Today is October 21st, 2017 -

Temple Sinai

50 Sewall Avenue
Brookline, MA 02446
Phone: (617) 277-5888

SINAI UPDATE  |    Week of June 4 – 10  2017  | Parashat B’ha’alotecha (Numbers 8:1 – 12:16)



Remembering the Six Day War on its 50th Anniversary 
This week, the Jewish world observes the 50th anniversary of the 1967 Six Day War, which resulted in Israel’s surprising victory over surrounding Arab armies, the reunification of Jerusalem and its Old City under Israeli sovereignty, the occupation and the control of millions of Palestinian Arabs by Israel, a situation which has endured since 1967 without resolution. This anniversary is not a simple one. The multiplicity of opinions about the Six Day War and its legacy is vast. Our commemoration of the Six Day War is both a celebration of Israel’s survival and thriving as a Jewish state, and an expression of concern for Israel’s ongoing, unresolved situation vis-à-vis the Palestinians.
   I encourage Temple Sinai members to read some of the excellent recent articles marking this anniversary, as we pray for peace for Israel and her neighbors.
Statement by Americans for Peace Now:
Rabbi Yehuda Kurtzer on Myth-Making and the Six Day War:
~Rabbi Andy Vogel

This Shabbat at Temple Sinai 
Shabbat@Six Services

Please join us for our monthly Shabbat@Six! service this Friday, June 9, at 6:00 p.m. in the Sanctuary, featuring our fabulous Shabbat band (including piano, guitars, drums, clarinet, violin, vocals and more).  We will also celebrate the recent conversion of Kate Plapinger, who recently joined the Jewish people.  The pre-service nosh is co-sponsored by Ronna Fried and Nicky Breitstein in honor of the bar mitzvah of Dominic Salamone and Gary Altman and Judy Ferber in honor of Kate Plapinger.   Please join us!

Shabbat Morning Torah Study, **in the Library** this Saturday, 9:00 a.m.

Join Rabbi Vogel this Saturday, June 10, for Shabbat morning Torah Study, held in the Larkin Library this month, at 9:00 a.m. until about 10:15 a.m. (Please enter through the garden door at the corner of Sewall and Charles Streets and walk through Ehrenfried Hall to the Library.)   This is an opportunity to study the week’s Torah portion and the ideas that emerge from it.  No prior experience or special expertise is necessary.  We begin with light breakfast and singing, and then begin to read and discuss a section from the week’s portion.  All are welcome!


Shabbat morning services, this Saturday, at 10:30 a.m.

Join us in the Sanctuary this Saturday, June 10 at 10:30 a.m. for Shabbat morning services, including the Bar Mitzvah of Dominic Salamone, grandson of Marie Salamone and Nick Breitstein & Ronna Fried.  The entire congregation is encouraged to join us for Shabbat morning prayer, and also to hear Dominic read from the Torah, and share his D’var Torah on  Moses leading the people through the wilderness.    We offer Dominic and his entire family our warm wishes of Mazel Tov on this happy occasion!  Please join us.

In our lives….

We wish mazel tov to our members Judy Ferber and Gary Altman on the birth of a grandson on Saturday, June 3, to their daughter Paula and her partner Akeel. We wish them all Mazel tov!

Check it out! Read about Temple activities over the past year
Chairs of Temple committees, project task forces and members of the staff have written reports describing their activities and programming over the past year. These have been compiled into a document available to all members.  The report is posted on our website. Click  Annual Meeting Report 2017.  Read the report and learn something new about Temple Sinai!


Team Sinai Softball News
Team Sinai/Ohabei continued its winning streak and for the first time in the team’s history has won four games in a season, and now enters the home stretch with a record of four wins and one loss. This past Sunday the team travelled to Newton to play Temple Reyim. Initially it was a competitive game, Sinai/Ohabei falling behind in the early innings but finally our bats came alive and the team batted around in two innings and took a commanding lead and won 38 to 13. A total team effort. Sinai was well represented with players Paul Rosenstrach, Rob Ford, Alex Cooper, Aaron Altman, Gary Altman, Rich Gold, Jon Katz. Team welcomes new west coast transplants father and son Mike (dad) and Andy Hogan, (son) family of the Temple’s Administrative Assistant Nancy Hogan, who herself set a team record by actually coming to cheer us on for two straight games. Thanks also to bat boy Jake Ford, who had a busy day picking up the bats after all our hits. The day before the game, Coach Altman welcomed into the world a new grandson, and he cannot wait for the day when he has the opportunity to play with three generations on the same field.  Next Sunday we play at home at Brookline High, tickets are still available.
~Gary Altman and Alex Cooper

Update from the Temple Sinai Refugee Resettlement Committee
As you’ve heard, Temple Sinai will be sponsoring a family of five and therefore we need to raise more money to fund a 3-bedroom apartment. Our new goal is $36,000. If you haven’t yet made a contribution, your tax deductible donation would be greatly appreciated!  Please send a check to the temple made out to JFS Metrowest with Sinai Refugee on the memo line. Or go to the fundraising site:   Please share this fundraiser with your family and friends! Thank you.
~Jill Winitzer (; Mel Stoler ( – Co-Chairs

Can you sponsor a Pre-Service Nosh this summer?  
Once again this summer, Temple Sinai will hold Shabbat services every Friday evening throughout the months of July and August. These summer services, held in Temple Sinai’s air conditioned Ehrenfried Hall, begin at 6:00 p.m. on Friday evenings and are slightly more informal than during the other months of the year. About half of these brief services are led by members of the congregation, while the others will be led by either Rabbi Vogel or Rabbi Shoshana. If you would like to sponsor an oneg on June 30 or a  pre-service “nosh”  during the months of July and August, please contact Kathy Arnstein,

Distinguished Service Award to be presented to Robin Orwant – June 16, 2017, 7:30 p.m.
Please join as we honor Robin Orwant, the recipient of the 2017 Harry Wheeler Distinguished Service Award. This honor is given annually to a Temple Sinai member who has made exceptional contributions to our synagogue. Robin has been active in temple life since joining in 2007. She has served in many roles, including overall co-chair of the Caring Committee, chair of the Music, Prayer and Ritual committee, coordinator of High Holiday honors, and Secretary for the Temple Board of Trustees.   Robin is passionate about Jewish education and has taught both Adult Learning and Adult Bar Mitzvah classes here. We thank Robin for her many contributions to our community on June 16.

Shabbat Torah Yoga – last session of the year Saturday , June 17 

Experience the relaxation and joy of Shabbat through the flow of our monthly Torah Yoga, on Saturday, June 17, 9:30 – 10:45 a.m., led by Rabbi Shoshana and an experienced yoga instructor.  Join us! 

Summer Adult Learning – “Holy and Unholy Objects,” Wednesdays in July, 7:30 – 9:30 pm
The Tanach briefly but evocatively describes a variety of sacred (and not-so-sacred) objects, some of which are quite familiar. The Ark of the Covenant, for example, even starred in its own movie. Other objects are more obscure. What do you know about Moses’ bronze snake, Neshutan, and why, hundreds of years after its creation, King Hezekiah felt the need to destroy it? We will visit the texts, midrashim, and commentaries on these and other objects, including the Urim and Thummim and the golden mice of the Philistines. Using the lens of holy and unholy objects, we will shed light on life in ancient Israel and explore our own theological commitments. No background is necessary. Come to one or all of the sessions.

New Families – register for Religious School online
Please make sure you register your K – 12 child by visiting      To reserve your child’s place, kindly send in a $100 (per child) deposit to Temple Sinai, 50 Sewall Avenue, Brookline, MA, 02446. Questions? Contact Director of Education, Heidi Smith Hyde, at 617-277-5883 or

From Tzedek@Sinai…..
Two important opportunities to learn how we can support and stand with our Muslim neighbors and friends:
~Saturday, June 10 – The Greater Boston Interfaith Organization’s (GBIO) Bystander Intervention Workshop will be held from 9:30-11:30am in Bethel AME Church’s Fellowship Hall (40 Walk Hill Street, Boston). The Quabbin Mediation Group will conduct the training.
~Tuesday, July 25 – GBIO’s next Muslim Teach-In will be held at Temple Isaiah, (55 Lincoln Street, Lexington) at 7:00pm. Look for further content information to come within the next several weeks.
For questions or to request more information, email Scot Osterweil at or Amy Shulman Weinberg at . Also, we’d like to know who from Temple Sinai plans to attend, so please let us know. Thank you!
From the Climate Team:

~Free compost pick-up for your Brookline home!
Do you want to compost but you don’t have anywhere to put it? Do you know about the compost drop off bin at the Brookline teen center but you don’t have time to drop your compost off? We are a group of high school students who would love to help you to participate in Brookline’s composting system! What we will do: We will pick up your compost from your place of residence, and bring it to the compost drop off bin at the Brookline Teen center. What you will do: collect your compost through the week in a biodegradable bag or a container. This service is free of charge, donations welcome. Contact to sign up.

Support the Campaign for Temple Sinai!
It’s never too late to make a pledge or donation to the Campaign for Temple Sinai.  Reminder: donations of $1,000 or more can be spread over five years and, if received by June 30th, will be eligible for an alphabetical listing on our Donor Recognition Wall. Visit our website at If you have already pledged or donated, thank you!

The Rabbis’ and staff offices have moved!  
In preparation for the renovations at Temple Sinai, last week the staff moved to temporary office space in Brighton where they will work for one year until construction is complete.   While religious services and most other Temple activities will continue to take place at Temple Sinai, the staff is now located  in a suite of offices on the lowest level of the  Chestnut Park Senior Housing facility, 19 Chiswick Road in Brighton, MA.  Telephone numbers and address for mail remain the same.   

Do you listen to podcasts?  Do you want to know more about Israel?
If so, the Israel Education Committee suggests you listen to “Israel Story,” an admitted (and unabashed) ripoff of “This American Life.”   “Israel Story,” which is just starting its third season and is the English language version of the popular Israel radio show Sipur Israeli, “tells modern tales from an ancient land – the kind of stories you’d share with a friend over a plate of hummus on a Friday afternoon, or with your partner at the end of a long day. These are everyday stories, told by, and about, regular Israelis.”   All of the the “Israel Story”   podcasts (, issued every other week on Wednesdays, are available through PRX (Public Radio Exchange) (, through the Israel Story website ( or Tablet Magazine (
            ~Temple Sinai’s Israel Education and Action Committee

In the community….
IAC and CJP are sponsoring the “Celebrate Israel Festival” on Sunday, June 11th, 2:00 -6:00 p.m. at the Arsenal Mall in Watertown. In celebration of Israel’s 69th birthday, the event will feature many activities for young and old alike. See for more details. Tickets are $20 per family until June 8th, $25 at the door, and $10 per individual.