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Ohel Shalom Torah Center Newsletter
Parashat Kedoshim 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
Project Connection Update
Amazon Smile
Eruv Check- In
Kollel Korner
Davening Times
Candle lighting 
7:39 pm
Shir HaShirim 6:45 pm
Mincha 7:00 pm
Shabbat starts 7:59  pm
Shacharit 8:15 am
 Mincha 7:14 pm
Shabbat ends
8:50 pm

Regular Weekdays

7:45 am
Monday, Thursday
6:15 am

 Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday
6:30 am 

Sunday- Thursday
7:49 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! 
Mazal Tov to our Kollel teacher,  Rabbi Yosef Asayag and his wife Miriam on the birth and Birit of their baby boy, David . May he grow to Torah, Chuppah and Ma'asim Tovim. 

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

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

Birkat HaIlanot

This year mysteriously the two pear trees are out of sync. One has fully blossomed, while the other is not there yet. Hoping that the second tree will blossom by Sunday, we are tentatively setting our community Birkat HaIlanot for Sunday May 12th at 7:15 pm. If the non-blossomed tree doesn't blossom by Shabbat, we will have to reschedule. Please listen for the announcements on Shabbat. 

   Rabbi Raccah's Wednesday Night Parasha Shiur
On Wednesday, May 22, Lag BaOmer, Rabbi Raccah's Parashat HaShavua Shiur will NOT be taking place. The Shiur will BE"H resume the following week, May 29th at 8.30 pm.
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. 

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

This week the primary effort has been on the electrical work. It is difficult to show the B"H considerable progress for this in pictures, but we will still present a few.

"Light Cans" in the ceiling

HVAC and electric work in ceiling

Electric piping and ceiling cans in offices

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.   
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 month of learning has been sponsored anonymously for the month of May. The Kollel thanks the patrons for their generosity.
    Halacha of the Week  

 Honoring the Torah-The Philanthropist's Burial

The Mishnah (Pirkei Avot, Chapter 4) states: "Rabbi Yose says: If one honors the Torah, one himself is honored by people." This means that when one realizes the intrinsic value of the Torah and honors the Torah and its sages, one will likewise be respected by others.

An incident occurred approximately a year ago. A rabbi living in the New York area decided with his wife that they would not stay home for Rosh Hashanah that year and would travel to a different city. His wife told him that she tried to visit her parents' graves every Erev Rosh Hashanah in nearby New Jersey and that instead, this year, she would try to do so sometime before Erev Rosh Hashanah.

Sometime during the month of Elul, this rabbi and his wife were in New Jersey and suddenly, the wife remembered that she wanted to visit her parents' graves whenever she had the chance. They therefore took a detour to the cemetery where the wife's parents were buried and stopped there to pray for a little while. When they were ready to leave, he saw a group of people gathered on the side of the cemetery. They beckoned him over and told him that they had come to bury a certain deceased individual who had no family and wanted to form a Minyan to say Kaddish for him. The rabbi agreed, as this was a great Mitzvah before the Day of Judgment. His wife waited for him while he joined the group and the member of the Chevra Kadisha (burial society) recited Kaddish for the deceased. They then lowered the deceased into the grave, but the rabbi was then astounded when he saw the members of the Chevra Kadisha were not covering the deceased with dirt and instead, they turned around to leave. The rabbi immediately asked them, "What are you doing? Why are you not burying the deceased?" They replied that a tractor would arrive in a few minutes and it would cover the deceased using its shovel. The rabbi was utterly shocked by what he heard as it was highly inappropriate to bury this poor Jew in such a manner. He therefore decided to remain there to see what would happen.

Several minutes later, a small tractor driven by a non-Jew pulls up. The rabbi turned to the driver and said, "Do you mind lending me your shovel so that I can cover the grave myself?" The driver said, "Sure. Take the shovel and do whatever you like." The rabbi indeed spent the next half-hour digging and covering the grave all by himself. When he finished, he inserted the sign with the deceased's name on it into the ground as is customary and turned to leave. When he joined his wife again, they could not get over the bizarre occurrence that had just come their way. They had not even planned on visiting the cemetery that day and they ended up paying final respects to this deceased individual. However, the rabbi was unable to find out any more information about the deceased.

Several days later, the rabbi called one of his own rabbis from the Yeshiva he attended in his youth (Yeshiva Ner Yisrael in Baltimore, Maryland) to wish him a Shana Tova. Within their conversation, this bizarre episode in the cemetery came up. When the rabbi mentioned the deceased's name, his rabbi let out a shriek. He told his student, "When you were younger and you came to learn in Yeshiva, your parents refused to pay tuition for you. I therefore reached out to a certain man to help cover the cost of your tuition for the years you spent learning in the Yeshiva. He graciously agreed. That man never had a wife and children. His name was the one you just mentioned. Apparently, he was about to be buried in a most demeaning manner but Heaven would have things turn out differently. You had the merit of being able to repay some of the goodness you received from him by burying him honorably in the Jewish tradition."


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 9 - Yom Haatzmaut
May 23 - Lag BaOmer
June 2 - Yom Yerushalayim
June 9-10 - Shavuot
Community Section
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
Yom Yerushalayim
Celebrate Yom Yerushalayim, Sunday, June 2nd with Mizrachi - Religious Zionists of Chicago at Cong. Or Torah in Skokie.
  • 8:45 am: Tefillat Shacharit Chagigit
  • Guest Speaker Rabbi Zev Shandalov
            Teacher and Rav in Ma'ale Adumim; Former Rav of KJBS
  • Concurrent Children's Program
  • Complimentary Breakfast Buffet
  • Youth Art Contest Winners Announced
No admission fee. 
For sponsorship opportunities, please visit; email;or call 847-674-9733 x 2.
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.