Services, Challah Deliveries and Happy Father’s Day

Shabbat Shalom and Happy Father’s Day! Thank you to our special Mitzvah makers this week! Jakob, Cecy Gomez, Sabrina, Bob Miller and Miriam! PLEASE let us know if you would like some yummy fresh challah delivered to your home next week. Please let us know if you’d like to help drive.Shabbat Shalom and we so look forward to seeing you all tonight at 7 PM via zoom and in person in the synagogue. Please let us know if you would like to attend in person services? All health and safety measures will be in place.

Our deepest condolences to Esther and David on the loss of Esther’s beloved brother Sol Bleiweis this week. Sol was a survivor of Auschwitz and has such an amazing and inspiring story. Please listen to this beautiful interview of him:

And this article:

Hazzan Ben-Moshe’sWeekly Message:This week we read in Parshat Sh’lah L’kha of Moshe sending spies (or scouts) to the Promised Land. Moshe sends one man from each of the twelve tribes-each of them a prominent man, mentioned by name. The haftarah, from the Book of Joshua, also deals with spies-two, sent by Joshua to scout out Jericho before laying siege to that city. These two men are not named.

The first scouting expedition ends in failure-ten of the twelve spies report that the Land cannot be conquered, and discourage the People, leading to forty years of wandering in the wilderness. The two anonymous scouts sent by Joshua succeed-they report that Jericho is demoralized and ready to fall. They are not concerned with their own egos, and report directly to Joshua instead of speaking in front of all the People. Quiet professionalism is the way to success. May we always be blessed with competent public servants, like Joshua’s scouts, who do their jobs without thought of fame. As the Sage Avtalyon says in Pirkei Avoth, “Love labor, avoid public leadership, and do not seek to be known to the authorities.” Shabbat Shalom.Hazzan Yitzhak Ben-Moshe

Candle lighting in Austin at 8:17 PM.

Sisterhood Book Club via zoom MONDAY June 22 (NEW DATE) at 7 PM

Topic: Sisterhood Book Club discussion and schmooze
Time: Jun 22, 2020 07:00 PM

The next Tanach class is June 30!
Join Zoom Meeting

Save the Date. Let’s have a fun afternoon at Town Lake this summer, where each family rents a canoe or kayak and enjoys each other’s company together. The prefect Social Distance event.

The Special Day – Happy Father’s Day from Grandpa Abe

This is a special time of the year for me. It brings back many memories and future expectations. Yes, I’m talking about Father’s Day. They really should call it Daddy’s Day. I will explain that as we go.

As you know, just anybody can be a father. And often there are many people doing this job. It takes someone special to be a daddy. You don’t need to necessarily be a father to be a daddy. A lot of men marry ladies with children already. They take on the responsibility of being a daddy. This takes someone very special. They have to have patience, love, and understanding. A lot of people say they also need the ability to stay steps ahead of the children. I have seen many father/daddies in my time. I was blessed with the world’s greatest daddy (I feel).

Let me give you a few words about my Daddy or I guess at my age, just plain Dad. My Dad was extra special. He married my Mom who already had two children. Later on in their marriage they had one more. The two children that he took in and loved were both boys. And by some miracle Mom and Dad had a little girl. I don’t think at any time that my sister was ever short on being loved. To this day we worship her. She’s very special. Dad was middle class, worked his heart out to support his family of five. He always thought of and loved his children. Love is something that comes along and it stays with you always. We, the three musketeers, or should I say, the three rascals had always loved him unconditionally.

When I was in the teenage plus years, my Mother and I would kid each other and, of course, were getting real good at teasing. One day she told me, “you know you’re going to miss your parents when we’re gone.” Me, who knew everything, and had all the answers replied, “Never.” Well, as time went by, the more that statement became true. There’s not a day that goes by that I don’t think of my parents. And especially my Dad. It sure would be good to be able to speak to them one last time.

Now that I’m pretty well aged, I have children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren. I’m wondering as I sit here thinking about the future. Will my children/grandchildren and great-grandchildren think of me like I think of my parents?
Le Dor Ve Dor – from Generation to Generation!

Friday services via Zoom, Sunday School Rocks on via Zoom

Dear Congregants,

We hope you had a great week all things considered. We want to remind each and every one of you that even though we may need to be “physically distant”, there is no way we are being “socially distant” from our beloved congregants. Please reach out to us if you need anything at all – from meals on the go, to just a phone call to say hello. We want to hear from you!

Please check every Friday evening at 6:45 PM for a link to be able to live stream our beautiful Kaballat Shabbat services. We will also post it on our Facebook page. Let’s make this homeshuling experience awesome!

If you would like a PDF version of our Friday night services, please email us ASAP at and we will happily send you a copy for free. Those lovely Friday night transliterate books were dedicated to the late Morris and Elaine Shapiro, who will be beaming down at us knowing that we are using and sharing them with the congregation that they helped found.

Sunday school BERS, we will be keeping to our regular Sunday schedules and meeting “virtually” with our amazing morot starting THIS Sunday March 29. PLEASE be on the lookout for a Zoom invitation from your class teachers. Contact Iris at for any questions please.

This Saturday night at 8:30 PM join the whole Austin Jewish community, including our very own Hazzan Yitzhak Ben-Moshe, in a community wide Havdallah.
Cantor Ben-Moshe’s Weekly Parashah:

This Shabbat we begin the reading of Sefer Vayyikra, the Book of Leviticus. The Latin name stems from the fact that this book deals largely with the duties of the Kohanim, who were of the Tribe of Levi. Actually, an alternate name in Hebrew is Torath Hakohanim. The parshah begins with the laws of offering an ‘olah, a sacrifice which was entirely burned on the altar for God. We read how to sacrifice a bull, or a sheep, or a goat, and we are told that the smoke of these sacrifices is a “reiah nikhoah”-“a sweet savor” to God. And then, the Torah describes the ‘olah of two doves-which was offered by someone who couldn’t afford a bull, a sheep, or a goat. The Torah states that the entire bird was burned on the altar, including the feathers. No human would say that the smell of burning feathers is savory or pleasant-but this sacrifice is also called a “sweet savor”. Why is this? Because the offering of a poor person was just as pleasing to God as a bull offered by a wealthy person. In God’s view, we are all equal, whatever means we have. We do not believe in the so-called “Prosperity Gospel”-that the rich are more favored by God. We are all, down to the “hewer of wood and the drawer of water” precious to our Creator. Shabbat Shalom, and Hodesh Tov-a good and blessed New Month of Nissan.
Hazzan Yitzhak Ben-Moshe

Shabbat candle lighting time in Austin 7:29 PM

Purim at Congregation Beth El

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PLEASE join us tonight at 7 PM for a soulful and purpose-filled service, as we welcome in Shabbat.

Sunday School with the BERS this Sunday 3/8 at 10 AM. Our children may come in costume!

Purim is this Monday Night 3/9 at 7 PM! Come for one cool Megilla reading, live klezmer music with Klez Austin, a karaoke machine that will have us rocking into the wee hours, food, fun, children’s activities and so much more.

Cantor Ben-Moshe’s Weekly Parashah:

This week we read Parshat T’tzaveh, which among other things describes the vestments of the kohanim, the priests and especially the Kohen Gadol, the High Priest. The kohanim were to dress a certain way to enter the Sanctuary, in a manner befitting their status and role.

This Shabbat is also Shabbat Zachor, the Shabbat before Purim. On Purim, of course, we dress in costumes. The Megillah also speaks of costumes-Queen Esther dresses in her best to approach the king, as the kohanim dressed to come into the presence of God. Similarly, Mordechai is dressed in royal robes in the lead up to Haman’s downfall. Clothing and costume are not only linked to the Temple or to Purim. We too dress in particular ways for different occasions, especially for attending synagogue. We wear kippot and tallitot, on Shabbat we dress nicely and on the High Holidays we wear white. We may not be kohanim, but we too can dress ourselves to come into God’s presence. Shabbat Shalom.

Hazzan Yitzhak Ben-Moshe

Shabbat candle lighting time in Austin 6:16 PM

Scout Shabbat at Beth El

Please join us for a lovely dinner THIS Friday at 6:30 PM. We will have services, followed by a lovely dinner. You may see a few green or blue scout uniforms as we honor the Jewish scouts of Austin. All are welcome to join and we can’t wait to see you!

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Join us on Sunday 3/1 at 10 AM for Sunday school too!

Cantor –Yitzhak Ben-Moshe weekly message:

This week we read Parshat T’rumah, in which B’nei Yisrael are commanded to build a sanctuary. The Torah relates that God tells Moshe “And they shall build me a sanctuary and I will dwell among them.” Of course, we know that God cannot be contained in a tent or a building-the entire Universe can not contain God. The Mishkan was rather a focal point for the people and a symbol of God’s Presence. What could that mean to us, that God is present with us, dwelling among us? How should we act knowing that God is with us? Some things to think about as we come together in our sanctuary this Shabbat. Shabbat Shalom.