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Hearing Enhancement Devices

Hearing enhancement devices are available during services at the security desk. In addition, there is a Hearing Loop in the Schafler Forum. Please switch hearing aid to T-coil.

Union Field Cemetery

Come visit and learn more about Rodeph Sholom's historic Union Field Cemetery. Discounted fees are available for CRS members. For more information, call our knowledgeable staff at 718-366-3748.

Bereavement Notices 

Click here if you would like to be informed of deaths in our community.


Join Our Mailing List

December 1, 2014

With Thanksgiving behind us and Chanukah just around the corner, it's a wonderful time to celebrate the blessing of community. As always, there are wonderful opportunities here at CRS, so we hope you'll join us as we welcome back Rabbi Lisa Grushcow for a discussion about her newest projetct, The Sacred Encounter: Jewish Perspectives on Sexuality; start off Chanukah right with our Shir Chadesh service and Latke Party; and join CRuSTY for their annual Beit Cafe ... the list goes on.  Scroll down to see what community opportunities we have for you this month at CRS.
Community Engagement

Why Be Good?

The Journey Towards a Life of Meaning

Led by Rabbi Robert N. Levine, D.D.

Tuesday, December 2nd from 7:00 - 8:30PM 

The High Holy Days underscore the urgency to live a good life, to be proud of who we are and what we do.  But why?! Join Rabbi Levine for a personal and honest exploration of mortality, meaning, legacy, and the world beyond our own.

To register or for more information, please contact: or 645-454-3029

Va'Yinafash & Special Erev Shabbat Service with Nancy Sharp

Friday, December 5th from 4:30PM - 5:45PM with Erev Shabbat Services starting at 6PM  

Nancy will be with us for an intimate conversation at Va'Yinafash and will share her wisdom during Erev Shabbat Services. Nancy's story is one of love, loss, and learning to live in the gray areas of life.

To RSVP for Va'Yinafash or for more information, please contact or call 646-454-3045 
Baby Naming for Noa Mayhem De Lowe

Friday, December 5th Erev Shabbat Services 

Join us as we celebrate with Cantor Shayna De Lowe, Mel, and big brother Amichai, at the baby naming ceremony for their new baby girl, Noa Mayhem.
Memorial for Cantor Jenny Izenstark 

Saturday, December 6th at 5:30PM 

A Memorial Service will be held on Saturday, December 6, 2014 at 5:30PM at Congregation Rodeph Sholom. Cantor Garfein, along with many of Cantor Jenny's dear colleagues, will participate. The congregation and community is welcome to attend.




For more information, please contact the Cantors' Study: 646-454-3039 

Sacred Encounters 
Let's Talk About Sex...(in a liberal Jewish way) 
with Rabbi Lisa Grushcow

Tuesday, December 9th at 7:00PM 

Our own Rabbi Lisa Grushcow returns with The Sacred Encounter: Jewish Perspectives on Sexuality, the new book of which she is the editor.  Tackling the topic of sexuality from a Jewish lens, the book covers a wide range of topics from LGBTQ issues, aging, and infertility to adultery, online pornography and bondage.  In essays, personal reflections, and 100-word "short takes" by rabbis and scholars, the book is a comprehensive look at past, present and future expressions of sexual intimacy.



For more information, please contact:

Kos Kafe 

Friday, December 12th at 9:00AM 

Kos Kafe (cup of coffee), our monthly coffee/conversation/lounge time begins this month.   Meet your sisters of all ages from the congregation to share coffee, light breakfast, and interesting conversation. Held usually on the second Friday of the month at someone's home, we will send you the address when you RSVP (we know, very secretive).

To RSVP or for more information, please contact: 
Chanukah at Rodeph Sholom

Shir Chadash and Chanukah Latke Party 
Friday, December 12th Erev Shabbat Services 

A special Shabbat Chanukah service featuring our Cantors, children's choir, Jr. Jr. choir, and instrumentalists. 

Congregational Oneg Shabbat Latke Party, sponsored by the Brotherhood, with a (practice) candlelighting ceremony following the Erev Shabbat service.

We will be celebrating all September through December congregant birthdays.  Please join us on the Bimah during our Erev Shabbat Service to receive your special treat from the Clergy! 



Chanukah Shireinu Service

Saturday, December 13th Shabbat Services from 11:00AM - 12:00PM


Come join the Rodeph Sholom family for a warm, inviting, musical and interactive experience! This Chanukah celebration is designed to be accessible and sensitive to a  variety of needs. There will be healthy snacks available (gelt too!) and the service will be ASL interpreted.  


RSVP encouraged. For more information or to RSVP, please contact: or 646-454-3124

Shabanukah B'Yachad 

(Shabbat/Chanukah Together) 

Saturday, December 20th at 9:30AM

Families with children 1st Grade and below 

Join us as we celebrate Chanukah at Shabbat B'Yachad with Chanukah songs, stories, and snacks (Donuts aka Sufganyot) and lotsa PJ Library books!! 


For more information, contact Marcia Stein at

CRuSTY Beit Café 

Chanukah Party & Trivia Game Night 

Saturday, December 13th from 5:30PM - 8:00PM 

A fun night with Havdalah, games, yummy food, silent auction, and a trivia competition run by Quizmaster Noah Tarnow and The Big Quiz Thing!: The Greatest Interactive Trivia Experience.  Suggested donation $36 p/family and donation of a new article of winter clothing (for the Midnight Run).  All donations will support the Youth Scholarship Fund to send our youth on events, trips, Jewish summer camps and more.

For more information, please contact: 

Midnight Run 

Saturday, December 13th at 8:00PM

We will meet at CRS and then subway (so please bring your MetroCards) to an assigned location to distribute food, warm drinks, warm clothing items, and toiletries to those in need. You may receive Service Hours for this project! Adult chaperones will be with the group. 

We need parent volunteers for the evening. We also need drivers (with large cars or vans) to help transport all the food and clothing.

For more information and to RSVP, please contact: 

Parent Volunteers, please contact:
Lunch Together 
It Takes a Village

Tuesday, December 16th from 11:30AM - 1:30PM 
Next date: Tuesday, January 20

How can we transmit our memories and Jewish knowledge to the children in our circle?  Kerith Braunfeld and Marcia Stein, Director and Associate Director of Religious Education at Rodeph Sholom's Religious School, will lead us in a conversation about the important role we can play in deepening the connection with Judaism felt by the young people whose lives we touch.  Equally important, how do we become and stay welcome partners in this process?


To RSVP or for more information, please contact: or 646-454-3039

War and Peace: A Jewish Narrative

Tuesday, December 16th at 7:00PM

As Chanukah begins, we celebrate-among other things-the victory of the small over the mighty, an unexpected military defeat, and a religious uprising. An ancient story, it is one that seems to be lived and relived, even in modern Israel. Based on their learning at the Shalom Hartman Institute in Jerusalem in the summer of 2014, fellow CRS congregants-moderated by Rabbi Laufer-will share classical and modern Jewish texts about war, peace, ethics, compromise, and the Land of Israel. An evening not of answers, but of conversation, learning, and questioning, guided by congregants and Jewish sources, and-unfortunately-more timely than ever.

To RSVP or for more information, please contact: or 646-454-3029

PJ Library

Sign up and share the fun of reading!


Congregation Rodeph Sholom and PJ Library invite you to join in the fun of reading with FREE Jewish children's books and music. Click here to sign up or to receive more information.
Tikkun Olam

CRS Social Action Initiative:



December E-Advocacy: Expand Gun Violence Protections for Domestic Abuse Victims  

Most female murder victims are killed by someone with whom they have had an intimate relationship (i.e., a spouse, ex-spouse, boyfriend or former boyfriend).  Currently, the law bars convicted domestic abusers from owning guns but does not apply to dating partners.  In addition, even though a high percentage of women murdered by an intimate partner were stalked in the year preceding their death, current law does not bar convicted stalkers from possessing guns.  The purpose of Protecting Domestic Violence and Stalking Victims Act (S.1290) is to close these loopholes.  Torah expressly commands that we "do not stand idly by while [our] neighbor's blood is shed" (Leviticus 16:19).  Click here  to let Senators Chuck Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand know that this bill resonates with our Jewish values and urge them to continue to take a stand against gun and domestic violence and stalking by cosponsoring the Act.  You are just two clicks and one minute away from making a difference.


On-going E-Advocacy: Sometimes e-advocacy opportunities arise that need quick action; legislative action will occur prior to our ability to inform you in our next monthly e-blast.  If you would like to receive notification of these pressing e-advocacy issues, 

click here  to opt in to a special email action list.  You will receive e-advocacy email alerts on an "as needed" basis (on average twice a month - though sometimes a little more and other times a little less, as needs fluctuate). 

CRS Homeless Shelter 

New Year Family Challenge 


Do a mitzvah and have a family slumber party at the synagogue at the same time!  With January 1st just 31 days away, we are kicking off the CRS Homeless Shelter New Year Family Challenge.  We challenge 31 families to sign up to volunteer for a night in our CRS Shelter on an open date in December or January to kick off the New Year by doing one of the highest mitzvot there is: providing shelter to those in need.  Bring your PJs and come ready to meet our wonderful shelter guests for some conversation and camaraderie.  Community service hours available (email Rabbi Meyer).  Click here to take the CRS Homeless Shelter New Year Family Challenge and sign up for a night in December or January. 

St. Xavier's Soup Kitchen


Sunday, December 14th from 11:45AM-3:30PM


Help prepare and serve meals to visitors at the St. Xavier's Soup Kitchen in Chelsea with your fellow CRS congregants.  All volunteers must be over the age of 14, and children under the age of 17 must be accompanied by an adult.  Sign up to volunteer on VolunteerHub.


Cycle for Survival: 

Join the Rodeph Sholom Riders! 


Contact Rabbi Laufer now if you are
 interested in participating


Sunday, March 8th, 2015


Cycle for Survival is a national indoor cycling event raising money for rare cancer research at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center. To date, Cycle for Survival has raised over $52.8 million dollars; 100% of the money raised is directly allocated to research at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center within six months of the events. This year, Rodeph Sholom is riding...and we want you to ride with us. On Sunday, March 8, 2015, join Rabbi Laufer and the Rodeph Sholom Riders (accepting suggestions for a team name, too!) for an afternoon of high-energy indoor cycling for a lifesaving cause.  You can pedal hard or hardly pedal-no experience necessary! (But you must be 18 to participate.) Contact Rabbi Laufer if you are interested in participating; more details to come.

Ongoing Adult Learning and Life

CRS Walking Group


Tuesdays at 9:15AM (weather permitting)

Meet at CRS


Come walk with us to stay healthy and fit, make new friends or spend time with old ones.  


This group is spearheaded by RSS parents, CRS congregants, and Rabbi Kaye.  All are welcome!


For more information, please contact:

Therapists' Study Group


Tuesday, December 2nd from 10:30-11:30AM 


This group will provide an opportunity to discuss ethical and clinical issues unique to therapeutic work, focusing on how Jewish insights and perspectives might be relevant to your practice.   


For additional information contact Ruth F. Kobrin, LMSW at 646-454-3180

Jewish Basics


Wednesday, December 3rd from 7:00-8:30PM 

Remaining 2014 dates: Wednesday, December 10


An introduction to basic Jewish culture, ritual, and living. This course is open to all who want the opportunity to take a closer look at why and how Jewish rituals have developed and how these rituals create meaning in our lives.


To register or for more information, please contact: or 646-454-3029

Book Club


Thursday, December 4th at 7:00PM

Next date: Thursday, January 8th (New date!) 


We are reading A Replacement Life by Boris Fishman. Next month we are reading Little Failure by Gary Shteyngart. 




To RSVP or for more information, please contact:

How to Raise a Mentsch

The Parenting Discussion Group

Led by Rabbi Spratt, Rabbi Laufer, 

and RSS Parent, Rabbi Erica Gerson


Wednesday, December 10th from 8:45-10:00AM 


Whether you're thinking about how to bring Shabbat (and other Jewish holidays) to life in your home, or what a gratitude practice with your kids might look like-this monthly group offers an opportunity to ask the big, small, practical, and theoretical questions surrounding parenting in an intimate environment.



To register or for more information, please contact: or 646-454-3029

Mah Jongg


Thursday, December 11th from 1:00-4:00PM


Are you ready to play?  Do you want to learn?  Whether you're an expert or a novice, come enjoy a few hours of camaraderie (and the "bridge mix")!  Bring your own cards, or purchase them when you arrive.


To RSVP or for more information, please contact: 

Personal and Spiritual Pathways 

Through The Psalms

With Rabbi Jacqueline Ellenson


Friday, December 19th from 12:00-1:30PM


The Book of Psalms contains expressions of all human experience and multiple manifestations of the ancient search for God's presence. Through the study of Psalms, we will gather for a personal and participatory learning experience, supplemented by poetry and song. 


To RSVP or for more information, please contact: or call 646-454-3029

 Hebrew Classes

Taught by Sara Rosen 

Class Levels:

  • Beginning Hebrew Reading 
  • Continuing Hebrew Reading 
  • Beginning/Continuing Modern Hebrew 

Dates and times vary by level.  


To register or for more information (including dates and times), please contact: 

or call 646-454-3029


Yom Kippur Appeal 5775/2014


It's almost the end of the year -- have you made your 2014 Appeal gift yet?


The last day for donations to qualify for a 2014 tax credit is December 31st.  The Development Department will be closed beginning December 24th at 2 PM through January 4th but you may click here to make a secure online donation before midnight on the 31st or send a check, made payable to Congregation Rodeph Sholom, and postmarked by December 31st. 


Your participation in the Appeal - no matter the amount - will be very much appreciated. All gifts to the Appeal will be listed in the spring Chronicle

To make an automatic recurring gift or for any questions, please contact: 646-454-3052

Congregation Rodeph Sholom | 212-362-8800
7 West 83rd Street
New York, NY 10024