May You Be Inscribed for a Good Laugh
MEIR Y. SOLOVEICHIK for Commentary
Laughter,” writes the the essayist Jim Holt in his book Stop Me If You’ve Heard This, “is our characteristic response to the aesthetic category of the humorous, the comical, or the funny. What is it about the humorous situation that evokes this response? Why should a certain kind of cerebral activity issue in such a peculiar behavioral reflex?”
This is not only a question that is raised every time you watch the Marx Brothers; it is also, you will be surprised to hear, at the very heart of Judaism. Laughter is a central theme on one of Judaism’s most serious days, a fact that makes it clear that for Jews, laughter is no laughing matter.
On Rosh Hashanah, the Day of Awe that begins each new year, we read the passage in the Torah about the miraculous birth of a son to the elderly Sarah, then 90 years of age. This son’s Hebrew name, Yitzchak, means “he will laugh.” This, the Bible informs us, is linked to the laughter that his birth to Sarah provoked: “And the Lord visited Sarah as he had said, and the Lord did unto Sarah as he had spoken. For Sarah conceived, and bore Abraham a son in his old age . . . . And Abraham was a hundred years old, when his son Isaac was born unto him. And Sarah said, God hath made me to laugh, so that all that hear will laugh with me.”
A Captivating Tour of Jewish Life at the Moment before the Holocaust and Israel
By Michel Gurfinkiel for Mosaic
Translated into English for the first time, The Wandering Jew Has Arrived captures the breadth of Jewish life from London to Eastern Europe to Palestine just before it all changed.
If you’ve always longed to read a book capturing that very special moment in history when the European Diaspora still was the Jewish people, even as the state of Israel was looming on the far horizon—a book explaining, from within, that moment of incipient transition into two Jewish identities—it has existed since 1930. The problem is that it was written in French, and by a Gentile at that, and for decades nobody bothered introducing it to the English-speaking public.
But now the situation has been rectified. Albert Londres’ masterpiece, The Wandering Jew Has Arrived, has recently been published in a superb translation by Helga Abraham, an Egyptian-born graduate of Edinburgh University who now lives in Jerusalem. In her foreword, Abraham goes so far as to compare Londres with “such great documentarians as Mark Twain and George Orwell.” I couldn’t agree more.
In Omaha, Three Faiths Share One Big Idea
By Jonathan Zalman for Tablet Magazine
The Tri-Faith Initiative brings together a synagogue, a church, and a mosque, with a promise to build bridges between them
A new kind of “neighborhood” is nearing completion in West Omaha, Nebraska—a place where Jews, Muslims, and Christians will share spaces, food, ideas, joy, and pain.
Over 10 years ago, a group of Omaha’s religious and lay leaders hatched an idea: Build three, brand-new houses of worship—a temple, a mosque, and a church—located close together on the same plot of land; ensure that the design scheme feels borderless, flowing, and inviting of interaction; encourage communication between communities—promoting, among other things, cross-religious education and, well, understanding; put into place the right leaders to foster these activities; have plentiful parking; coexist; shock the world.
The Last Jews Of Kolkata | Unique Stories From India
From ASI (American Sephardi Federation)
"If it is our fate to be the last flicker of the Jewish candle in Kolkata, then so be it."
Everyone agrees that Kolkata is one of India's most beautiful cities. But not many know that a majority of the landmarks in the city were built not by the British, but by members of the Jewish community. Once a community several thousands strong, they are now down to just over 20 members.
Despite their diminished numbers, the Jews of Kolkata still own three Synagogues, three schools and a cemetary in Narkedanga. Members of the community are now reaching out to Jewish communities in Singapore, Hong Kong and the United States, to see if they would help to manage Jewish affairs in the city. Members of the community are resigned to the fact that they may be the last generation of Jews in Kolkata. The way they see it, it's the city's loss.
A 1938 Family Film Uncovers a Lost Polish Jewish World
BY AVISHAY ARTSY for Jewniverse
It’s rare that vacation photos elicit more than a yawn, and it’s certainly unusual to find anything as riveting as the 16mm reel Glenn Kurtz uncovered while sifting through a cardboard box at his parents’ house in Florida.
His grandfather’s home-movie footage included three minutes of Kodachrome color film shot in 1938 during a visit to the small Polish town of Nasielsk. Fewer than 100 of the town’s 3,000 inhabitants survived the Holocaust, and David Kurtz, a Jewish tourist from New York, captured the only surviving moving images of the town. Today, December 3, marks the 75th anniversary of the deportation of Nasielsk’s Jewish population.
Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur
High Holidays - 2017/5778
High Holidays 2017/5778 Services Schedule -Rosh Hashanah September 21-22, Yom Kippur September 29-30 - Click here for the 2017 services schedule.
Sign Up to Attend High Holidays Services - Please let us know which services you'll be attending in order to help us assign honors by completing our High Holiday Services Attendance Form
Reserve Your Tickets and Seats - Can pay by cash or credit card - Click here for the ticket and seating reservation form.
Special Programming for Children and Teens:
Children Can Participate in Our Beautiful Neilah Service - Join us on September 30 at 7:00 p.m. sharp in the Chapel. - Click here for the registration form due by September 25, 2017.
High Holiday Children's Services - Great for families who love holiday songs and storytelling! Join us for Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur at 2:30 p.m. - Click here for the schedule.
High Holiday Childcare for Children up to 5 Years - Free for Temple Members, $25/day for Non-members, Return form to the office no later than September 1, 2017 - Click here for the form.
High Holiday Experience For Children in TK, Kindergarten, 1st, 2nd, 3rd, and 4th Grades - A creative service with hands-on fun! Begins at 9:00 a.m. - Click here for the flyer.
Junior Congregation For Children in 5th, 6th, and 7th Grades - Join in leading a meaningful service in the Winer Chapel. For Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur, meet in Wolfson at 10:45 a.m. - Click here for the flyer.
This Yom Kippur Sicha is LAVA!! Don’t get burned by the choices you made in the past! Join us on September 30th, from 12pm-1pm for a fun and interactive program about how to be our better selves this year. For 8-12th graders only. Click here for the flyer.
Tashlich Walk with USY - USY Tashlich Walk at Temple Etz Chaim. Meet us on September 21st in the Religious School rotunda at 11:30 a.m. sharp. Click here for the flyer.
Caring Connections and More
I Care, We Care, TEC Cares!
For more information and to be a part of Caring Connections visit our page.
Volunteer opportunity: The ALS Association is looking for volunteers to visit home-bound people with ALS once a week. Teens would be welcome. Please contact with Barbara Porush: 818-429-5686; b[email protected]
Bereavement Support Group Open to the Community: Our Bereavement group will meet every 2nd and 4th Wednesday of the month.
Al-Anon meets every Wednesday at TEC, 7:00-8:15PM.
Be Involved - Click here for a calendar of upcoming events.
Refuah Shelamah Requests - Can't make it to shul for a friend or loved one in need of a prayer for healing? Send in any name you would like read at services (Shabbat, minyan or other) and a dedicated Temple congregant will stand and read the name. Just email your request to refuah.[email protected] with the details of the individual in need of healing. It is that easy and simple! Because No one should be without a voice.
Community Outreach/Caring Connection presents New support group forming at TEC: Caregiver Support Group - May 15th,11:00am ALL TOPICS ENCOURAGED (dementia, behaviors, finances, Alzheimer, aging, etc.) Hear, share,learn, discuss, resolve issues in caring for loved ones. Click here for the flyer - Open to the community.
Rabbinic Seach Frequently Asked Questions - Our congregation has begun the process of searching for and hiring a new rabbi. The Rabbinic Search Committee (RSC) recognizes that you will have various questions regarding the search, so we thought we would try to anticipate some of them and do our best to provide answers. Please read our Rabbinic Search Frequently Asked Questions.
Saturday September 16th dinner and Selichot Services- Join us for Havdallah, a light dinner, the screning of "The Women's Balcony" followed by a coffee and cake and the late night Selichot service. More information.
Operation Isaiah Canned Food Drive - Donate cans of food to the hungry! September 18 - September 30, 2017
September 29th is the last day to RSVP for "Dinner in the Sukkah" More information and form
Annual Sukkah Building October 1st 9 am- Join the Men's Club in the annual tradition of building and decorating our sukkah, it's a great way to spend a Sunday while the kids are at Religious School. No esperience necessary. More information.
Sukkot Dinner December 6, 6 pm - Remember to RSVP by September 29th.
RSVP for Say Shalom "Celebrate Life" Dinner by October 11 - "Celebrate Life' Shabbat onwill begin with a Say Shalom complimentary dinner for all at 6:00pm. Please RSVP by October 11
Guess Who's Comming to Shabbas. October 13 - This is Temple Etz Chaim’s new program where congregants host a Shabbat dinner in their homes and invite 1-2 other synagogue families to attend. Thus far, 86 Etz Chaim families have participated! If you’d like to host a dinner, if you’d like to be invited to attend a dinner, or if you have questions, just contact us at [email protected]. Our goal is to have every Temple family invited for an at-home Shabbat dinner over the next year. Doesn’t everyone enjoy celebrating Shabbat over a good meal at home with family and friends?
Say Shalom Dinner: Celebrate Life and Community in the New Year Friday, October 20 6:00 pm ~ Social Hall - Click here for the flyer.
TEC Book Club - Join us to read and discuss a selection of great books - August-November 2017 upcoming schedule
The First Great Challa Bake -Wednesday, November 8th RSVP by October 27. 7:00 pm -9:00 pm Click here for the flyer.
Be The Change - Tzedakah campaign - Are you ready to be the change? Suggested donation of $5.
Parent and Me Classes - Wednesdays, 9:15 AM -10:30 AM. Storytime, art, music, Jewish traditions, crafts, and so much more.
Women of TEC Judaica Shop
Visit the Women of TEC Judaica Shop at Temple Etz Chaim! We carry a wide selection of Judaica gifts for every occasion. Visit the Women of TEC Judaica Shop web page for hours and featured items!
Religious School 2017-2018
First Day Religious School Grades 3-7
Tuesday, September 5th and 6th are the First Days of Religious School Grades 3-7
First Day Class Grades TK,K,1,2
Sunday, September 10 is the first day of Religious School for Grades TK-2
First Day Confirmation Grades 8-12
Monday, September 11th 6:30pm
Infant Care Now Registering!
Infant Care Now Registering!
Now Offering Full-time Infant Care from 3 months on.
Small caretaker - child ratio.
Full Time Monday to Friday 7:30am - 6:00pm.
Space fills up fast, plan ahead and reserve your spot! To schedule a tour please contact the pre-school office at (805) 497-6852 or email us at [email protected].
Support Temple Etz Chaim everytime you shop
Amazon will donate 0.5% of the price of your eligible AmazonSmile purchases when you shop at AmazonSmile - smile.amazon.com.
Agoura Hills Hand Car Wash "Wash Bucks" Program
Find out here how you can help support TEC every time you wash your car or shop at Agoura Hills Hand Car Wash.
Earn Funds for TEC
When you search and shop with GoodSearch, you help Temple Etz Chaim earn money. How? Good Search is a search engine which donates 50-percent of its renveue to the charities and schools designated by its users.