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Ohel Shalom Torah Center Newsletter
Parashat Acharei Mot-Mivarchim Iyar 5779

Contact Us

 Ohel Shalom 


Check out our new and improved website at 

To determine if the Eruv is operational either click on the phone number link below, or call
 1-773-74-ERUV-2 (743-7882) after 2pm every Friday afternoon or every Erev Yom Tov.

Join Our Mailing List
In This Issue
Office Contact During Construction
This Week at Ohel Shalom
Pesach Recap
Project Connection Update
Amazon Smile
Eruv Check- In
Kollel Korner
Davening Times
Candle lighting 
7:32 pm
Shir HaShirim 7:27 pm
Mincha 7:00 pm
Shabbat starts 7:52  pm
Shacharit 8:15 am
 Mincha 7:07 pm
Shabbat ends
8:43 pm

Regular Weekdays

7:45 am
Monday, Thursday
6:15 am

 Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday
6:30 am 

Sunday- Thursday
7:42 pm 
Late Arvit following Kollel 
10:00 pm

Regular Shiurim  

 Open Seder  
Rabbi Olstein
Parasha Shiur
Wed 8:30pm (Hebrew)
Thurs 8:00pm (English)
Rabbi Moshe Miller
Tomer Devorah
Sundays after Mincha/Arvit  
Father and Son  
Torah and Chamin
Thursday 8 pm  
Rabbi Yosef Asayag
Monetary Issues in Halacha
 Shabbat Afternoon
45 min. before Mincha (Hebrew) 
Ateret Chaya 
Simcha Hall  

 Nachat on Shabbat
Kids learning program
1 hour before Mincha  
Men and Women

Ner Foundation 
Rabbi Raccah   

Parashat HaShavu'a
Wednesdays at 8:30pm  

Personalities in the Bible
Motza'ai Shabbat during the winter
see you next year!


Male Member Shiur
Pele Yoetz in English
contact Shlomo Mizrahi
Yalizu Chasidim in Hebrew
contact David Ben Abu 



Seuda Shlishit






Breakfast Fund

Day- $15 

Week- $75 

Month- $250 

Year - $2400  


Fish Fund

$20 month 


Hamin Fund

Monthly contribution 



Chair Sponsors

(127 sold - 133 left)

$20 each  


New Set of Artscroll Talmud Yerushalmi  

$35.00 for Talmud Yerushalmi




Siddurim Shaarim Ba'Tifilla

($15.00 each) 


Chumash w/simanim  

($20 each) 

20 New Talitot  

(4 sponsored - 16 left)

$75.00 each 


Office Contact Info During Construction
During office hours, Mrs Sror can be reached directly at

Office hours are Monday-Friday 9:15 am - 1:15 pm.

Use the regular 773-465-5274 to leave a message for Rabbi Raccah or for Mrs Sror outside of office hours. This number will not be answered during construction and is voicemail only.

This Week at Ohel Shalom
Mazal Tov! BiSiman Tov!
Seruya Bar Mitzvah
The Kehillah is invited to join in the Simcha of  Yeshaya and Pnina Seruya BE"H  THIS Shabbat, Parashat Acharei Mot, to celebrate the Bar Mitzvah of their son, Moshe Benyahu Seruya. Mazal Tov to the entire extended Seruya and Elkaim families
Kiddush Sponsorship
This week's Kiddush is sponsored by the Seruya family in honor of Moshe Benyahu Seruya's Bar Mitzvah. The Kehillah thanks the Seruyas for their generosity.
With Sorrow 
With sorrow we relay the passing of Mr. Yanky Turner a"h, husband of Mrs. Heidi Turner, son of our friends, Reb Shabsi and Hesha Turner, and father of Dovid, Danny, Leah and Sara.
There was a brief Levaya on Monday, April 30th in Skokie and continued  on Tuesday in New York.
מִן הַשַׁמָיִם תְנוּחָמוּ, וְלֹא תֵדְעוּ לְדַאֲבָה עוֺד

Early Shabbat Minyan Begins THIS Week BE"H

Once again, BE"H Ohel Shalom will hold Early Shabbat Minyanim during the summer months. Last year there was no later Minyan on Fridays. This week, the early Minyan will begin at 7 PM.

Please inform  Chanoch Raccah or Yosef Zayan if you are interested in an early Minyan and/or a regular later Minyan so we can determine if both are necessary.


Kollel Has B"H Resumed

Kollel BE"H resumed Tuesday, April 30th and with it the 10 pm Arvit.
Rosh Chodesh Iyar

We will bless the new month of Iyar this Shabbat. Rosh Chodesh will begin on Motza'ai Shabbat, May 4th, and continue for 2 days, on the 5th and 6th. May it be a chodesh tov! 

Birkat HaIlanot

The trees are moving towards blossoming but have not yet arrived. BE"H we will keep your informed so that we can say Birkat HaIlanot as a community.
Learning Group with Rabbi Raccah on Pele Yoetz
Please join us for a weekly learning group with Rabbi Raccah on the Pele Yoetz. This group meets weekly, and is only open to male members of the Kehillah. For more information  text Shlomo Mizrahi at 323-274-8178.    
Yalizu Chasidim Learning Group
with Rabbi Raccah in Hebrew

Due to the success of the Pele Yoetz Learning Group, Rabbi Raccah has B"H started a similar group in Hebrew, Yalizu Chasidim. The group has B"H already met a few times. Interested? Contact David Ben Abu for more information. 

Pesach Recap

With the passage of the Pesach holiday, we would like to share a few of the special moments of the Chag. Certainly the Tifilot were wonderful. The Pesach spirit, as well as many new and not so new faces of visitors were wonderful to see as well.

7th Day of Pesach Shiur

On the night of the 7th day of Pesach, Rabbi Raccah gave a Shiur about the miracles of the Splitting of the Sea. Two years ago, Rabbi Raccah elucidated 25 of the 50 root miracles and last year he went through the remaining 25 miracles. This year he started over. Notwithstanding the very late start time of 11:00 pm, over a Minyan of people attended the Shiur! At Halachic midnight (about 12:47 am), the program ended with a spirited singing of the Shirat HaYam and was followed by a Kaddish. All who attended mentioned the feeling of inspiration they enjoyed.

Se'udat Ni'ilat HaChag

After Mincha on the last day of Pesach, the Kehilla gathered for Se'udat Ni'ilat HaChag. All enjoyed the final Matzah Meal of the holiday and Divrei Torah that Rabbi Raccah shared! 

Project Connection UPDATE
(new info below)

As the construction B"H has significantly advanced, you may want to dedicate an item. As you can see, B"H many items have already been taken. The Rabbi and Committee still have not begun fundraising efforts, so this is your chance.

Two things to keep in mind:
1) Items have been set at all price points from as little as $180 and up. This was done intentionally to allow all our members to BE"H participate and be a part of reaching this vital milestone in our history.
2) The pledges for this campaign are payable over the next year and a half (till Rosh HaShana 5781 - 2020) and are separate to all other pledges and charges. The opportunities are on a "first come first served basis" so don't delay!!
UPDATE: B"H the Sacramento Entrance has been dedicated.

For a printable version of this flyer click here

Construction Updates

During Pesach construction was shut down of course. B"H construction has resumed with electrical work and more. As construction gears up again BE"H, we hope to share more photos next week.

Amazon Smile

Do you purchase items from Amazon? If so, you are in a perfect position to provide the Kehilla with much needed financial support with zero cost or additional effort from you, beyond following a few easy steps just one time.

Amazon has a philanthropic branch called Amazon Smile. All you need to do is sign up (no cost) and select our Kehilla as your charity of choice and Amazon will give the Kehilla 0.5% of all your eligible purchases! There are millions of eligible items.

Please take advantage of this opportunity
and sign up immediately.

Click here to select Sephardic Community Shaare Mizrah as your charity.

The Geshem Fund

It has been very busy for the Geshem Fund. Significant sums of money have been distributed to dozens of people to help with rent, utilities, food and many other purposes. This has depleted the fund. Please help us help those in need.

Please open your hearts and your wallets and make checks out to the order of GESHEM FUND and give to Rabbi Raccah or put in the mailbox of the office or the shul and Ayelet will give it to Rabbi Raccah.  As you thank Hashem for all that He has blessed you with, remember the less fortunate who are struggling and in desperate need of assistance. Thank you.
Eruv Check-In
Is the Chicago Eruv up and operational for Shabbat? If you utilize the Eruv, it is your responsibility to check each week before Shabbat if it is up. There are now some new and easy ways to do this.

The Chicago Eruv has set up a website with this information, as well as other pertinent halachot and information about the eruv. The web address is

You can call the hotline on Erev Shabbat after 2pm and listen to the recorded message or sign up to receive a weekly e-mail update on the status of the eruv.

Click here to sign up to have the eruv weekly email update sent directly to you! 
To Determine if the Eruv is Operational either click on the phone number link here, or call 1-773-74-ERUV-2 (743-7882) after 2pm every Friday afternoon or every Erev Yom Tov.

Kollel Korner of the Sephardic Community Kollel
Sephardic Community Kollel
Come learn with the Sephardic Community Kollel from 8:00pm to 10:00pm, Sunday through Thursday. Please contact the Kollel Coordinator, Rabbi Yosef Olstein to arrange a learning partner or to receive information about the Kollel and its programs. Rabbi Olstein can be reached at 773-338-8046 or by email at Sephardic Community Kollel.   
Kollel Has Resumed 
Kollel resumed on Tuesday, April 30th, together with the 10 PM Arvit.  

Donations to the Kollel
Donations to the Kollel can also be made via credit card. Please call the shul at 773-465-5274 or email the Kollel for details.
Sponsor Learning in the Kollel
Our Rabbis tell us the great power and merit associated with supporting Torah learning. To that end, consider sponsoring a week or a month of learning in the Kollel.

Examples of sponsorship purposes include: in memory of a deceased loved one for their Azkarah, to merit a Rifuah Shilamah, or to honor a loved one or friend. In addition to the great merit of supporting Torah in our community, your sponsorship will be marked with printed pages noting the intent of your support that are placed in stands on the tables in the Beit HaMidrash for the duration of your sponsorship period. 
Here are the costs for the various sponsorships:
A night of learning -  $52
A week of learning -  $100
A month of learning - $400
The Kollel appreciates the following sponsors of learning: 
A week of learning has been sponsored by Yosef Miller for May 1-8 in memory of his father, Shabsai ben David and Miriam. May his Neshama merit an Aliyah.
A week of learning has been sponsored by Yigal ben Rivka for May 1-8 in memory of Shimon ben Aziza. May his Neshama merit an Aliyah.
A month of learning has been sponsored anonymously for the month of May. The Kollel thanks the patrons for their generosity.
    Halacha of the Week  

Mutual Respect

Our Sages teach us that Rabbi Akiva had twelve-thousand pairs of students and they all died in a plague during the period between Pesach and Shavuot. The reason why these righteous scholars were punished so harshly was because they did not respect one another.
Certainly, this does not mean that they denigrated one another; rather, they were expected to treat one another with more respect based on their level of greatness.
Let us quote an unbelievable incident which portrays the tremendous inter-personal sensitivity the great Gaon Harav Moshe Feinstein zt"l behaved with and we will understand how much we must act with respect to one another.
Hagaon Harav Moshe Feinstein zt"l was one of the luminaries of his generation and was the chief halachic authority in the United States. Maran Rabbeinu Ovadia Yosef zt"l once remarked, "Do you know whom you can recite the 'She'chalak Me'Chochmato Li're'av' upon nowadays? You may certainly recite it upon Hagaon Harav Moshe Feinstein but I am not sure if it can be recited upon anyone else." When Maran zt"l would study Hagaon Rav Moshe's works, he would be astonished by the author's sheer genius.
When Harav Feinstein was older, it became increasingly more difficult for him to walk to his Yeshiva which was near his home. His relatives approached a philanthropist who made a car available for the venerable sage to transport him from one place to another. A Kollel student was appointed as the rabbi's driver and he readily and joyfully accepted this new position. Every day, this young Kollel student thought of ways to make the rabbi's time in the vehicle more comfortable. He would always get up and open the door for the Rav and he would help him enter and exit the car.
Indeed, Hagaon Harav Feinstein happily returned the favor and he would answer the young man's questions and converse with him throughout the ride.
Once, when driving the Rav from the Yeshiva to his home, the young man opened the door for the Rav and after he was seated, the driver failed to notice that the Rav's fingers were still clutching the side of the door and he slammed the door hard on the Rav's fingers.
In a split second, the Rav decided not to cry out in pain and instead to be silent and wait until the young man turned around at which point he would open the door and release his fingers. When the driver turned around, the Rav tried to open the door but it was locked. Even so, the Rav decided to keep silent, for he would arrive home in several moments in any case.
During the ride, the young man began to converse with the rabbi, "How is the rabbi feeling?" The Rav responded, "Baruch Hashem, everything is fine." The conversation continued but the pain was unbearable and the great sage wished to arrive home already.
Not far from the Rav's home, there was a huge traffic snarl and the car could not proceed forward. The Rav turned to the driver and asked, "Maybe I should walk the rest of the way home since the traffic is not moving anyway?" The young man replied, "G-d-forbid! I have accepted the job of taking the rabbi from door to door so that the rabbi should not exert himself." The great Gaon once again fell silent and continued bearing the excruciating pain quietly.
When they finally arrived at the Rav's home, the Rav got out of the car and walked towards his house; when he saw that the young man drove away, the great sage turned around and fell faint on the ground.
An ambulance was immediately called and the Rav was taken to the hospital. The doctors asked him what happened but he refused to say. When the doctors implored him to tell them so that they would be able to provide him with the appropriate medical treatment, the Gaon finally disclosed what had happened. His relatives were shocked and asked the Rav, "Was this necessary? You could have caused yourself irreversible damage including not being able to write the books which illuminate the eyes of the Jewish nation with your brilliance any longer! Would it not have been simpler to tell the young man to open the door for you?"
The great sage replied, "This young man does everything for me to have a good feeling while he drives me around. How can I hurt him by making him aware that he caused me terrible pain? He will certainly never forgive himself! It was therefore necessary for me to be silent at any price."
This is the behavior of one who succeeded in purifying himself and his actions completely. Let us learn from his actions the importance of paying attention to the feelings of one another and certainly not to hurt one another.


If you have a Simcha occurring within the next few months that you would like to have added to the calendar, please call the off ice at 773-465-5274 or email the office with the link provided in the sidebar at the top of the email.  

May 2 - Yom HaShoah
May 5-6 - Rosh Chodesh Iyar
May 8 - Yom Hazikaron
May 9 - Yom Haatzmaut
May 23 - Lag BaOmer 
Community Section
Yom Iyun- Israel 360 
This Sunday, Rosh Chodesh Iyar, community wide Yom Iyun, Israel 360 - Celebrating Israel around the world, across the USA
Mizrachi-Religious Zionists of Chicago invites you to our Community-wide Yom Iyun-Israel 360. Three presentations sharing inspiring ideas on Israel - the Land, People & Torah of Israel. Rabbi Yitzchak Blau:"Torat Eretz Yisrael & Torat Bavel According to Netziv & Rav Kook"; Dr. Carl Hochhauser: "Hashem as a Part of Everyday Secular & Religious Life in Israel"; R av Binny Freedman: "Israel: Why are we here?"
Sun., May 5, RZC Center, 3740 Dempster. 
 9:15 AM Refreshments, 9:45 Program.  
Yom HaZikaron Commemoration 
Join us for a community-wide Yom HaZikaron Commemoration, Azkara and Multi-Media Presentation. Tuesday evening, May 7th, Mincha 7:20 PM; Presentation 7:30, at ICJA, 8233 Central Park Avenue Skokie. Presented by the YU Torah Mitzion Kollel in partnership with the cRc and Mizrachi Chicago.
Yom Ha'atzmaut
Celebrate 71 years of the State of Israel with Bnei Akiva of Chicago. Join us May 8th at ICJA, 8233 Central Park. 6:40 PM - Mincha, 6:55 PM - Yom Hazikaron Tekes, 7:40 PM Tefilla Chagigit, followed by light dinner and shiurim (RSVP required). RSVP and support Bnei Akiva at For more information, email or call 847-674-9733 ext 5.
Simon Weisenthal Center
The Simon Wiesenthal Center and Congregation Or Torah invite the community to "Confronting the Old/New Anti- Semitism" - A panel conversation.
A panel discussion on Modern Anti-Semitism, moderated by Rabbi Abraham Cooper, Associate Dean of the Simon Wiesenthal Center. Panelists include Gunther Jikeli and Patrick John; both with differing expertise in the field. 
May 16th, 2019, at 7:00 PM.
Location: Congregation Or Torah, 3800 Dempster Street, Skokie. Event is free. Registration required:
Yom Yerushalayim Art Contest
Deadline is May 20th. Open to grades 3 - 12.  
Calling All Students - Elementary through High School: Enter the Mizrachi - Religious Zionists of Chicago Yom Yerushalayim 5779 Art Contest, sponsored in memory of Howard D. Geller z"l and Sheldon Robinson z"l. Three divisions: Grades 3-5; 6-8; 9-12. First place prizes range from $100 to $400. Deadline is Monday, May 20, 2019. Awards presented at RZC Yom Yerushalayim Celebration, Sunday morning, June 2, at Or Torah in Skokie. For full contest rules and entry form, visit: artcontest.rzc .us
Bike the Drive
Bike the Drive for Chai Lifeline, Sunday, May 26th, 2019. For more information go to Bike the Drive with Chai Lifeline Midwest is back for the 11th year! On May 26, you can bike, enjoying the gorgeous lakefront and downtown views, while raising money for families here in Chicago.
Register with Chai Lifeline at and receive a complimentary T-shirt, delicious breakfast for after the ride, and lots of fun activities at Grant Park.  
For any questions, please email
Momma Chef's Soup Kitchen

Momma Chef's Soup Kitchen at Congregation K.I.N.S. has opened their doors to feed meals to those in need.

Once a week on Tuesday evenings they will provide a kosher four-course homemade hot dinner, as well as bagged lunches to-go, at no costs to their guests.
Please help to spread the word.. whether it be to volunteer or to invite someone who may be in need of food and a friendly face...  
Tuesday Evenings 6:00 PM
For more info email or call 773-761-4000.  
(Volunteer shifts run from 4:30 pm - 7:15 pm)
To sign up for a shift click here.  
To donate click here.
All food served is Kosher and prepared in a supervised kitchen.

Click Here to volunteer or email for more information.