Congregation Tiferet Israel 

Austin, TX

21 Tevet 5783 -- January 14, 2023

What's the Spiel?

Parshat Shemot

Austin Community Eruv

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Rabbi's Reflections

-Effective Leadership: The Voice of a Sign-

Parshat Shemot introduces us to the origins of Moshe Rebbeinu, Moshe our Rabbi. However, before Moshe could become our Rabbi, he first had to go through a long and difficult process of self-realization and self-transformation- born the son of Hebrew slaves, raised as an Egyptian prince, and finally, shepherding his father-in-law's flock in the land of Midian. And it was as a shepherd that Moshe encountered God for the very first time in the midst of a burning bush, and it was there and then that Moshe received his Divine charge to return to Egypt and free His people. But instead of earnestly obeying God's command, Moshe's initial response was one of reluctance, saying, "But they will not believe me and they will not heed my voice…’” (Ibid., 4:1). 


Moshe's concerns raise two important issues: First, the people will not believe him, and second, the people will not hear his voice. Thus, in order to resolve Moshe's apprehensions, God promises to perform two signs for Moshe, two proofs signifying that the source of his leadership is true. God tells Moshe, "If they will not believe you, or hear the voice of the first sign, then they will hear the voice of the latter sign" (Ibid., 4:8). What does God mean when He says that the people will hear the "voice" of a sign? To help answer this question, I would like to turn to the words of Rav Shimshon Raphael Hirsch, who notes that when the Torah discusses hearing the "voice" of a sign, "it implies that the performance of the sign should be accompanied by an instructive and inspiring explanation, which would speak to the hearts and minds of the people" (Commentary on Shemot, 4:10). 


I believe that Rav Hirsch is saying very important about the dynamics of effective leadership. According to Rav Hirsch, every sign of leadership, every outward demonstration of guidance and act of authority should be communicated in a way which will "speak" to each and every individual we are entrusted to support, comfort, care for, and guide, so that they know we have their best interests at heart, and based on that understanding, trust can develop and relationships can flourish. 


Every sign of leadership, if it is going to be effective, should be communicated in the "voice" of the individuals being addressed, and the challenge and task of a leader is to understand how to do that, how to communicate a sign, a vision, a ritual or just a moment – happy or sad, painful or pleasant, in such a way that it can be heard and internalized by each and every individual "bah asher hu sham," in whatever stage they happen to be on their individual life journeys. 


This Shabbat, as we consider the leadership positions we occupy in our personal, professional and religious lives, let us remember that the greatest demonstration of leadership is first and foremost, the ability to communicate with the people in our charge. Only when we understand them can they understand us. May our actions as leaders always speak to the people we love and care about, and may the "voices" of our actions, our signs, resonate in the hearts and minds of our family members, our friends and our community for all time. 


Shabbat Shalom,

-Rabbi Dan

Schedule of Services at B'nai Abraham

We encourage everyone to daven privately when unable to attend services. Use the private time to connect to Hashem. Public prayer definitely adds to our prayer experience. Yet we also have the capacity to create a profoundly meaningful private experience with the Divine. Let us seek such an experience in the coming days.  

Friday Night

Candle Lighting

No later than 5:33PM

Mincha/Kabbalat Shabbat


Shabbat Morning


9:00 AM

Youth Services


Shabbat Evening








Weekday Services

*Monday, MLK Day*



-Tues through Friday-



CTI Announcements


Sunday, January 22, 2023, 3:30p-5p

We are voting on the budget and need a quorum of 21 or more. Please join the board, Rabbi and other members to ask questions and learn what we are doing this next year. Your participation is important!

Sincere thanks to our CTI family. We are so grateful for all your love and support during Jan’s recent hospitalization. Your visits truly changed the outcome of his hospital course. Special thanks to Gary Gerstenhaber, Eric and Beth Shapiro, Arthur Altman (and Barb’s chicken soup!), Reese and Sherri Carroll, Jay and Carol Rubin, and Rabbi Millner. We are also very grateful to our children, Steve, Christy, Jonathan, David and AJ. We are looking forward to being back in the shul as soon as we can. - Vicky Gould

RSVP Here!
RSVP Here!
RSVP Here!

CTI is looking for a man or woman to serve as a backup shmira coordinator for when Larry Smith is out of town of otherwise unavailable. This involves a couple of hours of training to learn how to set up and manage shifts and communicate with the shomrim. Please contact Larry at 512-923-3964 or by email at if you are interested or would like more information.

If you are new to the community and want more information about Austin Shmira, here is a link to their website:

It is with incredible excitement that I invite you to this year's 8th Annual IAC National Summit to be held right here, in Austin, at the beautiful Fairmont Hotel from Jan. 19-21st.

The IAC National Summit has become one of the largest, most influential, and most high-profile conferences in the Jewish world. Under the theme "Israel. Together." we will bring together   hundreds    of Israeli Americans, American Jews, and Israelis of all ages. The focus of this gathering will be Israel's 75th anniversary, which will be celebrated as a community this year.

We will be offering a few different shabbat experiences this year, including an orthodox service, a traditional conservative prayer service led by our own Agudas' Rabbi Neil Blumofe, a reform singing     meditations' prayer service, and a gathering of women shared with the women who travelled to Israel with Momentum.

This year we are also offering a unique opportunity for our singles! Bring your children/family members so that they can meet their basheret at our singles event.

Our own Shalom Austin CEO, Rabbi Daniel Septimus, is also a speaker at the summit.

The summit will officially begin at 3pm on Thursday, January 19th at the Austin Fairmont Hotel. Celebrating Israel's 75 years of innovation together with world renown speakers, political figures,   business leaders, artists, and musical performances.

You can register here! 

Please use the following code as an Austin community member and receive 10% off today! Code: ATX10

Food Drive!

We are hosting a Food Drive to support the Shalom Austin Jewish Family Service Food Pantry! Unopened, unexpired, non-perishable food items can be brought to the shul Sunday-Friday and dropped in the black bin with the JFS Food Pantry sign. New, unopened personal hygiene items - like shampoo, diapers, and toothbrushes - are welcome, too.

The JFS Food Pantry serves those in need in the Jewish community and beyond here in Austin.

Sponsor Kiddush!

Thank you Arthur & Barb Altman for sponsoring a FULL SIT-DOWN Kiddush Luncheon in honor of our wonderful Tiferet AJA families and all the supporters of traditional Jewish education at Austin Jewish Academy.

Wow! Kiddush Sponsorships are filled up for January and February! Please sign up to sponsor Kiddush in March or April so we can all continue to enjoy Kiddush with our new expanded menus, and give us the opportunity to thank YOU for kiddush!   

Sponsor a Kiddush


Click Here! for more information on how to join these exciting classes:

Torah Classes at CTI!

Take Your Tanakh Series

TYT Tuesday Night - The Book of Judges

Tuesday 7:00pm

TYT Wednesday Mornings - The Book of Job

Wednesday 8:15am

For those new to the community, check out this introductory video 
featuring Rabbi Dan and a few of our wonderful CTI community members! 


Adam Hoffman on January 16

J.E. Wolfson on January 17

Maxwell Wander on January 19

Jennifer Kron on January 19


If you have any birthdays or anniversaries you would like to add,

please update your profile on our website.

Yahrzeit Remembrances

Lottie Orent, Mother of Amnon Orent, on Saturday 21 Tevet

May their souls be bound up in the bond of life.

If you have a Yahrzeit that you would like the congregation to acknowledge, or if you have a correction that needs to be made, please update your profile on our website.


Thank you to our anonymous donors.

Thank you Rick Goldberg for his aliyah donations.

We encourage you to use electronic payments by credit card or eCheck through CTI's website at when fulfilling the mitzvah of giving Tzedakah to mark family events and milestones, including Yahrzeits, and in honor of CTI and our community. 


Spiel sponsorships are now available for a donation of $18. Advertise your business or dedicate an issue of the spiel in memory of a loved one or to celebrate a Simcha.

Contact admin for more details. 

Donations can be made via our website at or by sending your check to:

Tiferet Israel P.O. Box 27254, Austin, TX 78755. Please make check payable to Tiferet Israel and please indicate what the donation is for. 

Refuah Shelayma to: 
  • Allene Novy-Portnoy; Hannah Bassa bat Sarah Osnat 
  • Avshalom ben Hannah Bassa
  • Cindy Newman 
  • Janet Goldberg; Shayna Masha bat Chasha Mina
  • Ken Friedman
  • Rebecca Millner; Rivkah bat Shoshana
  • Sheina Ruchel bat Henya Leah
  • Tzvi David ben Rivka Golda
  • Yoel Simcha ben Chaya Risha 
  • Sulta bat Nedgma
  • Zvi Aharon ben Bayla
  • Yaira bat Sarah
  • Tamar bat Chaya
  • Ilana bat Gheita
  • HaRav Avram Meir ben Eli Yosef v'Shira Chanah.
  • Rabbi Harold Liebowitz, Ha Rav Chaim Alter ben Necha. 
  • Baruch Akiva Ben Rivka
  • Miriam bat Helen
  • Rivka Michal bat Sarah Chana
  • Lori Garza 
  • Yisroel Natan ben Sarah
  • Masha Gitil bas Chaya Yita
  • Allen Levinson; Avraham Yitzchak ben Gittel
  • Moshe ben Reizel
  • Sandra Freed
  • David Chapin
  • Shoshana bat Yocheved
  • Miriam bat Rachel v'Mordechai
  • Alta Shoshana bat Shulamit
  • Meir Psachia ben Tziril
  • Geni Berman Abitbol
  • Beilya Golda bat Leah
  • Yosef Yehoshua ben Sarah
  • Jonathan Malawer (Yosef ben Bracha)
  • Bowie Alarcon
  • Fivel ben Sarah HaLevi
  • Adam ben Chanah
  • Rafael ben Sheindal Leah
  • Aharon Asher ben Chaya Naomi
  • Esther Malka Fraida bat Serel Chaya Raiza
  • Kalev Boaz Chai ben Aliza
  • Esther Reva bat Malka
  • Avraham ben Rut
  • Peter Janson, Fievel ben Devorah
  • Sheva Eva bat Bella.
  • Dorit Iken, Dorit Chana bat Orah
  • Moshe ben Rut
  • Shulkah Malka bat Tziporah
  • Chandal bat Basia
  • Shmuel Dovid bat Malka
  • Anthony Ben Devorah
  • Shayna Leah bat Yehudit
  • Reuven ben Shira
  • Batyah bat Sara
  • Akiva ben Sara

 Wishing all Cholei Yisrael a Refuah Shlayma. 

Dear Tiferet Friends, 

If you placed a name on the Refuah Shelayma list and G-d willing the person is well, 

please let us know. Also, if you have a friend or family member who needs 

prayers for healing, again please let us know at  

Using the CTI Website

Logging in is easy via the login button at the top of the web page. Your login ID is your email address. Once logged in, many of the fields are pre-filled for you, to make it easier and quicker to register for an event or make a donation.

But that's not all! You will also have access to the online Member Directory, the CTI Bylaws, the minutes of Board meetings and the President,Treasurer and Rabbi Reports and other documents, all under the Resources tab. With more coming all the time!

If you have any questions or comments about the website, please contact our webmaster at

Contact Us!

On the web:


Dan Millner: 

Phone: 512-410-0336 ext 101


Alana Pompa:  

Phone: 512-410-0336 ext 102

Vice President:

Sarah Wander 


Chuck Kaufman,


Sarah Church Carroll 

Phone: 512-410-0336 ext 103


Larry Smith  

Phone: 512-923-3964


Alana Pompa 

Phone: 512-410-0336 ext 106

Kiddush Committee:

Beth Shapiro

Youth Educator:

Emily Yaffe

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