Cranford’s Temple Beth-El Mekor Chayim Welcomes New Religious School Director. Registration open for 2016-17 school year – excellent new curriculum.

As Temple Beth-El Mekor Chayim enters its centennial year, we welcome Cantor Frank Lanzkron-Tamarazo back as our cantor and education director. Cantor Frank led our Religious School from 1999-2005, during which time it became one of the top three USCJ “Framework for Excellence” schools in New Jersey, and one of the top 50 Conservative religious schools in the country. Cantor Frank is beloved by students for making Jewish education fun and interesting, and for encouraging the youth to learn more than they ever thought possible. One of his strengths is forming strong bonds with the kids, inspiring them to become more involved in synagogue life. Many students who graduated under his leadership stayed in touch with him and are returning for High Holiday services, from college or post-college life, to celebrate the holidays with him.

TBEMC’s Religious School welcomes children in preschool through 7th grade. School starts on Sunday, September 11, and families will join together at 9 a.m. for a celebrational welcome to the school year. Cantor Frank will also hold an open house for prospective families that morning, to learn about the school. The annual back-to-school family picnic follows the end of school at noon, at Unami Park (Lexington and South Union Avenue in Cranford, near the playground). TBEMC welcomes new and returning Religious School families to the potluck dairy picnic, as well as prospective families. Prospective families interested in attending the open house and/or picnic should contact Cantor Frank at (908) 276-9231 or after September 2, at (908) 276-7351.

TBEMC’s Religious School includes:

Gan Katan – now in its third year, this popular program for 3-4 year olds meets twice a month on Sunday mornings, and includes crafts, songs, stories and other creative learning activities.

Grades K-2 – our kindergarten through 2nd grade program meets every Sunday from 9 a.m. to noon. The children learn about holidays, mitzvot, Hebrew letters and words, Israel and biblical stories, differentiated by grade level.

Grades 3-7 – while adding to previous years’ knowledge, the children will also focus on learning prayers, specific to their grade level. School meets Sunday mornings 9 a.m. to noon, as well as Tuesday afternoons from 4-6 p.m. Cantor Frank will also tutor children for their bar or bat mitzvah.

A detailed curriculum is available from Cantor Frank. The Religious School can accommodate children with special needs and all religious backgrounds, including those who might need additional help with Hebrew. Please call Cantor Frank for more information about the curriculum, registration or the school. Cantor Frank can be reached at (908) 276-9231 or after September 2, at (908) 276-7351.

“We are excited that our Religious School is in such capable hands with Cantor Frank. His dedication to learning, and his detailed, ambitious and thorough curriculum will be key in raising a new generation of involved Jewish children,” said Jackie Baranoff, TBEMC co-president.

TBEMC also welcomes Rabbi David Klatzker as our rabbi. He is an engaging teacher and speaker, who most recently served at Temple Emanuel in Woodcliff Lake, NJ. He has a strong background in Jewish education, pastoral counseling, officiating at meaningful lifecycle events and creating innovative programming.

“Rabbi Klatzker has already proven to be an amazing resource for learning and inspiration. We welcome the community to come for services and for his ongoing Thursday class,” Baranoff said. Rabbi Klatzker will teach a class on Mussar, a Jewish system for personal growth, starting September 8 at 11:15 a.m. Details on the class are at or by calling the office. Rabbi Klatzker will also teach the second year of the popular Melton class, the Foundations of Jewish Family Living, with details to come.

About TBEMC: Celebrating 100 years, Temple Beth-El Mekor Chayim is a conservative, egalitarian synagogue in Union County. TBEMC welcomes singles, couples, families, interfaith families and anyone exploring Judaism. For more information, please contact Sandy Wilson, Temple Administrator at (908) 276-9231 or