January 24, 2018 | 8 Sh'vat, 5778
This Week

Friday, 1/26
Shabbat Zimrah
Saturday, 1/27
Hevrah Torah

Sunday, 1/28
Religious School

US Film Society Screening: "The Settlers"
Who Holds Us Up?

This week’s Torah portion Beshalach contains one of my favorite stories of Moses. In the battle with the Amalek people the Torah tells us that Moses noticed something interesting; when his arms were held up high the People of Israel prevailed, but when he lowered his arms they were defeated. Unable to lift his arms the entire time, he receives the assistance of Hur and Aaron who hold up his arms for him, allowing Joshua to lead the Israelites in defeating Amalek.
As I read this Torah portion I think of the Aarons and Hurs that we have in our lives. Those friends, family members and communities who lift us up, sustain us and help grow our capacity beyond our own abilities. The days are long, the nights are short and the never-ending to-do list grows by the minute. In order for us to delight in the beauty that surrounds, we must be acknowledge our capacity and welcome the assistance of others to lift us up.
As we travel into Shabbat together, take the remaining days of this week to express gratitude and thanks for the Aarons and Hurs in our lives. 
Rabbi Joel Simonds
Zichronam Livrachah
Dorothy Reed, grandmother of ECLC teacher Emily (Blumenberg) Slater.
Annual ECLC Shabbat Dinner
The Early Childhood Learning Center of University Synagogue will be gathering for their Annual Shabbat Dinner on Friday, February 9.

This evening consists of a special service centered around the entire Shabbat experience. What do you eat? How do you make it? How does it makes you feel? What makes our Shabbat special? And more! The children will participate in the service as well as create Shabbat related items that will be used that evening. All alumni are additionally invited and welcome to attend... the more, the merrier!

We are very much looking forward to this evening. Please use the button below to register.

Please help make our Purim a fun event for all! We need your help with sponsorships. If you would like to sponsor a ride, booth, or activity, please click the button below. All sponsorships will include two wristbands.
As for wristband/ticket purchase, we will be having a raffle each week starting 3-4 weeks before Purim for those who have purchased wristbands online. To purchase tickets and wristbands online, please click here:
US Film Society Screening of "The Settlers"
The US Film Society presents the Israeli documentary, "The Settlers" (2016) on Sunday, January 28, 2018 at 9:30 AM in the chapel at University Synagogue, 11960 Sunset Boulevard, LA, CA 90049. The film was a nominee for Best Documentary by the Israeli Film Academy and the DocAviv Festival and was a nominee for the Grand Jury Prize at Sundance. 

This will be an extremely compelling event for all who care about Israel. The pre-statehood, early history of the settler movement is fascinating, as are the residents themselves, a disparate population of 400,000 people including US expats, religious, young families (Jewish and Evangelical), senior ex-kibbutzniks, and secular working class laborers from Jerusalem.

Academics, both Israeli and Palestinian provide their own analysis. Director Shimon Dotan has created as evenhanded an examination of the subject as has been made to date.

Rabbi Stanley Davids, who teaches adult Torah Study at the University Synagogue, will help us navigate this challenging film. He will share his personal understanding of this issue after living in Israel for 12 years before recently returning to the US.

If you would like to support the University Synagogue Film Society's efforts to bring meaningful films and discussions to our members, you may contribute by taking our guest to brunch after the discussion at Divino for a mostly deductible contribution of $250. 

Please RSVP using the button below to reserve your seats. There is no admission charged, and families, friends and guests are all welcome.

I hope to see you at the screening.

Jim Ruxin
310-617-7372 mobile
Tu BiSh'vat Sameach  - Happy Tu BiSh'vat!
Tuesday, January 30 - Wednesday, January 31
Even though many of our trees are far from blooming, in Israel, it's the season for Tu BiSh'vat - the New Year of the Trees. Named for the 15th of the Hebrew month of  Sh'vat , the holiday begins next Tuesday evening. Learn about Tu BiSh'vat's history and customs, and find recipes, how-to videos, family activities, and more for your celebration.
Calling all Greeters!

If you’re interested in welcoming our community at services, we want you. All you need is a smile.

Please contact our Executive Director, Lisabeth Lobenthal at LLobenthal@unisyn.org
Follow University Synagogue on Facebook!
Want to stay up to date on all events and activities? Please like and follow us on our Facebook page. Simply click on the button below, sign into your Facebook account, and click like. 
Save the Date: Greater Los Angeles Homeless Count

University Synagogue’s Tikkun Olam Committee is recruiting volunteers to help facilitate the annual Greater Los Angeles Homeless Count. Brentwood’s neighborhood count takes place on Wednesday, January 24th from 8pm-11pm at Brentwood School  100 S Barrington Pl, Los Angeles, CA 90049 . University Synagogue is partnering with Brentwood School to host this year’s homeless count in our neighborhood. 
All across Los Angeles every January, the LA Homeless Services Authority (LAHSA) embarks on a three-day mission to count our homeless neighbors so that we can get a better picture of their scope and demographics. To learn more about LAHSA and the Homeless Count please refer to  http://www.theycountwillyou.org .
If you have any questions please do not hesitate to contact:

Tamara Melzer Levenson 
Rabbi Joel Simonds
(310) 472 - 1255
'Mayor Eric Garcetti is keenly interested in constant contact with faith communities throughout Los Angeles. As the Mayor has said,"You exemplify our cities greatest strength-that we are a place where the world comes together." It is only in partnership with faith communities that we can solve some of the critical issues that we face in the City of LA . . . '

The Days of Compassion Civic University is a 3 day training session to provide congregants, lay leaders, clergy and advocates within the faith community focused on providing comprehensive engagement, resources and education to participants as well as assisting with the development individual service plans for attendees to develop a strong foundation for homeless service partnership. 

Read more about the Days of Compassion project and how to sign up by clicking the button below.
The Music Guild returns to University Synagogue on Monday, February 26th, with the Fiato String Quartet! Complimentary coffee, cookies, and cheese will be offered from 7:30pm to 8:00pm during intermission.
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 .
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.
Oneg Shabbat Sponsorships

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

Click here to see the sponsorships. 

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