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Hebrew Order of David

Lodge Jaffa of the Hebrew Order of David is still alive and well and holding regular meetings on the third Monday of the month. We are still active in visiting the sick, entertaining Senior Citizens, and holding Fund-Raising functions. Our latest fund raising function, which we shared with the Durban Womens’  Zionest League, was our latest success.

We regularly have guest speakers, and have outings for our Brethren and their families. There are Lodges in America, Canada, Israel  & the UK. They send us their lodge agenda’s and from this we note that HOD is going from strength to strength. 

We are always looking for new members, and a phone-call or an email will bring an immediate response. [Bro Josh Oshry 031 5647092]

Community News

Hebrew Order Of David

Les Levin

The new year started off slowly for the Lodge. Now that we have a convenor to organise guest speakers, we expect attendance and hopefully, membership, to increase. Our guest speakers entertain us on a variety of subjects, not necessarily religious or political.

The Hebrew Order of David has Lodges in Israel, England, the United States of America, and Canada, and in a few months a delegation from South Africa will be attending the installation ceremonies of these Lodges. A free trip has been offered to a Lodge Brother to join them (although of course, you can’t join now and expect to be eligible for selection).

Durban Jewish Welfare invited the executive of our Lodge to a Friday night dinner at Jewel House to express their thanks for the work we do in raising funds for them, and also for the sick-visiting at Entabeni and St Augustines Hospitals, that we do on their behalf. Their gesture is much appreciated.


Hebrew Order of David

Gary Budlender

On Wednesday 29th October, a braai was hosted for residents of

Jewel House and MASADA workers by the Hebrew Order of David.

The braai was held at the home of Gary and Vivienne Budlender

and organised by Laurence and Julie Levy. Approximately twenty

people attended, including a few drivers.

Stephen Abrahams and Stanley Lipschitz provided the music, playing

an assortment of well-known songs. Many of the guests joined in,

and a few tried out their voices in accompaniment with the music.

A thoroughly enjoyable evening was had by all.

The Hebrew Order of David is appealing for sponsorship to hold

more such braais for Jewel House residents at different venues.

Please contact Laurence Levy on 083 2276509 if you would like to



Hebrew Order of David

Gary Budlender

The Hebrew Order of David, Lodge Jaffa was privileged to have Dr Deena Padayachee as guest speaker at the open lodge meeting on Monday 15th September. Dr Padayachee is a recipient of several prestigious awards for prose writing and short stories. His talk was entitled “What’s love got to do with it?”.

Dr Padayachee has in the past been invited to speak to various groups, and many schools and universities, in South Africa and in countries such as India, Germany, Denmark, Norway, the USA and Australia. He was the first winner of the Nadine Gordimer Prize (Congress of South African Writers) in 1991. In 1994 he became the only medical doctor to have won the Olive Schreiner Prize (English Academy of Southern Africa).

Dr Padayachee said that writing is essentially about communication. It is about bringing to life the culture, the thinking and the values of peoples. It’s about turning strangers into fellow human beings. He read out his poem, “The evil in their eyes” and also a poem about how if we loved people, we would help them find better leaders.

He told how Sylvia Tankel, editor of the Short Story International journal had published his short story, “A first encounter of the marital kind” back in 1988, at a time when no South African magazine would publish the tale. The story won a prize from the Grahamstown Eisteddfod. He also shared how difficult it used to be for South Africans to get their books into South African bookshops. He said that he was not bitter about all the turmoil he had endured in South Africa and that he still loves his country.

This was a most enjoyable and interesting talk. Former Lodge President, Natie Klein presented Dr Padayachee with a small gift in appreciation. Brethren had the opportunity to chat to him afterwards at tea.


Hebrew Order of David

Gary Budlender

Welcome back to our President, Les Levin and his wife Zelda, who were recently away for the Barmitzvah of a grandchild in Israel.

Barry Alice and Les Levin represented Lodge Jaffa, Durban at a meeting of the Governing Lodge of South Africa at the HOD Centre in Orchards, Johannesburg on Saturday evening 12th July. They also attended the joint installation of Gauteng Lodges on Sunday morning 13th July, followed by the HOD 110th Anniversary Luncheon in the Banquet Hall of the HOD Centre.

A braai for Jewel House residents, organised by Laurence Levy, was held at the home of Bradley and Carryn Meltz in June. Approximately twenty people attended the braai. Kosher burgers and salads were served, and an enjoyable evening was had by all who attended. We are looking for sponsors for the next braai which will be held at another home soon.

The annual HOD Haskarah memorial service was arranged by Josh Oshry at Open Lodge on Monday 19th May. Candles were lit by appointed brethren in memory of the deceased. Frankie Melman’s singing enhanced the short service. We especially mourn the passing of Rob Sichel who was a valued member of Lodge Jaffa.

Following his recovery from a recent back operation, Glen Sol has kindly offered to organise a tea for residents of Beth Shalom at a venue to be announced soon. We are looking for other senior citizens from outside Beth Shalom who would also like to attend our tea outings. Please contact us if you are keen to attend. 

Martin Loewenstein will soon be having an informal get-together at his home for brethren and their wives, to listen to some music from a popular Durban musician.


Hebrew Order of David

Gary Budlender

It has been a difficult start to the year for Lodge Jaffa, with the passing of Basil Ostilly, a long-time member for 50 years, and the unfortunate resignations of a couple of well-liked and hardworking brethren owing to personal circumstances. On the positive side, we welcomed Bradley Vinik as a new member to the HOD at our last Open Lodge meeting on 17th March, and hope to see him regularly at meetings and involved with activities.

The HOD is a service organization primarily concerned with the welfare of the Jewish community: raising funds to support various organizations, and performing Mitzvot in the service of our local community.

Some of our more active members are now getting on in years, and the HOD is in need of an injection of new blood. The initiation of new members is fundamental to the long-term welfare of the organization. We appeal to young Jewish men to come forward and serve their community. The HOD is an ideal vehicle towards this end. If you are interested you are urged to call our Vice-President, Josh Oshry on 031 5647092. He would love to hear from you.

This year it has been decided to host a show at the Elizabeth Sneddon Theatre towards the end of the year as our major fundraiser. We can’t give details as yet, but have been assured that it will be a top class local production suitable for the entire family. 

A braai for Lodge members and their families was held at the home of Barry and Val Alice on Sunday 6th April. This informal function was well attended and thoroughly enjoyed by all.

Our grateful thanks go to Barry and Val who have been wonderful hosts for many such braais over the past few years. 

We look forward to welcoming Fiona Klein as a guest speaker on her travels to Asia at our next Open Lodge meeting in April.

We take this opportunity to wish all members of the community Chag Sameach and a meaningful Pesach.



Gary Budlender

The HOD Charity Auction Dinner was held on Sunday evening,
10th November, and was attended by close to fifty guests. A
delicious menu was prepared by Judy Druck and her team, and
a fun evening was had by all. Items which were auctioned off by
the auctioneer, Bradley Meltz, included: a ladies’ watch, bicycle,
dishwasher, deep sea fishing trip, painting of a Rabbi, rugby
ball signed by the Sharks, X-Box 360 game, a mid-week break
at a game lodge and rugby memorabilia from the World Cup
1995. Funds made from this fundraiser will be distributed to
various deserving charities and organizations early this year. Kol
Hakavod to Barry Alice, Dr Sheldon Levin and Bradley Meltz for
their efforts in making the fundraiser a success. A big thank you
to all our sponsors, including the Victor Daitz Foundation, the
Aaron Beare Foundation, JAKAMAR Trust and Witbank Abattoir,
whose support made the function possible. Thanks also to those
guests who attended and made it a great evening.

The Hebrew Order of David will hold an initiation for a new
member early this year. Any other Jewish gentlemen who may
also be keen to join the Order, should contact Josh Oshry.

A braai was held for the residents of Jewel House on, 19th
November, at the home of Eddie and Laraine Cohen. Twentythree
people attended, and a good time was had by all.

Colin Levinsohn, a well-known Durban psychiatrist, was guest
speaker at an open lodge meeting late last year, and we hope
to have more interesting speakers of this calibre at forthcoming
meetings this year.

Hebrew Order of David

42nd biennial conference of the Hebrew Order of David International

AdGary Budlender

The 42nd biennial conference of the Hebrew Order of David International was held on Saturday evening 27th July and Sunday 28th July at the HOD Centre in Johnnesburg.
Barry Alice and Eddie Cohen represented Lodge Jaffa, Durban, at the conference, at which representatives from Lodges from around the world were present. Wor Bro Stan Klaff was re-elected Grand President of the Hebrew Order of David International for another two-year term of office. Wor Bro Mike Margolis of the London Lodge was elected Deputy Grand President. This means that for the first time there has been a shift to an overseas lodge for one of the two presidential positions, which may well result in the Grand President being from the UK in two years' time. It is indicative of the growth of membership in the lodges of the UK, the USA and Canada.
The Shield of David is the most prestigious award offered by the Hebrew Order of David, and this year it was presented to Wor Bros Stan Klaff and Phil Gerson. Mike Krasner, a regular visitor to Durban installations, was made an honorary life member of Grand Lodge.
Lodge Jaffa, Durban, was nominated as the "Premier Lodge of the Order" in South Africa, which is the first time our Lodge has received this prestigious award. However, we must not rest on our laurels and keep up the high standards expected of a premier lodge of the Order.
Jenny Russell, who is branch manager of Diabetes SA, was the guest speaker at the July Open Lodge meeting. Her talk on the causes and effects of diabetes was of interest to all.
Anthony Zambelli, who is a member of the HOD and a veterinary specialist, was festive board speaker in June. He addressed brethren on Rabies, and the prevention of this terrible disease.
Laurence and Julie Levy hosted a braai for residents of Jewel House at their home on 23rd July. The guests were treated to kosher burgers and salads.
Donations from funds raised last year were recently made to local organisations.
We were saddened by the recent passing of Mike Levitan, a former active member of the HOD. We wish his wife Sharon, son Elion, daughters and the rest of the family a long life.

Hebrew Order of David

Hebrew Order of David ‘’ORDER OF MERIT’’ award.

AdGary Budlender

Gary Budlender, who received the Hebrew Order of David ‘’ORDER OF MERIT’’ award.
This was presented to him by the Worthy Brother Grand President of the order, for meritorious service rendered in furthering the objectives of the Order. It was a unanimous decision by all those present that this award was well and truly deserved. Gary,  is also a past president of the Lodge.
The award took place during the recent installation  of the new President

Hebrew Order of David

AdGary Budlender

The joint installation of officers for two of the Lodges in Johannesburg on 17th March was attended by Lodge Jaffa members, Barry Alice and Eddie Cohen. A meeting was also held in Johannesburg to set up a governing lodge for South Africa.
The HOD ran a stall selling hot dogs at the KNZC Yom Ha'atzmaut function on 15th April. Kol Hakavod to Glen Sol who took over the running of the stall, and thanks to others who also helped at the event.
The unveiling of the tombstone for the late Cyril Mann on 14th April was well attended by members of the HOD.  
A braai for Jewel house residents was organised by Laurence Levy and held at the home of Les and Zelda Levin in April. Kosher hamburgers and salads were served, and an enjoyable evening was had by those who attended.
The annual HOD Haskarah memorial service was conducted by Josh Oshry at Open Lodge on 22nd April. Candles were lit by appointed brethren in memory of deceased brethren from Durban Lodges.
Bro Frankie Melman assisted with the singing of memorial prayers, and Rabbi Mark Friedman also recited a prayer in memory of the deceased.
The installation of officers for Lodge Jaffa for 2013/2014 was held on the weekend of 18th/19th May. Visiting brethren from Lodges in Johannesburg, Port Elizabeth and East London attended.
On Friday evening brethren attended the shul service in Silverton Road, and visitors were hosted by local brethren for Shabbat dinner. On Saturday night, at the conclusion of Shabbat, a braai was held at the hall of the Durban Progressive Jewish Congregation.
Entertainment was provided by Stanley Lipschitz and Stephen Abrahams, who played some well-known music. Thereafter, Frankie Melman displayed his singing talent, and others present were also invited to take a turn at the mike.
On Sunday morning 19th May, the installation ceremony took place at the Durban Jewish Centre. This was followed by an excellent lunch, with catering by Sharon Levitan.
Les Levin was installed for a consecutive term as President, and Josh Oshry was installed into office as Vice President. There are a few new faces on the management committee and we look forward to their new ideas and active involvement this coming year.
The Grand President, Stan Klaff paid tribute to Lodge Jaffa for its contribution to the community and its commitment to the principles of the order. He also gave a summary of the progress of other lodges overseas, after his recent visit to some of these lodges.
A tea for residents from Beth Shalom was hosted by the HOD at Botanic Gardens on Sunday 25th May. Bernard Rosen helped to organise this outing with the help of Ronnie and Margaret Spector. Our grateful thanks to Jack Puterman for sponsoring the tea, scones and crumpets which were enjoyed by all.
We are looking for other senior citizens from outside Beth Shalom who would like to attend our tea outings. Please contact Gary Budlender at tel. 0312614222 if you are keen to attend, and we will notify you of the next tea, and organise a lift for you.
Donations from funds raised last year have been finalised, and will be made available to local organisations in the near future.

Hebrew Order of David

Gary Budlender

The year 2013 will be another challenging year for the Hebrew Order of David, as it is for many other Jewish service organisations. But there is reason for optimism, with a couple of new brethren joining the Order in November last year. We welcome Rabbi Mark Friedman and Darren Smith to Lodge Jaffa, and hope to see them at our Open Lodge meetings and getting involved with activities this year.

Our fundraiser, "Beauty and the Beast", at the Elizabeth Sneddon Theatre on 5th December was almost a sell-out, and a high quality production was enjoyed by all who attended the show. Kol Hakavod to our convenor, Glen Sol for organising a successful function. A kosher cheese and wine function was provided before the show.The function was expertly catered for by Selma Lurie. Our grateful thanks go to Durban Deliveries for helping to transport items for the cheese and wine, and to our generous sponsors, the Aaron Beare Foundation, the Victor Daitz Foundation, Witbank Abattoir and Sydney Lazarus. Residents of Jewel House and Beth Shalom were also treated to the show. Funds raised from the show will be distributed to charities and organistions in the near future.

At our Open Lodge meeting in January, Charles Whiteing a knowledgeable historian, gave an interesting talk on the capture of Robey Leibbrandt, a Nazi sympathiser in South Africa during the Second World War.

A tea was held for senior citizens at the Izinga Centre on Sunday 3rd February. We would like to thank Rabbi Zekry, Robert Sussman and the Kolel team for making the afternoon at Izinga a memorable occasion for the residents of Beth Shalom, Eden Crescent and Jewel House. A wonderful afternoon was had by all.

The installation of officers for Lodge Jaffa will take place on the weekend of 18th/19th May this year. We hope to elect some new faces into office, in order to provide new ideas in going forward, and sustain the long term viability of the Order in Durban.


Hebrew Order of David

The Yomtevim have come and gone, and organised activities are back on track

Gary Budlender

Despite the unsettled weather in Durban recently, Lodge Jaffa held a successful day's outing to Karridene Beach, on Sunday 14th October, where a group of brethren and wives gathered for an enjoyable day out at the beach, and around the pool of the Protea Hotel. Fortunately the weather was kind to us that day, and a large part of the day was spent in glorious sunshine.

The only disappointment was that our past president was unable to make any catch at all during his attempt at fishing on the beach. Afterwards, Basil Ostilly took a few brethren to see Ostilly Road, named in honour of his family. On Sunday, 28th October, a tea was organised by Glen Sol for senior citizens at the home of Barry and Val Alice, who once again showed their wonderful hospitality to all. The tea, cake and savoury snacks were enjoyed by residents of both Beth Shalom and Eden Crescent, as well as HOD drivers.

Music was provided in the form of Stephen Abrahams and Stanley Lipschitz, who played a number of well-known songs that had guests dancing and singing along. The rain held out just long enough for the "thank-you" speeches. A social braai for brethren and their families was held at the same venue on Sunday 11th November.

A braai was also organised at the home of Les and Zelda Levin in mid-November for residents of Jewel House. Thank you to Laurence Levy for his help in organising this. The annual fundraiser for the H.O.D. is the show "Beauty and the Beast" at the Elizabeth Sneddon Theatre on 5th December. A kosher cheese and wine function for all patrons precedes the show.

Funds raised from this event will be distributed to local charities and deserving organisations early next year. We take this opportunity to thank our generous sponsors, including the Victor Daitz Foundation, the Aaron Beare Foundation and Jakamar Trust.


Hebrew Order of David


Stan Hart, a long-standing member of the HOD, has undergone a heart bye-pass operation, and is currently recuperating at home. We wish him a speedy and full recovery.

An enjoyable outing was organised for senior citizens at Moses Mabhida Stadium on Sunday 23rd July. Tea and cream scones were served. The weather was pleasant, despite an afternoon breeze. Eighteen enthusiastic people, including drivers, were also treated to a guided tour of the stadium. The outing was once again well oganised by Glen Sol.

Our president, Les Levin, and past-president, Barry Alice attended the Grand Lodge conference in Johannesburg on 22nd July. A governing lodge is soon to be established for South Africa.

We wish a hearty Mazaltov to David Simon, Eli Shalem and Shimon Cohen, who were raised to the first degree on Monday 16th July, and are now eligible to hold positions in office. Congratulations also go to Jack Puterman, who was recently presented with his 50 year membership certificate.

One of the real stalwarts of the HOD is Natie Klein, who celebrated his 90th birthday a few months ago. Natie and his wife, Shirley, have shown great commitment in visiting Jewish patients in hospital over the years, and continue to perform this mitzvah willingly. Natie has been an inspiration to all, and his positive attitude to any adverse situation is truly admirable. We wish Natie many more happy birthdays, and great-grandchildren too.

A high profile guest speaker at Open Lodge on Monday 20th August was the well-known Durban urologist, Dr Grizic. Thanks to Dr Sheldon Levin for securing his services. We hope to attract more speakers of this calibre to our festive board sessions.

Gary Budlender



AdA tribute to the late Worthy Brother Cyril Mann On 4th April, the Hebrew Order of David was stunned and saddened to lose one of the real stalwarts of the organization. Cyril Mann, who devoted a large part of his life to the H.O.D., passed away in hospital, after suffering a bad fall in late March, only a few weeks away from his 91st birthday.

Cyril Mann arrived with his family in South Africa in 1937, as a boy of fourteen, and settled in Brakpan.

He served with the S.A. forces in North Africa during the Second Word War.
He married Phyllis Miller, and they had two daughters, Roselyn and Gwen. Cyril joined the Dr Max Nordau Lodge in Brakpan in 1946 and served as president of the Dr Max Nordau Lodge in 1952. When he settled in Durban, he transferred to the F.C. Hollander Lodge. With the consecration of Lodge Sinai in 1967, Cyril became a foundation member. He served as president of Lodge Sinai in 1983-84.

With the formation of Lodge Jaffa in Durban, he served as preceptor. In 1990, he was awarded the Order of Merit by the Grand President, and in 1996 received his 50 year membership of the Hebrew Order of David award.

Cyril served in most senior positions of Lodges of the Order, and was highly respected by Lodges around the country.

Affectionately known as the Sergeant-Major of Lodge Jaffa, Cyril is sadly missed at Lodge meetings, where he instilled a sense of order and decorum.

Other news

A picnic/braai was held at the picturesque smallholding of Martin Loewenstein on Sunday 25th March. The weather was good, and those who attended enjoyed the hospitality of our enthusiastic host. Highlight of the day was probably the large catfish caught by David Simon, who in true sporting fashion, decided to free his catch and threw it back into the river.

There was a good turnout to welcome our new initiate Anthony Zambelli into the Order at the March open Lodge meeting. We wish Anthony many happy and fulfilling years with the Lodge. Paul Gering was the festive board speaker at our April open Lodge meeting. His talk on current tax issues was informative and interesting.

Once again, the organization took part in the Yom Ha’atzmaut festivities at Eden College on 25th April. This time we ran a stall selling kosher hot dogs, and we gather that our customers enjoyed the hot dogs.

Senior citizens were treated to a tea at the Umgeni Bird Park on the last Sunday in April. They were also able to attend the bird show, which is hosted by the park. Well done to Glen Sol for organizing a successful outing.

Our Haskarah service at May Open Lodge was attended by the Grand President, Stan Klaff, from Johanesburg, who has been visiting lodges of the Order, both here and abroad.