Monday, October 17 - 9:30 AM -Sukkot Services
Monday, October 17 - 11 AM - Torah Study
Tuesday, October 18 - Sukkot 2 OFFICE CLOSED
Wednesday, October 19 - 6:30 to 8 PM - Board meeting.
Thursday, October 20 - OFFICE CLOSED
Thursday, October 20 - 12 noon to 1 PM - Torah Thursday. Join us at Torah Thursday as we begin all over again with Genesis! We will work on understanding the text more completely with the help of Rashi (France, 1040-1105), Sforno (Italy, 1475-1550) and Rabbi Adin Steinsaltz (Israel, 1937 and still going). Calories and commentators - what could be better? Brown Bag Lunch.
Thursday, October 20 - 6 PM Shalom Dinner at L'Osteria Mondello, 1507 Stillwater Avenue, followed at 7 PM by a free presentation arranged by the Endowment Board on the tax benefits of donating to non-profit organizations. A donation to the Synagogue in your estate could mean that money that would have been taken out in taxes would go to the Synagogue instead. Scott Robinson, a local tax attorney, will be on hand to answer questions. His advice will apply to the Endowment Fund, the Mt. Sinai Trust, and the Synagogue. And anything donated to the Synagogue will have a lasting impact on Jews and Mt. Sinai for years to come.
Friday, October 21 - 6 PM - Sukkot Dinner
Friday, October 21 - 7 PM - Shabbat Services led by Rabbi Moldo followed by Oneg sponsored by the Sisterhood.
Saturday, October 22 - 9:30 to 11:30 AM - Shabbat Services and Torah study led by Rabbi Moldo followed by Oreg sponsored by the Sisterhood.
Sunday, October 23 - 10 AM to 12 noon - Mt. Sinai Religious School.
Sunday, October 23 - 1 to 3 PM - Jewish and Israeli Dancing. Please contact Mary Weinstein with any questions and/or to let her know you will be coming. Or just show up! Great exercise and great fun! Newcomers (and former dancers) are welcome any time.
Monday, October 24 - 9:30 AM - Shmini Atzeret Services
Monday, October 24 - 11 AM - Yizkor
Monday, October 24 - 6:30 PM - Simchat Torah Hakkafot
Tuesday, October 25 - 10:30 AM to 12 noon - Simchat Torah - Torah Study.
Thursday, October 27 - 12 noon to 1 PM - Torah Thursday. Join us at Torah Thursday as we begin all over again with Genesis! We will work on understanding the text more completely with the help of Rashi (France, 1040-1105), Sforno (Italy, 1475-1550) and Rabbi Adin Steinsaltz (Israel, 1937 and still going). Calories and commentators - what could be better? Brown Bag Lunch.
Friday, October 28 - 7 PM - Shabbat Services followed by Oneg sponsored by the Sisterhood.
Saturday, October 29 - 9:30 to 11:30 AM - Shabbat Services and Torah study followed by Oneg sponsored by the Sisterhood.
Sunday, October 30 - 1 to 3 PM - Jewish and Israeli Dancing. Please contact Mary Weinstein with any questions and/or to let her know you will be coming. Or just show up! Great exercise and great fun! Newcomers (and former dancers) are welcome any time.
Sunday November 6 - Religious School cancelled.
High Holyday Services
Monday, October 17 - Sukkot 1 9:30 a.m. Services
Monday, October 17 - Torah Study 11:00 a.m.
Tuesday, October 18 - Sukkot 2 OFFICE CLOSED
Friday, October 21 - 7:00 p.m. - Shabbat Service led by Rabbi Moldo followed by Oneg sponsored by the Sisterhood.
Saturday, October 22 - 9:30 to 11:30 AM - Shabbat Services and Torah study led by Rabbi Moldo followed by Oneg sponsored by the Sisterhood.
Monday, October 24 - Shmini Atzeret 9:30 a.m. Services
Monday, October 24 - Yizkor 11:00 a.m.
Monday, October 24 - Simchat Torah 6:30 p.m. Hakkafot
Tuesday, October 25 - Simchat Torah 10:30 – noon Torah Study
1 Michael Sherman
2 Sue Carlass
2 Hal Ginsburg
18 David Bloch
20 Dorothy Feldman
25 Mark Elliott
23 Ilaine Brown
24 Jaimee Sodosky
27 Helen Zigmond
28 Jeff Weinstein
31 Namaste Reid
Weekly Message from our Board President
October 17, 2016
Let’s talk money. You probably know that donations to the Synagogue are tax deductible, so one way to pay lower taxes is to be super generous to Mt. Sinai (Hey, it never hurts to ask…) But there are other areas where a donation to the Synagogue will hold off Uncle Sam. For example, there will most likely be taxes taken out of your estate. That same money could go to Mt. Sinai instead of into taxes. The Mt. Sinai Endowment has arranged for a tax attorney to talk about the various ways that donating to the Synagogue could lower your tax bill. He’ll be coming to our Shalom Dinner this Thursday night.
The Shalom Dinner is set for 6 PM on Thursday, October 20, at L’Osteria Mondello’s on Stillwater, behind Dell Range Blvd. We’ll eat at 6, and then at 7, local tax attorney Scott Robinson will make a short presentation on taxes, and ways to cut down your tax bill. So it’s fun and food and 6, and then a little education at 7.
By the way, donations to the Synagogue can be made to the Endowment, the Mt. Sinai Trust, Sisterhood, and the Synagogue itself.
Sukkot is here! There will be a dinner at 6 PM at the Synagogue, followed by our Friday night services at 7. The Mt. Sinai religious school students have been working hard on the Sukkah, which is out in our back yard. Here are some pictures of their work.
The Jim McKinnon Memorial Food Drive was a tremendous success. Here’s a note from Therese McKinnon, who organized it.
47 cans of tuna, spam, chicken
131 cans of soup, vegetables and fruits
10 fruit cups
7 boxes of au gratin potatoes
7 cans pasta sauce
1 box stuffing
34 Ramen noodles - 10 individual plus 4 boxes of 6 individual
10 boxes of cereal
12 boxes of oatmeal
12 boxes of mac & cheese
5 of each of the following:
Rice, pinto beans, peanut butter, jelly, crackers, rice a roni, parmesan cheese, applesauce, mashed potatoes, pancake mix, fruit punch, syrup, tuna helper
Needs weighed everything and it was 340 pounds of food at an estimated cost of $510.
A big thank you to Babs Klein, who encouraged me to do this in Jim’s memory again this year and for her very generous donation. Blessings to the entire Mount Sinai congregation. Whether or not you participated in this project, you have contributed more than you could possible know over the past year in friendship, smiles, acts of kindness and good thoughts. Shana Tova
Dave Friedberg has another saying for us:
If you quarrel with the rabbi, make peace with the bartender.
Here’s our Yiddish Phrase of the Week:
Der vint flit avek un di kerpes bleiben.
The storm blows over but the driftwood remains.
Mt. Sinai Board of Directors
This is Rabbi Moldo's Sermon from Erev Rosh Hashanah.
I always like to begin the High Holiday season by reviewing what Teshuvah is all about.
First, let’s clear away some misconceptions. Teshuvah is not repentance. Repentance is sometimes the beginning of Teshuvah. Repentance involves feeling bad about something you have done, so you wish you had not done it. As I see it, expecting that repentance is meaningful on its own is very selfish – and doesn’t do much to improve the world. As a relevant joke has it - “Have you felt bad about the murders you have committed?” “Certainly – I feel bad each time I get caught and wonder what to do so I don’t.”
Teshuvah is also not an all or nothing kind of thing. There is a complete “I have checked off all the boxes” Teshuvah, which applies to almost everything a person might do which gets us further away from God. There is also a Teshuvah which is necessarily incomplete in terms of checking off all the boxes, but it is complete in terms of interactions between people.
The complete, checking off all the boxes process which works for most actions is: 1) Realize that there is something nagging at you, and if it happens to be because you remember you did something wrong, admit your wrongdoing to yourself. 2) State the wrongdoing to the person who was wronged. Asking for forgiveness at that time is possible, but not a requirement. 3) Fix what was broken whenever possible. Please note that punishment is not fixing what was broken, even if it is often a consequence of doing something wrong and admitting it. 4) Do not repeat that particular mistake ever again.
At a minimum, teshuvah involves the first and fourth steps. It is really hard to imagine that the process can even begin unless you realize that you did something wrong. Now, there are times when the way you find out something you did was not taken the way you meant it is when a friend of yours becomes less friendly. Those peccadillos can become the impetus for a relationship based Teshuvah – as in teshuvah for the relationship, where neither party will punish the other party for a similar offense without letting them know what is triggering it, but they are not really the basis for a personal Teshuvah (I can fulfill the promise not to throw the ball in my parent’s home, but I cannot fulfill a promise to never disappoint them.) There is also no teshuvah at all if my future actions are not changed.
It is the second and third stages which cannot always be accomplished. There are times when the person whom we have wronged is no longer available. While many psychological techniques involve writing letters to people with whom you can no longer speak, and it is often helpful for the person who is doing the writing, it is not actually, technically, letting the person know. Then there are the two prime examples of actions that are not amenable to being fixed – gossip and murder. I used to think that meant that those people who were engaged in activities that were not amenable to the third step could never do teshuvah while alive. I now think that this is being too easy on them by removing their responsibility to work on the fourth step. It is very important that murderers and gossips stop what they do. Under these two main categories fall the concepts of causing embarrassment and shaming, which are also things which should be stopped, or not even started. I understand that shaming is being used more and more these days – the internet seems to be wonderful about never letting a person forget that they acted stupidly once.
I would sincerely like it if in every aspect of my life, when I messed up, I could do Teshuvah. Teshuvah gives you a life-long opportunity for a second chance. Unfortunately, not all bureaucracies believe in second chances.
I originally thought that there would be some instances when I would want the all or nothing approach to be applied. As I began listing those things like plague carriers or places where people got food poisoning, I realized that if their situation changed, then indeed allowing a second chance was appropriate. When the plague carrier is beyond the contagious stage, or the restaurant has fixed the cleanliness problems, the incident which caused the problem is not an adjective that permanently describes them.
The world of no second chances is a bleak one. What you have done defines who you are, and what you will always do. It is the world of Les Miserables, as interpreted by Javert. As a brief overview, Valjean stole a loaf of bread to feed his starving nephew when he was 19, and forever after he is an unemployable thief in Javert’s eyes. If you don’t know the story, I suggest you either read it or watch the musical.
A problem I have with the world of no second chances is that it makes it far more difficult to rebuild one’s life after a mistake has been made.
I know there are certain classes of misdeeds that actually are indicative of a life-long problem. A person who acts like a predator because they consider themselves to be one is probably only going to pay lip service to the concept of Teshuvah at best. The miscreant who does one of the many other kinds of misdeeds may indeed be susceptible to Teshuvah, the second step of which is admitting that you did something wrong.
I think one of the problems with some of the agencies which do not agree with Teshuvah on principle, is that they feel that enabling Teshuvah would be the equivalent of saying that nothing wrong had been done. It is not, of course. You can accept somebody’s statement of what they did, and even listen to their appeal for forgiveness, and then afterwards you can help them figure out how to do the third step – and none of that requires that you forgive the person. Over time, not forgiving somebody does you more harm than them, but you can help somebody do Teshuvah without being ready to move on yourself. After all, if they are serious about their Teshuvah, you will never have to worry about them repeating the same thing.
May each of us be enabled to perform Teshuvah regularly, so that each year we are focusing more deeply on perfecting ourselves.