The Coastal Star

Finding Faith: Noted author to highlight Jewish Women’s Foundation Granting Wishes event

By Janis Fontaine

    The Jewish Women’s Foundation of South Palm Beach County will host its 2017 Granting Wishes award announcements and reception at 5:30 p.m. March 15, at Boca Rio Golf Club, 22041 Boca Rio Road in Boca Raton.
    The guest speaker is author Ellen Brazer, the recipient of Hadassah’s Myrtle Wreath Award, an honor also bestowed on the late Maya Angelou. Brazer’s new book, The Wondering Jew, My Journey into Judaism, tells the personal stories that helped Brazer understand her faith, its complicated, mysterious nature and its dichotomies — reward and punishment, good and evil, love and hate.
    Brazer’s first book, Hearts of Fire, released in 2000, is a saga set in Germany and Poland that follows two families, one Jewish and one Gentile, from pre-war Paris to post-war Russia. Her 2009 book, Clouds Across the Sun, was named one of’s best Holocaust-related novels. And So It Was Written, published in 2012, is praised as a well-researched foray into historical fiction set around 132 CE.
    In the past three years, Brazer has spoken to more than 6,000 people at venues across the country. She was recently invited to join the Jewish National Fund Speakers Bureau, and she especially enjoys speaking about angels and reincarnation.
    The JWF’s 2017 grants fund programs that create social change, especially initiatives that help women and children in the areas of education, health, abuse prevention and economic security. JWF trustees who contribute a minimum of $2,000 per year for five years determine the programs to fund. Over the last 13 years, the JWF has awarded more than $1.2 million to local organizations.
    Guests will also enjoy an array of hors d’oeuvres, desserts and wine. Tickets are $85. For information or tickets, visit, call 852-3188 or email

For your health
    Trinity Lutheran Church & School is hosting a Community Health Fair from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. March 11 at the school, 400 N. Swinton Ave., Delray Beach. The theme — “Just for The Health of It” — covers all aspects of healthy living. Exhibitors, live demonstrations in fitness, healthy eating, dancing and yoga, as well as children’s activities are planned. For more information or to exhibit, call 276-8458.

Make a visual prayer
    Unity Church of Delray hosts Treasure Mapping Day from 1:30 to 4:30 p.m. March 11 in Mary Kupferle Fellowship Hall, 100 NW 22nd St., Delray Beach. Charlene Wilkinson will guide participants in making a treasure map — a collage of pictures and words — to help find their treasure.
    Sometimes called a vision board or a visual prayer, this collage is a powerful tool to help focus both your conscious and subconscious mind on a particular goal. Bring magazines, pictures and words that are meaningful to you and represent your primary goal for the coming year, and include a picture of yourself.
    Scissors, poster board and glue will be provided. A love offering will be taken.
    For more information, visit

Pig roast fundraiser
    Cason United Methodist Church will host its first Pig Roast from 1 to 8 p.m. March 12 at the church, 342 N. Swinton Ave., Delray Beach.  
    The event is a fundraiser supporting Next Step’s upcoming mission trip to Sumpango, about an hour from Guatemala City, where volunteers are working with residents to expand a church building. They also serve at a local HIV orphanage and make home visits to pray and share their faith with Guatemalan families.
    The Pig Roast features pulled pork, cornbread, salad and dessert, plus vendors, games and music. Tickets are $15 for adults, $8 for children, or go all out with the $25 all-you-can-eat option.
    For more information, call 276-5302 or visit

Join the discussion
    Dr. Nasir Ahmad, the imam at the Masjid Al-Ansar in Miami, joins Canon Tom O’Brien, from the Episcopal Church of Bethesda-by-the-Sea, and Rabbi Howard Shapiro, rabbi emeritus of Temple Israel, from 5:30 to 7 p.m. March 14 for Interfaith Dialogues. This panel discussion brings these experts of different faiths together for a discussion of timely, important topics. This is Ahmad’s first year on the panel. He also serves as the assistant regional imam for the southeast United States.  
    Hosted by the Palm Beach Fellowship of Christians and Jews, the topic this month is “The Meaning of Israel to Jews, Christians and Muslims.” The event takes place at Bethesda-by-the-Sea, 141 S. County Road, Palm Beach. Admission is free for fellowship members and $10 for nonmembers. For information, call 833-6150 or visit

A Joe-Paddy party
    The annual Joe-Paddy Festival celebrating the feasts of St. Joseph and St. Patrick will take place from 6 to 9 p.m. March 16, on the campus of St. Vincent de Paul Regional Seminary, 10701 S. Military Trail, Boynton Beach.
    Enjoy traditional Italian and Irish food and drink under the big-top tent with live entertainment by Echoes of Erin and Msgr. Stephen Bosso and St. Vincent’s seminarians. A silent auction and a separate live auction are planned.
    Tickets are $50 and are available online at For more information, call 732-4424 or email

    The Palm Beach Friends Meetinghouse, 823 North A St., Lake Worth, hosts “A Course in Miracles” study group each Wednesday at noon. The reading of a passage from the workbook opens a discussion. This free event is sponsored by Lisa Stewart and John Vincent Palozzi. For information, call 585-8060 or visit
    The Interfaith Cafe is a monthly gathering of people from diverse faiths to discuss topics of common interest. In February, Cantor Stephanie Shore led a discussion of how music moves our spirit and the importance of music in different forms of worship. The group meets from 7 to 9 p.m. the third Thursday of the month at the South County Civic Center, 16700 Jog Road, Delray Beach. Light refreshments are served. The meeting is free, but donations are appreciated. For information, email

Looking ahead
    Mark your calendar for CROS Ministries’ Raise a Glass to End Hunger from 6 to 9 p.m. April 19, at Old School Square’s Fieldhouse, 51 N. Swinton Ave., Delray Beach. The evening will feature beer and wine tastings, food pairings, raffles and a live auction. Supporters include DaDa, Caffe Luna Rosa, Lemongrass, Scuola Vecchia Pizza, Route 128, Due-South Breweries. Info:

    Janis Fontaine writes about people of faith, their congregations, causes and community events. Contact her at

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