Category Archives: Worship

Shabbat Rishona this Shabbat!

The first Shabbat of every month is Shabbat Rishona, a family-friendly Shabbat experience.

•Saturday, January 8, 2022 at 9:30 am, Congregation Agudath Achim
•Out of an abundance of caution, Shabbat Rishona will be on Zoom!
Please join us for a Family Friendly service, followed by a fun game of
“Jewpardy”.
•As a reminder, this is in place of Religious School on Sunday,
January 9th, so there is no school on Sunday.

CHICK HELFAND’s 100th BIRTHDAY SHABBAT SERVICE

The Helfands at our Centennial Celebration.

SERVICES WILL START AT 9:45 AM THIS WEEK (12/18/2021) FOR US TO CELEBRATE CHICK HELFAND’S 100TH BIRTHDAY!

Then services go back to 9 AM for the following weeks.

Just to assure anyone who has questions, we are having live services this Shabbat and any subsequent Shabbats unless there is an announcement indicating otherwise. Looking forward to seeing you at synagogue on Saturday.

Masks are mandatory in the synagogue!

Please join us for in person services this Saturday morning at 9:45 AM or on Zoom if you are not comfortable attending in person (Zoom Link was emailed).

Please RSVP if you are attending to Mike Novick (mikenovick1 @ gmail.com) or Mija Almeida (mijaba65 @ gmail.com). There will be a sign in book when you arrive for services.

Adding Meaning to the Lights- The 6th Candle

Happy Hanukkah!

Judaism teaches us that what we do with our lives is precious.  Adding meaning to all of our actions is a holy act- whether we are praying, eating, washing our hands, or partaking in normal, everyday activities, doing them with intention lifts the seemingly mundane to the level of holiness. Simply put, Judaism asks of us to act not mindlessly but with intention. Hanukkah, or  חנוכה ​means ‘Dedication’. As we light the Hanukkah candles, let our intent be meaningful with each night. 
We dedicate the 6th Candle to those who struggle with mental illness.  With nearly 20% of our country diagnosed with some form of mental illness, there are nearly 5% who struggle with severe mental illness.  In other words, nearly 50 million Americans struggle, and their families struggle as well.  Mental illness also contributes to drug addiction and suicide.
Tonight, let us offer a Mishebeirach prayer on behalf of those who suffer and struggle with mental illness:
May the One who blessed our ancestors — Who named us Israel (Yisrael), those who “struggle,” Bless and heal those among us who struggle with mental well-being. May they acknowledge their own strength and resilience in persevering, May they treat themselves with forgiveness and patience, May they find others who share their experiences, so they know they are not alone, May they find help, compassion and resources when they are able to reach out for them, May they find others willing to reach out first when they cannot, And may they find inclusive and welcoming communities that will uplift and celebrate them. May the Holy One grant us the strength and resilience to support our loved ones, May we find the patience and forgiveness we need for ourselves and others, May we find solidarity and support from other caregivers, May we find the capacity to listen without judgment and with the intention to help when asked, May we find the ability to notice when others are struggling and reach out to them first, And may we create communities that accept, uplift and celebrate those among us who are struggling.
AMEN.

Adding Meaning to the Lights: The 5th Candle

Happy Hanukkah!

Judaism teaches us that what we do with our lives is precious.  Adding meaning to all of our actions is a holy act- whether we are praying, eating, washing our hands, or partaking in normal, everyday activities, doing them with intention lifts the seemingly mundane to the level of holiness. Simply put, Judaism asks of us to act not mindlessly but with intention. Hanukkah, or  חנוכה ​means ‘Dedication’. As we light the Hanukkah candles, let our intent be meaningful with each night. 

Let us dedicate the 5th Candle to Acts of Compassion (Rachamim).  Rachamim also shares the same route verb as womb, or brotherhood.  Maimonides declared that “arrogant, cruel, misanthropic, and unloving persons were to be suspected of not being true Jews” (Yad, Issurei Bi’ah, 19:17). The Torah teaches us that G-d’s compassion is a reflection of our ability to show compassion to others. The prophet Isaiah wrote, “Learn to do well; seek justice; relieve the oppressed; judge the fatherless; plead for the widow.”

May this 5th Candle of Hanukkah serve as a light of compassion for others.  Below is a prayer by Trisha Arlin:

Barukh Atah Adonai
Blessed One-ness, Blessed Connection,
Kadosh Barukh Hu:
We pray for all who are in pain
And all who cause pain.

We pray for those of us 
Who are so angry
That we have lost compassion for the suffering
Of anyone who is not a member of our group.
And we pray for those of us
Who cannot see the suffering
behind the loss of that compassion.

We pray for the strength
To resist the urge to inhumanity
That we feel in times of fear and mourning.
We pray for the courage
To resist the calls to inhumanity
That others may make upon us in times of crisis.

Barukh Atah Adonai
Blessed One-ness, Blessed Connection,
Kadosh Barukh Hu:
May we find relief from our hurts and fears.
And may we not, in our pain,
Lose our empathy
For the hurts and fears of others.
We pray for all who are in pain
And all who cause pain.

Amen

Adding Meaning to the lights- The 4th Candle

Let us dedicate the 4th Candle to upholding Human Rights:

In the Hanukkah story, the Maccabees fought for liberty, for the right to practice their religion, for the dignity of human freedom. Who are the Maccabees who stand for human rights in our world today?

Nelson Mandela is a Maccabee for helping South Africa emerge from a history of apartheid. He ensured that his society would be ruled by forgiveness and reconciliation, not by vengeance over the past.

The Dalai Lama is a Maccabee for representing peaceful resistance to the Chinese occupation of his native Tibet and has become a peace emissary to the world.

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was a Maccabee by helping this country face its racism and showed us a path to a better America.

Hanukkah: 3rd Night Dedication

Dear Members,

Happy Hanukkah!

Judaism teaches us that what we do with our lives is precious.  Adding meaning to all of our actions is a holy act- whether we are praying, eating, washing our hands, or partaking in normal, everyday activities, doing them with intention lifts the seemingly mundane to the level of holiness. Simply put, Judaism asks of us to act not mindlessly but with intention.

Hanukkah, or  חנוכה ​means ‘Dedication’. As we light the Hanukkah candles, let our intent be meaningful with each night. Let us dedicate the 3rd Candle to stopping Domestic Violence and Abuse:

“May the lights of our Hanukkah Menorah shed light on those that cower in the darkness. May their fear be quelled by Your Eternal Love. Guardian of Israel who never slumbers or sleeps, protect the victims of violence and bullying. May You protect those who suffer because of words that hurt more than fists. May we do all we can to offer comfort and help to those who are too weak or who live in fear. May we lift up those in need and remove the stumbling blocks that stand in their way. May the 3rd candle inspire us to act, as the Torah commands: “Love your neighbor”, and “Do not place a stumbling block before the blind”. (Leviticus)

Do you want to help protect victims of domestic violence and abuse?

https://www.jfcsboston.org/Our-Services/Center-for-Basic-Needs-Assistance/Journey-to-Safety-Response-to-Domestic-Abuse/Jewish-Domestic-Violence-Coalition

Hanukkah 2nd Night Candle Dedication

Happy Hanukkah!

Judaism teaches us that what we do with our lives is precious.  Adding meaning to all of our actions is a holy act- whether we are praying, eating, washing our hands, or partaking in normal, everyday activities, doing them with intention lifts the seemingly mundane to the level of holiness. Simply put, Judaism asks of us to act not mindlessly but with intention.

Hanukkah, or  חנוכה means ‘Dedication’. As we light the Hanukkah candles, let our intent be meaningful with each night. The 1st candle is dedicated to family and friends.  Let us dedicate the 2nd candle of Hanukkah to doing our share to stop world hunger:

“As we light the 2nd candle of Hanukkah, let us do so with the promise to work toward a future where we can share in our bounties.  While we are blessed to be able to eat latkes, jelly donuts and anything we want this time of year, we are aware of those who will go to bed hungry tonight.  This 2nd candle is lit with the intent that we will do what we can to feed the poor and hungry in our community and the greater world community.  Then will the prophet’s words ring true:  “You shall eat in plenty and be satisfied (Joel, 2:26).”

Want to do more about the Jewish response to hunger and what YOU can do?

MAZON – A Jewish Response to Hunger MAZON spotlights issues and populations where larger organizations and the government have yet to turn their focus. Your support for MAZON’s Spotlight Fund furthers this work, by allowing us to fight to end hunger among military families, veterans, Native Americans, single mothers, LGBTQ seniors, the people of Puerto Rico and the territories, and all who struggle.

Cantor Colman Reaboi

Spiritual Leader, Congregation Agudath Achim

Shabbat Rishona This Week

November 6, 2021 / Kislev 2, 5782

From Christina Mattison Ebert’s D’rash Designs Series

Shabbat Candlelighting Times:
Shabbat begins on Friday, November 5th at 5:15pm, and ends on Saturday, November 6th at 6:15pm.

Parashat Toldot – Genesis 25:19-28:9
Rebecca and Isaac have twins, the smooth-skinned Jacob, whom Rebecca favors, and the hairy Esau, who Isaac favors. After returning from a hunting trip, Esau asks his brother for some lentil soup, but Jacob tells him he must trade him his birthright. Years later, when Isaac is old and blind, Jacob tricks their father into giving him the firstborn blessing. Jacob leaves home, fearing his brother will retaliate, and finds a wife at his uncle Laban’s house.

Haftarah: Malachi, 1:1-2:7
Though Esau was the firstborn, and thus had the birthright to his father’s inheritance, it was Jacob who received the more prestigious blessing, and who went on to be the patriarch of the family. Malakhi is likely mentioning Jacob and Esau because Esau was also known as Edom (Gen 25:30), the progenitor of the Edomites. During Malakhi’s life, the Edomites looted Jerusalem and killed many of those who fled. The people of Israel might reasonably have questioned whether Jacob and the people of Israel really were being accepted and Esau and the Edomites rejected, but Malakhi assures the Jews that God is still on their side.

Click here to learn more about the Parshat Toldot.

This Shabbat is Shabbat Rishona!
Please join the Religious School in celebrating the joy of Shabbat this Saturday beginning at 9am.

Mishkan T’filah for Children will be used as our Siddur for this service.

Cantor Colman Reaboi
Spiritual Leader, Congregation Agudath Achim

Latkes Are Back and On Sale Now!

Potato Latkes

The Religious School Latke Fundraiser is back!!

We are excited to once again be able to offer our wonderful kosher latkes for sale as a Religious School Fundraiser.

24 latkes in a box (frozen): $10.00 per box

Quick turnaround time on orders!
ORDERS ARE DUE by THURSDAY, NOVEMBER 11th. ​

More information to come re:
ORDER PICKUP at the JCH the week of November 29th.

Please email the information on the pdf below to Stacey Gay at office@tauntonshul.com ASAP. Please put LATKE ORDER in the subject line.

Name: _____________________________________________​

Phone:_____________________

Email: _________________

​I would like ____________boxes x $10.00 per box = $ _________________

Also, you may drop off the form at the Jewish Community House (Lori’s office) or mail form with your check payable to Congregation Agudath Achim to:
Congregation Agudath Achim
P.O. Box 826
Taunton, MA 02780

Sukkot and Simchat Torah

The Holidays aren’t over just yet! Below are the dates and times for our Sukkot Observance:

-Sukkot Shabbat- Saturday September 25th, at 9am. (Live and on Zoom)

Shemini Atzeret/Yizkor Service- Tuesday, September 28th, at 9am. (Zoom only)

Also, please join the Religious School and parents as we celebrate Simchat Torah on Saturday, October 2nd from 9am-11am  (This Service will be Live and on Zoom.)