2016-01-20 / Voice at the Shore

AC’s Rodef Sholom welcomes Shalom Ever as new rabbi

By ELLEN WEISMAN STRENGER
Voice shore correspondent


Rabbi Shalom Ever at his new pulpit in Rodef Sholom Synagogue Rabbi Shalom Ever at his new pulpit in Rodef Sholom Synagogue Atlantic City’s only synagogue, Rodef Sholom, now has a new rabbi. On January 1, Rabbi Shalom Ever officially started as rabbi of the 120-yearold Orthodox shul.

Ever takes over the pulpit at Rodef Sholom two years after the departure of the shul’s last rabbi, Max Fox, who served there for 12 years until his retirement. Since then, the synagogue has been led by lay leaders and visiting scholars, said Mendy Schwartz, a long-time Rodef Sholom member who was instrumental in bringing Ever to the Atlantic City shul. Recently, Schwartz added, “it had gotten to the point we decided that we really needed a rabbi.”

Ever is well-known to Rodef Sholom congregants and to the local Orthodox community at large. After moving to the area six years ago to become rabbi for Young Israel in Margate, Ever played a key role in promoting good relations between the two Orthodox shuls, which often needed each other’s help in securing a minyan, noted Schwartz.

“While at Young Israel, he enjoyed a wonderful relationship with this shul, and would come here to give classes, Schwartz said. He is also the supervising rabbi of the only Glatt Kosher restaurant in town. Rabbi Ever is a perfect fit.”

Although

Rabbi Ever officially took over Rodef Sholom’s pulpit at the start of the New Year, he has served as spiritual leader there since early December as a “visiting scholar.” Since then, he has been leading services as well as short classes following Monday and Thursday evening services for those who want to dig deeper into the Torah portion.

Ever, who comes from a “rabbinical family,” (“my father and grandfather were illustrious readers and orators,” he said) graduated from rabbinical school in Miami at age 18. Since then, he has held pulpits in Florida, Nevada and Israel, where he also lived for 10 years.

His enthusiasm, vast knowledge, and approach to teaching Judaism have gained him a following locally, which is all good for Rodef Sholom. Since December, said Schwartz, “A number of people have joined the shul just for Rabbi Ever.”

Likewise, observant Jews who visit Atlantic City and want to find a minyan—a population Rodef Sholom sees year round—have also expressed positive feedback for the new rabbi in the short time he’s been there. According to Schwartz, “One congregant who lives in New York told me, ‘You’d think I’d get my Torah knowledge from New York, but I’m getting more here now, with Rabbi Ever.’”

After leaving Young Israel in Margate roughly a year ago, Ever became rabbi for the Jack and Mira Trocki Zichron M’Vilna Shul.

Ever, who had previously led much larger congregations, decided to leave the Margate Shul in mid-November. “My dream for Rodef Sholom is to have lots of lectures, seminars, and symposia where people can come, so that even out-of-towners will hear that there is a vibrant synagogue not far from their hotel,” said Ever. He also plans to hold classes specifically designed for women. “People can come here for vacations and to become spiritually uplifted.” .

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