Holiday Card Contest


The High Holidays are here and we are once again sending out greetings to family and friends, wishing health and happiness. Holiday cards have been a best seller at our annual conferences and on our website. Unfortunately, we have not had them in stock for some time. However, with all the talented artists in our organization, we are sure that we could create some new cards. CSJO would like to have a contest, open to all members, to design cards for next year and beyond. Hopefully, this year’s holidays are filled with inspiration.

Below is a list of groupings and we are asking each affiliate to work with their members to solicit designs for each of the listed categories. Please do not submit more than 3 designs per grouping. We hope associate members will also take part in the contest. The winning designs will be selected by the Executive Committee of the Board of Directors of CSJO and, yes, there will be prizes.

The winners, if below age 13, will receive a gift card, and if above age 13, will receive a discount on registration for our annual CSJO conference.

Due to the nature of our groups, the categories are broken into several groups and are as follows:

  • Group 1: Kindergarten through Second Grade (ages 5-8)
  • Group 2: Third Grade through Fifth Grade (ages 8-11)
  • Group 3: Sixth Grade through Eighth Grade (ages 11-14)
  • Group 4: Ninth Grade through Twelfth Grade (ages 14-18)
  • Group 5: All those above Twelfth Grade (youth and adults)

Please have your members submit a holiday card that represents what Rosh Hashana means to them on a card 4 1⁄4 in. X 5 1⁄2 in. The card should include a design on the front, some sort of wording inside the card, and the signature of the artist on the back including the age and the affiliate of the artist. If the submission is from an associate member, then please include the state of residence of the artist.

We have extended the deadline, so please have all submissions sent, no later than December 1st, 2015 to:

CSJO 320 Claymore Blvd. Cleveland, OH 44143

We look forward to seeing all of the submissions we will receive.

- Madi Burns, Youth Representative to the Executive Committee of the CSJO Board

Nous Sommes Tous Français


CSJO has a "sister" organization in France called "Liberté du Judaïsme." They, too, are a secular Jewish organization which sends their newsletters (in French) to us to keep us informed as to their actions and positions on issues. Sadly one of their members lost a family member in this past week's terrorist attack in Paris. Condolences were sent along with our support.

Inappropriate Words


By Joan Kurtz At our recent Executive Committee meeting, I made a remark (can’t remember exactly what it was) but I used the word “marranos.” I was quickly corrected and told that “marranos” literally means “pig” and is used as an insult when referring to Jews of Spanish descent who were forcibly converted during the Inquisition. The preferred term is “conversos.” Though I knew both terms, I did not know the difference.

Another term I recently learned about is “gyped,” as in when one feels as if they have been ripped off, cheated or mislead. That term comes from the word “gypsy” and is also an insult.

We learn something new every day!