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Announcements for Shabbat Parshat Nitzavim & Rosh Hashanah 5780

09/27/2019 06:48:55 AM


Rabbi’s Message:

    We enter the new year with three major additions to our Shul: one, we have acquired a new Yamim Noraim machzor, The Koren Machzor with commentary by Rabbi Jonathan Sacks. This replaces our Birnbaum machzor as our official Shul machzor; two, we have improved the acoustics and decor of our Social Hall, which among many other purposes, serves as the space for our auxiliary Yamim Noraim minyanim; and three, we are in the process of installing a new roof for our Shul (the Bayit and Social Hall section) and a solar panel array on our roof to better our energy efficiency and carbon footprint. None of these could have happened without the generosity of funds, time and energy of our gracious donors and volunteers. Thank you to all who have helped us with these achievements (we will have a full list in a later thank you post).  We are confident each in its own way will enhance the mission and vision of our Shul community.

On Rosh Hashanah, Yom HaZikaron, we seek to be remembered for life, and transform our hopes and dreams for the new year into our new reality. We will hear the Shofar call us to rouse ourselves from our slumber and greet the New Year awakened, proactively engaging opportunities for personal transformation and communal advancement.  May this Yamim Noraim present us all with opportunities for spiritual wonder, awe and meaningful introspection as we gather “Lishmoah el ha-Rina ve-el ha-T'filah (to hearken to the melodies and prayers).  May we be enthused to grow religiously, spiritually and morally. May our Kehillah Kedoshah uphold its sacred purpose and may we all work as partners with Hashem to spread the Sukkah of Peace over Israel, America, and our entire world.  

    Wishing one and all a Shanah Tova and a Ketivah veChatimah Tovah.

Come to daven early, stay late, and be inspired! 

Rabbi Benjamin J.  Samuels


(See full schedule and details at the end of these announcements)




Elul/ Tishrei








6:40 AM

6:15 PM


CL before 6:15 PM




8:00 AM

9:00 AM

6:05 PM


Havdalah after 7:14 PM




8:00 AM

6:10 PM

7:00 AM

Hatarat Nedarim after Shacharit

CL before 6:12 PM




8:00 AM

6:10 PM


RH Day 1 ● Tashlich 5:00 PM  ● CL after 7:11



8:00 AM

6:10 PM


RH Day 2  ● Havdalah after 7:09 PM



6:10 AM

6:00 PM

5:45 AM 9:00 PM

Tzom Gedaliah

Fast Begins 5:19 AM

Fast Ends 6:54 PM



6:30 AM 

6:10 PM

9:00 PM




6:40 AM

6:05 PM


CL before 6:03 PM

Yamim Noraim Niggunim Kumzitz

 at Shul 8:30 PM




8:00 AM

9:00 AM

5:40 PM


Rabbi’s Shabbat Shuva Drasha after Minchah

Havdalah after 7:02 PM




8:00 AM

6:00 PM

7:30 AM, 9:00 PM

Shul Sukkah Building Part I

Bringing Up Materials from Storage




6:30 AM

6:00 PM






6:30 AM

3:30 PM

Before Shacharit

CL before 5:56 PM ● Kol Nidre at 6:00 PM




6:40 AM

6:35 PM



Yom Kippur ● Havdalah and Fast Ends

after 6:46 PM


Shabbat Schedule

Friday Night   

6:15 PM Minchah/Kabbalat Shabbat/Maariv.  


Shabbat Morning

8:00 AM Hashkama Minyan in the Social Hall

9:00 AM Main Sanctuary Minyan. Dvar Torah:  Daniel Jackson. Anim Zmirot: Eyal Levin

10:30 AM Youth Programs:

  • Torah Tots group (1-5 year olds) meet in the small Youth Room downstairs.
  • K-2nd grade group meet in the Large Youth Room across from the Beit Midrash men’s entrance.

5:40 PM Minchah  Youth leyner: Almog Ankori.  All youth who would like to participate should contact David Waxman to reserve a spot.  

Post-Minchah Shiur with Rabbi Samuels. Topic: The Secret of Longevity

7:14 PM Maariv/Havdalah

Upcoming Events and Learning Opportunities

This Shabbat, 4:45 PM: First Bnei Akiva Snif! Meet in front of Beth El and walk to Newton Centre Park. Scavenger Hunt and prizes! Pick up at 6pm from Beth El.

Tai Chi: Thursday, Oct 3, 7:00 - 9:00 PM in Youth Room with Danny Wyschogrod. Beginners welcome. 

WTG Simchat Torah offers an opportunity for all women at Shaarei to have an aliyah on Simchat Torah. If you would like to volunteer to read Torah or help run the service, please speak to Shoshie Lockshin:

JS&CF Family Table - 8th Annual Ride for Food: A bike ride to support hunger relief. Sunday, Oct 6th, Noble & Greenwood School, 10 Campus Dr., Dedham. How to support FJ& CS Family Table: Join the Family Table ride team, donate in support of a ride, volunteer on the day of the ride. Visit the JF&CS Family Table Ride for Food fundraising page to join the team or donate or call 781-693-5649.


National Book Club:  Sign up now to join  and to reserve your book. Shaarei is participating in the Jewish LIves National Bookclub as a group. See the flyer in the atrium for details. We will be reading two books this year. In the Fall: Martin Buber a Life of Faith and Dissent by Paul Mendes-Flohr. Livestream event Thursday, October 24, 2019 7:30 p.m. In the spring: Moses: A Human Life by Avivah Gottlieb Zornberg. Contact for more details.

Shaarei Blood Drive: Sunday, October 27, 2019. Time: 9 AM to 2:30 PM. You can help to save lives!  Register here:

Teen learning with Rabbi Samuels is scheduled to resume on Monday, October 28.  All families with high school students studying in non-Jewish frameworks are warmly welcome and encouraged to contact Rachel Greenblatt for more information here .

Book Group: Next meeting will be in November when we will discuss the book Inheritance by Dani Shapiro. Contact for more information.

Save the date for our first Community Dinner!  On Friday night, November 8, 2019 




ROSH HASHANAH HOSPITALITY  If you are an individual or family that would like to receive hospitality or provide hospitality for the holiday meals, please contact the Hospitality Committee and we will do our best to set you up. You can email the Hospitality Committee at

If you wish to be set up for meals, please indicate if you have any preferences or restrictions such as vegetarian or wishing to stay within a half mile of your residence and we will accommodate. 


In-Home Shofar Blowing Available  We are pleased to offer in- home shofar blowing for anyone unable to be at shul on Rosh Hashana. Please email or text Rabbi Samuels at (857) 636-8489 so the proper arrangements can be made with the ba'alei tokeah. 


A few words on logistics as we gather for the Yamim Noraim…...

1. In case of emergency:  The safety of all in attendance is of the utmost importance. In case of emergency, all should exit through either an emergency exit (far side and rear of Sanctuary; front and rear of Social Hall) or a regular exit and move far from our Shul building.  Parents with children should meet in the back of the building/parking lot in order for everyone to be accounted for. (If there would be a need to evacuate that area, families should meet in the area in front of the bayit). Let your children know of this meeting place in case of emergency.  


2. QuietIt is essential that we maintain a quiet space in our Atrium, as noise flows quite easily into our davening spaces.  Please do not gather or talk in this area, and use the area outside the Sanctuary and Social Hall only for taking or putting away your Machzorim. Please also make every effort to limit your exiting and reentering, as this increases the noise level and can distract from our Tefillah.


3. Parking:  It is preferable to walk to shul or get dropped off. If you must drive on Sunday evening, please be respectful of our neighbors, and observe parking regulations: No parking within 5 feet of a driveway, no parking within 20 feet of a corner. Thank you for your cooperation in this very important matter.


4. No Parking behind Shaarei:  We need this area for children to play.  Kindly use the guidelines above for parking.


5. Please note:  The social hall will remain with the seats up through Yom Kippur and the Beit Midrash will be reset for Shabbat Vayelekh (October 5 ).  There will be no kiddush or seudah shelishit this Shabbat.

ROSH HASHANAH SANCTUARY FLOWERS are in honor of each member of the community who gives of their time to serve the tzibbur, from all of us who benefit from that generosity.


ROSH HASHANAH SOCIAL HALL FLOWERS by Linda and Jeremy Jaffe, Jessica, Zach and Emily in memory of Linda’s mother Edna Shainfarber, Ettel Tubah bat Itzik Zev v’ Sarah z”l whose second yahrzeit she is observing, and in memory of her father George Shainfarber, Yehoshuah ben Ya'acov Yosef v’ Sarah  z”l whose 15th yarzheit she just observed.


Sukkot Notes

PLEASE JOIN OUR SUKKAH TEAM!  We will be building the shul sukkah in two sessions: first, on Sunday morning, October 6, following Shacharit, at approximately at 8:35 AM, we will bring up the Sukkah building materials from storage. And then on Sunday morning, Oct. 13, erev Sukkot, we will be building our Shul Sukkah. We need to delay until Oct. 13 due to the installation of our Solar Panels on the Shul’s roof.  Please contact Uri Feldman to indicate that you can help.  


Lulav/Etrog Pick on Sunday, October 13, Erev Sukkot, from after Shacharit until noon.


Family Shul Sukkah Decorating! - October 6. Time TBA.

Sukkah Hop: The annual Sukkah Hop will be on Tuesday, October 15th from 4:00 PM-5:45 PM starting at Shaarei and ending at Beth El for grades K-6. We are looking for teenagers in grades 8-12 to chaperone the Sukkah Hop. Chaperones will be paid. We are also in need of families to host the children. This is a great way to bring cheer and smiles to your sukkah and both hosts and children have a great time every year. If you are able to chaperone or host, please email Cheryl Levin at or Tamar Katz at




Sunday, Sept. 29, Erev Rosh Hashanah

7:00 AM Selichot

8:00 AM Shacharit followed by Hatarat Nedarim

Before 6:12 PM  Candle Lighting

6:10 PM  Minchah/Maariv


Rosh Hashanah – Day 1 – Monday, Sept. 30

8:00 AM Shacharit (Both minyanim)

Speakers: Rabbi Samuels in Main Sanctuary; Dr. Joshua Levisohn in the Social Hall

10:00 AM Childcare Programming Begins

5:00 PM Community Tashlich at Bulloughs Pond

6:10 PM  Minchah followed by D’var Torah and Maariv.  

After 7:11 PM Candle Lighting


Rosh Hashanah – Day 2 – Tuesday, Oct. 1

8:00 AM Shacharit  

Speakers: Deb Kram in the Main Sanctuary; Rabbi Samuels in the Social Hall

10:00 AM   Childcare Programming Begins

11:30 AM Special Middle Schoolers “Emtza NCSY” Program: "New Year, New You"  Grades: 6-8 in the Bayit. All middle school students are invited to participate in an engaging and lively discussion and workshop regarding strategies to make this new year a memorable and impactful one! Kiddush and Snacks will be served.

6:10 PM  Minchah followed by a shiur by Rabbi Samuels

7:05 Maariv

7:09 Havdalah


Tzom Gedaliah – Wednesday, Oct. 2

5:19 AM Fast begins

5:45 AM Selichot followed by Shacharit

6:00 PM Minchah followed by Maariv

6:54 PM Fast Ends

9:00 PM Selichot


Leil Shabbat Shuvah – October 4

6:03 PM Candle Lighting

6:05 PM Mincha/Kabbalat Shabbat/Maariv

8:30 PM Yamim Noraim Niggunim Kumsitz. Location: Home of Sarina and Allan Steinmetz, 963 Centre Street, Newton Centre. Come join your voice with our Yamim Noriam Baalei Tefillah to sing the niggunim of the Yamim Noraim and share Divrei Torah. Refreshments will be served. 


Shabbat Shuvah – October 5

8:00 AM Hashkama Minyan in the Social Hall.

9:00 AM Main Sanctuary MinyanDvar Torah: Rabbi Samuels.  Anim Zmirot: Aviv Ankori 

10:30 AM Youth Programs:

  • Torah Tots group (1-5 year olds) meet in the small Youth Room downstairs.
  • K-2nd grade group meet in the large Youth Room across from the Beit Midrash men’s entrance.

5:40 PM Minchah  Youth leyner: Yoni Trachtenberg.  All youth who would like to participate should contact David Waxman to reserve a spot.  

6:00 PM Rabbi Samuels’s Shabbat Shuvah Drasha.  

7:02 PM Havdalah


Detailed Rosh Hashanah and Shabbat Shuva Schedule for 5780


1. Sunday Morning, Erev Rosh Hashanah, we will daven Selichot and then Shacharit beginning at 7:00 AM. After minyan, we will form Batei Din (lay courts) to administer Hatarat Nedarim, annulment of unfulfilled vows.

2. Erev Rosh Hashanah: Mikvah Immersion for Men.  "Lifnei Hashem Titharu - Purify Yourself Before Hashem."  There is a custom for men to go to the Mikvah before Rosh Hashanah (Ramo Sh"A O"H 581:4).   The Daughters of Israel Mikvah, at 101 Washington St., Brighton, will host men's hours, Sunday, Sept. 29, 7:00 AM - 1:00 PM, and Tuesday, Oct. 8, 7:00 AM-1:00 PM. $15 per person suggested donation.  Soap and shampoo provided. To save time, I advise showering at home first. Please bring your own towel.  There is no parking in the Kadimah lot, only street parking. After 1:00 PM, please use the men's mikvah at Beth Pinchas, 1710 Beacon St., Brookline.  For more info go to Alternatively, Chabad of South Newton also has a men’s mikvah.

3. Sunday evening, Candle Lighting is 6: 12 PM. (Light your 25 hour candle before this time). The Berakhot to be recited are "le-hadlik ner shel Yom Tov" and "Shehechiyanu."  It is a proper custom to give Tzedakah before candle lighting on erev Yom Tov (and erev Shabbat when it’s not Yom Tov!), and also to see the moment of candle lighting as a moment of transcendence and an opportunity to compose personal prayers to Hashem.  


1. We will daven Minchah at 6:10 PM.  Maariv will follow immediately. On Rosh Hashanah, we are given the opportunity to pray, as if, again, for the first time, and thus we must come to Shul with a spirit of reverence and trepidation.  We should all expend extra effort to focus on our tefillot and improve our kavanah, resolve to limit talking during davening, and to respond "Amen" at the proper times.  When we daven, we are presenting ourselves to Hashem, our Heavenly Father, Judge and King.


2. Upon returning home, if applicable, remember to bless your child(ren) individually and add your own personal prayer for each of them for the New Year.


3. We recite the special Kiddush for Rosh Hashanah.  At the Yom Tov night meal it is our custom to use symbolic foods which serve as either an ideational symbol (apples and honey for sweetness; we also dip our Challah into honey after Hamotzi) or as a linguistic symbol (carrots which in Yiddish is Mehren which also means multiplying or abundance).  The proper protocol for the most common symbol, apples and honey, is to say the berakhah "...boreh pri ha'etz," then take a bite, and then say the "yehi ratzon."  Alternatively, one may say the "yehi ratzon," then say the berakhah and then take a bit.  Either way, there should be no verbal interruption between the berakhah and the act of eating.  See for more symbolic foods and recipes on how to prepare them.  See or for how to check these special fruits and vegetables for insects.  Ultimately, though, the blessings we wish for our homes are the blessings we each must strive to bring to our homes. Each of us must work hard to make our homes sanctuaries of expressed love and support, and not, God forbid, dwellings of frustration and anger.  A New Year presents us with a new opportunity to strengthen and fortify the Shalom Bayit of our own Bayit Ne'eman be-Yisrael.   


ROSH HASHANAH DAY 1, Monday, Oct 1

1. On Rosh Hashanah morning, our minyanim will begin at 8:00 AM. Rabbi Samuels will daven and speak in the Sanctuary minyan on the first day.  Dr. Joshua Levisohn of Silver Spring (son-in-law of Sylvia and Phil Fishman) will speak in the Social Hall minyan.  On the second day of RH, Rabbi Samuels will daven with and speak in the Social Hall minyan and Deb Kram will speak in our Sanctuary minyan.


2. All of our Shelichei Tzibbur wear a Kittel on Rosh Hashanah when they lead the community in prayer or Torah reading.  Some men have the custom to wear a Kittel for their personal Tefillah, even if they are not assuming the role of Shaliach Tzibbur.  The question arises concerning someone who is a mourner (during the 12 months of mourning for a parent).  Does such a person wear a Kittel or not?  There are various customs.  The rationale behind the question is as follows.  The Kittel serves as one of two possible symbols: 1. a symbol of purity and joy 2. a symbol of trepidation as it resembles tachrichin (burial shrouds).  If reason #1 is the impetus, then an avel does not wear a Kittel.  If reason # 2, then a mourner wearing a Kittel is appropriate.  Rav Moshe Feinstein zt"l (Igrot Moshe vol 8, Y"D, 61:7) recommends for the Avel not to wear a Kittel.  He thinks that reason #2 is culturally inoperative today, and thus since the Kittel is a symbol of purity and joy, it is not worn by an Avel, neither on the Yamim Noraim nor on Pesach.


3. At Musaf on the first day of Rosh Hashanah, we all have the obligation to hear the blasts of the shofar.   Ideally, there should be no talking or interruption between the blessing on hearing the shofar and the 100 blast of the shofar from the beginning of Musaf until the end of the concluding Kaddish.  For parents who must talk to their children, there should be no talking or interruption at least between the blessing and the hearing of the first 30 blasts, which precede the private Musaf Amidah.  The Rambam writes that the purpose of the shofar blasts is to serve as a wake-up call to us.  Only we can change ourselves. Each of us must believe that we each have the power to change the world for good and go-to-it.

 ** If any one misses shofar blowing or knows of anyone who is home-bound and would like to have someone come and blow shofar for them, please contact Rabbi Samuels at


4. For Kiddush on the first day lunch, we recite "vayidaber," "Tiku be-chodesh shofar be-keseh le-yom chageinu," "Borei Peri HaGafen."


5. Monday afternoon we will daven Minchah at 6:10 PM.  Between Minchah and Maariv, there will be a short D’var Torah.  Maariv will follow.



For Tashlich on Monday afternoon, this year, we recommend Bullough's Pond.  Our community, along with other local shul communities, has traditionally gathered for a Community Tashlich at Bullough's Pond, this year beginning at 5:00 PM.   Any of the bodies of flowing water in the Newton area are fine. While Tashlich is, in and of itself, a private and personal rite, much of Klal Yisrael has always seen Tashlich as an opportunity for a community gathering.  At the start of the new year, it is especially important to affirm the benevolent power of community and living life with dignity, honor, and in friendship. If one does not for any reason say Tashlich at a body of flowing water on Rosh Hashanah, one may do so for the remainder of the 10 days of repentance.



Candle Lighting on Monday night is at "Tzeit Hakochavim/Stars-out," which is after 7:11 PM.  Preparations for the second day of Yom Tov should commence only after candle lighting.  The Berakhot to be recited upon lighting are: "Lehadlik ner shel Yom Tov" and "Shehechiyanu." The Rabbis understood both days of Rosh Hashanah as constituting one long day - yoma arichta.  Thus, even in Israel two days of Rosh Hashanah are observed.  Since "Shehechiyanu" is recited again on the second night at the time of candle lighting and also in the special kiddush, even though, according to this reasoning, the "Shehechiyanu" of the first night should have sufficed, it is therefore our custom to have a new fruit on the table or to wear a new garment for the second night. 


ROSH HASHANAH DAY 2 Tuesday, October 1

1. On the morning of the second day, our minyanim will once again begin at 8:00 AM.

2. Once again, at Musaf on the second day of Rosh Hashanah, we all have the obligation to hear the blasts of the shofar.   Ideally, there should be no talking or interruption between the blessing on hearing the shofar and the 100 blast of the shofar from the beginning of Musaf until the end of the concluding Kaddish.  For parents who must talk to their children, there should be no talking or interruption at least between the blessing and the hearing of the first 30 blasts, which precede the private Musaf Amidah

** If any one misses shofar blowing or knows of anyone who is home-bound and would like to have someone come and blow shofar for them, please contact Rabbi Samuels.  

3. Minchah followed by a shiur by Rabbi Samuels will be at 6:10 PM. Havdalah may be said after 7:09 PM.



1. Wednesday, October 3,  is Tzom Gedalyah. The fast begins at 5:19 AM and concludes at 6:54 pm. We will recite selichot and daven Shacharit at 5:45 AM and daven Minchah/Maariv at 6:00 PM. We will gather for the next day’s Selichot (and late Maariv) at 9:00 PM later that night.



 1. During the Aseret Yemei Teshuvah, the ten days of repentance, it is customary to establish an ideal pattern of living and live an ethically and religiously scrupulous life.  It is also an appropriate custom to read works of mussar (religious self-improvement).  Many study a chapter of the 10 chapters of Maimonides Laws of Teshuvah each day of the 10 days of Repentance.  We will definitely need help at both our Minchah/Maariv be-zeman minyan, as well as at our late Ma’ariv/Selichot minyan. Please come to Shul and join in our minyanim.



 1. On Leil Shabbat Shuva, after dinner on Friday night, we will be having a Yamim Noraim Kumsitz featuring the niggunim of the Yom Kippur and Rosh Hashana davening, with Divrei Torah and Refreshments. This will take place at 8:30 PM at the home of Sarina and Allan Steinmetz, 963 Centre Street, Newton Centre.


2. Rabbi Samuels will deliver his Shabbat Shuva drasha in the afternoon. We will have our Shabbat morning minyanim at 8:00 and 9;00 AM.  Minchah will be at 5:40 PM, followed by Rabbi Samuels’s shiur (6:00 - 7:00 PM).  Please remember that this Shabbat Minchah is the last time for reciting “Kel Maleh” for an upcoming Yahrzeit until the Shabbat Parshat Noach Oct. 27.  


Maariv and Havdalah will be at 7:02 PM.


Shanah Tova ve-Ketiva va-Chatima Tova -- le-Alter Chaim Tovim U-LESHALOM!!

May this New Year bring to you and your families, to the people of Israel, and the people of America, a year of health and happiness, safety and security, goals achieved and dreams fulfilled, and as we sincerely end every Tefillah, may we all be blessed with a year of Peace.


Rabbi Benjamin J. Samuels





Wed, May 27 2020 4 Sivan 5780