October 25, 2017 | 12th of Cheshvan, 5778
This Week

Friday, 11/3
5:30 pm
Tot Shabbat PM

6:30 pm
Family Shabbat honoring Camp Newman, our beloved URJ camp that was ravaged by the fires in Santa Rosa. Hei students will help lead us in prayer and share the beautiful words they have written about the Prophets. Hasharim and Teen Choir will participate.
9:00 am
Hevrah Torah

What Will We Do Today?

One of my favorite prayers in the Jewish tradition is found in our morning liturgy. Yotzer Or, appears just after Barchu and just before Sh’ma. This prayer of beauty and awe helps us begin our day by acknowledging the wonders of God’s creation-the power of the ocean, the warmth of the sunrise, and the majestic mountains.  

But the prayer does not cease with gratitude for that which God created ages ago. The prayer continues with a line of hope and a challenge, “Daily, God renews the work of creation.” This line that we recite every morning gives us hope that every day is a new day for possibility and change. Acknowledging God’s renewal on a daily basis allows us to be keenly aware of God’s intentions for us. Daily, God renews creation so that we may serve and do God’s will.

So now comes the challenge!

What will we do today?

How will we honor God’s gift of creation?

What will we create as a sign of love and respect for this gift of life?

Everyday this prayer reminds us that the world has been renewed for the benefit of humanity. How will our actions honor such renewal?

Rather than live each day like it’s our last, Yozter Or asks that we live each day like it’s our first.  

May we wake up every morning seeking to do God’s will, acknowledging the beauty of creation, and pursuing a day with open eyes and full hearts. May today be our first day on this journey.

What will we create together? 

Rabbi Joel Simonds

Come Join Us on Nov 11! Support University Synagogue by Singing and Dancing the Night Away with the Mavens!
In celebration of University Synagogue’s Diamond Anniversary year, we are doing two lower priced fundraising events. So leave the tux and evening gowns in the closet this year as we take a break from the Heroes Gala.

Join your friends and fellow congregants on Saturday night, November 11 when we transform Klein Hall into a speakeasy lounge with live music and dancing, headlined by the Mavens, an amazing rock ‘n roll band featuring Unisyn’s own Jeff Melvoin, Jeannette Mills, Susan Corwin, Steve Galper*, Barry Pressman*, Jonathan Zucker*, and other special guests! ( *Our apologies for the omission of their names in previous updates!)

You will not only have a memorable evening, but through your generosity you will be supporting the important programs available at University Synagogue. 
Its only $90 per person to attend, so please join your friends by clicking on the RSVP link. For all you big spenders, we haven’t forgotten you. There are still event sponsorships available. Become an event sponsor and receive: - A reserved table for you and your friends-Free drinks for the evening-2 free raffle tickets for a chance to win dinners and a grand prize getaway-Prominent recognition as an event sponsor-Our grateful appreciation for your generous contribution -Circle you calendar for our second fundraising event, Casino Night at Unisyn on February 10.

Zichronam Livrachah
Mehrdad Lari , brother of Herzl (Fariba) Lary.
University Synagogue acknowledges a very generous donation to the Lisa Bro Goldberg Campership Fund by the Goldberg Charitable Trust . This fund supports youth activities including campership, scholarships, NFTY and URJ activities.
Family Shabbat Honoring Camp Newman
Join us this Friday, November 3 at 6:30pm for a family Shabbat honoring Camp Newman.

" I want to share some of my own reflections from my visit to camp yesterday. They include deep loss and sadness, and also miracles . . ."

Read the Camp Director's words following his first visit to the fire ravaged area HERE .

Support the #NewmanStrong campaign!
Happy Hour: An Evening out with the Girls
Monday, November 6, 2017, 5:30 pm - 7:30 pm

The Penthouse Restaurant at the Huntley Hotel
1111 Second Street, Santa Monica, CA. 90403

We are asking for a onetime $25.00 donation for three Happy Hours. The two remaining dates are December 4, 2017 and January 8, 2018.
RSVP to Enid Friedman at  enidfri@yahoo.com  or Suzy Giambatista at  suzy4433@aol.com

Please join us for our First Potpourri Event of The Year

The Ronald Reagan Presidential Library
40 Presidential Drive, Simi Valley, CA. 93065

Thursday, November 9, 2017
No need to drive - we will be taking a bus to Simi Valley. The bus will leave the synagogue at 8:45 AM and return at approximately 4:00 PM. No charge for the bus.

If you are not already a member of the Potpourri group, we are asking for a onetime donation to sisterhood of $10.00 for this day trip.

Depending on bus availability, friends and spouses are also welcome for a $10 donation per person. Please check with Enid or Margie for bus availability before inviting them.

For more information about the event and to RSVP please contact: 
Enid Friedman at  enidfri@yahoo.com  or Margie Sebolsky at  margietime@aol.com .

Thank you to Carrie Larson and Allen Schultz for sponsoring dinner for our teen choir on November 3rd. 

"Ein kemach, ein Torah; ein Torah, ein kemach" — If there is no food, there is no Torah; if there is no Torah, there is no food. - Avot 3, 21
With the holidays approaching soon, this is the special time of year that our hearts go out to those who are far less fortunate than we are.

Here at University Synagogue we have an annual tradition of making the residents at the Ocean Park Community Center HOMELESS SHELTER feel cared about! It has been 7 years that our Sisterhood has sponsored a Holiday Party, including refreshments,music, (a DJ for karaoke) and well needed practical gifts for all of the shelter residents.

The homeless population in our city has grown tremendously. The shelter's population is 70, including men and women.

Our traditional and warmly received gifts have been NEW towel sets: two bath towels, two hand towels, and two wash cloths. We are counting on as many families as possible to contribute to this generous tradition. Placing the towel sets in large gift bags will make them festive and exciting to receive. Some of you have even put small toiletries items in the bags (shampoo, toothpaste, soap, deodorant, mouth wash, lotion, etc collected from hotel and vacation stays, or purchased).

Please bring the gift bags to the front office, and we will be sure that the residents have them by the time that we have our Holiday Party. We would like to have them no later than December 18th .

Many, many thanks, without your participation and generous involvement we could not carry on with this meaningful and gratifying tradition!!


Suzy Giambattista and Enid Friedman
Social Action Chair Women of Sisterhood

Rabbi Stanley Davids to Teach Beginning Tuesday

iEngage 4: Milestones and Meanings
What is real in contemporary Israeli culture, politics, and religion? What has happened in the 100 years since the Balfour Declaration? How has Israel changed since the Six-Day War? 

Each session will feature one of the Shalom Hartman Institute scholars in a 20 minute video followed by a wide open discussion led by Rabbi Stanley Davids. Scholars include Donniel Hartman, Yossi Klein HaLevi, and Micah Goodman. Our first class will be on Tuesday evening, November 7th, 7-8:15 PM in the Beit Midrash, Weinstein Family Library. Other sessions will be on November 28th, December 19th, January 23rd, February 13th, March 13th, April 10th, and May 8th. Seating is limited. RSVP to Sue Share at Sshare@unisyn.org.
Calling All US Veterans

My dad is a tall, handsome, elegant man and a true iconoclast. If you saw him walking down the street, I’m going to bet that “Vietnam Vet” would not be the first thing that pops to mind. He landed in Vietnam and served as part of the press corps during the Tet offensive and he’s full of riveting stories about what led up to his service and his time in Vietnam. (He’ll be here for Frances’ bat mitzvah, so feel free to ask him to share when you meet him in December.)

Veterans, we know you served our country for myriad reasons and we want to honor you during the Erev Shabbat service that falls on Veteran’s Day this year. If you are a veteran, please reach out to me at cantorshapiro@unisyn.org so that we can involve you in our service on November 10 th at 7:30 PM.

Rabbi Feinstein and I will be joined by Rob Friedman for this special service. Rob is a US Navy Chaplain Candidate and a Rabbinic Student at Hebrew Union College – Jewish Institute of Religion. Rob also has a special relationship with University Synagogue, as he taught in our school and calls us “his shul”. We are planning a special evening and we’d like as many veterans to be honored as possible. 

Kerith Spencer-Shapiro
University Synagogue Membership Directory

A membership directory is a wonderful way to reach out, connect and stay in touch. University Synagogue will be creating one within the next few months. We plan to include pictures so people can put faces to names when we see each other around the synagogue. 

Please email your favorite photo to our Engagement Coordinator, Emilie Leder at  Eleder@unisyn.org .

We want to respect your privacy. This directory is for the private non-commercial use of the members of University Synagogue only. If you do not wish to have your information listed, please let us know by contacting Emilie at the above email. If we do not hear from you, we will presume it is o.k. to print your information which will include, name, address, phone number and email. We’re looking forward to connecting.  
Leon Prochnik: The Boy Who Had the Chocolate Factory

Leon Prochnik: “the boy who had the chocolate factory ,” will speak at University Synagogue on Tuesday Nov 14 in observance of Kristallnacht. 6:30 pm in the Gray Family Chapel.

He began his escape from Poland in 1939, along with 13 other family members; the 6-year-old boy held an image in his mind that helped him survive… CLICK TO READ MORE.
University Synagogue Film Society Screening: Gett: The Trial of Viviane Amsalem

Our next film, “Gett: The Trial of Viviane Amsalem,” is an Israeli film detailing the efforts of a woman trying to get a divorce in the religious court system.  November 19 at 9:30AM .

New York Times: “The hypnotic Gett: The Trial of Viviane Amsalem is the story of a woman wronged by men and God, if finally, in a sense, redeemed by cinema. Under Israeli law, a woman can be divorced only if her husband presents her with a religious bill of divorce called a gett (sometimes spelled get). No gett, no divorce. Viviane — brought to powerful life by Ronit Elkabetz with currents of humility and hauteur — is at once a fleshed-out character, a political metaphor, a shout to heaven and earth.”

Dear Rabbi Feinstein and University Synagogue,

On behalf of Jewish Family Service of Los Angeles (JFS) and our Board of Directors, we thank you for your recent participation in our High Holiday Food Drive supporting the SOVA Community Food and Resource Program. Your collection of 1,016 pounds of food helps ensure that hungry members of our community will have enough to eat.

The JFS { SOVA Community Food and Resource Program responds to hunger and poverty in our community by providing individuals and families with the resources they need to regain self-sufficiency and independence including free groceries, case management, counseling, legal and job assistance and other supportive services.
Please support our GREAT caterers! 

Please check out our newest edition of our Authorized Caterers List for 2017-18 – these caterers can do it all! 
Whether it’s a small intimate dinner party or a blow-out special event, our caterers and their fantastic menus are sure to delight your family and friends.

Mitzvah Corps: We're Here For You!

The University Synagogue Mitzvah Corps wants you to know that we're here, and we care!   Dedicated to serving our fellow congregants as they encounter major life cycle events, we will gladly send a welcome gift to a new baby, and provide support for ill or mourning congregants and their families (delivering a hot meal, completing a minyan, running an errand, etc.).  

If you’re in need of some TLC from the Mitzvah Corps, please just inform any clergy member or the synagogue office.    We’d also love to have you join us as a volunteer — the demands are few and the rewards are plentiful!
Please contact Susan Wieder at sdwieder@mac.com .

8:00 PM - Club Night with the Mavens

9:00 AM - Torah Off the Beaten Path

6:30 PM - Sisterhood Hanukkah Dinner 

Know of Anyone...?

We rely on our University Synagogue families , th eir friends and relatives, to alert us when someone is hospitalized or suffering any illness or bereavement. The Clergy would also be delighted to learn about happy events such as celebrating a birth, or any Simchah. Local hospitals do not release patient information; kindly call Sue Share, Assistant to the Clergy, at 310-472-1255, ext. 120, or email her at SShare@unisyn.org , so that our Rabbis and Cantors can better serve our congregation.
Calling all Volunteers!

Are you looking for volunteer opportunities? We are looking for enthusiastic individuals to join our volunteer workforce! Contact Emilie Leder at ELeder@unisyn.org if you are interested! 
Know of someone who is interested in joining US? 

Maybe there's a friend who is unaffiliated and wants to be part of a dynamic community! 

Send their name to Emilie Leder at ELeder@unisyn.org or (310) 472-1255.
Oneg Shabbat Sponsorships

Share your special life cycle event with the congregation on Friday night!
Birthday, Anniversary, Engagement, Auf-Ruf or Baby Naming

Click here to see the sponsorships. 

For more information, please contact Bonnie Kebre at BKebre@unisyn.org .