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“Over the past 25 years, the Temple has been involved in every important life event we have had.”

Going back in time, Henri was born into a military family as one of 4 daughters of U.S. Army Colonel David Spiegel and his wife, Adele. During WWII, Adele was in the WACs (Women Army Corps) and David was in JAG (Judge Advocate General.) Following the war, they each moved to Miami Beach, meeting while working at the Blackstone Hotel. They fell in love and when David decided to rejoin JAG, they became engaged and quickly sought out a Temple to be married. It was Temple Beth Sholom. Rabbi Leon Kronish married them under exceptionally unusual circumstances… in his office, during a Jewish holiday with just two witnesses. due to the urgency of David’s military responsibilities.

Henri’s formative years living on different army bases were quite secular, prior to her father’s military retirement and return to civilian life as an attorney, while her mother got very involved in Hadassah. Eventually settling in Pinecrest, Henri attended college and law school and moved to L.A. for a time.

In contrast to Henri’s childhood, Michael’s upbringing was in a fairly religious household in Long Island, New York.  He recalls his family keeping kosher with two sets of dishes and lighting candles on Shabbat. His close-knit family lived nearby and he remembers them being around very often. Michael, who today is a highly regarded furniture designer, eventually moved to South Florida; when Henri returned from L.A. they met and married 27 years ago.

When their son, Hunter, was a preschooler, they joined Temple Beth Sholom, enrolling him in Rabbi Glickstein’s wife, Ms. Joanie’s class. Adele joined Henri one day to pick up Hunter from school, saw the plaque in honor of Rabbi Kronish on the building and realized in amazement that she had been married there decades ago. “We had come full circle,” says Henri.

Over the years that followed, their Temple involvement included countless stories – from Hunter’s Bar Mitzvah, Henri’s parents’ 50th anniversary celebration officiated by Rabbi Glickstein and later on, to her parents’ memorial services performed so compassionately by our clergy. Michael especially loves attending the Shabbat services whenever possible. They both hope one day Hunter will be married here.

“Knowing that Temple Beth Sholom is here nourishes Michael and me, and makes us feel included as a part of this wonderful community, even if we don’t regularly come to Shabbat services,” says Henri. She adds, “I want others to experience that same richness. When you belong to this temple, you will always be treated as though you’ve just come home, any time you walk through these doors.”

Sat, September 30 2023 15 Tishrei 5784