Kehilla's Weekly Newsletter

Thursday, 10 December 2020 | 24th of Kislev, 5781 | כ״ד בְּכִסְלֵו תשפ״א

Contents: This Week at Kehilla | Upcoming Events | Mazel Tov
Community Announcements | In the Wider Community
Welcome Wren Ganin-Pinto, Musical Prayer Leader in Training!
We’re thrilled to announce that Wren Ganin-Pinto will be joining our bima team as a Musical Prayer Leader in training, beginning in December. Wren is working with Hazzan Shulamit, and will be leading parts of some Shabbat morning services (starting on December 12!). Wren will also join the MPL team for the 2021-22 Bar/Bat Mitzvah class. Learn more here!
Recording Available! Public Health Update with Dr. Ori Tzvieli
Dr. Ori, Kehilla board member and Contra Costa Deputy Health Office, generously provided an hour-long talk and Q&A session about COVID-19 with Kehilla congregants on Monday. You can now see the full recording on YouTube.
Adopt-a-Family with Shalom Bayit for Hanukkah
One of Shalom Bayit’s most heartwarming programs is Adopt-A-Family which gives individuals and community groups an opportunity to anonymously "adopt" their clients (survivors of domestic abuse) and their children during Chanukah. Sponsors choose the presents they provide based on wish lists that the families prepare. More info here!
THIS WEEK AT KEHILLA
Hanukkah with Kehilla - Eight Wild Nights!
Thursday, December 10-17, 6pm-6:30pm
During this unique Hanukkah, we will be leading virtual candle-lighting, prayer and song at a different congregant’s home each night. Please come ready with your menorah, candles and matches - candle-lighting begins right at 6pm! Visit our Hanukkah webpage for the full programming schedule.

Dec. 10: Saxe-Taller Family
Dec. 11: Rabbi David Cooper - BIPOC Shabbannukkah at 5:30pm!
Dec. 12: Rabbi Dev & Hazzan Shulamit - Havdalah starts at 5:40pm!
Dec. 13: Binya Koatz - with a Glitter hangout at 6:30pm!
Dec. 14: Debbie Fier
Dec. 15: Sharon Grodin
Dec. 16: Beth Dickinson and Rachel Bloch
Dec. 17: Lia Barrow & Family

RSVP and Join Us Here - just one registration needed for all eight nights!
Friday Morning Meditation Sit
Friday, December 11, 7:50am-8:45am
With Rabbi Dev. Short teaching at 7:55, silent sit from 8:00-8:30, mourner’s kaddish and announcements at 8:30.
Join us here! Passcode: ModehAni
BIPOC Shabbanukkah !
Friday, December 11, 5:30pm-7:30pm
With Ruthie Levin, Kehilla’s People of Color organizer. Beloved community, this space is for Black, Brown and Indigenous adults and children, folks who identify as People of Color and their white identifying siblings, parents and partners. We’ll light the candles together to celebrate Hanukkah and Shabbat! Join us here!
Hanukkah Shabbat Vayeshev Morning Service *CC
Saturday, December 12, 10:30pm-12:30pm
With Rabbi Dev, Hazzan Shulamit, and Wren Ganin-Pinto. As we have Shabbat morning with musical prayer, torah and community. We’ll sing HALLEL, psalms of longing, gratitude, and praise as part of our celebration of Chanukah! We’re delighted to welcome Wren Ganin-Pinto to the virtual bima, as they are being mentored as a new Musical Prayer Leader. Join us here!

*CC: Closed captioning will be available at this service.
Shabbat Afternoon "Tisch" with Rabbi David Cooper: Varieties of Jewish Theologies
Saturday, December 12, 4pm-5:30pm
Following a tradition of Torah study on Shabbat afternoon, a class on a variety of ways Jews have related to God and/or the idea of God. This week the atheism of Sherwin Wine and the reconstruction of the God idea by Mordecai Kaplan. There is a misconception that there is a single Jewish way of belief about God. Our Jewish theologies have evolved over time and differ within each time period and even within each community. Moreover, each of us can operate within ourselves with different relationships to God or the concept of God. This survey class is to enable people to consider and to honor their own theological (or atheological) and spiritual perspectives. The tisch ends with Havdala and Chanukah candlelighting at 5:40pm.
Working Class/Low Income Group
Sunday, December 13 , 4pm-6pm
If you are working class/low income and have experienced class/income in ways that have impacted you personally and/or in community, and you are looking for a place to talk and get support, we hope that you will join us. Please contact the coordinator to join us!
Beginning Hebrew: Decode the Alef-Bet, Part 2
Sunday, December 13 , 7:20pm-8:45pm
Join Bracha Stone for the next part in a series designed for those who desire to get friendly and familiar with this precious language. If you have SOME knowledge of the alef-bet, this may be the right place for you. We have made a start, and are working through our book at a moderate pace. Register here!
Torah from the Beginning: The Book of Genesis
Monday, December 14, 1:30pm-2:30pm
Join Rebecca Kaplan and occasional guest speakers for an opportunity to study the Torah as it unfolds week by week for 12 weeks; each class covers the same parasha that will be read/discussed at that week’s Shabbat service.
Book Discussion Group
Monday, December 14 , 7pm-9pm
In December we are voting on the list of books to read in 2021. Contact the coordinator to join us!
Octopretzel Hanukkah Performance - Live on Zoom!!
Tuesday, December 15, 5pm - 6:15pm
Join Bay Area’s favorite kids’ band Octopretzel for a super fun family friendly Hanukkah show! Fun and interactive songs, klezmer music, traditional candle lighting with blessings, and super silly puppets – all from the comfort of your own home. Cosponsored by the East Bay JCC.
Board of Trustees Meeting
Tuesday, December 15, 6:45pm-9pm
All members are welcome!
Wednesday Morning Meditation Sit
Wednesday, December 16, 7:50am-8:45am
With Rabbi Dev. Short teaching at 7:55, silent sit from 8:00-8:30, mourner’s kaddish and announcements at 8:30.
Join us here! Passcode: ModehAni
Folks with White Privilege Affinity Group
Wednesday, December 16 , 6:30pm-8:30pm
Any Kehilla – connected folks who identify as white, we’d love to have you, whether you’ve ever been to these meetings before or not! We meet every month to work on decentering white supremacy at Kehilla and working to make Kehilla more welcoming to people of color – we share feelings, build skills, and take actions. This is part of the Belonging & Allyship Initiative. Contact the coordinator to join us! And see our reading materials here.
UPCOMING EVENTS
Kabbalat Shabbat
Friday, December 18, 5:30pm-6:30pm
With Hazzan Shulamit and Julie Nesnansky. As we welcome Shabbat with music and prayer, and connect with the community. We’ll begin with candle lighting and end with kiddush and motzi– bring candles, juice, or challah to your zoom prayer space if you’d like!
Shabbat Service and Yanir Charney Weintraub becoming Bar Mitzvah (CC)
Saturday, December 19, 10am - 12:30pm
Join us as we celebrate Shabbat and Yanir’s simcha!
Tot Shabbat
Saturday, December 19, 10:30am - 11am
With Jen Miriam and Alon Altman and their Puppet Friends! Designed for babies, tots, and children up to 5 with their families! Join us for Shabbat songs and prayers, dancing and puppets and community. Cosponsored by the Jewish Baby Network.
Tikkun Ha-NeFesh: Healing Racism, Unpacking White Privilege
Sunday, December 20, 10am - 11:30am
Facilitated by Rabbi Shifrah Tobacman and Chaplain Laura Fitch. This is part of Kehilla's Belonging & Allyship Initiative.RSVP’s are strongly encouraged to give facilitators a sense of how many people to expect. To RSVP email Laura at lafitch@gmail.com.
Beginning Hebrew: Decode the Alef-Bet, Part 2
Sunday, December 20 , 7:20pm-8:45pm
Join Bracha Stone for the next part in a series designed for those who desire to get friendly and familiar with this precious language. If you have SOME knowledge of the alef-bet, this may be the right place for you. We have made a start, and are working through our book at a moderate pace. Register here!
Torah from the Beginning: The Book of Genesis
Monday, December 21, 1:30pm-2:30pm
Join Rebecca Kaplan and occasional guest speakers for an opportunity to study the Torah as it unfolds week by week for 12 weeks; each class covers the same parasha that will be read/discussed at that week’s Shabbat service.
MAZEL TOV
NEW! Mazel Tov Section in the Weekly
We're reviving our Mazel Tov section to give us all a place to celebrate and share in life's sweeter moments. Submit here by selecting the Mazel Tov section. Newborns: If you have a newborn in your family you'd like to share the news about, please send a photograph to Dee so we can send a happy news announcement to the community.
Mazel Tov! Janet Linder's Retirement
After a long and satisfying career, Janet Linder is retiring from her private psychotherapy and consultation practice. She looks forward to more exercise, especially swimming, reading and napping. You can reach Janet here.
Mazel Tov! Aurora Levins-Morales Launches Jewish Liberation Fund
As a member of the 100% JOC steering committee of the new Jewish Liberation Fund, Aurora Levins Morales is excited to announce its launch as a funder of Jewish social justice. Congratulations and more information can be sent/requested here!
Mazel Tov! Rabbi Chaya Gusfield has Retired as a Kaiser Chaplain
Rabbi Chaya Gusfield has retired from her work at Kaiser Oakland and Richmond as one of the Palliative Care Chaplains. You can reach her at cgusfield@gmail.com.
COMMUNITY ANNOUNCEMENTS
Kehilla Board Message: Please Vote on this Amendment Proposal!
This month, we ask you to vote on a proposed bylaw amendment to the Kehilla Board of Trustees. (The community must vote to approve any bylaws amendment, including those first approved by the Board.) Read more about the amendment by clicking here, including the full text of the amendment proposal. Cast your vote here before December 31st!
Hineinu Campaign
Like a Havdalah candle, we are braided together. Now more than ever, we need to build our resilience. Please consider joining our Hineinu Campaign with a sustaining gift to Kehilla by clicking here. Your contributions make it possible for us to house immigrants, support those who are struggling, care for our building, and sustain Kehilla’s people.
Immigration Committee Request
A family of four that we are accompanying is looking for housing, and an individual is looking for a car. This responsible, caring, employed family is trying to get established in this country. Looking for a studio to 2-bedroom for 4 months or longer. And a n asylum seeker in Kehilla accompaniment program just got his California driver’s license!  He is looking to buy a sedan-sized car or larger or a mini-van in good condition. Learn more here.
Kehilla Homeless Action Depot
Kehilla now has a Homeless Action Depot where we are collecting donations from our community and beyond to meet immediate needs on the streets. You can help! See this link to the Economic Justice Committee blog to learn more and get involved!
Norah Needs You!!
Norah is a 5 year old in our Kehilla Community who needs a bone-marrow donor. You might save a life by joining the marrow-donor registry, which is easy and free to do. If that isn't an option for you, there are other ways you can help!! Learn more here.
Closed Captioning at Kehilla Shabbat Services
Beginning November 21st, Kehilla will provide closed captioning for its Saturday morning Shabbat services. Services with this feature will include "CC" in the title on the Calendar and Weekly. Please share any questions or comments.
Automated Payment Notices!
This is a friendly reminder that we have launched a new system that automatically sends emails to folks when their monthly payments are overdue. If you see one but have already sent in a check or paid the balance, please disregard the email. If you have any questions or feedback please contact our bookkeeper Molly at molly@kehillasynagogue.org or call (510) 929-0602 (Tuesdays and Thursday, 2pm-7pm).
Phishing Scams Continue in Rabbi Dev's Name
Please be aware of phishing emails being sent under Rabbi Dev's name. If you get such an email, please report it to Google as a phishing email, and notify the Kehilla office. You can learn more here.
Make Clergy Appointments with Rabbi Dev!
Rabbi Dev welcomes one-on-one conversations with Kehilla members! Please contact Dee and she will help you schedule time with them.
The Rabbis’ Discretionary Fund is Here for You
Through the generosity of many in our community, the Rabbis' Discretionary Fund (RDF) can help with modest financial challenges: Learn more here.
Bikkur Cholim: Pastoral / Spiritual Care
Rabbi Chaya Gusfield is coordinating a wonderful group of members who are rabbis and chaplains to offer support to our members who are ill or caring for loved ones who are sick. Learn more here!
IN THE WIDER COMMUNITY
"Tiny colorful houses for homeless Oakland youth almost ready" - Kehilla in the J Weekly
"Kehilla member Alex Madonik saw the model tiny house at Beth El and arranged for it to be brought to Kehilla. The synagogue had already been involved in earlier construction volunteering in Oakland and Madonik said it was a good fit for the community. Volunteers worked on various aspects of construction over the summer, from nailing to installing insulation to painting..."
Hear from our Community Leaders
Kehilla Community Synagogue is comprised of people of all colors, genders, sexual orientations, including people with a wide range of religious and spiritual persuasions. We are committed to being a safe and welcoming place for everyone in our community.

Kehilla Community Synagogue | 1300 Grand Ave. | Piedmont, CA 94610
510-547-2424