Weekly E-News 5783
January 20 - January 27, 2023
Congregational Semi-Annual Meeting
Tuesday, February 7, 2023 at 6:30

We will need to form a Nominating Committee for the next Board, composed of both Board and non-Board members.
Rabbi's Message

“What’s in a name?” This famous phrase comes to us from Romeo and Juliet, where our hero Romeo ponders on why his love to Juliet should be so complicated. So, what if she is from his enemy’s house?” That which we call a rose/by any other name would smell as sweet,” he declares. I could not help but think of this declaration, and wonder if it is really true, as I read the first lines of this week’s parsha, Vaera. “וַיְדַבֵּ֥ר אֱלֹהִ֖ים אֶל־מֹשֶׁ֑ה וַיֹּ֥אמֶר אֵלָ֖יו אֲנִ֥י יְהֹוָֽה” “God spoke to Moshe, and said, ‘I am יְהֹוָֽה” “וָאֵרָ֗א אֶל־אַבְרָהָ֛ם אֶל־יִצְחָ֥ק וְאֶֽל־יַעֲקֹ֖ב בְּאֵ֣ל שַׁדָּ֑י וּשְׁמִ֣י יְהֹוָ֔ה לֹ֥א נוֹדַ֖עְתִּי לָהֶֽם׃” “I appeared to Avraham, Yitzchak, and Yaakov as El Shaddai, but I did not make myself known to them as יְהֹוָֽה” Having told Moshe this, God then instructs Moshe to introduce Himself to the Israelites as יְהֹוָֽה.

What is the significance of this name? Rashi and his grandson Rashbam both claim that El Shaddai is a name that signifies a promise. The patriarchs were promised that their children would inherit a good land, a land flowing with milk and honey, but they never saw the fulfilment of that promise. Now, connecting the Tetragrammaton (the four-letter name of God, יְהֹוָֽה) to “I am what I am,” grandfather and grandson say that the name represents a fulfillment of the promise. In other words, the change of God’s name indicates that the time of freedom is coming imminently.

Names have power. God’s name indicates an idea, and functions as a promise. So too, our parents give us names that they hope will carry meaning for us and impact our lives. And even the names of our institutions function as a promise. Agudath Achim means literally “An Association (or a Union) of Brothers.” The name of our congregation is a vow, taken by those who founded our congregation, to treat one another as siblings. To love one another, help one another, give to one another, support one another. It is a promise made to those who join our congregation. And it is a promise we hope all members of Agudath Achim take upon themselves.

Names have power. I know that in my time here so far, I have been greatly impressed by the brotherly and sisterly care members of this congregation have for one another. I have resolved, and I hope you will join me in resolving, to do my best to live up to this lofty name, to treat Agudath Achim as a true gathering of siblings, and treat everyone with the love and respect they are owed in being like family. 

Shabbat Shalom

Rabbi Gelman

Celebration Shabbat

If you have a birthday or anniversary in January, please join us this Saturday. Kiddush lunch is tuna salad, eggs, large tossed salad, bagels, butter, cream cheese, and PBJ triangles for kids of all ages. Lunch and celebration cake are prepared by Charna Cweibel, Gale Hirsh, Elise Shernoff, and Phyllis Aaron.

Interested in preparing or sponsoring a Kiddush, in whole or in part?Please contact Motti.
Service Leader Sign Up

Are you interested in leading services? Reading Torah? You can sign up on our service leader sign up sheet! We now have 2 sheets-one through the end of October, and the other from November to February. If you are interested in learning how to read Torah or lead services, contact Rabbi Gelman at rabbishgelman@gmail.com
Friday Night Services
The upcoming themes:

1/20 - Nosh 'n' Knowledge Learner's Shabbat starts at 5:30, with services beginning around 6. - come whet your appetite with a bisl of food and education! Sponsored by the Sisterhood.

1/27 - Musical Shabbat - Join us as we sing together old classics, learn new tunes, and explore the varieties of Jewish music at our musical Shabbats! If you are the kind of person who loves to sing along, this service is for you!

2/3 - Intergenerational Shabbat and Dinner! All ages welcome to this fun Kabbalat Shabbat service at 6, followed immediately by dinner at 7. Please RSVP to the office. There is no charge for this event, it is sponsored by the Potack Fund.

2/10 - Classic Shabbat

Please add these to your calendars!
In Person Service Times:
Tuesday: 7:30 AM
Wednesday: 8:00 AM
Friday: 8:00 AM (followed by breakfast) & 6:00 PM
Shabbat: 9:45 AM
This Shabbat:
2023 | 5783 
Parashat Va'era
Candle Lighting: 5:29 pm
Havdalah: 6:27 pm
(all times are for Savannah)
Annual Torah reading: Exodus 6:2 - 9:35 (Etz Hayim pp 351-368)
Triennial Torah reading: Exodus 6:2 - 7:7 (Etz Hayim pp 351-357)
Haftarah: Ezekiel 28:25 - 29:21 (Etz Hayim pp 370-373)
Talmud Torah K'Neged Kulam - Torah Study for Everyone

We are excited to begin offering classes with Rabbi Gelman! We will start with one class a week (Talmud Page of the Week) and expand from there. Come and see what we have to offer!

1. Daf Shevui/Talmud Page of the Week:
Always wanted a chance to learn a bit of Talmud? In this class we will be going through the first tractate of the Talmud, Berachot (Blessings). We will get a good variety of rabbinic legends, Jewish law, wit, and arguments. Lots and lots of arguments. Class will be held Wednesdays at 7 PM on Zoom. The ZOOM link can be found below...
2.  Learn to Lead: Have you always wanted to lead a service, but never quite got the melody? Always wanted a second shot at reading Torah after your Bat Mitzvah, but never seemed to have the time? Well, now is your chance to learn! Join Rabbi Gelman as he takes you through Kabbalat Shabbat, Torah trop, Haftarah Trop, and more. Please email Rabbi Gelman for more information!

3. Rotating Class with Rabbi Gelman: Winter Semester: We’re going to try something new this year at Agudath Achim. Each season, Rabbi Gelman will teach a different class of 6-10 sessions each on various topics. In the winter it might be on Jewish humor or Rashi’s commentary. To start things off, we want to hear from you what you want to learn. If you’re interested in learning with Rabbi Gelman, please fill out form below, or contact Rabbi Gelman at rabbishgelman@gmail.com or 912-521-7225.
4. Rabbis of the Mishnah Class will take a deep look into the Rabbis of the Mishnah; who they were and what they were thinking. Our next class will be when Motti returns from Israel. Please contact Motti for class link or email mottilocker@gmail.com

5. Women in the Talmud Women in Talmud and Jewish Law: Join Naima in discussing halachic (Jewish legal) questions about women. We will learn about public ritual, time-bound positive mitzvot, menstrual purity, and more. Reach out to Naima Gelman at naima.hirsch@gmail.com with any questions! Looking forward to learning with you. Dates of classes are February 5th, 12th, and 19th – all Sundays at 7:30pm.
Shalom School Fundraiser
Please come out on Sunday, March 12th to watch Savannah’s new Hockey Team the Ghost Pirates. The Ghost Pirates will give the Shalom School $5 back for each ticket sold.  The goal is to sell 200 tickets. Please follow the link to purchase your tickets. 
We had a fun time at the last game, but we were all spread out as additional tickets got released. The sooner you purchase tickets, the more friends you'll be sitting with!
Hope to see you there!
Deadline to order is Friday, January 27, 2023
Donor Dues Program

January 22
Marcy Konter

January 23
Harvey Sussman

January 24
Theodore Geffen

January 25
Meir Elfassy
Sheryl Kreh

January 27
Howard Gaynor
Arlene Ratner

January 25
Arnold & Ellen Goldberg
Kenneth & Jodi Sadler
If we have missed your birthday or anniversary, please email the office with the information so we can update your account. We apologize for the omission.
Yahrzeits For:

January 20 - January 27, 2023
28 Tevet - 5 Shevat 5783

Friday, January 20/Saturday, January 21 - 28 Tevet
Berthe Gomel - mother of Rachel Israel
Ashley Samuels - wife of Scott Samuels

Saturday, January 21/Sunday, January 22 - 29 Tevet
Helen Cweibel - mother of Marvin Cweibel
Eva Konter - mother of Michael Konter

Sunday, January 22/Monday, January 23 - 1 Shevat
Neal Aaron - father of Kenneth Aaron
Henry Feingold - grandfather of Mark Schwartz
Lawson Hayes - brother of Garrett Kaminsky

Monday, January 23/Tuesday, January 24 - 2 Shevat
Jonathan Aaron Blumenfeld -brother of Brian Blumenfeld
Bertram Freed - father of Suzanne Konter
Joseph Geffen - father of Morris Geffen & Theodore Geffen

Tuesday, January 24/Wednesday, January 25 - 3 Shevat
Sam Elman - grandfather of Brenda Salter
Fanny Zoller - grandmother of Michael Zoller

Wednesday, January 25/Thursday, January 26 - 4 Shevat
Yafa Ehrlich - grandmother of Motti Locker
Joy Warshaw - wife of Irvin Warshaw

Thursday, January 26/Friday, January 27 - 5 Shevat
David Fiegleman - father of Arlene Wizwer
Goldie Schmalheiser - mother of Helen Cranman,
grandmother of Paul Cranman & Lynn Reeves, and
great grandmother of Kasey Berman & Morgan McGhie

Commemoration of the Yahrzeit begins the evening of the first noted date.
Board of Directors forms new Committee
Board of Directors Authorizes Tzedek Committee

At the January 3, 2023 meeting, the Congregation Agudath Achim Board of Directors authorized the creation of a Tzedek Committee that will facilitate social action by interested members of the Congregation. The need for the Tzedek Committee stemmed from a recent review of synagogue functions that showed social action to be an area needing strengthening.

The primary purpose of the Tzedek Committee is to facilitate mutual support among congregational members engaged in social action. Many AA members are engaged in efforts to improve social justice in areas such as homelessness, education, youth, health, animal welfare and others. The Tzedek Committee will facilitate efforts by these members to reach out to other congregants by organizing educational events and programs, encouraging contributions, and announcing volunteer opportunities. The Tzedek Committee will also communicate with the Shalom School about opportunities for youth engagement in social action and designate AA representatives to interfaith alliances and other social justice partnerships. In addition, the Tzedek Committee may, from time to time, propose to the Board actions by Congregation Agudath Achim as an institution, such as signing on to a letter or petition or communicating a position on a relevant issue.

All of the work of the Committee will be guided by the expressed interests of congregants, direction from the Board, position papers issued by the Rabbinical Assembly, and core Jewish values.

The Tzedek Committee is actively recruiting members to guide its work. Those interested should contact Maurice Middleberg (mmiddleberg@icloud.com).

Other Committees, such as Education and Programming, are also in need of members. Please contact Adam Fins at amfins@gmail.com for additional information if interested.
In The Community
JEA Artist of the Month
Andrea & Mark Mathews

Their artwork will be available for viewing from
January 2 through January 31, 2023, at the JEA (5111 Abercorn Street).