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A Message from Rabbi Gartenberg – 01/16/2020

The Weekly Message from Rabbi Dov Gartenberg

Thursday, January 16, 2020

Dear Friends at CBI and the Community,

I am still recovering from all the activities this past Shabbat and over the weekend. After a non-stop Shabbat I attended the Nosh Fest, which was the first Jewish community wide event I have experienced in ABQ. The highlight for me was an invite from Beth Cohen to sing Hava Nagilah from the stage with her Klezmer band. It has been a blessing for me to collaborate with her and our new ensemble at CBI which we have named Shirat Burque (Song of the Burque).

Currently, Shirat Burque has committed to do a monthly Kabbalat Shabbat on the 2nd Friday of the month, (except in March) and a Malaveh Malkah and Havdallah every other month. We would be glad to expand our musical services but will need donor support beyond what we have committed to doing at present. The Musical Shabbat services we are doing are funded by donors through the Rabbi’s Discretionary Fund. Please contact me If you are interested in supporting what we do or, you would like to sing or play with us.

This past Shabbat we had two new initiatives take place. The first was the Singing around the Table Friday night dinner. Twenty of us sat around a Shabbat table after the Kabbalat services and sang our way through a delicious Shabbat meal. We will be doing this every month through May, the next one happening on Friday, February 14th. I am going to put a cap of 30 on it to keep it relatively intimate, so if you want to come, RSVP as soon as we publicize it. Since it is a series, we will set aside places for those who came to the first gathering.

On Shabbat morning we shared the sanctuary with Chavurat Hamidbar for a lovely morning of prayer and study. I invite those who attended to fill out the survey on this link JOINT SERVICE 1/11 as we consider future collaborations. Thanks to all those who led services and read Torah.

Looking forward, I wanted to let you know about improvements I am making around communications and ease of signing up to participate in shul life. First, we now have an online community calendar which has accurate and updated information about events at CBI. In my listings I try to give details about the event and links to online preregistration. Often the calendar is up to date many days before you receive the hard copy of the Shofar.  Please save this link in your favorites:

With the help of the staff we have made the lobby an easy place to gather up-to-date information about programs and activities at the synagogue. There is a turning kiosk near the front door that has multiple copies of fliers and announcements of upcoming activities. Near the office on the windowpanes above the stairs to the chapel we have posted current flyers announcing upcoming programs. If you are around on the weekdays you can take a picture on your phone of the announcements or easily signup in the office for an upcoming program.

It is important also that I remain accessible to congregants. Please note that you can easily make an appointment with me online by using this Calendly app link: Calendly lets me list all my appointments and lets you select a time that works for your schedule. I generally set aside as many as 8 to 10 hours of appointments a week. If computers are not your thing, call Anna and she will set up an appointment through the app for you.

Lastly, I want to highlight festival and special programs coming up that may interest you. The links take you right to the calendar and will give you more details. 

  • Illuminated Conversations. Sunday 2/2 (NOTE: Rescheduled new date): Interfaith and Intercultural Relationships and Conservative Judaism. Click on Interfaith more info.
  • Congregational Tu B’Shevat Seder. Monday 2/10, 6pm: Click on Tu B’Shevat
  • Illuminated Conversations. Sunday 2/23: A Conversation about The Rise of Anti-Semitism.

Lastly, in honor of Martin Luther King, I will be teaching about the enslavement of B’nai Israel in the first Chapter of Exodus this Shabbat. Here is my opening question. In 1807, The Society for the Conversion of Negro Slaves published a “Slave’s Bible”. What was different about this Bible from other publications of the Bible during this time? You can get a sneak peak by clicking Slave Bible.

Rabbi Dov Gartenberg
Congregation B’nai Israel, Albuquerque
4401 Indian School Rd NE, ABQ, NM 87110
Work Phone: (505) 266-0155 Ext 102

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Rabbi Dov