Creating Beth Emet Community Together

Tuesday, May 23 | 3 Sivan 5783

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Offices are Closed for Shavuot and Memorial Day Weekend

Friday, May 26, and Monday, May 29

Beth Emet Offices will close at 3:00 pm on Thursday, May 25.

Should you need to contact someone at Beth Emet during this time, please call the main number (847-869-4230), and press 4. We look forward to connecting with you when the offices reopen on Tuesday, May 30. Due to the holiday weekend, we will not be sending out a Shabbat Newsletter on Thursday. Next week's EmetMail will be sent on Wednesday, May 31.


What does it mean to integrate guidance from outside sources and make them your own? This is a question I ask myself at this time of year – just before Shavuot, the holiday we celebrate receiving the Torah. I take in guidance from many places – people, books, laws, etc. Torah is different for me. I think about Torah broadly, expanding to include many Jewish sources and texts, our customs and rituals, and our community. Torah is different for me because inherent in our Tradition’s understanding of Torah is that our texts and traditions are given to us so that we interact with them to make them our own. In this way, revelation did not only happen at Mt. Sinai; revelation can happen any time we make meaning of Judaism.


The blessings we say before and after reading the Torah contain the idea that our Torah has divine origins. One intriguing tradition is that these ancient prayers say that God gave us Torah (natan haTorah) and God gives us Torah (notein haTorah). This continued revelation can only happen when we pull out Torah’s teachings, read them with our hearts and our minds, imagine what meanings might be inside, and allow new interpretations and revelations to emerge from us. At Beth Emet, we keep Torah alive for us through our learning, our questioning, our debating and our celebrating. 

In some ways – we become Torah. 

Oh – did I mention that we do not need to do this work alone? We learn with and from each other. We are coming together on Shavuot, this Thursday, for an evening of learning and community. We will be joined by participants in JRC, Lomdim, Shirat HaAgam, Northwestern Hillel and our local Orthodox community. 

6:30 pm on Thursday, May 25 Beth Emet is the place to be with ice cream at 7:30 pm! 

May this time of year be one of learning and growing for all of us. 


Marci Dickman

Director of Lifelong Learning

Leil Shavuot: One Jewish Evanston

This Thursday, May 25 | 6:30 pm | In-Person and Virtual Options

All are welcome as multiple Evanston Jewish communities come together under the banner of “One Jewish Evanston” to celebrate the beginning of Shavuot. Join us for all or part of the program. There is no cost to participate, and advanced registration is required. Children's programming and simultaneous adult learning begin at 6:30 pm and ice cream for all at 7:30 pm. Adult learning, worship and a light meal continue from 8:00 pm to 11:00 pm. Details and registration here

This event is sponsored by Mordecai M. Kaplan Center for Jewish Peoplehood, Fiedler Hillel at Northwestern University, Lomdim, Shirat HaAgam, Evanston’s Orthodox Community, Jewish Reconstructionist Congregation and Beth Emet Synagogue.

Shavuot continues with Festival Morning Services (including Yizkor) on Friday, May 26 at 10:00 am

Mazal Tov To Our 2022 Kabbalat Torah Graduates and Their Families!

Ines Visa

Parents: Johanna and Olivier Visa

Listen to Ines' D'var Tora

Plans: Attending Macalester College in Saint Paul, Minnesota - majoring in Neuroscience.

Daniel Durango-Cohen

Parents: Pablo and Elizabeth Durango-Cohen

Read Daniel's D'var Torah

Plans: Attending Brown University to Major in Biomedical Engineering

Jonah Pfeifer

Parents: Jeremy and Danielle Crown

Read Jonah's D'var Torah

Plans: Attending the University of Illinois in Champaign Urbana to Major in Philosophy

Owen Levens

Parents: Nathan and Lisa Levens

Read Owen's D'var Torah

Plans: Attending De Paul University

Sophia Milner-Gorvine

Parents: Ben Gorvine and Amy Milner-Gorvine

Read Sophia's D'var Torah

Plans: Attending American University for Political Science and Spanish

BE Connected
Weekly Calendar
Full Calendar with Links
Program Registration 

Tuesday, May 23

Dayenu Circle Monthly Meeting

7:30 pm | Virtual

Calling on all those concerned about climate change. At this month's meeting, we will look at prioritizing goals for the fall.  

Thursday, May 25

Erev Shavuot

Beth Emet Offices will close at 3:00 pm today in preparation for the Shavuot holiday.

Qigong with Netiva Caftori

10:00 am | Virtual

Leil Shavuot: One Jewish Evanston

6:30 pm | In-Person and Virtual Options

See above for details.

Friday, May 26

Shavuot Festival Morning Service (Includes Yizkor/Memorial Service)

10:00 am | In-Person and Virtual

Kabbalat Shabbat Babayit- Welcome Shabbat at Home

(No In-Person Services)

6:30 pm | Virtual Only

Saturday, May 27

Kahal Shabbat Morning Service

9:30 am | In-Person and Virtual

This Shabbat we will be reading: Naso I

Torah: Numbers 4:21-5:31, p. 923, Follow Along Here

Haftarah: Judges 13:2-12, p. 947, Follow Along Here

Sunday, May 28

Sunday Morning Minyan

9:00 am | In-Person and Virtual

Over the summer, the Sunday Morning Minyan will meet around town! To find out where this week’s Minyan will meet, please email Jonathan Hartman-Seeskin.

Monday, May 29

Memorial Day- Building Closed

Tuesday, May 30

New 6-Week Session

Jamberry Music with Nicole Jaworski! Co-sponsored by JBaby

9:30 am | In-Person

Join us for joyful, collaborative music-making! You and your little one will bond with each other and make new friends while we sing, dance, play, pretend, and experiment with instruments. Class is geared to kids 6 months to 2.5 years old and siblings are welcome! Every Tuesday through June 27. Register here.

Wednesday, May 31

Current Politics with Professor David Zarefsky

7:30 pm | In-Person and Virtual

*Note Date Change*

A continuing lecture-discussion class on contemporary public issues of interest to Jews as citizens.

LifeCycle Notices

Want to receive lifecycle notices for all births, weddings & death announcements?  

You can sign up for the mailing list through MyBethEmet (our member portal) on your individual page or contact Miriam.


On this Shabbat, we observe the first yahrzeit of:

Stuart Fogel, father of Louis Fogel

Beth Emet relies on fundraising to support nearly 20% of our operating budget: Consider making a donation to Beth Emet in honor of someone special or to honor the memory of a loved one on their yahrzeit. A notification will be sent. Questions? Contact the office


BE Involved

Volunteer Opportunities

BE an Usher and Make Shabbat Extra Special

Add to your celebration of Shabbat by being an usher for Kabbalat Shabbat Services. We are looking for volunteers to greet, wish everyone a Shabbat Shalom who comes for services, and offer a siddur (prayerbook) to those who are interested. It’s a great way to get to know people and a wonderful way in which to make your Shabbat a bit more joyful.  Interested? Want to learn more? Contact Bekki Kaplan.

Upcoming Congregational Opportunities

Inclusion Committee Meeting

Thursday, June 1 | 5:00 pm | In-Person and Virtual

Join the Beth Emet Inclusion Committee as we examine our current practices and explore ways to create a culture of belonging and inclusivity for Beth Emet members of all abilities. We know that all individuals can contribute to our community.

BESSY Kabbalat Shabbat Service with June Birthday Blessings

Friday, June 2 | 6:30 pm | In-Person and Virtual

Pride Shabbat Sing-Along , Crafts, Story and Yummy Snacks

Saturday, June 3 | 9:15 am | In-Person

Celebrate Pride at Beth Emet! Young Families are invited to Shabbat Sing-Along with Cantor Cotler, followed by playground fun. Perfect for families with kids 5 and under. No registration needed–just come!

Soul Stitchers- Virtual Knitting Circle

Tuesday, June 6 | 7:00 pm | Virtual

Kabbalat Shabbat Honoring Cantor Kyle Cotler

Friday, June 9 | 6:30 pm | In-Person and Virtual

5:45 pm Festive Oneg

On this Shabbat, we will honor and thank Cantor Cotler as he sets forth on his new journey at Congregation Or Ami in Calabasas, CA. Prior to services, we will have a Festive Oneg starting at 5:45 pm.

Social Justice Committee Meeting

Monday, June 12 | 7:00 pm | Virtual

Community News

Every Conceivable Way – Family Building LGBTQ+ Community  

Wednesday, June 07| 7:30 pm | Virtual 

A free webinar for Jewish couples and individuals seeking support to build their families. Presentation and Q&A featuring: Rabbi David Chapman, Congregation Beth Shalom, Dr. Jennifer Hirshfeld-Cytron, Reproductive Endocrinology & Infertility Specialist at Fertility Centers of Illinois, and Dena Levy, Attorney, Levy Law Solutions. 

21st Annual Community Mental Health Conference: Untying the Human Knot: Managing Stress and Anxiety in Today's World

Saturday, June 10 | 9:30 am - 3:30 pm

In-Person at Evanston Township High School

Explore the stress response and the impact it can have on our physical and mental health, as well as when everyday anxiety becomes an anxiety disorder, one of the most common mental health challenges in the US. You’ll also learn what you can do to manage stress, and about local community resources. Sponsored by the Naomi Ruth Cohen Institute for Mental Health Education.

Kol Zimrah Sings!

Sunday, June 11 | 3:00 pm | In-Person at Makom Solel Lakeside Congregation and Virtual

Kol Zimrah, Chicago’s premier Jewish community choir, is proud to announce its first in-person benefit concert since 2019: Kol Zimrah Sings! Kol Zimrah Sings! will celebrate the choir by honoring its past while looking ahead to its continued growth and evolution.

Kol Or 6th Annual Juneteenth Havdalah

Saturday, June 17 | 6:00 pm | In-Person

Join us at KAM Isaiah Israel as we joyfully celebrate Juneteenth Havdalah presented by the Kol Or Jews of Color Caucus of JCUA. The theme is Liberation: Can you feel it? Come celebrate our diverse identities with our community.

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Current COVID Protocols: Masks are recommended, but not required. We ask that whenever you are in the building, we each continue to respect one another’s personal space and comfort levels. Everyone must still have the most recent booster shot they are eligible for.

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