On Sunday, December 17, the sixth night of Hanukkah, the menorah donated to Verona by Congregation Beth Ahm was lit at Town Hall. The ceremony featured Debbie Dretel Lawrence and Marsha Schreier, the past president and cantor, respectively, of Congregation Beth Ahm, as well as Mayor Kevin Ryan and Deputy Mayor Michael Nochimson.
“On behalf of Congregation Beth Ahm, I am very pleased to donate our menorah to the township of Verona,” said Lawrence. “And as happy as I am do be doing this, it is another bittersweet moment in the history of Beth Ahm. I’m sure all of our congregants would prefer that we were gathering on the front lawn of 56 Grove Avenue. It is indeed a time of transition for our embers. But it is truly with great joy and pride that we pass this on to our town and see it lit in our town center and shared with the community at large. Thank you to Cantor Schreier, who has been a part of our congregation for so many years for joining us tonight. It is my sincere hope that this is a new tradition and we gather here together each year going forward to light this menorah together. May the spirit and memory of Beth Ahm shine on for many years to come.”
The synagogue closed in May after eight decades at the corner of Grove and Personnette.
Photos courtesy Raph Paisner.