February 1, 2024/ 22 Shevat 5784

February Newsletter

Included in This Newsletter

February Shabbat Services

Blood Drive - 2/16

Rabbi's Corner

Weekly D'var Torah

Message from Barbara and Evan Salop

Civil Rights Trip - Register by 2/7

Register for Pirkei Avot Class

New Events - Community News

Spotlight Calendar

Members and guests are always welcome to attend our Shir Ami Services, Classes and Special Events (fees may apply)


Shabbat Service (in person)

Friday, February 2nd

7:30 PM

Soul Spa: The Torah Cycle (virtual)

(a yearlong weekly series)

Saturday, February 3rd

Saturday, February 10th

Saturday, February 17th

Saturday, February 24th

10:00 AM

Shir Ami Board Meeting (virtual)

Monday February 5th

7:30 PM

Pirkei Avot Class (virtual)

Wednesday, February 7th

7:30 PM

Shabbat Service (in person)

Friday, February 16th

7:00 PM

Details to follow

Pirkei Avot Class (virtual)

Wednesday, February 21st

7:30 PM


Shabbat Service (in person)

Friday, March 1st

7:00 PM

Details to follow

Soul Spa: The Torah Cycle (virtual)

(a yearlong weekly series)

Saturday, March 2nd

Saturday, March 9th

Saturday, March 16th

Saturday, March 23rd

Saturday, March 30th

10:00 AM

Shir Ami Board Meeting (virtual)

Monday March 4th

7:30 PM

Pirkei Avot Class (virtual)

Wednesday, March 6th

7:30 PM

Shabbat Service (in person)

Friday, March 15th

7:00 PM

Details to follow

Purim Havdalah Service (in person at congregants' home)

Saturday, March 23rd

7:00 PM

Details to follow

Pirkei Avot Class (virtual)

Wednesday, March 27th

7:30 PM

2023-24 Calendar is now available on our website. Click here (updated 11/30/23)

Contact Us:

Email Address




Donations and Payments


Mailing Address

1273 E. Putnam Ave

​PO Box 312

Riverside, CT 06878

Note: A decision has been made to start Shabbat services at 7:00 PM during the dark winter months.

Shabbat Service

Friday, February 2nd


First Presbyterian Church

(in person)

February 2nd will be a big Shabbat, coinciding with Torah's rendition of the Ten Commandments at Sinai. We'll stand together at Sinai to receive the Ten Commandments anew. 

Celebratory oneg sponsored by Marie Orsini Rosen and Phil Rosen in honor of Jess Rosen's and Sesame Workshop's Elmo's birthdays on Feb 2 and Matt Rosen's birthday on Jan 30.

Register for February 2nd Shabbat

Shabbat Service

Friday, February 16th


First Presbyterian Church

(in person)

Coming together for Shabbat Services is an important way for our community to connect. Please join us for on February 16th. More details to follow...

Thank you to Joan and David Green who will be sponsoring the oneg in honor of their wedding anniversary.

Register for February 16th Shabbat

The next blood drive at First Presbyterian Church will be on Friday, February 16, from 11:30 am to 4:30 pm in Fellowship Hall at First Presbyterian Church of Greenwich (1 West Putnam Ave., Greenwich, CT).  While this is not an Interfaith drive (the next one of those will be in June), First Presbyterian Church will be grateful if we encourage members of our congregation to donate. Blood donation appointments help the Red Cross ensure blood products are ready for patients whenever there is a need. Sign up to give at rcblood.org/donate using code: FPCG or call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767). All blood types needed!

Are you Joining the Civil Rights Journey?

Deadline to Register Extended to 2/7/24

Register for Civil Rights Journey

Shir Ami Classes

Soul Spa is open to all.

Our Torah study each week on Shabbat morning, is new to us and has become a mainstay of our programming. As we examine the parashat each week under Rabbi David's guidance and questioning, our sacred writings become more familiar, the stories clearer, and the teachings more meaningful.

The sessions are recorded and can be accessed by clicking the link below.

Soul Spa is free for members and non-members alike. Optional donations are always welcome and appreciated and can be made by clicking here.

You may drop in as frequently or as infrequently, as you like. Please click here to find the weekly Zoom link and for recordings of previous discussions.


Join Rabbi David for a first foray into the Jewish wisdom and ethical tradition, centered on Pirkei Avot. Together we'll explore ancient Jewish principles for just and good living – and bring those principles to life among us and in a world straining for justice and goodness. No experience necessary: all materials will be presented with English translation.  

Please save these dates at 7:30pm - 9:00pm on the following Wednesdays:

February 7, February 21

March 6, March 27,

April 10, May 8, May 29

The class is free for members and $120 for non-members. Classes will be recorded in case you miss one and posted on our website.

Register for Ethics & Jewish Wisdom Tradition

Rabbi's Corner

February 2024: Resetting Time

February 2024 has no Jewish holidays. And on both the secular calendar and Jewish calendar, February 2024 brings "leap time" – a leap day on February 29, and a whole leap month (Adar I) in Jewish time.

It's as if this no-holidays month operates to re-set time, to recalibrate so that not only calendars re-align but also so that we do. Because it does – for our community as well. Read more...

Weekly D'var Torah

D'var Torah by Rabbi David

Parashat Yitro 5784 (2024)

Coming Out to God

The journey from meaninglessness to identity to vision to purpose is a journey that hopefully all of us will choose to take throughout our lives. It's the quintessential journey of personal human development. It's also the quintessential journey of collective societal becoming. 

For our ancient spiritual ancestors freed from Egyptian bondage, seven weeks of desert wandering led them to Sinai. There the Ten Commandments forged with them a new sacred covenant of spirit, ethics, relationship and law – who they were, and what they must become.  

We've been tripping over it ever sense.

There are two additional places where you can read current and past Divrei Torah and other posts by Rabbi David. Check them out!

  1. The Blog on our website gives you a chance to read and re-read the Rabbi's posts.
  2. Our Facebook page, has been under utilized for many years, but now, the Rabbi has revitalized it by posting his blog posts there too. If you are a Facebook user, please be sure to "like", "follow" and/or share the Congregation Shir Ami Facebook page.

Blessings and Simchas

Dearest Shir Ami family ~

So many thanks for all your love and support during my recovery. To say that we are overwhelmed is to understate our gratitude by a mile. We are enjoying many delicious meals, along with the love and caring they bring. All the texts, emails and phone calls are the fuel for Barbara’s recovery, going strong and headed toward in-person Shabbats soon. Can’t wait to be together to give you our hugs of appreciation in person.

Love, Barbara & Evan

         "There are no shortcuts on the journey, but it is easier, better, and shorter if we walk it together.”

            Rabbi Daniel Allen

Blessings for a Happy Birthday to all of our members with February birthdays:

Larry Polansky - 2/1

Jess Rosen - 2/2

Mark Lob - 2/3

Robert Schwartz - 2/12

Steven Black - 2/17

Jane Raymond - 2/17

Phil Rosen - 2/17

Yaelle Nisinzweig - 2/19

Karen Lob - 2/27

In our weekly Blessing and Simchas, we invite members to offer congratulations on a special event in someone’s life, blessings for healing, or to remember a loved one.

If you make a special donation and would like to share it in the newsletter’s “Blessings and Simchas, let us know by emailing shirami.info@gmail.com with the subject line, "Blessings and Simchas" no later than 9:00 AM on Monday. Be sure to include the wording for how you want the donation and the donor to be recognized including your name, the occasion and the recipient's names.

You are not required to make a donation but if you chose to, you may do so on our website's donation page or by mailing a check to Congregation Shir Ami, 1273 East Putnam Avenue, P.O. Box 312, Riverside, CT 06870-9998. 

Community News

SIRS is an organization that several of our members are involved with and our congregation, as a whole, has supported through past TIKVAH Social Action projects.

There is a suggested donation of $10-$20 for IRIS-Integrated Refugee and Immigrant Services that can be collected at the walk.

Come join the community as the Bennett Center Presents

The Light of Learning: Hasidism in Poland on the Eve of the Holocaust


To learn more and register, click here. Shir Ami member, Barbara Salop is on the Advisory Board for the Bennett Center for Judaic Studies at Fairfield University. Shir Ami is a co-sponsor of this event.


Nov/Dec Issue of

Greenwich Jewish News

Please click here to read the digital version. Please see Shir Ami articles on pages 8, 17, 19, 20 and 21.

Dec/January Issue of

New Jewish Voice

Please click here to read the latest digital version.

Adult Bar/Bat Mitzvah

Adult Bar/Bat Mitzvah

This will be an awesome opportunity for those with interest.

Email us to indicate if you're interested in being part of an Adult B-Mitzvah cohort.

Please put "Adult B-Mitzvah" in the subject line.

2023-2024 Membership Drive Continues

For those of you who are not yet Members but are considering joining Shir Ami, we warmly welcome you!

The Benefits of Membership:

Being a Member of Shir Ami, allows you special access to

  • practice our faith together and learn from the Torah and each other
  • help shape our community
  • support Shir Ami's mission
  • find inspiration in our diverse offerings of services, classes and events where there is something for everybody
  • participate in rituals, group trips and events reserved for members
  • have access to our wonderful clergy for pastoral care
  • recognize our loved ones who have passed during our Yizkor service each year

We hope you will join our community at Congregation Shir Ami. The Membership Policy has details on dues, benefits, events, life-cycle and pastoral care and general involvement in congregational life. And if you already are a member, it's a good time to revisit the policy and refresh your memory on why you joined. 

If you are interested and would like to know more, please look for membership information which can be found on our website's membership page. The easy to fill out form may be completed online and submitted with a button, or can be printed out and sent to our mailing address: Congregation Shir Ami | 1273 E Putnam Ave, PO Box 312, Riverside, CT 06878

Contact us if you have any questions or would like to speak with an officer or our clergy, shirami.info@gmail.com

All are welcome to join our community!

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