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What's Going On - December 2009 PDF Print E-mail


Hanukkah is here and the time has come to celebrate the Festival of Lights.  Please join us on December 11th at 6:00 for services and then a fun and delicious Shabbat dinner.  

We look forward to seeing everyone’s favorite Chanukkiah light up the auditorium.  Please contact me if you would like to help cook on the 11th, or if you have any questions.

Meredith Ryan


Foodfest has come and gone and what an amazing show of solidarity and support from the entire Jewish and Corpus Christi community. Iris and I would like the Jewish community to know that when you help with foodfest by donating your time, skills and/or money, you are helping Congregation Beth Israel as a whole.  So far this year, Sisterhood has paid for a new condenser for the walk-in fridge, Sunday school curriculum materials, the ovens were fixed, and a commercial grade cuisinart was purchased for the kitchen.  Last year, we purchased a new ice maker for the kitchen and wrote a check to CBI for $26,000.  As you can see, all of the hard work that we put into Foodfest goes to improving CBI.  As a sisterhood, we work hard together so that all can benefit.

Sisterhood has many different functions.  One is the fundraising arm of the temple, the other is the social unification of Jewish women in our community.  We view our social activities to be incredibly important.  This month, we have planned a chartered trip to Houston.  This trip is a fun way to get some holiday shopping in, eat some great Jewish Deli and view works of art at museums.  More importantly, however is the opportunity for Jewish women to spend time together in a fun atmosphere.  Outings such as this are incredibly important in helping to facilitate friendships and a sense of belonging in our small, yet vibrant Jewish community.  This is an opportunity for us to rejuvenate after all of our hard work.  Please join us as we embark on this fun-filled trip.

                            Meredith Ryan & Iris Karas


By 4:45 PM, the line was already snaking out into the parking lot, and it did not stop until about 8:30!  We dished out cabbage rolls and split pea soup and matzah balls and corned beef and brisket and pickles to a never-ending procession of hungry neighbors and friends.  And everybody was happy and smiling.  A seasoned business executive said: “I’m just waiting for the wheels to fall off,” but they never did, thanks to superb organization and wonderful cooperation and spirit from many, many temple volunteers.

It’s almost irrelevant how much money the Sisterhood netted from the event (and we certainly don’t know the final figures yet).  We do know that food fest was an enormous success, and we express our deepest appreciation to everyone who had a part, whether one of the top leadership or one of the young people who walked around selling raffle tickets.  You all did a fabulous job.



Once-a-month, lay members of Congregation Beth Israel conduct traditional Friday evening Kabbalat Shabbat (Welcoming the Sabbath) services in the Racusin Chapel.  These services last about 45 minutes; attendees often then join the rest of the congregation in the Sanctuary for the Rabbi’s sermon, the concluding parts of the service and the Oneg Shabbat.  The mood of these services is relaxed and celebratory, and all are welcome.
The schedule for the entire year is:
December 18, 2009    April 30, 2010
January 22, 2010       May 21, 2010
February 19, 2010      June 18, 2010
March 26, 2010
We encourage you to enter these dates on your calendar now so that you will be able to attend these services when they occur.


On Saturday, February 6, we shall gather at 10:00 AM at the Rockport Yacht Club for the first of our three learning sessions about the MAKING OF RABBINIC JUDAISM.

Our guest speaker will be Rabbi Judith Abrams of Houston, a well-known and dynamic interpreter of the literature and history of the period from the destruction of the Temple in Jerusalem to the publication of the Babylonian Talmud (approximately 70 CE to 600 CE).  The documents of this period are often seen as arcane and difficult to understand, but Rabbi Abrams makes them come alive with her lively presentations, her delightful humor and her vivacious personality.  We count ourselves enormously fortunate to have such a gifted scholar join us for our retreat and hope you will look forward to meeting her and learning from her.

The retreat will continue Saturday afternoon and Sunday morning.  Arrangements have been made for all meals and for lodging at the Hampton Inn in Rockport.   Saturday evening’s program is designed to produce smiles and fellowship; you won’t want to miss it!   Scholarship funds are available to assist anyone who needs financial help in attending.

A detailed flyer with reservation information will be mailed out soon.  Meanwhile, mark your calendars and hold the dates.  This is a special opportunity open only to members of CBI.


Thursday, December 10, Rabbi Roseman has been asked to address the current group of Leadership Corpus Christi on the characteristics of his personal leadership style.  Among other things that he will tell the class is that you have to believe in the mission of the group that you are trying to lead, enjoy doing what you are involved with and have a good sense of humor.

Wednesday, December 16, he will speak at Trinity Towers on Hanukkah.

Earlier in the month, he and Phyllis will be at Temple Shalom in Dallas as one of featured speakers for the Temple Shalom Brotherhood’s tribute dinner to James Hogue, a dear friend of the Rosemans and a wonderful leader of the Dallas Jewish community.

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