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For teens today, life is like a pressure cooker — demands at home, school, from peers and constant bombardment of messages from social media. Kansas City and the country as a whole is facing a mental health crisis with our teens. For some, those pressures tackle teens self-worth, lead to depression and in a growing number of situations, lead to suicide.

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Rachael Klein Miller found her purpose in life when she realized she wanted to become a rabbi.

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Cantor Sharon Kohn

Cantor Sharon Kohn, who for the past three years has served as chesed/pastoral care director, will leave B’nai Jehudah when her contract expires June 30. She came to B’nai Jehudah 14 years ago in July of 2003 as the Reform congregation’s cantor. There is no longer funding in the B’nai Jehudah budget for the chesed position, so it is being eliminated.

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Taylor Poslosky

“My life has revolved around Judaism since I was little,” said Taylor Poslosky, who is studying to be a rabbi at Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion. “The synagogue was my first home; I spent more time there than anywhere else.”

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Lori Dollman helps her mother, survivor Regina Dollman, light the first candle representing the 6 million Jews that perished in the Holocaust during the Candlelighting Ceremony Sunday at the communitywide Yom HaShoah commemoration.Photo courtesy of Jill Maidhof

I get invited to a lot of events. In an effort to keep some sanity in my life, I try to rotate the events I attend. If I don’t make it one year, I try very hard to make it the next. One event I never miss is the Yom HaShoah Community Holocaust Commemoration. Now in its third year, I can say the same is now true for SevenDays.

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Harry Friedman

BERKLEY FAMILY TO BE HONORED — On Wednesday, May 3, the AdHoc Group Against Crime will celebrate the 40th anniversary of its founding by former Mayor Pro-Tem and advocate for the underserved, Alvin Brooks, at the Eighth Annual Community Guardian Awards.

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Eitan Silver is 7 years old and thoroughly enjoyed eating his falafel with parents Yosef and Daniella Silver at the May 2 Yom HaAtzmaut/Israel Independence Day celebration, which took place at the Jewish Community Campus. The event, brought to Kansas City by the Israel Emissary/Jewish Federation, Jewish Community Center, Teva Pharmaceuticals and a host of other Jewish organizations, included food and a variety of family activities including an Israel photo booth, face painting, music, dancing and Israel-themed crafts.

GO FUND ME CHILDREN’S ALBUM — Our friend Matt Rissien, who now lives and works in the Chicago area, is hoping to write and record a Jewish children’s album this summer!

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The KU Jewish Legal Society held its first event in March. Those in attendance included (first row, from left) Daniel A. Singer, attorney at Shamberg, Johnson & Bergman; Jacob Elberg, co-founder/president; and Joseph Uhlman, co-founder/treasurer. Back row: Jacob Nemeroff, co-founder/vice president; Rabbi Zalman Teichtel, director, KU Chabad and guest speaker; Jordan Yochim, executive director Kansas Bar Association.

Jewish life continues to grow in Lawrence and now the University of Kansas School of Law has a club with a Jewish heart.

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Rabbi Javier Cattapan will be officially installed as the rabbi of Congregation Beth Torah on Saturday, April 29.Photo by Scott Fishman

Javier Cattapan took an unusual path to the rabbinate. A native of Argentina, he was raised Catholic and was active in church serving as an altar boy. But when he was 16 years old and began writing a paper on religion, he concluded he didn’t necessarily believe all the Catholic theology.

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