Press Releases
  • The Best Means to Combat Hate is Through Education

    Montreal, QC – July 11, 2024 – Unlearn It, a ground-breaking educational resource to support parents and educators in teaching youth how to identify, unlearn, and stand against antisemitism, is now available in Quebec.
     
    At a time when Jew-hatred has – to quote Prime Minister Trudeau – reached ‘terrifying levels,’ a notable increase in antisemitic incidents has occurred where children spend their time: in the classroom, on the playground, at the rink, and on social media. Many of these incidents impact children in grades 6-8. To support their parents and teachers in addressing this concerning trend, the Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs (CIJA), with funding from the Quebec Ministry of Education and Federation CJA, has created a Quebec-centric version of the Unlearn It program first launched in Ontario in 2023.
     
    Unlearn It offers short educational videos and discussion guides to frame constructive, courageous conversations – at home or in the classroom – centred on Canadian grade 6-8 students’ lived experiences with antisemitism and online hate. These tools can be used proactively, or reactively to turn an otherwise ugly incident into a learning opportunity, supporting students and parents in identifying antisemitism, unlearning it, and standing against it, whether it manifests in person or online. Unlearn It is now available for use by any teacher, school, or school board in the province.
     
    Unlearn It is a free, bilingual resource hub for educators, parents, and all who wish to learn more about antisemitism. It is available at unlearnit.ca. For quick access to resources for educators, click here, and for parents, here.
     
    For more information, or to bring it to your classroom, contact [email protected].
     
    QUOTES 

    Eta Yudin, Vice President – Quebec, Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs (CIJA): 
    "At a time when the figures show a frightening rise in hate crimes and incidents – in Montreal, the SPVM noted a 67% increase in hate crimes and a 138% rise in hate incidents – and when we have sounded the alarm many times about the ravages of antisemitism in our society, a new, effective educational tool to combat this scourge is sincerely welcome. 
    With this choice, the Quebec government is following its words with actions. Unlearn It is an addition to the educational arsenal in the fight against this antisemitism, offering all Quebecers a new means of combating these hateful prejudices."  
     
    Yair Szlak, President and CEO, Federation CJA: 
    "Since education is often the best weapon for destroying prejudice and confronting hatred, we're delighted to have been able to adapt the Unlearn It program, which has proved so successful in Ontario, for Quebec students, parents, and teachers. Unlearn It will enable teachers and parents to have constructive conversations about anti-Jewish hatred and the harm it causes online as well as in real life. It will also help combat hatred among fellow students. This program will help protect our community by providing a new educational weapon to combat hateful prejudice.
    We would like to congratulate CIJA, Federation CJA's advocacy agent, and the Quebec government for their work on this issue. Our entire society can only be proud to welcome this innovative program." 
     
    Christopher Skeete, Minister for the Economy and Minister Responsible for the Fight Against Racism:
    “Raising awareness is crucial in countering prejudice and preventing discrimination in its various forms. I would like to express my deep gratitude to the Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs (CIJA), the advocacy agency of Federation CJA. Through their collaboration with our government, they have brought to fruition a valuable and innovative tool for promoting peaceful coexistence, thereby strengthening our shared commitment to fostering a more inclusive and harmonious society."
     
     
    Additional Background 
    About the Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs
    The Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs (CIJA) is the advocacy agent of Jewish Federations of Canada-UIA, representing Jewish Federations across Canada. CIJA is a national, non-partisan, non-profit organization whose mission is to preserve and protect Jewish life in Canada through advocacy and to advance the public policy interests of Canada’s organized Jewish community.   
     
    About Federation CJA
    For more than one hundred years, Federation CJA has been at the heart of the organized Jewish community in Montreal. In partnership with a vast network of agencies and organizations locally, nationally, and internationally, Federation CJA builds and sustains this community by providing leadership and by supporting the delivery of services and programs to care for the vulnerable and those in need, to ensure a bright Jewish future, to represent communal interests, and to positively affect issues in the wider society. 
     
    Media Contact
    Julien Corona 
    Associate Director of communications and media relations 
    Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs 
    819-349-8001 
    [email protected] 
  • Montreal – May 30, 2024 – The Montreal Academic Network Against Antisemitism (MANAA) has been officially launched with the support of Federation CJA, in partnership with the Bronfman Jewish Education Centre (BJEC).
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  • Montreal – May 14, 2024 – As Israel commemorates its 76th Independence Day, the spirit of resilience and determination echoes throughout the Jewish nation, even amidst the ongoing war against Hamas terrorists. Federation CJA and the Montreal Jewish community stand alongside the people of Israel in celebrating this momentous occasion, albeit with a guarded sense of joy as the Jewish nation continues to face war, international challenges and the pain of loss and uncertainty with its hostages.
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  • Montreal – May 3, 2024 – Along with Israel and the Jewish World, Federation CJA is marking the days, from remembrance to celebration, with Yom HaShoah, Yom HaZikaron, and Yom Ha'atzmaut in the coming weeks. These landmark days serve as a time for reflection, commemoration, and celebration of the Jewish People's resilience and strength.
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  • Montreal, QC, May 2, 2024 – Today, a coalition of Jewish students, faculty, and community members gathered at McGill University to affirm their unwavering support for Jewish and non-Jewish students' safety and academic freedom amidst escalating tensions on campus. In response to an anti-Israel and pro-Hamas encampment glorifying violence, the gathering had one goal: to ensure that all students, regardless of their background, can pursue higher education in a secure and inclusive environment.
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  • Montreal, April 19, 2024 - Today, as part of its strategy to support and ensure the safety of the Jewish community and its institutions, Federation CJA and the intervening parties returned to the Quebec Superior Court to request an extension of the injunction requiring that protestors remain at a safe distance away from specified Jewish community buildings. The Court granted the safeguard order for a period of 6 months, requiring protesters to stay 50 metres away from the buildings.
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  • Montreal, April 4, 2024 – Sunday, April 7 marks the six-month mark since the October 7 massacre and abduction of our beloved brothers and sisters in Israel. Bring Them Home Montreal and Federation CJA invite you to join in honouring the hostages and supporting their families in demonstrating our unwavering commitment to their safe return.
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  • Montreal  March 20, 2024 – Federation CJA and its advocacy agent, the Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs (CIJA) have called out La Presse for publishing an antisemitic caricature depicting Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Nentanyahu as a blood-thirsty vampire.
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  • Montreal, Quebec - March 12, 2024 - In recent weeks, the anti-Israel protests that have waged nonstop since Hamas' Oct. 7 massacre have grown increasingly aggressive, specifically targeting synagogues, community centres, and even hospitals, stoking fear in the hearts of Canadian Jews across the country. 
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  • Montreal, Quebec - March 12, 2024 - Today, Jewish students in the Hillel Concordia club room were targeted. Masked cowards banged on the walls, trying to intimidate them through the window by using the fire escape stairs, and chanted “All Zionists are racists, all Zionists are terrorists” outside.
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  • Montreal, Quebec - February 14, 2024 - Federation CJA, in collaboration with the Bronfman Jewish Education Centre, Hillel, and The Jewish Agency for Israel (JAFI), is proud to announce a special speaking tour featuring the Honourable Shirly Pinto, as part of Jewish Disability Awareness Acceptance and Inclusion Month (JDAIM) 2024.
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  • Montreal, QC – January 31, 2024 – Federation CJA is delighted to announce the extraordinary success of its flagship podcast, the Federation CJA 360 Podcast, as it enters its second year of production.
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  • Montreal – January 29, 2024 - Federation CJA will celebrate JDAIM, or Jewish Disability Awareness, Acceptance and Inclusion Month, a unified effort among Jewish organizations worldwide as a month-long celebration to raise awareness and foster acceptance of community members living with disabilities and mental health conditions, and those who love them.
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  • Montreal – January 23, 2024 – Federation CJA is returning to Israel. One mission has just returned, and several others are now being planned.
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  • Montreal – December 1, 2023 – Amidst the challenging context of current events in Israel, Federation CJA looks forward with hope to relaunching its GOTEENISRAEL program for the upcoming summer. This initiative stands as a beacon of positivity, offering Jewish teens substantial financial assistance to choose and immerse themselves in a meaningful and enriching Israel experience.
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  • Montreal – November 15, 2023 – More than 200 Montrealers travelled to Washington, D.C. to join in the March for Israel with hundreds of thousands from across the continent to show our support for Israel, for freeing the hostages and to combat antisemitism. Dozens of students also participated. 
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  • Montreal, QC – November 9, 2023 – The Jewish community in Montreal is demanding justice and swift action after two Jewish schools, including an elementary school, were shot at overnight. Bullet holes at the front entrance of both buildings were discovered this morning at Azrieli Talmud Torah and Yeshiva Gedola. While no one was in either building and the damage was minimal, this discovery represents a worrying escalation in the violence Jewish Canadians have been experiencing.
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  • Montreal, QC – November 9, 2023 – Overnight, two private Jewish schools in Montreal were shot at, including an elementary school. Bullet holes at the front entrance of both buildings were discovered this morning at Azrieli Talmud Torah and Yeshiva Gedola. While no one was in either building and the damage was minimal, this discovery represents a worrying escalation in the violence Jewish Canadians have been experiencing.
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  • Montreal, QC – November 8, 2023 – Today, a group of Concordia University Jewish students raising awareness about the 242 hostages held by Hamas terrorists in Gaza were confronted by an angry crowd that verbally and physically accosted them.  
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  • Montreal – November 2, 2023 – Today, from noon to 7:00pm, an empty Shabbat dinner table will be installed in front of Federation CJA offices at 1 Cummings Square (5151 Cote Sainte-Catherine Road), reminding passers-by that the captives being held in Gaza will not be with their families for yet another Shabbat, the weekly Jewish day of rest. 
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  • Montreal – October 29, 2023 – Today, Federation CJA alongside more than 85 Montreal community organizations, hosted the Bring Them Home rally calling for the release of more than 220 hostages abducted by Hamas terrorists, including 30+ children, the elderly, Holocaust Survivors and the infirm. 
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  • Montreal – September 22, 2023 – Federation CJA held its 106th Annual General Meeting last night, celebrating the past year's achievements along with its outstanding volunteer leaders.
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  • Montreal – August 30, 2023 – Last night, Federation CJA launched its boldest and largest campaign in its 106-year history. At a sold-out concert of 3,000 featuring Israeli pop star Omer Adam at Place des Arts, the 2023 Combined Jewish Appeal kicked off the second year of its $130 Million campaign. 
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  • Montreal – July 26, 2023 – Federation CJA is welcoming Daniella Elmaliach who will begin her role as Shlicha, or special emissary, and Israel Engagement director for the Jewish community of Montreal in August 2023.
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  • Montreal – July 10, 2023 – Federation CJA, together with JEM Workshop, Cummings Centre, Zera Café and Agence Ometz, are pleased to announce the opening of Café Soleil.
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  • Montreal – April 10, 2023 – Along with Israel and the Jewish World, Federation CJA is marking the days, from remembrance to celebration, with Yom HaShoah, Yom HaZikaron, and Yom Ha'atzmaut in the coming weeks. These landmark days serve as a time for reflection, commemoration, and celebration of the Jewish People's resilience and strength.
     (more)
  • Montreal – March 13, 2023 – Federation CJA Russian Speaking Jews (RSJ) Philanthropy division recently celebrated and recognized its outstanding volunteers. More than 80 volunteers gathered to mark their achievements and present the award for the RSJ Philanthropy volunteer of the year.
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  • December 24, 2021

    With the latest COVID-19 variant moving at a rapid pace, members of the Montreal Jewish Community are stepping forward to help those facing significant challenges.
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  • Montreal – February 13, 2023 – Federation CJA is excited to announce the launch a new podcast series featuring its President and CEO, Yair Szlak. The Federation CJA 360 Podcast is being dubbed as The Pulse of Montreal’s Jewish Community. The monthly show will focus on contemporary and newsworthy priority issues as they relate to the Montreal and Quebec Jewish communities. As well, the show will deal with Canadian, International and Israeli issues and perspectives as they relate to Montreal.
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  • Montreal – February 6, 2023 - For the fifth year in a row, Federation CJA is excited to participate in JDAIM and invites you to join in this year’s celebrations too! Montreal’s JDAIM 2023 Community Calendar of Events showcases many exciting and engaging events organized by local impact partners within the community.
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  • Montreal, January 25, 2023: ProMontreal Entrepreneurs (PME) is pleased to announce its funding of four new exciting start-ups via the PME fund. As well, aspiring entrepreneurs can now access start-up capital of up to $75,000. Federation CJA is grateful to its funding partner, Hebrew Free Loan, for its generous contribution of $25,000.
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  • March 22, 2021

    Today, Montreal Mayor Valérie Plante once again failed to put her words into action and follow through on her commitment to take concrete action in the fight against antisemitism by adopting the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA) definition of antisemitism.
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  • Montreal – January 18, 2023 – Federation CJA is pleased to announce the first Jewish Disability Acceptance & Inclusion Month (JDAIM) Micro-Grant program. This program is part of the overall JDAIM initiative of which Federation CJA will take the lead as a key convener.
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  • Montreal – January 16, 2023 – Federation CJA is launching the second cycle of a new grant funding called Working Together: Community Impact. The grant is an investment encouraging organizations to launch short-term collaborative initiatives lasting up to 12 months that can effectively strengthen partnerships, identify new solutions, maximize resources, and reinforce strategic learning in how organizations are working to address community issues in areas that align with Federation CJA’s three impact priority areas:
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  • Montreal – December 20, 2022 – Federation CJA Women’s Philanthropy TOV Chanukah Gift Drive took place last week. Hundreds of gifts were collected and giftwrapped and over $3,000 was raised. More than 50 volunteers joined together to get into the Chanukah spirit by packing baskets filled with tons of items provided by generous donors, wrapping gifts, and delivering to members of the Montreal Jewish Community.
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  • Montreal – December 14, 2022 – Federation CJA recently held a Real Estate networking event in conjunction with Kehilla Montréal Residential Programs bringing together over 100 people in real estate and other sectors at the Gelber Conference Centre.
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  • Montreal, QC – December 13, 2022 – Yair Szlak, Federation CJA President and CEO expressed relief that there were no injuries and that the Montreal Police have determined that this incident was not a hate-motivated crime.
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  • Montreal – December 2, 2022 Read more...
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  • Montreal – November 23, 2022 - Federation CJA President & CEO Yair Szlak is condemning today’s terror attack on a Jerusalem bus that killed a Canadian student and injured many others.
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  • Montreal – November 14, 2022 – For the 15th year in a row, Federation CJA organized the Yom Yocheved Clothing Giveaway. More than 1000 people were the recipients of items including coats, boots, shoes, and other winter clothing.
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  • Montreal – November 8, 2022 - Leaders from Federation CJA joined over 1,200 Jewish communal leaders in Chicago at Jewish Federations of North America’s three-day General Assembly, where they set the shared Jewish communal agenda for the year ahead and heard from a diverse array of voices on critical issues facing the North American Jewish community. First held 90 years ago, The General Assembly is the most consequential gathering of the leadership of the North American Jewish community and brings together Jewish leaders of diverse backgrounds in a space that fosters productive dialogue and debate.
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  • Montreal – November 2, 2022 – Federation CJA will honour the Montreal Jewish community’s soldiers, in person, at this year’s Remembrance Day Ceremony.
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  • Montreal – November 1, 2022 – Federation CJA is proud to present GOTEENISRAEL: Two incredible opportunities for Jewish teens in the Montreal area offering substantial financial support towards an Israel experience of their choice.
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  • Montreal – September 23, 2022 – Federation CJA held its 105th Annual General Meeting last night and celebrated the achievements of the past year along with its outstanding volunteer leaders.
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  • Montreal – Federation CJA, the Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs (CIJA), and Canada’s Jewish Federations were deeply saddened to hear the news that Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II has passed away.
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  • CJA ’22 Main Event featuring world-renowned comedian Modi
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  • CJA ’22 volunteer canvassers to make thousands of calls.
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  • Montreal, July 20, 2022: ProMontreal Entrepreneurs (PME) is pleased to announce its funding of two new exciting start-ups via the PME fund.
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  • Montreal – July 15, 2022 – Today, Roger Waters, former member of iconic rock band Pink Floyd, participated in an event endorsed by Samidoun, an organization with documented ties to the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP), an organization designated by Canada as a terrorist group.
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  • Montreal – July 14, 2022 – Federation CJA is pleased that the Montreal Police Department has made an arrest following a violent incident that took place after the Israel Day Rally, last May.
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  • Montreal – May 5, 2022 – Federation CJA and the Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs (CIJA) - Quebec are expressing strong condemnation following an act of violence that was perpetrated downtown against a member of the Jewish community following a peaceful celebration of thousands of supporters of the State of Israel.
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  • Montreal – May 3, 2022 – Federation CJA commended the City of Montreal for declaring the month of May as Jewish Heritage Month.
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  • May 2, 2022 - Yom Hazikaron Commemoration – Israel's National Remembrance Day for Fallen Soldiers and Victims of Terror
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  • Montreal – April 27, 2022 – Yom Hashoah, "Zikaron BaSalon" – Holocaust Remembrance Commemoration for Federation CJA and agency staff.
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  • Montreal – April 20, 2022 – Federation CJA is pleased to announce that ProMontreal Entrepreneurs (PME) has moved from Agence Ometz to Federation CJA.
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  • Montreal – April 4, 2022 – Federation CJA has dispatched a team of seven Russian-speaking volunteers to Warsaw, Poland to assist the Jewish Agency for Israel (JAFI) and Joint Distribution Committee (JDC) with processing refugees. The Russian-speaking Jewish Philanthropy (RSJ) group will be headed by its president, Anna Digerman, and professional director, Oxana Pasternak.
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  • Montreal – March 25, 2022 – Hillel GenMTL, Federation CJA and its advocacy arm the Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs (CIJA) commend the administration of McGill University for taking concrete steps to address the toxic and polarizing Student Society of McGill University (SSMU) referendum. SSMU leadership ignored an interim order of the Judicial Board to suspend the referendum due to serious concerns regarding the inclusion of the “Palestine Solidarity Policy” - best described as antisemitic, polarizing and undemocratic.
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  • Montreal – March 17, 2022 – Federation CJA has issued a call to the Montreal Jewish Community to donate vital goods to be delivered to refugees crossing out of Ukraine.
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  • Montreal – March 9, 2022 – Federation CJA has launched an urgent appeal in conjunction with Jewish Federations of North America and its global network. The goal is to amass twenty million dollars.
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  • February 11, 2022

    Federation CJA is pleased to welcome Zera Café into its facilities at 1 Cummings Square on Cote Sainte-Catherine Road. Zera Café is a not-for-profit, social enterprise catering business that employs people with developmental disabilities.
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  • January 31, 2022

    or the fourth year in a row, Federation CJA has taken the lead as a key convener to unite the Montreal Jewish community under the umbrella of JDAIM (Jewish Disability Awareness, Acceptance and Inclusion Month).
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    Shabbat Candlelight
    July 19  8:18PM
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