Hanukkah Simhat Tot STEAM Program at JCDS!

This year we are teaming up with JCDS (the Jewish Community Day School) to provide a special Hanukkah STEAM event for families! STEM is based on the idea of educating kids in the areas of science, technology, engineering and mathematics in an interdisciplinary and applied approach. With STEAM, you also get the added benefit of arts activities as well! At JCDS, their educators integrate engineering, robotics, and design thinking with Jewish education in authentic, innovative ways. JCDS is located at 57 Stanley Ave in Watertown.

This event will be on Sunday, December 10, 3:00 - 5:00 PM, and is geared towards families with children ages 3-12 years old (both older and younger siblings welcome to join as well!). There will be a maker space with Parts and Crafts, family coding with Scratch Jr., lots of crafts, Hebrew Story Hour, and tons of fun! This event is FREE and open to all. See our FLYER.


 

A Celebration of the History and Culture of Arab Jews

Join us on Sunday, December 10, starting at 7:15 PM (Evening Services will begin at 7:00 PM) as we welcome Sharona Mizrachi, who will be telling her story of persecution and ultimate escape from Iran in 1984. Light refreshments will be served and the Consul General will give an introductory speech. We will end with a musical performance. This event is co-sponsored by the Consulate General of Israel and the Temple Emunah Israel Committee. This event is FREE, but please RSVP HERE by December 3rd. More details HERE..


 

The Science of Torah - Classes at Brookhaven

Join Rabbis Fel and Lerner as they discuss how modern science further informs our understanding of the Torah and how scholars have dealt with tensions between the Hebrew Bible and our understanding of the world. Topics will include Jewish views pertaining to dinosaurs, the origins of the world, an in depth analysis of the Garden of Eden, the global Flood, and evolution. The class will meet at Brookhaven (1010 Waltham Street), Tuesday, 9:30 - 10:30 AM, December 12, 2017

ALSO: On Tuesday, December 19th, we'll be visiting the Harvard Museum of Natural History in Cambridge as a follow-up to these discussions! We will begin at Temple Emunah at 8:30 AM for a Meditation Session, then leave at 9:30 AM. We will go through the museum together, then go out for lunch (purchased on your own). Our plan is to arrive back at Temple Emunah around 2:00 PM. You do not need to attend the Brookhaven lectures to join us! Please RSVP for this trip in advance to Rabbi Fel: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. FLYER.


 

Hanukkah Dinner, Celebration, and Mitzvah Project

Everyone is invited to join us for a Community Hanukkah dinner and celebration on Wednesday, December 13, starting at 5:30 PM for the second night of Hanukkah! In addition to a delicious meal with latkes and sufganiyot (donuts), there will be songs, games, crafts, and fun! RSVP to Jodie Parmer by December 6th. More details HERE.

This year the Family Ed Committee is also sponsoring a hands-on mitzvah project as part of this event. We have pre-ordered 20 duffel bags and supplies through the organization Together We Rise, which provides a nice bag full of items for foster kids who are abruptly taken from their homes, often with nothing but a trash bag with just a few meager items.  Every day 1,200 kids enter foster care in the United States, and through creating these bags, with cards and drawings for them as well, we can make this transition a bit easier for them. We need Temple Emunah families to help put these bags together at our Hanukkah event, as well as create cards and notes for both the foster kids and for American soldiers who are currently serving overseas. Celebrate with us and experience the joy of giving back to others during our own moments of joy! 


 

Hanukkah Story Hour at Burlington Barnes and Noble

Join both Rabbis and Temple staff on Thursday, December 14, 7:00-8:00 PM for a Hanukkah Story and Sing-Along at the Barnes and Noble in Burlington! We will tell stories, sing songs, and play dreidel in honor of Hanukkah! We will also light an electric Hanukkiyah together and share book suggestions. Shop ANYTIME that day and mention you are from Temple Emunah—we will receive a percentage of your purchase! (Including purchases at their café!)

Can't make it that day? Don't worry! We are organizing an on-line book fair with Barnes and Noble from Thursday, December 14 through Tuesday, December 19! Shop on-line at Barnes and Noble during those dates and purchase anything you want! When on the Payment Page, scroll to the bottom and check “Check this box if this is a bookfair order” then add in this voucher number: 12079976

But wait, there's more! The Family Ed Committee is adding a mitzvah component to our Barnes and Noble event as well. If you purchase a toy, gift, or children’s book, we will collect it and bring it to a local Homeless Shelter that houses children, so they can have new holiday gifts. Shopping at Barnes and Noble becomes a double-mitzvah, as the gift will go to a child in need, and the purchase will support Temple Emunah. We will also accept gift donations made on-line if they are brought in to the office and we will make sure they get into the hands of children in shelters by the end of December. See our FLYER.


 

Crockpot Cook-Off with Sisterhood!

Bring your appetites and join the Temple Emunah Sisterhood for a Hanukkah Crockpot Cook-off on Thursday, December 14, 2017, 7:00 PM! We will have dinner, drinks, and dessert (yes, latkes too!). This event is for women only. Cost is $5 for Sisterhood Members, $7 for all others. Want to help out? Contact Janet Goldberg to help with a recipe or to RSVP: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. See our flyer for more information.


 

KERUV Shabbat with Rabbi Rachel M. Isaacs

We are thrilled to announce that this year's KERUV guest is Rabbi Rachel M. Isaacs, the founding Director of the Center for Small Town Jewish Life and the Dorothy "Bibby" Levine Alfond Assistant Professor of Jewish Studies at Colby College. She was ordained at the Jewish Theological Seminary in 2011 as a Wexner Graduate Fellow, after starting rabbinical school at the Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion. Isaacs graduated summa cum laude from Wellesley College in 2005, and also studied at Ben-Gurion University of the Negev. Upon ordination, Isaacs assumed spiritual leadership of Beth Israel Congregation in Waterville, Maine, while teaching Hebrew and advising Hillel at Colby College. Isaacs has served on the Rabbinical School Advisory Committee of the Jewish Theological Seminary since 2011. Isaacs was named one of America's Most Inspiring Rabbis by the Jewish Daily Forward in 2014, and was chosen to deliver the final White House Hanukkah benediction of the Obama Administration in 2016. She lives in Maine with her wife and two daughters.

Rabbi Isaacs will be with us on Friday, December 15 through Saturday, December 16, and she will discuss her path to serving a small-town Jewish community, as well as her adventures as a Maine rabbi. On Friday night Rabbi Isaacs will discuss her Institute for Small Town Judaism and her thoughts on building a multi-generational community. In addition to her Saturday morning drashah, from 1:00-2:00 PM Rabbi Isaacs will offer a text study on some of the classic texts dealing with LGBTQ issues. Dinner on Friday costs $15 / person; please RSVP to Jen Geller at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.m.

This event is being supported by The Ladle Fund, and we recognize the generosity of Ron Chaney and Julie Greenberg. FLYER HERE.


 

JBBBS Brunch Honoring Havery Lowell

Jewish Big Brothers Big Sisters is hosting a Brunch to Honor Harvey Lowell on Sunday, December 17, 9:30 AM - Noon in the State Room, 60 State Street, Boston. Harvey has served as President and CEO of JBBBS for 21 years, and funds raised at this brunch will help establish the Harvey D. Lowell Fund for Inclusion. Learn more HERE


 

Brotherhood Beer Fest & Board Meeting

Everyone is invited to join the Brotherhood for their big December event - their annual Brewfest on Sunday, December 17! At 10:30 AM We will have an open Board Meeting, which includes time for the softball teams to discuss the upcoming season, and is open to everyone to attend. Starting at 11:00 will be brewing beer in the kitchen, followed by lunch at noon and watching football in the Social Hall while tasting our beer. The beer brewing includes beer that we will serve at our Man of the Year dinner in the spring. If you enjoy brewing beer, or if you're interested in learning more about it, then this is the event for you! More details HERE. Please RSVP for this event to Larry Bressler at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Our teams in the Men's Shul Softball League are open to all men at Temple Emunah who are at least 25 years old. For the past several years, we've had two teams in the league. Our teams are normally divided up based on how competitively the players want to take the games, with one "more serious" team, which made it to our division's championship game in the 2017 season, and one "less serious" team. The games are a lot of fun and a great way to build friendships with other members of Temple Emunah, so I highly encourage anyone who's interested in playing softball in the spring to come on December 17. If you can't make it that day, please contact Scott Lerman at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..


 

Emunah Explorers: Trip to the Museum

Join both Rabbis Lerner and Fel on Tuesday, December 19 on a trip to the Harvard Museum of Natural History in Cambridge! We will start at Temple Emunah and travel together, leaving at 9:30 AM (optional Morning Meditation Session at the shul at 8:30 AM).  

The Harvard Museum of Natural History was established in 1998 as the public face of three research museums: the Museum of Comparative Zoology, the Harvard University Herbaria, and the Mineralogical & Geological Museum. Presenting these incomparable collections and the research of scientists across the University, the Harvard Museum of Natural History’s mission is to enhance public understanding and appreciation of the natural world and the human place in it, sparking curiosity and a spirit of discovery in people of all ages. This trip is the completion of the Rabbis class at Brookhaven, the Science of Torah, however anyone can come on the trip; you do not need to have been part of this class to enjoy our outing!

The cost of the trip is $25 / person, which includes transportation, museum pass, and a catered lunch (to be eaten at the museum). Our goal is to be back at the shul by 2:00 PM. Please RSVP in advance to Rabbi Michael Fel at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. FLYER.


 

Phyllis Klein Thrope Memorial Programs

Following Phyllis Klein Thrope's death in 1986 at the age of 33, her family established the Phyllis Klein Thrope Memorial Fund to honor her memory. The Fund's purpose is to build bridges and promote better understanding between the Jewish community and its neighbors. It seeks to achieve these goals by sponsoring programs that bring together people from throughout the community to examine issues and concerns shared by all. All Phyllis Klein Thrope Memorial Programs are free and open to the public. You are encouraged to invite your neighbors and friends! 

This year, we will be doing a series of talks throughout the Fall. Our next one is December 21, 8:00 - 9:30 PM, when Dr. Seth Gale and Hope Schwartz will present "Pathways to Prevention: Maximizing Brain-Healthy Behavior to Protect from Cognitive Decline."

For more information, see our FLYER and contact Linna Ettinger at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


 

December 24 Chinese Dinner & Movie

Everyone is invited for our annual Chinese Dinner and Movie Night on December 24th! We will start with Ta'am China at 5:30 PM, followed by a movie at 6:30 PM. The movie we will be watching this year is Inside Out, a Disney PIXAR comedy-drama rated PG, running 1 hour and 35 minutes. The film is set in the mind of a young girl named Riley Andersen (Kaitlyn Dias), where five personified emotions—Joy (Amy Poehler), Sadness (Phyllis Smith), Anger (Lewis Black), Fear (Bill Hader) and Disgust (Mindy Kaling)—try to lead her through life as her parents (Diane Lane and Kyle MacLachlan) move from Minnesota to San Francisco, and she has to adjust to her new surroundings.

Cost for the evening is $20 / person, $15 / child (12 and under), with a family cap of $65 (free for 0-3 years). Please RSVP to Jodie Parmer at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. by December 20th. FLYER.


 

What’s All This Prayer Stuff About?

Everyone is invited for this introduction to the Morning, Afternoon and Evening Services with Rabbi Lerner. This adult education course will give an overview of the 3 services that take place on weekdays. It will cover the history and meaning of the services and individual prayers. Rabbi Lerner will demystify the many body movements used during the service, explain why some prayers are said silently and some out loud, and delve into why we say them and what they are intended to do for us. This course is designed for beginners who want to feel comfortable in the service and for regular attendees who want to increase their understanding of the prayers. Whether a beginner or a regular, the concepts taught in this class are intended to enhance your appreciation of the service. And, as a bonus, since the weekday prayer services form the core of the Shabbat prayer experience, this class will provide insight into the Shabbat service as well. This class will meet on Sunday mornings, 9:45 - 11:00 AM on January 7 & 21, 2018, and  10:30 - 11:45 AM on Feb 4, 2018. There is an optional Spiritual Shaharit service with Rabbi Lerner and January 7 and 21, and February 4 is the World Wide Wrap. FLYER HERE.


 

Karen K and the Jitterbugs

Bug Out With Karen K and her imaginary friends, the Jitterbugs at Temple Emunah on Monday, January 15, 2018 (MLK Day) at 10:30 AM! Don’t miss this engaging, high-energy, theatrical show. Karen K's amazingly catchy tunes makes the Jitterbugs one of most buzzed about bands for families and kids on the East Coast. This event is a fundraiser for the Billy Dalwin Pre-School. Come join us, have a blast, and support a great cause!

Advance sale prices: $8 per person / $25 family cap. Door Prices: $10 per person with $30 family cap (cash/check only)and children 12 months and under are free! Sorry, no refunds. Buy your tickets NOW


 

MLK Day of Service in Lexington

On Monday, January 15 2018, the Town of Lexington will commemorate Martin Luther King, Jr. Day with its fifth annual family-friendly day of volunteer activities supporting the underserved. We hope it will be a fun and meaningful day. Last year, almost 400 volunteers made a difference in the lives of more than 2,000 people. It's amazing what a community can do! There will be community dialogues, hands-on projects, and much more. Temple Emunah and LICA are both supporters of this event, and we hope you can make it! More details coming soon, and feel free to check out their website


 

The Wisdom Project

The Wisdom Project: Discover wisdom and strength you didn't realize you had! Please join Toni Stechler on Sunday afternoons as they lead us in a discussion on promoting personal wisdom within our community at Temple Emunah. Our upcoming dates are Listed HERE. Next session is December 10 at noon in the Pious Chapel.


 

Shabbat Morning Meditation

Led by members of our community, our meditation group meets approximately once a month for a variety of meditative Shabbat experiences. This can include: guided meditation, singing niggunim (melodies), chanting prayers, or brief teachings on either meditation practices or the Torah portion. Click HERE for our 2017-2018 dates. We meet on Saturday mornings, 9:30 AM in the Pious Chapel. Questions? Contact Miriam Sadofsky at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. Our next date is November 18, 2017.


 

Cliff's Notes: An Excursion into Our Bible & Rabbinic Judaism

The weekly sedra, the Haftarah, upcoming holidays, the Hebrew Bible, and the breadth of our inherited tradition all are fair game - as are your questions! Rabbi Cliff Librach will have a topic for each Saturday evening session of this new Adult Ed program, but will always begin by soliciting your queries. Nothing is out of bounds! Come explore, and leave enriched, enlightened, and energized. We will meet every Shabbat in November and December (except December 16) during Minhah/Ma'ariv - please check the calendar for exact times.  Contact Linna Ettinger at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. with questions. See our November and December topics HERE.


 

Meditation at Temple Emunah

Join Rabbi Lerner and Barbara Neustadt for a weekly morning meditation group on Tuesday mornings, 8:30 - 9:20 AM or for our NEW Minhah Meditation Group which meets monthly on Thursday afternoons. Our next date is December 21, 2017, 4:00 - 4:50 PM. Come to either or BOTH! Meditation experience is not required!

Mindfulness meditation groups are a wonderful way of connecting with others to share and deepen your meditation practice. We have guided meditations with themes such as the joys, difficulties, and insights experienced in meditation practice. We also explore the multitude of ways to bring mindfulness into our relationships, work, and daily lives, and into our Jewish practices. Please contact Barbara Neustadt with any questions at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. Click HERE for our flyer.

We also meet monthly on Shabbat, 9:30 - 10:15 AM on the following dates in 2017-18: December 9 and 23, January 20, February 10, April 7, and May 19. For questions about Shabbat meditation, contact Miriam Sadofsky at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


 

Running with the Rabbis

Join Rabbi Lerner for a fun Shabbat morning run around the neighborhood; meet at Rabbi Lerner's home (5 Blossom St.) at 7:30 AM for a 3.65 mile run. We hope to have two groups if possible a faster group around 9 minutes per mile and another group around 11 minutes per mile. We will vary speeds and distances depending on who shows up. And we make sure we are back in plenty of time to make it to shul on time! Email Ellen in Rabbi Lerner's Office for details and updates: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


 

iEngage: Israel’s Milestones and Their Meanings

This course explores the pivotal events of 1947 and 1967 – following the 1917 Balfour Declaration – as key moments when Zionism unleashed new thinking about the meaning of Jewishness for generations to come. The course engages participants in an open and pluralistic discussion about issues of Jewish identity, peoplehood, ethics and theology as they relate to nationhood, land, sovereignty, Jerusalem, occupation, and moral red lines.
Please bring your own kosher dairy lunch for Lunch and Learn. Participants take turns bringing in kosher dessert for the group. For more information, contact Linna Ettinger (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.).

This year we will be running TWO parallel tracks of iEngage – one during the daytime with Rabbi Lerner (Lunch and Learn at noon), and one in the evening with Rabbi Fel (Dessert and Discussion at 8:00 PM). Our next sessions are December 13 (lunch and learn) and December 20 (dessert and discussion) Click HERE for more details and registration information.

Through video lectures, text study, and lively group discussion, we welcome back the world-renowned faculty of the Shalom Hartman Institute into the Temple Emunah community this fall.


 

ME'AH SELECT - Crucial Moments in Israeli History

This course introduces students to certain critical moments in the history of the modern state of Israel through short stories. The stories range from the earliest days of the pioneers to the 21st century. Written by men and women, Ashkenazim and Sefardim/Mizrachim, Jews and Arabs, secularists and traditionalists, these stories open up for us uniquely visceral and imaginative windows on many of the compelling events that have shaped the history of Israel. The class will meet on Thursday mornings, 9:30 - 12:15 PM at Temple Emunah, starting October 19, 2017. See our flyer for more details. 


 

Talmud Study Group

The Temple Emunah Talmud Study Group, led by Dr. I Ely Stillman invites you to join our ongoing study of Tractate Berakhot on Wednesday nights at 8:00 PM in the Temple Library. All who are interested are welcome to join; knowledge of Hebrew is not required, since Dr. Stillman translates all Hebrew source materials during the study group sessions. Dr. Stillman teaches Talmud and rabbinic thought throughout the Boston area; his approach reflects the multi-faceted potential of Torah study, exploring fundamental principals and esoteric concepts within a historical context. He is on staff at the Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center/Harvard Medical School, where he practices surgical and renal pathology. To learn more and to see our 2017-18 calendar, click HERE.