WarmWelcomingIt just feels right

Matot-Masei

Posted on July 16th, 2017

Numbers 30:2 - 36:13 


BY RABBI DOROTHY A. RICHMAN, Rabbi Martin Ballonoff Memorial Rabbi-in-Residence at Berkeley Hillel, for myjewishlearning.com


Creating Sustainable Freedom

 

All people must know that they have value.


Parashat Masei, the portion of journeys, begins with a recounting of the Israelites’ travels from slavery in Egypt to the borders of Israel. Yet within this re-telling of the Israelites’ trek comes a different journey: the path of a man-slayer into exile.

Powerful Priest and Accidental Killer
An entire chapter of the portion addresses the process by which an unintentional murderer is sent out of the community for his own protection. A person convicted of accidentally taking a life is sent to one of six cities of refuge. He lives there, guarded from his victim’s avenging relatives, until the natural death of the high priest (Numbers 35). If an exiled murderer wants to return home, his only recourse is to pray for the High Priest’s death.

Continue reading.

PINCHAS

Posted on July 10th, 2017

NUMBERS 25:10−30:1 


Rabbi James Jacobson-Maisels teaches Jewish thought and mysticism at the Pardes Institute of Jewish Studies in Jerusalem.


Heroic or Sinful?


Zealous acts are not always heroic.


Just before this Torah portion begins, Israelite men have begun sleeping with foreign women. These relations have brought the Israelites to worship foreign gods and have caused, in response, a Divine plague to break out in the Israelite camp. God and Moses then command the Israelites to slaughter the idol worshipers among the Israelites.

In the very next verse, we learn that Zimri ben Salu (an Israelite) and Kozbi bat Tzur (a Midianite) publicly display their relationship as Zimri takes Kozbi back to his tent to sleep with her. Our Torah portion opens with the conclusion of the bloody tale as Pinchas slaughters Zimri and Kozbi and ends the plague (Numbers 25).

Continue reading.
 

Balak

Posted on July 2nd, 2017

Numbers 22:2 - 25:9 

Judith Greenberg was ordained at the Jewish Theological Seminary. Reprinted with permission from Torah Topics for Today.


Saying No To Temptation


Not giving in to temptations helps us to clarify our values and stick to our convictions.


We are surrounded by things that tempt us. Unhealthy foods, video games, and gossip are just a few of the things enticing us. It’s hard to make the decision to eat healthily.  Or to not play “just one more round!” Or to keep from spreading a juicy piece of news. When confronted with a temptation, we know what the right decision is, but in the moment, it can be so hard to stay connected to our values, be they healthful eating, productive use of time, or not engaging in lashon hara or gossip.

In this week’s Torah portion we have one of the most famous – and fateful – examples of someone giving in to a temptation. In the Garden of Eden, God told Adam not to eat from the tree of knowledge of good and bad.  But the snake tempts Eve, and she eats from the tree. Eve was tempted because she forgot about consequences and saw that the tree was appetizing and a source of wisdom. Shortsighted, Eve fell to temptation because she thought only of immediate gratification.

Continue reading.

Chukat

Posted on June 25th, 2017

Numbers 19:1 - 22:1 

By Rabbi Bradley Artson, The following article is reprinted with permission from American Jewish University, for MyJewishLearning.com


Miriam: Water Under The Bridge?


Miriam's death should motivate us to recognize people today who provide nurture and support.


Careers of public figures take on a life of their own, ebbing and flowing with shifts in public opinion and the latest values. One Jewish figure whose popularity is at an all-time high is the prophet Miriam, the sister of Moses and Aaron.

While featured prominently in the Torah , Miriam’s claim to fame always paled in the face of her more visible brothers. After all, Aaron was the first Kohen Gadol (high priest), the link between the Jewish people and their religion, and Moses was the intimate friend of God, transmitting sacred teachings to the people.

Continue reading.

Korach

Posted on June 18th, 2017

NUMBERS 16:1−18:32 

Rabbi Marc Wolf is assistant vice-chancellor of The Jewish Theological Seminary


Jewish Texts: The Ultimate Self-Help Guide


Amidst seemingly mundane laws, valuable lessons emerge.


A colleague and friend who shares my fascination with golf as well as my plague of performing poorly, recently gifted me with a book entitled, Golf is Not a Game of Perfect.

It is another one of the ever-expanding genre of self-help books in sheep’s clothing in which the subject, in this case, golf, is viewed as a microcosm of life. Accordingly, the sport is given a philosophical reach that outdistances any drive from the tee. It is filled with pithy moral teachings such as “Golfers must learn to love the challenge when they hit a ball into the rough … the alternatives–anger, fear, whining, and cheating–do no good.” Through tangible advice on the game, it subtly links such challenges as hitting a 40-foot putt to reaching for personal and professional goals. Books like this one and others of this ilk by sports personalities like George Forman and Michael Jordan tend to see an ecumenical relevance in seemingly mundane activities.

Continue reading.

Pages

Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur

High Holidays - 2017/5578

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: 818-429-5686b[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.

Chai Lights

Religious School Programs available for Transitional Kindergarten through 12th Grade. For more information, contact the Religious School office at (805) 494-8174 or [email protected].

Temple Etz Chaim’s Thursday Night Bingo - Doors Open 4:00 PM Games Start 6:15 PM. All Games, Including Early Birds, Pay $250.

Shabbat Under the Stars - June 9th to August 18th, 7 p.m. ~ Warren Lawn - TEC's favorite summer tradition is back. Don't miss this beautiful, outdoor service. Click here for the flyer. 

Tailgate Shabbat for Religious School Families - August 18th at 5:30 p.m. on Warren Lawn - Complementary dinner, bring your own blanket, reservations required! - Reserve your spot with this flyer.

Havdallah and Hike With TEC USY! August 26 from 5:30pm-7:30pm *Please bring a parve or dairy meal Wildwood Park in Thousand Oaks 928 W. Avenida de los Arboles Thousand Oaks, Ca 91361 Havdallah services led by Hazzan Pablo and you! Click here for the flyer.

Preschool Summer Camp - Registration is now open for a summer of fun! Click here for the list of activities. 10 week program - June 19th - August 25th. Click here for the calendar and registration package

Camp Conejo Creek - It's time to start thinking about summer - Join us here from June 19th - August 11th. We have a lot of speciality programming - come for one week or stay for the summer! 

USY - Fun, exciting, meaningful, immersive Jewish experiences for teens grades 7-12. Click here for the flyer.

Join TEC USY for Disney Day 2017 ● September 3 at 7:30 am to 12:00 am - Click here for the flyer.

Operation Isaiah Canned Food Drive - Donate cans of food to the hungry! September 18 - September 30, 2017

TEC Book Club - Join us to read and discuss a selection of great books - July-November 2017 upcoming schedule

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.

Temple Etz Chaim Video

A window into Temple Etz Chaim's daily life

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!

 

 

 

 

Camp Conejo Creek

Spend your summer at Camp Conejo Creek! Join us here at TEC June 19th - August 11th

Camp Conejo Creek will provide your children with a fun and engaging summer Jewish day camp experience. Activities include mixed media arts, theater performance, cooking, sports and recreation, science and magic, along with local field trips and theme days – your camper decides on the programming they want to do for the summer! We incorporate Jewish values into our programming and celebrate Shabbat every Friday as a camp. Come for the week or stay for the summer. Camp Conejo Creek is open to everyone! 1-week sessions with the choice of 2, 3 or 5 days a week. Early and late care available.

Click here for Camp Conejo Creek Information and Forms:

Activity Calendar
About Camp Conejo Creek and Workshop/Enrichment Schedule
Registration Form - 2/days a week (T/Th) 

Registration Form - 3/days a week (M,W,F)

Registration Form - 5/days a week (M-F)

 

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.

GoodSearch

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.

TEC Trip to Spain

Rabbi Richard Spiegel of Temple Etz Chaim took a group of Temple members to Spain for a Jewish heritage tour of Spain. The group traveled to Madrid, Barcelona, Cordoba, Granada, Sevilla, Girona, and Toledo to see remnants of a once vibrant Jewish community that existed in Spain during the middle ages.