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Northern Hills Synagogue


Wednesday, October 17, 2018

The Rabbi is IN!
Introducing Rabbi Noah Ferro

A crowd of seniors got a good laugh as well as things to think about as Rabbi Noah Ferro opened the 2018-2019 HaZak program at Northern Hills Synagogue (NHS) with his talk: "The New Rabbi Is In," on Wednesday afternoon, Oct. 17th.

After introducing himself with humor and entertaining visuals, Rabbi Ferro came up with five words to express his approach to the Rabbinate: Joyful Jewish Meaning Every Day. He then invited participants to engage with each other to come up with a personal definition and/or example for each of these terms. 

"As a rabbi, it is my sacred calling to guide all of our people, young and old, and from all sorts of backgrounds, as they journey through the cycle of the Jewish year," he said when he applied to Northern Hills Synagogue. "Guide them through triumphs and tragedies of human life, and through the sometimes-unfamiliar landscape of Jewish culture and tradition. I believe I should empower them to experience things for themselves – to make their own Jewish choices and find their own Jewish meaning."

Rabbi Ferro was raised in Nashville and is a graduate of Tennessee State University. He earned his rabbinic ordination from Hebrew Union College in May 2017. Since then, he has continued his studies at HUC, pursuing a Ph.D. in rabbinics. While at HUC, he was twice awarded the Slonimsky Prize in Midrash. As a student, Rabbi Ferro served as an educator at Adath Israel and Wise Temple and as a chaplain at Bethesda North Hospital. He has participated in Jewish Foundation fellowships. Last year, he was the part-time rabbi at Temple Beth Israel in Saginaw, Michigan. He has also served as a research assistant and archivist at the American Jewish Archives. 

 "Our HaZak program meets the third Wednesday of every month – except when holidays necessitate changing to the second Wednesday," said HaZak co-chair, Sarah Barnard. "On Nov. 14, we are looking forward to hearing from Cincinnati Zoo docent Sandra Spitz who will speak on what's new at the zoo. The program begins at noon with a delicious lunch and is followed by a speaker or performance."

Bobbi Handwerger, also HaZak co-chair, added: "Northern Hills HaZak programs are open to the public, but reservations are required to assure enough food is prepared for lunch." 

HaZak, which stands for Hokma (wisdom), Zikna (maturity), and Kadima (forward) provides monthly programs for people 55 and older from September through June at Northern Hills Synagogue. It is an accessible facility that strives to make all events inclusive of people with disabilities. For more information or to make reservations, call the office at (513) 931-6038 or email Kim at

Photography by Gayna Bassin.

A delicous lunch buffet of Alfredo Pasta, Salad, and Dessert.

The dessert selection.

Sonia Milrod gets some lemonade.

After lunch, Rabbi Ferro led the singing of Birkat HaMazon, Grace after a Meal.

Hazak Co-Chair Bobbi Handwerger introduced Rabbi Noah Ferro.

Sonia Milrod, standing, made an announcement.

Rabbi Ferro started his slide show presentation.

After the slide show, Rabbi Ferro answered questions from the audience.


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