Congregation Tiferet Israel 

Austin, TX

27 Tishrei 5783 -- October 22, 2022

What's the Spiel?

Shabbat Mevarchim - Parshat Bereshit

Austin Community Eruv
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Tiferet Israel
PO Box 27254
Austin, TX 78755
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Membership Information

Would you like to become a member of a congregation that feels more like a family?

If so, contact Alana Pompa for more information at

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Rabbi's Reflections

-Creation and Bikkurim: For the Sake of the First-

Parshat Bereshit begins with the words, “When God began to create heaven and earth” Bereshit 1:1). The first word of the Torah, however, is grammatically perplexing. “Reshit” is an ordinal number, meaning, “First.” Thus, the Midrash interprets the Torah’s first word to mean that the world was created for the sake of that which is called “First,” namely, the “First Fruits,” or “Bikkurim” (Bereshit Rabbah 1:4). Why is the mitzvah of Bikkurim, the bringing of the First Fruits, such a significant mitzvah that Chazal would tell us the world was created for its sake?

According to Rav Moshe Feinstein in his Derash Moshe, the First Fruits only really have significance to the owner. After all, the owner, or the farmer, worked very hard for those fruits. To the owner, those First Fruits hold so much meaning – they represent all the hardship and work, all of the love and care he put into his fields and trees, his orchards and vineyards in order to make healthy, nutritious food. However, the owner’s First Fruits have almost no meaning to others. What does a purchaser care which number apple the one he is purchasing was? He doesn’t care! All he cares about if it is sweet or not, if it is soft or firm, large or small. Similarly, even the Kohen, before whom the owner presents his First Fruits in the Temple, does not really care. All the Kohen cares about is performing the mitzvah! To the Kohen, this farmer’s fruits is just like all the other fruit he has seen and will see that day.

However, to the owner, his fruit is the most special thing in the world! And so, asks Rav Moshe, “Why should he give his fruit to the Kohen?” Why shouldn’t the owner “pay their amount, and give another in its place?” Like the first dollar a millionaire ever made which he frames and never spends, this owner too may not wish to give away that which is so meaningful to him, especially when no one else can understand its real value. Nonetheless, the mitzvah is to give the First Fruits, specifically – the owner cannot switch them around or make substitutions. Part of the reason why this is so important, is because when we take something that is so meaningful to us, and we use it for the sake of a mitzvah, we demonstrate how much we love mitzvot, how dear they are to us. It is hard to give away, to sacrifice or contribute something precious to us. But when we do that – whether it be with money or other resources, with time or attention, we demonstrate how important that mitzvah is to us, and that attitude inspires others to want to give of themselves, of their very best, of their most precious for the sake of mitzvot as well. This is why the world was created of the sake of the First Fruits, because it shows us how every individual can demonstrate their love for mitzvot, and for the that reason, God chose to create the world.

This Shabbat, let us consider those things in our lives that are significant or precious only to us – something no one else would or could understand. Let us consider how when we give that which we cherish, we show our love for mitzvot and the Torah, and also, when we do so, we inspire others as well. The world was created for the sake of expanding Torah and God’s kingship over all, but the very first place is start is with that which is called “First” to us.

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 6:35PM

Mincha/Kabbalat Shabbat


Shabbat Morning


9:00 AM

Youth Service

 10:30 AM

Shabbat Evening


6:25 PM


7:29 PM




Weekday Services




CTI Announcements

CTI is honored to host Rabbi Pesach Wolicki, Associate Director at the Center for Jewish-Christian Understanding and Cooperation. Rabbi Wolicki will deliver the Devar Torah on Shabbat morning, as well as a class following Mincha on Shabbat afternoon.

RSVP Here!

 Have a special event coming up? 

Sponsor Kiddush!

Would you like to honor a family member on the anniversary of their yahrzeit? Celebrate a loved one’s birthday? Maybe you have a special anniversary? Perhaps your dog took 1st place in their training class?


There is no better time to celebrate with your friends than when something special is going on in your life. CTI is happy to have you as part of our community and even happier to be able to share the special moments in your life with you.


For more information on Kiddush sponsorship, please click here.

Visit for more information on how to join these exciting classes:


TYT Tuesday Night - The Book of Judges

Tuesday 7:00pm

TYT Wednesday Mornings - The Book of Jonah

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! 


Philip Spertus on October 22

Sherry Fishman-Carroll on October 27

Sandra Hoffman on October 28


Offer & Ilana Shavit on October 25

If you have any birthdays or anniversaries you would

like to add, please update your profile on our website.

Yahrzeit Remembrances

Sandra Jeanne Hoffman, Mother of Julie Van Keer,

on Saturday 27 Tishrei

Belle Rubin, Mother of Jay Rubin, on Saturday 27 Tishrei

Bernard Giller, Father of Carol Rubin, on Tuesday 30 Tishrei

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 to Arthur Altman for his donation in gratitude

for the honor of Chatan Torah

Thank you to Loretta Magill for her donation to the Tendler Memorial Fund.

Thank you to Sandy Sack for her donation for a

Refuah Shleimah for Marshall Sack and Jeff Kane.

Thank you to Rich Maron for his donation to the general fund.

Thank you to Karina Schumer, Reuven and Rosemary Robbins, Josh Rosenberg and Kendra Fox, Reese Carroll and Sherri Fishman-Carroll, Phil Spertus, and an anonymous donor, for their

donations to the High Holiday Appeal.

Thank you to Reuven Robbins, Jay Rubin, Offer Shavit,

Larry Smith, and Myles Shaftel for their aliyah donations.

Thank you to Reuven Robbins, Jay Rubin, Myles Shaftel,

Marta Shaftel, and Larry Smith for their yizkor 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, by pressing "Make a Donation" in the sidebar, using the "Donate to CTI" button on the top left of this email, 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
  • 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
  • Yehudit bat Sara
  • Chandal bat Basia
  • Shmuel Dovid bat Malka
  • Anthony Ben Devorah
  • Shayna Leah bat Yehudit
  • Reuven ben Shira
  • Batyah bat 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, and so on.

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 Director:

Emily Yaffe

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