1950-52 - Ron Bar Mitzvah, Temple Beth El, Breed Street Lynn, MA

1961- Joan and Ron marry in Temple Emanuel, Marblehead, MA

1964 - Join Temple in Albuquerque, New Mexico

1965 - Lesley Page Fox born in Bernalillo County, New Mexico

1967 -Move back to Massachusetts and join Temple Beth El and become members of its Social Action Committee. Found resistance to gathering signatures to oppose the Vietnam war.

1968 - Steven Fox born in Lynn, MA

1971 - Young Leadership of the Jewish Federation of the North Shore meeting to discuss education for children

1971- 1986 - We heard Rabbi Arthur Green speak about Havurah (small family groups pursuing Judaic values outside of temples) in 1971 and was referred to Rabbi Everett Gendler. Along with his family we formed the Alternative Religious Community of Marblehead composed of seven Jewish couples, most from the suburban middle class community of Marblehead, Mass. Highly educated, their occupations included lawyers, bankers, Rabbi, teachers, psychiatrist, economist, psychiatric nurse, writer, social worker librarian, artist and community organizer. As political activists, many shared common involvement in campaigns, demonstrations, the women’s movement (5 women worked) and a variety of community affairs. Particularly significant, at the beginning, was the fact that six of the seven couples had children between the ages of  3 to 6.

For 15 unique and wonderful years we took from Judaism and other sources words of caring, compassion, equality, fairness and social justice and created holiday celebrations that were consistent with these teachings including sunrise services at Plum Island in Newburyport, MA, for Rosh Hashanah; Passover services and a movie of the story of Passover made at the Audubon Reserve on Marblehead Neck; Chanukah and Purim celebrations; weekend retreats; and eventually, two Bar/t Mitzvah celebrations.



1972  - We resigned from Temple Beth El.

1972-1975 - Ron - Board of Directors – North Shore Jewish Community Center and Public Affairs Committee Chair

1978 - Alternative Religious Community - First Joint Bar/t Mitzvah - Lesley Fox and three others. The service included the following -  “A loving parent does not show genuine love by telling a child, ‘Do whatever you want.’ That would not indicate love, but lack of concern and abdication of responsibility. ..  The Jew understood from the beginning that Judaism was a religion of love because it did not leave him or her to find the way through life alone and unaided. It offered advice, insight and experience. It was out of God’s love and concern for Israel that S/He gave them the Torah, so that instead of stumbling blindly, they might be aided by its principles, take heed of its warning and draw closer to God.

1981 - Alternative Religious Community – Second Joint Bar Mitzvah – including Steven Fox - May 30, 1981 – “May your way be the Way of the Torah – one filled with love of life, respect for all Nature, awareness of the potential in all individuals, desire to create sharing communities and active concern for social justice and human equality.”

 1982 - Design and promote a debate in Marblehead entitled “Israel in Lebanon – Self-Defense or Invasion? Is the Road to Beirut the Path to Peace”

1982-1986 - Joan – Board of Directors and VP, North Shore JCC and  Chair of Long Range Planning Committee

1984-1989 - Ron - Harvard Law School Public Interest Law Career Advisor – places on office wall lithograph by Mordechai Rosenstein – “Tzedek, tzedek, tirdof” ( “Justice, Justice Shalt thou pursue”) followed in Deutoronomy XVI 20 by “That you may live in the land”.


1990-present - Ron - Tikkun Study Group – originally formed as a safe haven for reasoned discussion about the conflict in Israel/Palestine, the assignment of articles from Tikkun Magazine has led to conversations about a wide range of topics from education to healthcare to anti-Semitism to US presidential politics as well as the middle east.  Overall, however, the tolerance of different views has justified our reason for being.  

1993-1997 - Ron - Jewish Federation of the North Shore - Co-Chair, Community Relations Advisory Council – Surveyed members of the Jewish community about their social concerns, finding that a major issue was their isolation and alienation from the community. Co-designed and ran a program aimed at integrating one of the largest alienated groups – singles (including those divorced and widowed) – into Jewish institutions “We have so many important issues within our own community that we are not dealing with – problems with family breakdown, alienation, economy, healthcare problems. I see a problem with disenfranchised Jews who don’t feel as though they belong in a  Jewish community.” The mission statement of the council obligated it to provide an opportunity for those in the community to be involved in efforts “to impact issues of social concern’ in order to reinforce Jewish identity as positive and meaningful” and to “promote social justice, mutual respect and understanding” -  Later became  Co-Chair of a committee  to draft a Mission Statement for the Jewish Federation of the North Shore.

2001- Joined Temple Shalom in Salem, MA, and served on the Social Action Committee which presented programs that year on the environment, the housing environment and the crisis in the workplace. The theme for the series was “Judaism’s Relevance to Our Personal and Public Lives”

2002-present - New England Tikkun Community - meets monthly – studying issues, meeting with Congresspersons and presenting speakers.

2003 - Ron - At the June, 2003, national Tikkun Teach-In in DC, participated in a mediation/advocacy session on the issue of the illegality of the settlements in the West Bank

2002 - Resigned from Temple Shalom

2002 - present - In October, 2002, after hearing Devorah Brous, the Director of Bustan L’Shalom talk about her work with disadvantaged groups in Israel/Palestine, Joan proposed, and the New England Tikkun community agreed, to establish a sister community relationship with Wadi Na’am, an unrecognized village in the Negev with 4500 Bedouin Israeli citizens. We raised funds for the construction of a medical clinic.




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