. Golub's lawyer is seeking to appeal the order, which involves counseling that was unrelated to Golub's position as a rabbi.
The disciplinary order - unanimously approved Friday by the Virginia Board of Licensed Professional Counselors, Marriage and Family Therapists and Substance Abuse Professionals - said Golub had inappropriate relationships with three clients.
The order said Golub had sex with one client, offered money and jobs to two and made inappropriate comments about all three. He saw the women between February 1996 and July 1997 as a counselor with the Hampton-Newport News Community Services Board.
Rabbi Resigns From NN Synagogue
By DAVE SCHLECK Daily Press
Daily Press (Newport News, VA) - February 18, 1998
Rabbi Mark A. Golub resigned as spiritual leader of Temple Sinai in Newport News Tuesday night following the disclosure that he had been disciplined for sexual misconduct involving his work as a professional counselor.
The synagogue's board of directors unanimously voted to accept the resignation, according to Evelyn Adams-Ledford, president of the congregation.
``We're going to go on with our life and search for a new rabbi,'' Ledford said.
An investigation by the Virginia Department of Health Professions concluded that Golub had sex with one woman he was counseling and broke several other state regulations while counseling three clients at the Hampton-Newport News Community Services Board in 1996 and 1997.
The other misconduct included giving money and offering jobs to two clients and making ``inappropriate'' comments about the physical attractiveness of all three, according to a disciplinary order from the board that regulates mental health counselors in Virginia.
The state licensing board unanimously approved the order last week and suspended Golub's counseling license for two years.
Golub signed the order earlier this month admitting to the findings of misconduct, but now denies many of those findings.
The licensing board's disciplinary action was not related to Golub's position as rabbi of the synagogue, where he has served for 11 years. But Golub said that the stigma of the findings in the disciplinary order would make it difficult for him to remain as rabbi, according to his lawyer, Robert Lawrence.
Members of Temple Sinai reacted with disbelief and concern Tuesday. Many had heard nothing about Golub's trouble as a counselor until they read about the licensing board's decision in Tuesday's Daily Press.
Eric Brown, a 26-year-old synagogue member, was debating Tuesday whether he should still ask Golub to preside at his wedding. Brown, whose fiance is not Jewish, says he worries that Golub is the only local rabbi who will conduct interfaith marriages.
``I want to give him the benefit of the doubt,'' Brown said. ``I know deep down, he's a good person - that's my first instinct.''
Bob Cohn, a member of the temple board, said he can't dismiss the fact that Golub has done many good things for the congregation, including helping Cohn's son get his bar mitzvah.
But Cohn stressed the importance of clergy as philosophical leaders of their congregations.
``My concern is, if these allegations are true, I would have to separate that from what he does as a rabbi in the Friday night service,'' said Cohn.
Golub's attorney said he received several calls Tuesday from people concerned about Golub.
Several members of the Jewish community on the Peninsula declined to talk about the controversy, expressing concern about the delicate and sensitive nature of the situation.
Rabbi Norman Golner, spiritual leader of B'nai Israel Congregation in Hampton, said he wanted only to make a brief statement of support for Golub.
``Mark remains a colleague and a close friend of mine,'' Golner said. ``I really feel bad that it was brought out in the public.''
Lawrence, Golub's lawyer, said the rabbi has given up on trying to challenge the licensing board's action, as he said Monday he intended to do.
Lawrence said there is little chance that Golub can withdraw his signature from the consent order or reopen the case before the Virginia Board of Licensed Professional Counselors, Marriage and Family Therapists and Substance Abuse Professionals.
``He still emphatically denies having sex with the client,'' Lawrence said.
Golub has asked that his lawyer answer questions from the news media.
``He's devastated,'' Lawrence said. ``He did ask me, `If you have any pull with anybody, please ask them to leave us alone. We've been hurt enough.'"
Asked about Golub's future, Lawrence said, ``He will proceed to look for another place to work.''
State officials, returning to work after the holiday weekend, were available for the first time Tuesday to answer questions about Golub's case.
Evelyn B. Brown, executive director of the licensing board, said that Golub, by signing the consent order, waived his right to have a hearing before the board.
``As far as we're concerned, the case is closed,'' Brown said.
Lawrence said that someone associated with the state board misled Golub into thinking that signing the document would bring closure to the situation.
Lawrence said he wanted to look into how Golub's case was investigated by the Department of Health Professions.
Brown said she carefully explains to all counselors facing a consent order that the order, if signed, is a matter of public record.
``He may regret signing it, but he did it under his own pen with no influence from the board,'' Brown said.
Brown also explained the procedure involved when someone files a complaint against licensed professional counselors. She had to speak in general terms because she said the state's confidentiality laws prohibit her from talking about any specific investigation.
Full-time investigators with the Virginia Department of Health Professions interview several people involved with the complaint, including the person who made the complaint, the counselor, his employer and other counselors associated with case, Brown said.
Faye Lemon, director of enforcement for the Department of Health Professions, said that each case usually involves one investigator and can range in length from 30 to 90 days.
Cases that don't stand up to inspection are closed, Brown said. If the case proceeds, Brown and a disciplinary committee review the findings before they are presented before the Board of Licensed Professional Counselors.
The local Community Services Board was also investigating Golub, according to its executive director.
According to the disciplinary order, Golub was under contract with the Community Services Board when he had inappropriate relationships with the three clients between February 1996 and July 1997. Golub stopped working for the board when his contract expired at the end of June 1997, according to Chuck Hall, executive director.
Hall said he could speak only in generalities, because Golub's case is a personnel matter and involves the confidential records of mental health patients.
When the Community Services Board receives a complaint about any of its counselors, a staff of investigators will interview everyone involved in the case, Hall said. In addition to the internal investigation, cases can also be referred to Social Services, the Board of Licensed Professional Counselors, and the organization where the counselor received his credentials.
``I can tell you with a great deal of conviction, that our policies were followed in this matter,'' Hall said.
State Revokes Counselor License
The Associated Press
Richmond Times-Dispatch - February 18, 1998
Mark A. Golub, a local rabbi who has worked as a mental health counselor, was stripped of his professional counseling license for having sex with a female client, according to a state disciplinary order.
However, Golub denied the findings in the order issued by the state board that regulates mental health counselors, even though he signed it.
"I am categorically innocent of everything," he said in an interview with the Daily Press. Golub's lawyer is seeking to appeal the order, which involves counseling that was unrelated to Golub's position as a rabbi.
The disciplinary order - unanimously approved Friday by the Virginia Board of Licensed Professional Counselors, Marriage and Family Therapists and Substance Abuse Professionals - said Golub had inappropriate relationships with three clients.
The order said Golub had sex with one client, offered money and jobs to two, and made inappropriate comments about the physical attractiveness of all three. Golub counseled the women for different periods between February 1996 and July 1997 as a counselor with the Hampton-Newport News Community Services Board.
The order also said that for the past three years, Golub has received individual counseling for "issues related to sexual addiction."
Golub, 60, said he signed the order to put an end to the stress he has felt since the allegations arose last summer. He said it was too painful for him to even read the order.
Golub's lawyer, Robert Lawrence, conceded that Golub made a mistake by signing the order. Lawrence said he will send a letter to the board this week asking to withdraw Golub's signature and for a hearing.
Memo: (ljb) shorter version in the City edition, page B-4
Rabbi Leaves Synagogue After Discipline By State
Richmond Times-Dispatch - February 19, 1998
Rabbi Mark A. Golub, disciplined last week for sexual misconduct in his work as a mental health counselor, has resigned as spiritual leader of Temple Sinai.
Golub resigned Tuesday night, and the synagogue's board of directors unanimously voted to accept the resignation, said Evelyn Adams-Ledford, president of the congregation.
An investigation by the Virginia Department of Health Professions concluded that Golub had sex with a woman he was counseling and broke other regulations while counseling three clients at the Hampton-Newport News Community Services Board in 1996 and 1997.
Golub signed a regulatory board order admitting to the misconduct but then denied the allegations in a published interview. Golub's counseling work was unrelated to his position at the synagogue, where he served for 11 years.
The Associated Press
The Washington Times - February 19, 1998
NEWPORT NEWS, Va. (AP) - Mark A. Golub, a local rabbi who has worked as a mental health counselor, was stripped of his professional counseling license for having sexual relations with a female client, according to a Virginia disciplinary order.
However, Mr. Golub denied the findings in the order issued by the state board that regulates mental health counselors, even though he signed it.
"I am categorically innocent of everything," he said in an interview with the Daily Press. Mr. Golub's attorney is seeking to appeal the order, which involves counseling that was unrelated to Mr. Golub's position as a rabbi.
Mr. Golub has been rabbi at Temple Sinai for 11 years.
The disciplinary order - unanimously approved Friday by the Virginia Board of Licensed Professional Counselors, Marriage and Family Therapists and Substance Abuse Professionals - said Mr. Golub had inappropriate relationships with three clients.
The order said Mr. Golub had sexual relations with one client, offered money and jobs to two and made inappropriate comments about the physical attractiveness of all three. Mr. Golub counseled the women for different periods between February 1996 and July 1997 as a counselor with the Hampton-Newport News Community Services Board.
The order also said that for the past three years, Mr. Golub has received individual counseling for "issues related to sexual addiction."
Mr. Golub, 60, said he signed the order to put an end to the stress he has felt since the allegations arose last summer. He said it was too painful for him to even read the order.
"I signed it only because I wanted to put it behind me," he said.
Mr. Golub's attorney, Robert Lawrence, conceded that Mr. Golub made a mistake by signing the order.
Jewish Congregation Surviving Without Leadership
By DAVE SCHLECK Daily Press
Daily Press (Newport News, VA) - March 28, 1998
Members of yet another local Jewish congregation are trying to cope with the recent resignation of their spiritual leader.
Rabbi Yosil Rosenzweig resigned from Congregation Adath Jeshurun earlier this month to care for his wife Kathy, whose fight against cancer has taken a turn for the worse, said Bernice Victor-Smith, a congregation member who is close to the Rosenzweigs.
Rosenzweig is the second Newport News rabbi to leave his congregation in recent weeks.
In an unrelated incident, Rabbi Mark A. Golub resigned from Temple Sinai in February after the Virginia Department of Health Professions concluded that Golub had inappropriate relationships with three of his clients at the Community Services Board, where he was a licensed professional counselor.
Golub had served about 11 years at Temple Sinai, a Reform synagogue on Warwick Blvd. with a membership of about 200 families. Rosenzweig had served 15 months at Adath Jeshurun, an Orthodox synagogue on Nettles Drive with about 130 families.
At both synagogues, congregation members have taken over leadership of Sabbath services and formed search committees to look for their next spiritual leaders, a process that could take several months.
Words of encouragement and offers of support from the community are helping ease some of the sadness at Adath Jeshurun, Smith said.
``We have heard from people from many different faiths who have expressed concern for the rabbi and his wife,'' Smith said. ``His entire family had encompassed this community with love, compassion and spirituality.''
Lee Malkin, a member of Adath Jeshurun for 10 years, said Rabbi Rosenzweig will be sorely missed as a teacher and friend.
``He was a very warm and loving man,'' Malkin said. ``He knew how to talk to people on everyone's level and not make anyone feel left out.''
The resignation of two rabbis is significant in a community with five synagogues and 2,300 Jews, said Rod Margolis, executive director of the United Jewish Community of the Virginia Peninsula.
``We don't have a large contingent of Jewish professionals, especially clergy, to use as resources on the Peninsula,'' said Margolis.
``Rabbis serve as the contact person in religious education and community involvement for their congregations. Not having those individuals to contact may limit what those congregations can do.''
Despite the loss of resources, Margolis says he remains optimistic that the United Jewish Community will not have to drop any of its educational or community programs.
``We'll still offer programming as best we can with the support of the three other rabbis on the Peninsula,'' he said.
Rosenzweig and his wife had been renting an apartment next to the Newport News synagogue, but are now living in the rabbi's parents' home in Ontario, Canada, Smith said.
For the past several months, Rabbi Rosenzweig had been flying in every week from Canada, where his wife was undergoing chemotherapy, to Newport News, where he led services and ministered on the weekends.
But since Kathy Rosenzweig's cancer has now spread through much of her body, her husband decided to resign from the synagogue and spend more time with his wife and family, Smith said.
The couple, who are in their 50s, have two sons and three daughters. Two of the daughters attend a Jewish girls school near Detroit, which is accepting cards and packages to forward to the Rosenzweig family, Smith said.
Expressions of support and encouragement may be sent to the following address: Rabbi Rosenzweig, c/o Baif Yakcov School, 14390 West Ten-Mile Road, Oak Park, Mich., 48237.
Caption: Mug (b&w) of Rabbi Yosil Rosenzweig Resigned earlier this month
Pastor/Counselors Walk Thin Gray Line - Separating Codes Of Conduct Important To Providing Care
By Dave Schleck
Daily Press (Newport News, VA) - March 1, 1998
When church members call on the Rev. Ron Blade for help, he is able and willing to visit them at their homes if they are sick or help them if they are in a financial bind.
That's what pastors do.
But when clients seek Blade's help at the Peninsula Pastoral Counseling Center in Newport News, Blade doesn't give them money or visit them at home.
That's not what counselors do.
``If you give them money, it somehow indebts them to you,'' Blade says about his clients. ``It confuses the relationship.''
Ministers who pull double duty as pastors and professional counselors say it's important to follow the different codes of conduct for each job.
A Newport News rabbi recently had his professional counseling license suspended for crossing the line of appropriate conduct, according to an investigation by the Virginia Department of Health Professions.
It concluded that the rabbi, Mark A. Golub, broke state regulations while counseling three clients at the Hampton-Newport News Community Services Board. The findings of misconduct included having sex with one of the clients and giving money and offering jobs to two clients, according to the investigation.
Golub denies many of the allegations.
Sexual misconduct aside, the idea of giving money or offering jobs to needy people is perfectly acceptable to most ministers. But when ministers are working a second job as professional counselors, as Golub was, the rules change.
Activities that, on the surface, may seem like compassionate care can end up exploiting a vulnerable mental health patient or impairing a counselor's objectivity and professional judgment.
``There are many professionals who wear more than one hat,'' said Howard King, a member of the state board that licenses professional counselors.
``If that is the case, one needs to be sensitive to the hat that they're wearing at the time,'' said King, who is also a licensed professional counselor in Hampton.
Many ministers involved in pastoral care and professional counseling say there is some gray area between the roles of pastor and therapist. In both circumstances, ministers try to help people by listening and lending advice. But there are some clear differences as well.
Blade said when he ministers to people as pastor of Community Presbyterian Church in Hampton, he sees himself as the parent of a family of faith.
He cares for them as an active participant in their lives. He presides at their weddings, baptisms and funerals. He laughs with them at church social functions and visits them when they are down.
But when counseling clients at the Peninsula Pastoral Counseling Center two nights a week, he sees himself as a therapist trying to help clients examine and change their lives.
``I don't socialize with people at the center,'' he said. ``A therapist is much more objective. They are one step removed from your life.''
In a counselor's office, people can take an hour apart from their busy lives and refocus, Blade said.
Another difference between counseling and ministering is the issue of who takes the initiative in the relationship, according to the Rev. Donald Denton, who is pastor of Brett-Reed Memorial Presbyterian Church in West Point and works for the Virginia Institute of Pastoral Care in Richmond, Ashland and Chesterfield.
``In a parish setting, we trust the pastor to discern the needs before they arrive,'' Denton said. ``It's expected that I would be free to visit their home, to call on them or visit them in a hospital.
``As a professional counselor, I have appointments. I don't visit them. I wait for them to come to me.''
Denton said he tries to keep his jobs as therapist and pastor separate. For example, he has strong reservations when clients at the counseling center ask him to preside at their weddings.
Not all pastors are licensed professional counselors.
State law exempts ministers from having to get a license for counseling within the context of a religious congregation. Ministers without counseling licenses are beholden to the rules of conduct of their particular denomination, not the state licensing board. Many religious denominations discourage pastors from counseling church members unless the minister has received the proper training.
The Episcopal Church requires supervision of pastors who counsel people for more than six sessions, according to the Rev. Susan deGavre, rector of St. John's Episcopal Church in West Point.
``Usually, I will see people a couple of times and refer them to a therapist,'' said deGavre.
Most seminaries do not equip ministers with the necessary skills to conduct long-term counseling, says Jean Bozeman, assistant to the bishop of the Virginia Synod of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America.
That's why the Lutheran Church encourages pastors to refer church members who need long-term counseling to professional therapists, Bozeman said.
``It's important to know your limits and know your skills.''
Spirited Celebration As Sanctuary Hits 50
By Kathy McCabe
The Boston Globe -March 27, 2003
On Chestnut Street, just where a hill starts to climb, a spacious white house blends easily into the quiet neighborhood of single- family homes.
But the stucco structure at 120 Chestnut St. is not a home, but a house of worship. This is Temple Emmanuel, Wakefield's only synagogue, which has nourished Jewish faith and learning for half a century. This weekend, the small Conservative congregation will mark a milestone: the 50th anniversary of the dedication of its sanctuary.
A sanctuary, or worship space, is the sacred heart of any house of worship. At Temple Emmanuel, the sanctuary is where the circle of life and faith begins and ends. It is where babies are named, couples marry, and adolescents read from the Torah at a bar mitzvah or bat mitzvah, the ceremony marking their passage from childhood to adulthood.
At services on Friday nights and Saturday mornings, or on holidays like Passover, which starts next month, the sanctuary is where Jews young and old seek God's grace. This weekend, congregants will gather in song and prayer to rededicate the sanctuary, during a weekend of special Shabbat, or Jewish sabbath, services. The celebration falls after the sanctuary's official dedication date of Sept. 17, 1952, but falls in the temple's golden anniversary year.
On Friday, Rabbi Mark A. Golub, the temple's spiritual leader since 2001, will deliver a special sermon during an 8 p.m. Shabbat service. On Saturday, services will be held at 9:30 a.m., and a special Havdalah Service, marking the end of the sabbath, will be held at 7 p.m. on Saturday. A reception will follow. The public is welcome.
"All the religious occasions in our life as Jews take place in the sanctuary," Golub said as he sat in the temple's small library, just off the sanctuary. "It is where our life cycle is [celebrated] and our holidays celebrated. But it is also a place where people can close their eyes and meditate."
Temple Emmanuel's sanctuary was dedicated in the spring of 1952, five years after the congregation formed. Until then, synagogue meetings were held first at the Wakefield YMCA and in a small chapel on Lake Quannapowitt. But with its membership growing, mostly due to the migration of Jews from cities like Chelsea, Malden and Revere, founders decided the temple needed a permanent home, according to a temple history.
In 1951, Temple Emmanuel purchased the former Yuell family estate on Chestnut Street. Over the next year, the manor-like home was converted into a Jewish temple, with classrooms, meeting and social rooms, and a sanctuary. "It was a beautiful home in a great location," said Liz Freeman, the temple historian. "In those days, people didn't drive a lot. But they could walk there from other neighborhoods or from the train. It just had a nice feel to it."
The congregation's effort to make a home for itself in Wakefield drew strong community support. The town's 11 Christian churches, most of them Catholic and Protestant denominations, contributed to the building fund. When the first service was celebrated, First Parish Congregational Church, the Greenwood Union Church and the Wakefield Daily Item, the town's daily newspaper, sent flowers for the pulpit.
Today, as Temple Emmanuel marks a sacred anniversary, Wakefield's Christian community continues to embrace its Jewish neighbor. "We're pleased for them that they're celebrating this," said the Rev. Katharine C. Evans, convenor of the Wakefield Interfaith Clergy Association, which includes most of the town's religious leaders. "The faith community in Wakefield is very strong. It is good for us to have the Jewish perspective. We all try to work together."
The Christian community last fall showed its loyalty to Temple Emmanuel. Avowed racist Matthew Hale, whose World Church of the Creator is anti-Jewish, spoke at the Wakefield library. In response, Wakefield churches organized a counter talk called "Love Lives Here," to promote tolerance and respect for all faiths in town. Yom Kippur, the most sacred holiday, followed a day later. The town's police department offered Temple Emmanuel extra security for the high holy services, Golub recalled.
"We felt the support of Wakefield at that very difficult time," Golub said. "It was almost as if the community was trying to protect us and we very much appreciated that. . . It's important, as the only Jewish temple in town, that we not isolate ourselves. I can go into any church in the community and feel welcome." A community seder, open to the public, has been scheduled for April 17, the second day of Passover, he said.
Today, Temple Emmanuel is home to 90 families. Although most live in Wakefield, Lynnfield, Stoneham, and Reading, members also come from North Reading, Peabody, Saugus, Billerica, and Woburn to attend services. The temple has about 30 children enrolled in religious education and Hebrew School. A Couple's Club recently formed to encourage members to socialize outside of the temple. New programs include a Tot Shabbat, designed to encourage young families to come to synagogue. Money is being raised to add an elevator, to make the three-story building accessible for the elderly and disabled.
The golden anniversary of the sanctuary has been planned to celebrate Temple Emmanuel as a family of faith. "A synagogue has three traditional functions: A house of prayer, a house of study, and a house of assembly," Golub said. "Of those three, the most important is prayer. Because we are a House of Worship, it's important that we reconsecrate the sanctuary."
Congregation members young and old will celebrate. Rosamond Leavitt, 85, is a founding member. Along with her husband, Dr. Joseph Leavitt who is now deceased, the couple helped the congregation find a permanent home. Over the years, both were active in the temple, with Rosamond serving as its first woman president. "I always felt privileged to be part of it," said Leavitt, who now lives in Boston. "It was so important to my husband and I, when we were moving to a community where we were in the distinct minority, that we had a place where our children could know their Jewish heritage."
Ellen Scott, 40, a mother of two young children, similarly has found a home at Temple Emmanuel. Scott and her husband, Gregory, are a mixed family. Gregory was raised Catholic. Today, the couple's children, Shayna 10, and Jordan, 8, are growing up Jewish. "What I love about it [the temple] is that it is so welcoming," said Scott, who joined seven years ago. "Whether you are a mixed marriage or not, whether you can read Hebrew or not, people are made to feel like they belong."
Meet The New Rabbi
By Kathy McCabe
Boston Globe, The (MA) - August 29, 2004
Congregation Agudas Achim-Ezrath Israel today will welcome Rabbi Mark A. Golub as its new spiritual leader. An open house will run from 10 a.m. to noon at the synagogue, located at 245 Bryant St. People can meet Golub to talk about the High Holy Days, which start Sept. 15, and activities for the year ahead. A native of Newton, Golub graduated from Tufts University and Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion. He has served congregations in Canada, New York, Ohio, and Florida. - Kathy McCabe
Agudas Achim - Ezrath Israel
Religious notes - Friday, January 14, 2005
Congregation Agudas Achim-Ezrath Israel, 245 Bryant St. will hold its first Friday Night Service of the new year on Jan. 14 at 8 p.m. Rabbi Mark Golub will speak on the "Legacy of Martin Luther King, Is It Good for the Jews?" An Oneg Shabbat will follow.
There will be an Interactive Service, Saturday, Jan. 15 at 10:45 a.m. specially designed for children and their families. The services will be led by Hebrew School principal,Julie Cohen. Regular services will be at 9:30 a.m. led by Rabbi Mark Golub and Sexton Wayne Freedman. A Kiddush will follow both services. All are welcome.
The Men's Club of the Congregation will hold its monthly meeting on Sunday, Jan. 16 at 10 a.m. A continental breakfast will be served. Wayne Freedman will preside.
Casting Bread On The Water Nourishes A Congregation Symbolic Act Helps IN Readiness For Jewish Holy Day
By Kathy McCabe
Boston Globe, The (MA) - September 23, 2004
Men, women, and children tossed bits of bread into Fellsmere Pond, a serene spot in the West End of Malden. But it wasn't a flock of ducks happily diving for the crumbs that drew the group to the water's edge.
It was the chance for members of Congregation Agudas Achim Ezrath Israel, a Jewish synagogue on Bryant Street, to cleanse their souls by symbolically casting away their sins, during the High Holy Days. A 10-day period of repentance, the holy days started Sept. 15 with Rosh Hashana, the Jewish New Year, and will end at sunset Saturday on Yom Kippur, the holiest day of the year for Jews around the world.
Yom Kippur, called the Day of Atonement, is a time for Jews to ask God to forgive their sins against God. Services at the synagogue start at 6:15 p.m. tomorrow with a Kol Nidre service, the most solemn vigil of the holy days. On Saturday, services start at 9 a.m., break from 2:30 to 4:30 p.m., and continue until nightfall.
At Congregation Agudas Achim Ezrath Israel, established a year ago by the merger of neighboring synagogues Agudas Achim and Ezrath Israel along Bryant Street, the new year brings the promise of prosperity.
"The temple is like an extended family," said Barbara Weiner, a 47-year member and past president of Ezrath Israel. "We're hopefully looking to a very good year of happiness."
In the year ahead, the congregation plans to reach out to families, increase fund-raising, and offer new and different religious services. The congregation now has 130 families and individuals, most of whom live in Malden, but hopes to grow to 150 over the next year.
"What we have now is very positive and dynamic," said Rabbi Mark A. Golub, the congregation's first religious leader. "But I'd like to see us grow so that [the synagogue] can take its rightful place as a leading [worship site] in the community. "
The synagogue is one of four Jewish synagogues and the only Conservative congregation in a city once a center of Jewish faith and culture. The others are Beth Israel Congregation of Malden and Young Israel of Malden, both Orthodox congregations, and Temple Tifereth Israel, a Reform congregation. Malden, a city of about 56,000 people, once was home to thousands of Jews, most of whom built an enclave around old Suffolk Square. But today, the Jewish population in Malden is thought to be fewer than 5,000, locals say.
"When I was growing up, Malden was probably 35 percent Jewish," said Harvey Steller, 57, president of Congregation Agudas Achim Ezrath Israel. "Now, today, there are 5,000 or less. . . . I am a little hopeful, though. There seems to be more Jewish families moving back to Malden, particularly in the West End."
Over the years, Jewish families moved out of urban areas such as Malden to suburbs such as Swampscott and Marblehead. Combined Jewish Philanthropies of Boston will conduct its 10-year census next year. The most recent data, from 1995, showed 7,500 Jews living in Malden, Chelsea, Everett, Medford, Revere, and Winthrop, a 53 percent drop from 1985, when Jews numbered 16,000 in the area.
The shrinking numbers have prompted several area Jewish congregations to merge or share resources. In Malden, the merger between Agudas Achim and Ezrath Israel actually reunited two congregations.
Agudas Achim, formed about 100 years ago, was an Orthodox synagogue on Harvard Street. Prayers and services were offered in Hebrew, and religious observance was strict. About 20 years later, a group of more liberal-minded members broke off. They moved to Bryant Street to form Temple Ezrath Israel, a Conservative congregation with a more liberal bent. Services were in English, and women were welcome on the bimah, to read from the Torah during services.
Over the years, as membership and the Jewish population declined, the two congregations tried to get back together. A main sticking point was the role of women, who in Orthodox congregations are seen as equal, but separate, from men. They do not take an active role in services, for example.
"Because they wouldn't accept women on the bimah, we stopped talking," said Weiner, who represented Ezrath Israel on the merger committee. "We started again when we came to agreement that women are fine. That's when we were finally able to say, `Let's get together.' "
They agreed to form a new Conservative congregation, where men and women are equal and young families welcome. A year ago, in a solemn procession, members carried the Torah from Agudas Achim to Ezrath Israel, the new temple's home. A sign bearing the name Congregation Agudas Achim Ezrath Israel officially went up last week.
Although there were some anxious moments, such as deciding which name would go first on the new congregation, the merger has gone smoothly, members say.
"It's been wonderful," said Hyman Sandler, chairman of the house committee. "Whenever two congregations come together, there is always a concern that some might feel like they are second-class citizens. But in fact, that hasn't been the case here."
The new congregation is on more solid financial footing. Dues are $350 per year for families. Helped by weekly Bingo games and private donations, costs are under control.
"We've got some money in the bank," Steller said. "We're paying our bills. Financially and really all around, we're stronger now than before."
Members from each of the original congregations serve as officers. There are about 15 new Torah scrolls among the religious items. Memorial plaques honoring beloved members of Agudas Achim have been placed inside the sanctuary at Ezrath Israel.
A new building committee aims to improve facilities. Windows and doors will be fixed, and the parking lot renovated. The ritual committee, which plans services, is working to expand programming. Tot Shabbat, services geared to children, will be held more often. And special services will be added. Tashlich, a centuries-old custom where Jews symbolically cast away their sins in the form of bread crumbs on a body of water and resolve to do better, was held for the first time by the newly formed congregation.
"I sense a real desire here in this community," said Golub, a seasoned rabbi who most recently served a congregation in Wakefield. "People want to come together. . . . My goal is to bring them together, and serve them, to the best of my ability."
Some say they feel blessed to be brought together. "I hadn't done this in years," said David Friedman, 60, a former member of Agudas Achim who took part in the Tashlich service. "It's just nice to be together."
"It was fun," said Sam Masters, 10, after tossing bread crumbs to the ducks. "I like it because I know I'm doing something religious, too."
Important Safety Alert Rabbi Allan Lehmann, Brandeis University Chaplain
From: "Allan Lehmann" firstname.lastname@example.org
To: "'Aharon Frazeremail@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org
Subject: Important Safety Alert
Date: Fri, 11 Feb 2005 13:18:06 -0500
We wish to advise you of a serious safety concern that has been brought to our attention.
A rabbi named Marc Golub recently invited a student on the Brandeis campus to participate in an interfaith text study, sponsored by a Conservative movement Keruv (outreach) Project. The student detected something inappropriate about his manner, and reported her concern about his intentions to Rabbi Frazer.
Upon investigation, we determined the following:
1) JewishWhistleBlower.com reports that Rabbi Golub worked as a mental health counselor in Virginia until he lost "his professional counseling license for having sex with a female client, according to a state disciplinary order... The order said Golub had sex with one client, offered money and jobs to two and made inappropriate comments about all three..." Shortly after this disciplinary action, Golub resigned his position as the rabbi of Temple Sinai in Virginia. http://jewishwhistleblower.blogspot.com/2005/02/updated-brandeis-u-alert-sexual.html#comments
2) Officials at the New England Region of the United Synagogue for Conservative Judaism knew nothing of the grant or project that Golub claims to represent.
3) Golub is not affiliated with Brandeis University or Hillel in any way.
We have notified the Department of Public Safety, and they are taking all necessary steps to protect students. Rabbi Golub should not appear on campus in the future; students are urged to report any contact with him to the Department of Public Safety or to one of us.
Students are also reminded not to share personal contact information with him or other strangers.
We appreciate that this issue was brought to our attention, and emphasize that vigilance in reporting all contact with suspicious people on campus helps the campus police keep the community safe.
Rabbi Allan Lehmann - Jewish Chaplain, Rabbinic Director of Hillel
Rabbi Aharon Frazer - Director, Hillel's Jewish Learning Initiative
Rabbi of ill repute recruits for unsanctioned text study
By Jacob Olidort
The Justice: The Independent Student Newspaper of Brandeis University - February 15, 2005
Rabbi Marc Golub, a former mental health counselor and spiritual leader who had sex with a female client while working for a Virginia mental health treatment center from 1996 to 1997, appeared on campus last week and asked students to participate in an interfaith text study not sanctioned by Brandeis Hillel or any regional Jewish organization.
Golub told students the text study was sponsored by a Conservative Jewish outreach project, but officials in the New England region of the United Synagogue for Conservative Judaism say they know nothing of such a project, according to an e-mail sent to Hillel members Friday by Allan Lehmann, the University's Jewish chaplain.
Golub served as the rabbi of Virginia's Temple Sinai for 11 years before resigning a week after being disciplined by the Virginia Department of Health Professions, the Richmond Times-Dispatch reported in 1998.
Director of Public Safety Ed Callahan sent a campus-wide e-mail Monday that asked students to contact the Department of Public Safety if they have seen anything suspicious.
"I'm still waiting to converse with students who have interacted with this person," Callahan said. "So I'm not trying to panic people, but we should initiate caution when we interact with people who aren't directly part of this community."
Golub signed a regulatory board order admitting to misconduct in February 1998, but later denied the acts in a published interview, according to the Times-Dispatch report.
The article also said that a Virginia Department of Health Professions investigation "concluded that Golub had sex with a woman he was counseling and broke other regulations while counseling three clients at the Hampton-Newport News Community Services Board in 1996 and 1997."
Callahan said that an investigation is underway, and that he has banned Golub from entering campus property.
He has written Golub and will send an all-campus e-mail to serve as notification of this action.
"I'm concerned about this being a safe campus for our students and wanting our campus to be a place where people can study and interact safely," Lehmann said.
The Case for CHA Education
The Jewish Hournal - July 1, 2005
My wife and I attended the annual meeting of Cohen Hillel Academy (CHA) in Marblehead, and we were immediately struck by the highly professional manner in which the meeting was conducted by Head of School Dr. Robert Tornberg and President Dr. Howard Abrams.
We were especially moved by the devotion and love of the Academy's students for their teachers, many of whom have been on staff for a -quarter-century. The praise and affection of these students were obvious, with learning relationships blossoming into long-standing friendships that grow with the years.
It is palpably obvious that CHA and similar Jewish institutions of learning throughout the Commonwealth provide the best in Jewish education offered by outstanding educators and administrators who truly love to teach and mentor their students while battling financial challenges every step of the way. A parochial setting enhances these relationships because of smaller teacher-student ratios, which permit closer ties and warmer pedagogic settings than public schools can provide.
The educational excellence of CHA sends a message to every Jewish parent that there are wonderful private institutions of Jewish and secular learning out there that can provide Jewish children with the essential tools not only to grow their Jewish identity and faith but also prepare them for the stiff competition of college placement and academic success. Good Jewish education is absolutely quintessential to provide a strong Jewish future with leaders well-schooled in and inspired by their Jewish learning.
I believe that our community is blessed to have parochial Jewish schools like Cohen Hillel Academy in our midst, and we must do all within our power to keep it and schools like CHA strong and viable for the sake of a future Jewish leadership that is powered by the pride and knowledge of our Jewish heritage.
Rabbi Mark A. Golub
Congregation Agudas Achim
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