Sofia’s Bat Mitzvah

Friday Night Live! Tonight @ 7PM! 
Shabbat Morning Services this Shabbat at 9 AM. Please join us as we celebrate Sofia’s Bat Mitzvah. Mazel tov to her family, Yosef, Claudia, Vania and Nathan. There will be a delicious meat kidush immediately following services, sponsored generously by Sofia’s family. “Shabbat Shul Storytime” with Morah Shereen for the children during services.

Cantor Ben-Moshe’s Weekly Message.

The end of this week’s parshah, Tzav, details the ordination ceremony for Aharon and his sons as Kohanim, priests. Moshe offers his last sacrifice as his brother takes over that role, and the trope, the cantillation note over the word “vayish’hat”, “and he slaughtered” is sharsheret, a long, drawn-out tone that is used only four times in the Torah, and always indicates hesitation. Moshe is sad that he has to give the sacerdotal function away. Transfer of power is not easy. In the Megillah which we just read on Purim, the king takes his signet ring from Haman and gives it to Mordechai, signifying the transfer of power as prime minister. In the Megillah, Haman has to die in order for Mordechai to take his place. The Torah describes an orderly transfer of power. May all people everywhere be blessed to live under a system which transfers power not through assassination or violent revolution, but through democracy. All of the human family deserve this. Shabbat Shalom.
Hazzan Yitzhak Ben-Moshe 
Shabbat candle lighting at 7:26 p.m.

Thank you to all who helped make our Purim Party so much fun and so very meaningful.

From the teens who organized the children’s arts and crafts stations, to the Hazzan for a great Megilla reading, to the wonderful families that attended.

As Yosef mentioned, without you guys, we are just a building.

With you all, we are a community/kehilla!

A few photos of our Beth El campout last weekend. Save the date for the fall campout in November 23-25.

Please Join Us: Wednesday May 1
Internationally acclaimed Guest Speaker Itzhak Brook. Beth El at 7 PM. All are invited!

You’re Invited: Second Night Seder at Beth El.
Please send your RSVP’s to
It fills fast – but there’s always room for you!

Announcements for the End of Passover

On Thursday night, we begin the concluding days of Pesah, the Season of our Liberation. Friday’s Torah reading is the dramatic tale of the Crossing of the Sea of Reeds, usually identified as the Great Bitter Lake on the border of the Sinai Peninsula. Worthy of note is the aggadah, the Rabbinic legend, that the Sea did not split when Moses raised his staff pver the water. According to the legend, God performed the miracle only when one man, Nahshon ben ‘Amminadav, was brave enough to wade into the water. God does indeed provide for us-but we need to meet Him halfway. I hope to see everyone Friday night at 7:00, and Saturday morning at 9:00 for the conclusion of Passover and for Yizkor. Shabbat Shalom and Hag Sameah.

Cantor Yitzhak Ben-Moshe
8902 Mesa Drive
Austin,TX. 78759

Announcements for Passover

image via

image via

Dear Congregants and Friends,
We hope you can all join us this Friday night, March 30 at 7pm for our regular Kabbalat shabbat services and Saturday morning, March 31 at 9 am, with the Torah service at 9:45, for our shabbat services.  Also, don’t forget to send your RSVP by replying to this e-mail for the second night seder at Beth El a week from Saturday – April 7 at 6 pm.
Cantor Ben-Moshe’s Weekly message:
This week we read in Parshat Tzav more of the rules of sacrifices-how they were to be offered, and for what reasons. This parshah, as well as most of the Book of Vayikra, Leviticus, are rather hard reading for us, living nearly 2000 years after the last sacrifice was offered in the Temple. What we need to do is to look at the Hebrew word for sacrifice-korban, meaning something that is brought near, or more to the point, something that brings us near to God. Our ancestors offered sacrifices in order to come near to God. How can we do so in our time? That is the central question that is raised by the Book of Leviticus, and a very important question for all Jews at all times.
This Shabbat is also Shabbat HaGadol, the Shabbat before Pesah. The Season of our Liberation is at hand, and we will be discussing the traditions and the meaning of Pesah this Shabbat.  Please join us Friday and Saturday.
Before services on Friday night, a sign-up sheet will be available for anyone to make me their agent for selling hametz to a non-Jew for the duration of the Festival.
Shabbat Shalom.
Cantor Yitzhak Ben-Moshe
8902 Mesa Drive
Austin, TX 78759

Happy Passover! Community Seder 2nd Night

Please join us at Congregation Beth El for a community/congregational seder for the second night.  We will begin reading the haggadah with Cantor Ben Moshe at 6pm, and Morah Betsy and our children will act out the plagues section, including a dash to the Sea of Reeds.

The meal will be Kosher-for-Passover  dairy pot-luck and you can contact Iris for details.


The Caritas donations drive is ongoing and your gift of new bottles of shampoo and conditioner are welcome.  There is a box at the synagogue entrance.

Shabbat, Tzedakah, Fast of the Firstborn & Passover

Dear Congregants and Friends,

We would like to remind you of our regular Friday night services tonight at 7 pm. Please bring shampoo and conditioners for our Tzadakah drive to help Caritas of Austin – the box is by the door.

Also, please note we have a special morning and Torah service this Monday morning at 8 am. It is the fast of the first born, preceding Passover, and a very special service. We hope that you can make it.

Finally, the second night Seder is Tuesday evening at 6 pm. Please let me know asap if you plan to come so we can confirm numbers. This event is open to the community and free, but please rsvp with what dish you can bring and if you can help with set up and clean up.

You may RSVP by commenting on this post or by emailing

Shabbat shalom and a Happy and Kosher Passover to you all.

From the Beth El family