, Salem, MA

April 26, 2014

North Shore religion news in brief

The Salem News

---- — The Peabody Essex Museum and St. Michael’s Church are sponsoring a symposium, titled “Building a Handsome Church: St. Michael’s Marblehead, 1714,” on Saturday, June 7, from 8:30 a.m. to 6 p.m., at PEM, 161 Essex St., Salem. The symposium features a full day of presentations observing the 300th anniversary of the oldest Episcopal Church in New England still holding worship services in its original building. The $75 registration fee includes all presentations, lunch, tours of St. Michael’s Church, concluding reception and general admission to PEM. Everyone is welcome to attend. Registration and details are available at

The JCC of the North Shore has partnered with New England Yachad, the local chapter of the National Jewish Council for Disabilities, to offer inclusion services to children with different abilities. Yachad is launching a new initiative, Yachad Buddies, at the JCC this spring. Two to three times a week, Yachad will buddy teens from the North Shore Teen Initiative with children participating in JCC classes and programs. There is no charge for the services and all are welcome to participate. Parents and guardians are encouraged to contact Becca Spiewak,, 617-651-2243, to discuss their children’s needs and the Yachad Buddies program. All levels of ability and need can be accommodated.

St. Michael’s Episcopal Church will receive the Marblehead Ministerial Association’s Covenant from Grace Community Church during a special evensong service at 5 p.m. on Sunday, May 4, at St. Michael’s, 26 Pleasant St., Marblehead. People of all faiths are invited to join the congregations of the Ministerial Association to observe the 25th anniversary of the creation of the covenant, which originated in response to a widely publicized incident of vandalism and desecration at Temple Emanu-El and at Marblehead’s Jewish Community Center. Refreshments will be served and everyone is welcome to attend. For more information, contact the Rev. Andrew J. Stoessel at St. Michael’s Church, 781-631-0657, or visit

The Congregational Church of Topsfield will hold a celebratory worship service and a festive outdoor reception to commemorate the installation of the church’s 41st minister, the Rev. Martin J. Riekert. The installation service takes place at 2 p.m. on Sunday, May 11, at the church, located at the intersection of Main and Washington streets at the Topsfield Common. A reception will follow at the Emerson Center, 9 E. Common St. In addition to the congregation and general public, there will be United Church of Christ dignitaries, area ministers, state Rep. Brad Hill and other special guests in attendance. To help plan for the reception, those interested in attending are asked to RSVP by Thursday, May 1, to, or Jan at 978-273-6295.

St. Michael’s Episcopal Church will host the Episcopal Diocese of Massachusetts’ annual Parish Historians Society meeting on Saturday, May 10, from 9:30 a.m. to 3 p.m., in St. Michael’s Parish Hall, 26 Pleasant St., Marblehead. The daylong program will focus on three centuries of change at St. Michael’s, and features presentations on liturgy, architecture, music and conservation of historic documents. Built in 1714, St. Michael’s is the second oldest Episcopal Church building in New England, and this year the church is celebrating its 300th anniversary. The event is open to parish administrators and historians of all faiths, and interested members of the general public. The cost is $20, which includes all programs and lunch. Information and registration forms are available at, or by email at

The Aleph Academy, a new Jewish preschool that focuses on Judaic studies, will open in September and run through June at the Chabad of the North Shore’s headquarters in Swampscott. Activities offered include preschool concepts and readiness skills, creative arts, music, Jewish holiday celebrations and stories, and specialty instruction. The school is co-founded and directed by Rabbi Aliza Friedman and Joie Reimer-Spritz. The academy will host an open house Sunday, May 4, at 10:30 a.m., at 44 Burrill St., Swampscott. Details are available at

The Lappin Foundation has formed the Youth to Israel Alumni Association, which invites all alumni from 1971 to 2013 who participated in any of the teen trips subsidized by Lappin Foundation and by the Jewish Federation of the North Shore, including Y2I, LGI, USY, NFTY, Young Judaea and others. The first alumni event will take place on Sunday, June 1, at 4 p.m., with a free, special screening of the IMAX film “Jerusalem, The Movie.” Alumni are invited to reconnect, reminisce, and re-visit the magic and beauty of Jerusalem. Seating is limited to 300. Attendees will receive a goodie bag of Israeli treats. Alumni can reserve up to two tickets each by contacting Evan Coltin at 978-740-4410 or

The Lappin Foundation is planning to quantify the impact of its Youth to Israel Adventure on Jewish identity. The success of the program interests Jewish communities across the country. The foundation needs to contact at least 75 percent of Y2I alumni from 1971 to 2007. Anyone with information should send names and emails of people they know who participated in Y2I, aka LGI, or ask them to send the information by emailing or by calling 978-740-4410. If they know which year they participated, that would also be helpful. The foundation also needs names and emails of alumni of Israel teen trips who received a subsidy from the Federation from 1971 to 1988 for any teen Israel experience, including USY, NEFTY, Young Judaea and others, since they will be included in the study. Contact Evan Coltin at the number and address given above.

On the second Sunday of each month, members and friends of Maple Street Congregational Church collect food and essential items for the Danvers food pantry. Items most needed are baby wipes, disposable diapers in sizes 3 through 6, canned soups, peanut butter, canned tuna and cereal. The church is at 90 Maple St., Danvers. For more information, call 978-774-4510.