Congregation Shaarey Tphiloh

Welcome to Shabbat Services

Rosh Hodesh

Shabbat Hahodesh

April 8-9, 2016 – 1 Nisan 5776

Leviticus 12:1-13:59
Exodus 12:1-20
Haftarah: Ezekiel 45:16-46:18 & Isaiah 66: 1 & 24

Candle lighting 6:59 p.m.
Saturday morning services 9:30 a.m.

Kiddush generously sponsored by Lou and Shula Bornstein in honor of Arthur and Gerald Cope, and the Cope family, for their dedicated and loving care of Mount Carmel Cemetery, and life-long devotion and contribution to Portland and world Jewry.

Kiddush generously sponsored by Donna and Larry Geller in memory of their beloved father, Robert Geller.

Congregation Shaarey Tphiloh, 76 Noyes St. Portland, ME 04103

President: Dr. Natan Kahn
Administrative Director: Susan C. Lawrence 207-773-0693
Shaarey Tphiloh Office Hours: T, Th, F 9 a.m. – 1 p.m.


Parashat Tazria

“If a person has a blotch, discoloration or spot on the skin of his body…he shall be brought to Aharon or one of his descendants, who are kohanim. The kohen shall examine the mark…” (Leviticus 13:1–3).

We will read later (Leviticus 16:4) that on Yom Kippur, for the Yom Kippur parts of the service, the kohen gadol (high priest) wore only white garments. In this week’s Torah reading we learn that there are three degrees of white that are tamei (impure). How can it be that on the holiest day of the year, when the holiest Jew enters the holiest place on earth, he wears white—a universal sign of cleanliness and purity—and the appearance of white blotches on a person’s skin announces that he is tamei and may even have to be quarantined and sent somewhere beyond the boundaries of holiness (ibid. vv. 4, 46)?

The answer is in our mind. Rebbe Nachman teaches (Likutey Moharan I, 29) that the more refined one’s speech is, the “whiter” (cleaner) one’s clothing is. (Refined speech is speech that enhances the honor of God [e.g., praising Him, His people and His Torah], and does not denigrate God’s honor by being used to lie, slander, curse, or the like.) This whiteness, he writes, stems from the mind. The less our thinking is clouded by personal interests, the more clearly we can see the truth that surrounds us.
Ozer Bergman,


Holocaust and Heroism Remembrance Day
Wednesday May 4, 2016, 6pm-10pm

Maine College of Art, Osher Hall, 522 Congress Street, Portland

Community Observance
Candle lighting by 1st, 2nd & 3rd generations of survivors,
Kaddish prayer, poetry, songs and narratives
Film Screening of Karski & The Lords of Humanity
Video Q&A with the filmmaker, Slawomir Grunberg
Seating is on a first come basis.
The Yom HaShoah Film Project is made possible with the
generous support of Drs. Verne and Tracey Weisberg.

Yom HaZikaron (Israeli Memorial Day) / Yom Ha’Atzmaut (Israeli Independence Day)

Portland, ME
400 Deering Avenue
Temple Beth El (Conservative)
May 11 5:30 PM – 8:00 PM

Join the Jewish Community for a solemn ceremony for this year’s Israeli Fallen Soldiers and Victims of Terror followed by an uplifting celebration marking 68 Years of Israel’s Independence
Children’s activities and Israeli food
Please RSVP (207) 772-1959
Participants are encouraged to wear blue and white.
Please be in touch if you:
* Have a name or story of a fallen soldier or victim of terror that you would like shared *
* Served in the IDF and would like to share your story of army life *
* Have photos from your travels to Israel in the past year that you would like to share *

Holocaust and Human Rights Center
Yom HaShoah
Sunday, May 1, 2016
The Messalonskee High School Master Singers

Songs of the Holocaust, along with the story of Brundibar, the children’s opera performed at Terezin concentration camp.

Call – 207-621-3530 to make reservations
E-mail –

2016 Maine Conference for Jewish Life!

Registration is on a roll!

We have a special price available to those who register early, but this opportunity to save on the conference ends March 31. Please register today to get a special deal!

On June 17 – 19, 2016, at Colby College in Waterville, come enjoy Maine’s only state-wide Jewish conference. We offer superlative learning, speakers from near and far, good food, great socializing, and the opportunity to learn, play, and meet with Jews from all over our beautiful state.

The schedule is up on the MCJL website! Though more information will continue to go up, you can see the many amazing offerings we’ll have — from a crash course in trope to ASL translation for prayer to the amazing power of kugel to a teens mocktail-making session, the MCJL offers a ton of varied opportunities for learning.

This year, we’re featuring a special track of learning specifically to empower small congregations with the skills they might want or need — and have difficulty finding elsewhere. Learn how to run a successful synagogue garden, book group, and social justice committee; how to conduct a tahara; how to build a learning and praying community in the absence of clergy… and much more. Register today to reserve your spot!

You can always find interesting updates on our Facebook page. If you have any questions regarding registration, the schedule, or other aspects of the MCJL, please don’t hesitate to be in touch!

Garth Silberstein, rabbinic intern from Yeshivat Chovevei Torah, will be here for Passover, April 22-24. More details in a week or two. Please plan to join us.

Sunday, February 28:
Garth Silberstein was a guest Sunday, February 28, on Sunday Simcha, Jewish music radio. If you missed it, find the interview in their archives at Sunday Simcha 90.9 FM, WMPG. It will be available for five weeks. Join DJ Gail Wartell as she engages Garth in a conversation about environmentalism and Judaism.

WMPG is a community radio station broadcasting from Portland, Maine. It is located on Bedford Street at the University of Southern Maine Portland Campus. Affiliated with the college, a mix of USM students and volunteers from the greater Portland community produce all the music and local public affairs programs.

Sunday Simcha 90.9 FM, WMPG, Sunday morning from 6:30-8:30


Wish List:

  • Diapers and wipes
  • RICE!!
  • Baked Beans
  • Pasta Sauce & Pasta
  • Kid Friendly Snacks-granola bars, etc.
  • Cereal
  • Juice Boxes

Learning Opportunity at Chabad House

On Tuesdays at 7:00 p.m., Dr. Shimon Simons will teach Maimonides’ Hilchot Deot, “laws of character development,” at Chabad House, 11 Pomeroy Street, Portland. The next class meeting is Tuesday, January 19. Texts will be provided. Call Chabad House at 871-8947 for more details or check the December issue of the Jewish Journal.


Every year, the Yiddish Book Center welcomes a group of enthusiastic, engaged high school students for our Great Jewish Books Summer Program. Applications for the 2016 program are due April 1.

Now in its fifth year, Great Jewish Books brings together a diverse group of rising high school juniors and seniors to spend a week reading important works of modern Jewish literature and discussing them in seminar-style classes led by college professors. Outside of class, they meet renowned visiting authors, enjoy group recreational activities in the Amherst area, and get a taste of college life while staying (with staff RAs) in dorms on the Hampshire College campus, adjacent to the Yiddish Book Center.

All students admitted to the program receive scholarships covering the full cost of tuition, room and board, books, and special events.

Because the program has proven so popular in the past, this year we’re offering two sessions of Great Jewish Books: July 24-29 and July 31-August 7.

You can learn more about the program at or by calling or e-mailing us at 413-256-4900, ext. 143, I’m also including a flyer about the program that can be downloaded here, which I hope you will post and share with others.

As we look forward to another exciting summer of Great Jewish Books, we appreciate your sharing this information with any prospective applicants you know.


All kids pre-bar/bat mitzvah are invited to all of our programs; however, each program is targeted to a different age group. Parents are invited to attend as well, but parent attendance isn’t necessary (except Minyan Katan) unless your child needs supervision. We expect parents and guests that attend to participate fully in the program.


Mar 12 – Cancelled
Mar 19 – Tefillat Yelidim (10:35) at Shaarey Tphiloh
Mar 26 – Shabbat Club (10:35) and Minyan Katan (11:30) at Temple Beth El
Apr 2 – Tefillat Yelidim (10:35) at Shaarey Tphiloh
Apr 9 – Shabbat Club (10:35) and Minyan Katan (11:30) at Temple Beth El
Apr 16 – Tefillat Yelidim (10:35) at Shaarey Tphiloh
Apr 23 – Cancelled
Apr 30 – Cancelled
May 7 – Shabbat Club (10:35) and Minyan Katan (11:30) at Temple Beth El

Note: Schedule is still changing as we coordinate with guests and the community.

Program Descriptions

Minyan Katan (New Program at Temple Beth El)
Targeted to 1-3 year olds
Mostly Shabbat related songs in a circle time environment with some finger
plays and movements
Short story around Jewish themes
At least one parent must be in attendance with kids

Shabbat Club (at Temple Beth El)
Targeted to 4-7 year olds
Prayers consist of mostly shacharit
Includes singing and dancing
Story for the kids around the parsha

Tefillat Yelidim (at Shaarey Tphiloh)
Targeted for 8-10 year old
Prayers consist mostly of preliminaries
Israeli style davening and tunes
In-depth discussion or d’var for older kids

No electronic devices are permitted. No electronic children’s toys or cell phones or cameras are permitted in the synagogue on the Sabbath.

Please consider making a gift to one of our many funds. Call the office at 773-0693 for details. Thank you for your support of Shaarey Tphiloh. Contributions are tax-deductible.

Yahrzeits This Week

2 Nisan Charlotte Berenson, Esther Fineberg, Abraham Weisman
3 Nisan Annie Goffin, Rose Lewis, Carl Miller, Alan Seavey
4 Nisan Freida Finn, Anna Fireman, Rose Goffin, Lillian Goldberg, Fannie Klaman, Ruth Slotsky, Mae Rose Tabachnick, Jeanette Urdang
5 Nisan Abraham Diner, Sarah Mersky, Max Pinansky
6 Nisan Eva Blumenthal, Morris Glovsky, William Goodman, Sumner Gordon, Joseph Kaufman, David Siegel
7 Nisan Morris Cox, Frank Lerman, Etta Livingston
8 Nisan Leonore Banny, Morris Finkelman

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