March 16-22, 2020 / Adar 5780  
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For the next few weeks, Congregation Kehillah is an online synagogue. We encourage you to read through this issue of Connections to learn about changes we are making.

Please know that we are here to answer your questions or hear your suggestions for connecting and learning during these unprecedented times. We are Kehillah and we are here for one another.

In the days ahead, we will be inviting you to participate in  Kehillah Connect, a series of short classes, messages from Rabbi, Kabbalat Shabbat, Passover preparation, and chats for all CK members. We'll also have a special online version of YEP!

To participate, please download Zoom. Zoom is a free videoconferencing and online meeting platform (for your computer or phone) that has received consistently positive reviews from users. We've chosen Zoom because it offers excellent quality and because many people find it easy to use. Don't despair! If you need assistance with Zoom, we can help you.

And as always, if you are on your own or in need of other kinds of help, please contact us and we will do our best to help.

RABBI'S MESSAGE__________________________________
Dear Friends,

Our double parashiyot  this week are Vayakhel and Pedukei. Every year, even while reading the same, unchanged words, I see something in the parasha I did not see before. The names of these very Torah portions immediately jumped out: Vayakhel means 'and he convoked,' i.e., 'gathered together,' while Pekudei refers to an 'accounting' or 'reckoning' (more on this during Torah Talk).
At present, we are not gathering physically, but that does not mean we cannot be together! We are about to offer alternative ways of gathering, supporting and being together in community (Kehillah) so that we can use this time to learn, grow, and not be in isolation from one another just when we need to be in the loving embrace of our community. Vayakhel teaches us about investments of our hearts and remembering our priorities.
Pekudei alludes to taking stock of our assets and our liabilities (it's the favorite parasha of CPAs! ) and of being accountable and responsible in a communal sense. As we have consulted and learned from healthcare authorities about COVID-19, we are asked to understand that decisions must not only be about our own strength and well-being, but about how we care for those who are more vulnerable, and for the responsibility we all bear for others. While the applications and circumstances are new, the concepts are not: they are present in deep and venerated Jewish teachings inspiring us for over 3,500 years.
I want you to know that I love you and am here for you (  ; 602-369-7667). I know that you are scared, anxious, and concerned, and that we want answers that are not immediately forthcoming. Isolation and anxiety can be as debilitating as physical illness and lead to it. It's hard! This is new and unprecedented. We're getting lots of information from medical experts. I want to help with navigating the unknown through the lens of our Jewish tradition and compassion, as rabbis have always done.
In the days ahead, we will be inviting you to participate in Kehillah Connect (See GOING FORWARD, the first item in this newsletter.) We are not without resources, including technology and creativity, and will employ those in support of this new collective journey. 
It is not business as usual. Try to establish a routine. If you're not already saying Modeh Ani upon rising in the morning, see the link below to Erica's videos. It's a good place to start. While this is not what anyone of us would wish for ourselves or others, we have opportunities; growth does not come when we stay comfortable.

With love and affection,

Rabbi Sharfman

Thank you to Erica and Jared for providing us with these wonderful videos.
Modeh/Modah Ani
Modeh/Modah Ani
If you missed Erica and Jared's video showing
their preparations for Shabbat dinner, including
proper hand washing, you can see it here:
Blessing for Hand Washing for Kehillah!
Blessing for Hand Washing for Kehillah!

Ma Tovu
Ma Tovu


 JCPA WEBINAR: Jewish Values During a Pandemic 
 Featuring Rabbi David Wolpe, Sinai Temple, Los Angeles
  Tuesday, March 17     
 10:00 a.m. local time
 Click here for the full-size flier 
We strongly encourage you to register for this webinar.
What do Jewish values instruct during a pandemic? How should individual Jews act? How should we act collectively? What can Jews do to ensure other vulnerable groups feel safe?  
Rabbi Wolpe has been recognized as one of the 50 most influential Jews in the world by the Jerusalem Post. JCPA (Jewish Council for Public Affairs) is a network of 125 local Jewish community relations councils and 17 national Jewish agencies that advocates for a just and pluralistic America.  
Torah Talk
Saturday, March 21
10:30 a.m.
From the comfort of your own home through Zoom

Note: You can participate in Torah Talk even if you haven't signed up for Zoom.
This week we have a combination of two parashiot: In Vayakhel we learn that no work is to be done in the tent of meeting on Shabbat. From this the rabbis have established how we are to celebrate Shabbat. In Pekudei, the construction of the Tabernacle is finished and Moses anoints Aaron and his sons to serve in the Priest-hood. These are the last portions in Exodus. 

This session will be led by Rabbi Sharfman using Zoom. Join her online for a session filled with questions, conversation, and laughter.
No prior knowledge is needed to enjoy Torah Talk; all are welcome. Be part of an amazing 4,000-year-old conversation, as relevant today as when it began. Torah Talk is one of Kehillah's most-loved traditions.

If you have the JPS Hebrew-English Tanakh, page 191 starts this week's Parasha.

Here's how to participate:

If you haven't yet signed up for Zoom:
RSVP to Renee by Wednesday, March 18. You will receive a Zoom invitation with a link to click. Once the host (Rabbi) starts the "meeting" Torah Talk, please make sure you turn on both audio and visual in the lower left corner. Renee will explain to you how to change your name to match your picture.
If you have already signed up for Zoom:
RSVP to Renee by Wednesday, March 18. You will receive a Zoom invitation with a Meeting ID and Password. Log into Zoom and enter the Meeting ID and Password. Once the host (Rabbi) starts the "meeting" Torah Talk, make sure you turn on both audio and visual in the lower left corner.

Would you like email reminders about Torah Talk? Just  let Ellen know
See below for the complete Torah Talk schedule. Please note that the April date has been changed.
   Friday, March 27     
  Please watch for details about Kehillah Connect and participating in Kabbalat Shabbat. 
  Meanwhile, remember to sign up for Zoom!
Sunday, March 29
9:30 a.m-12:00 p.m.

There will be a special online version of YEP!
                            More details coming soon.
                            Meanwhile, sign up for Zoom!
October 19-November 2 


Isn't it time for you to travel to Israel - for the first time or for a return visit? The only thing better than visiting Israel is visiting Israel with Rabbi Sharfman and your Kehillah friends! Click here for trip details.

Kehillah members receive $200 off by using memberk200 when registering and paying.

If you're interested -- from "just curious" to "ready to pack RIGHT NOW!" -- email us for the latest updates.
A call to action

For the next few weeks let's make our Social Action Project "A Call to Action." Congregants can make sure family, friends and neighbors who are elderly, living alone, or who are disabled are checked on and have all they need to get by. A friendly call can make all the difference.

For example: If you are going to the store ask if you can pick up something for a person who may be homebound.

If you can shop, do errands, or just make some calls, let the Kehillah office know so that we can let our congregants know that help is available.
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Passover food drive  
Kehillah has always supported the community-wide Passover food drive, which continues through March 30th. 
JFCS is also accepting monetary donations. 
Click here for the flyer and complete information. 
Mazel Tov . . .  
to Cathy and Alan Michels on the birth of their granddaughter, Elle. Parents are Erin and Scott Parkin. 
Refaeinu . . .
Mark Solow
Steve Kanefsky
Frances Schneeweis LeRoy, mother of Scott LeBlang
Stanley Rosen,  father of Robin Rudin
Cathy Michels
Ethan Miller, son of Reisa Miller
Abbott Miller, son of Reisa Miller
Hinda  Sterling , sister-in-law of Reisa
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Kimberlie Rich, sister of Pamela Miller      
Rose Sobel,  mother of Bruce Sobel
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I am available to all Kehillah members in times of joy and sadness. Please let me know when I can extend support and comfort to you and your family.
~ Rabbi Sharfman
Your donations in any amount are genuinely appreciated. 
Please help support Congregation Kehillah by donating to Kehillah's various funds  
-- to celebrate, honor, remember, give thanks, to assist, or simply to do tzedakah.  
You can donate through our website in any amount or send a check. Congregation Kehlllah is a 501(c)(3) organization; donations are tax-exempt to the fullest extent allowable by law. (Please consult with your tax adviser.) 
General Fund 
Caring Fund 
Torah Fund 
Social Action Fund
Gottlieb Music Fund 
Education Fund 
Oneg & Hospitality Fund 
Rabbi's Discretionary Fund 
Memorial Plaques 
You can also plant trees in Israel directly through Kehillah, shiny-tree-button.jpg  
and Jewish National Fund will send a certificate out on your behalf.  
Each tree is $18 and a portion of your donation stays with Kehillah.  
Contact Renee for more information or to place your tree order. 
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Here are other great ways to support Kehillah 
Normally, we'd invite you to celebrate with an Oneg.
Sponsoring an Oneg is a great way to celebrate your lifecycle events and other wonderful news with your Kehillah family. For 2020, we are aiming to have every Oneg sponsored. To reserve your Oneg, please email Renee or call her at 602-369-7667.
But while we're currently not gathering, and you are (we hope!) spending most of your time at home during the next few weeks, remember to use Amazon Smile when you buy on Amazon.

You can sign up for Amazon Smile and choose Congregation Kehillah as your charity. It's simple, costs nothing, and Amazon will donate a portion of your purchase price to Kehillah.

Here's how to sign up:  
Visit and select Congregation Kehillah . That's it! After you're signed up, shop on Amazon by visiting (your Prime account goes with you) and continue as usual. The website  will remember you selected Congregation Kehillah, and every eligible purchase you make at  will result in a donation.
Did you know . . . 
that it is customary to donate at the time of Yizkor or when Kaddish is recited in memory of a loved one? It is also customary to make a donation when given an aliyah (honor) during a service. 

Jewish Philanthropy: The Concept of Tzedakah is a much-admired practice throughout the world. "In Jewish tradition, tzedakah requires the donor share his or her compassion and empathy along with the money. Judaism teaches the belief that donors benefit from tzedakah as much [as] or more than the recipients." 

You can find out more about the roots and practices of Jewish philanthropy at Learning to Give.   
Cutler-Plotkin Jewish Heritage Center has canceled all public cultural and educational programs for March. The office and museum gallery will remain open and previously scheduled private events will continue. For more information, contact the Center.       
AZ Friends of Magen David Adom has canceled its March 30th event featuring the Director of Magen David Adom's Blood Center.  

CompleteScheduleKabbalat Shabbat   |    Torah Talk   |   YEP!
Please see GOING FORWARD and RABBI'S MESSAGE, at the top of this newsletter, for information about changes as we move online during the pandemic.   
Shabbat candles
Kabbalat Shabbat
B'nai Mitzvah

Kabbalat Shabbat begins on Fridays at 7:30 p.m. unless otherwise noted.          
March 27
March 28 
April 17
May 1 - Bar Mitzvah of Noah Sunshine-Barinbaum, 6:30 p.m.  
May 15
June 12
June 13 - Bar Mitzvah of Ryan Heller, 10:00 a.m.
Torah Talks are led by Rabbi Sharfman (except where noted) and are held monthly on Saturday mornings from 10:30 a.m. to 12:00 noon. They are among Kehillah's most-loved traditions --  mornings filled with questions, conversation, and laughter as we explore that week's Torah portion. No prior knowledge is needed to enjoy Torah Talk; all are welcome. For more information, contact Ellen Lerman.
March 21
April 4
May 2 ( depending on weather) 

  Youth Education Program 

YEP! sessions are held on Sundays during the school year from 9:30 a.m. to 12:00 noon unless otherwise noted. Read about YEP! here. Please use this registration form. Questions? Please contact Renee.  
March 29
April 5
April 19
May 3
May 17
Congregation Kehillah   
602-369-7667    |
5858 E. Dynamite Blvd., Cave Creek, AZ 85331

Mailing Address: 21001 N. Tatum Blvd., Ste. 1630 #439, Phoenix, AZ 85050

Saturday, March 21
Torah Talk
Wednesday, March 25
Rosh Chodesh Nisan 

Friday, March 27
Kabbalat Shabbat
October 19-Nov. 2
Kehillah's Fabulous Trip to Israel
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  Information for Seniors  
The Senior Concierge Project (through Jewish Family and Children's Service) can provide information and help with socialization, education, transportation, home care, living facilities, legal assistance and more for those over age 60. Contact Janet Arnold Rees, Senior Concierge, at 480-599-7198 or
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  Need a hand?   
Need a ride to services or to an event? Have an odd job that might need an extra hand or two? Give Men of Kehillah a shout! MOK members are ready to help out. Email Rich Fox at   
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Remember "Mom" and the other women!  
Reminder: There are hungry neighbors and families experiencing food insecurity throughout the Valley, throughout the year -- even if we can't always see it. And there are women who can't afford basic feminine products. Our food collection bin for   Mom's Pantry is always in our lobby, and our Kehillah Cares bag for women4women tempe is in our ladies' room.  
Please bring food  
and toiletry donations whenever you come to Kehillah.    
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Congregation Kehillah Leadership 

Rabbi Bonnie Sharfman
Gil Blumenthal,  
Scott Leader,
  Cantorial Soloist
Renee Joffe,                

Board of Directors:
Rich Goldman,
  Immediate Past President
Joseph Ettinger,
  Member at Large
Henry Fleet,
  Member at Large
Rich Fox,
  Member at Large 
  MOK President
David Goldfarb,
  Member at Large 
  Building Chair
Leslie Goldman,
  Member at Large
Arlene Maletta,
  Member at Large
  Hospitality Co-Chair
Ilene Malka,
  Education Chair
Jane Neely,
  Member at Large 
  High Holy Days Chair  
  Hospitality Co-Chair
Dr. Bruce Sobel,
   Member at Large
Dan Sommer,
   Member at Large
Paul Stein,
   Member at Large

Additional Support:  

Scarlett Allison,
  Caring Committee
Amy Bessen,
Rick Cohen,
  Book Group
Paulette Fraenkel,
  Social Action
Leona Garza,
   Movie Time
Dr. Stephanie Kirklin,
  OLC Director 
Ellen Lerman,
  Torah Talk and Special  
Vicki Mardell,
   Membership Co-Chair
Reisa Miller, Sherry Siegel
Mark Solow,
  Finance Manager

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We love hearing from you!

If we don't respond to your email within 24 hours, it means we did not receive your message.  Please call us at 602-369-7667.
We  take a technology break for Shabbat and Yom Tov. If you have an emergency during these times, please leave a message on the Congregation Kehillah phone and we will get back to you. O therwise, we ask that you please call or email us after the Sabbath or holiday ends.