The Festival of Shavuot

Saturday evening, May 19 - Monday, May 21

Please join us for our 23rd annual Tikkun Leil Shavuot study session. Instead of our normal potluck dinner, we’d like to invite you to contribute a potluck teaching, topic of our choice. Please contact Rabbi Krishef to let him know what you would like to contribute. You are of course welcome to participate as a learner, even if you would prefer not to teach.

If you would like to contribute a dessert, please contact Marisa (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 459-4627) and let her know what you would like to bring. Please make arrangements to drop off all desserts at the home or at the synagogue prior to Shabbat.


  • 7:30 - 9:45 p.m. - Study session
  • 9:45 - 10:30 p.m. candlelighting, ma’ariv, and dessert
  • 10:30 - ? Study sessions

Shavuot Yom Tov services - Sunday and Monday, May 20 and 21, 9:30 a.m.

  • Sunday - Torah Reading - “The 10 Commandments”
  • Monday - Service includes the Yizkor Memorial service.

International Day of Halakhic Study

On Sunday, May 6, Ahavas Israel will participate in an International Day of Halakhic Study, a movement-wide day on which Conservative/Masorti congregations, communities, and schools will come together to study a specific teshuvah (responsa) of the Committee on Jewish Law and Standards of the Conservative movement.

Our focus this year will be on the rapidly developing realm of genetic engineering. What do halakhic norms and values teach about the remaking of life? We will study a teshuvah entitled "Halakhic Perspectives on Genetically Modified Organisms" by Rabbi Daniel Nevins. 

Location and time to be announced. Contact Rabbi Krishef for more information.

Second Zentangle class

Zentangle 005 Our first Zentangle class was a huge success! Everyone had a great time and so by popular demand, we are offering a beyond-the-basics Zentangle class, called Shading Techniques, which will be offered on Tuesday, May 15, 2018 from 6:30 PM to 8:30 PM at the synagogue. (Prerequisite: Introduction to Zentangle.)Zentangle 004 copy

This class will explore different paths you can take with your pencil to really transform your Zentangle art and bring it to life. Learn how subtle differences in shading techniques can change the look of your tangle patterns and your entire tile. Focused time will be spent on isolating the shading process and show how a single graphite pencil has the ability to produce not just one shade, but many.

PLEASE BRING: Your Zentangle tools (Micron pen(s), pencil and blending tool). Tiles will be provided.

TO REGISTER: If you would like to register for this class, please contact Leah Sauer at 616-805-3778 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..">This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. The cost of the class is $20.00 plus $2.00 for supplies.

If you are interested in taking an Introduction to Zentangle class, please also let Leah know.

The Zentangle Method is an easy-to-learn, relaxing and fun way to create beautiful images by drawing structured patterns. 

Ahavas Israel Reading Group

Interested in joining a book group? Ahavas Israel will buy the first book for you and all members of your group, either a print copy or we'll reimburse you for the eBook. Contact Leah Sauer (616-805-3778) if you are interested. Here is one possibility:

The Secret Book of Kings: A Novel, by Yochi Brandes

“This volume, by Biblical scholar Yochi Brandes, is a riveting novel based on textual sources about the experiences of David and Solomon. Its lessons are also relevant for our turbulent times.” ―Elie Wiesel, #1 New York Times and internationally bestselling author of Night

Subsequent dates will be Monday, October 10 and Monday, February 11 at the same times.

Future book titles under consideration are People of the Book by Geraldine Brooks and Walking Lions by Ayelet Gundar-Goshen. These are tentative suggestions - the book group participants will make the final choice.

Leah Sauer has offered to facilitate this. Please contact her if you are interested. 616-805-3778, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..">This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Torah Study Shabbat

Please join us for a Torah Study Shabbat/Abbreviated Shabbat service on the 4th Shabbat of the month. The schedule is:
  • 9:30 a.m. Torah study
  • 10:30 a.m. Service
  • 11:55 a.m. (approximately) Kiddush

Upcoming Torah study Shabbat services will be on April 28, May 26, June 23, July 28, August 25, September 22, October 27, November 24, and December 29. Mark your calendars!

Tot Shabbat /Young Junior Congregation

Give your children an age-appropriate Shabbat experience. Bring them to our Tot Shabbat/Young Junior Congregation service. The final one before summer will be on May 19 at 11:00, focusing on Shavuot. Please RSVP with Marni to let her know that you are coming (so she knows how to prepare). This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 774-8644.

Study Groups

Rabbi Krishef’s study groups:

• Thursday Tanakh study, 1:00 - 2:00 p.m., Schuler Books and Music, 28th St. (either in the back of the store or in the café). We are studying the books of Kings. Exciting narrative! Intrigue! Politics! Backstabbing! Join us.

• Jewish mysticism/Zohar study group, Mondays, 12:00 - 1:00 p.m., Ahavas Israel library. We are reading through Daniel Matt’s translation and commentary of the Zohar.

Betzalel Art Group

BETZALEL ART GROUP, Thursdays, 2:30 - 4:30 p.m., room #1

Join the fun at the Betzalel Art Group and be inspired by others as you work on your own projects. Bring your fiber art project or oil painting or any other art or craft you enjoy doing. Everyone is welcome. This is an open and flexible group, so come as your schedule allows.

For more information, please contact Pat Weller, 453-2954 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Delving Into Our History

With the help of Peg Finkelstein from the Temple Emanuel Archives, significant progress has been made on Ahavas Israel's Gen and Jack Finkelstein Archives, generously funded by Mort and Peg Finkelstein and Raleigh Finkelstein in memory of their parents. Contributions to the Gen and Jack Archive Fund provide continued support. The committee is working at the synagogue Wednesday mornings from 10AM until noon.  If you are interested in being a part of this important project, please contact Toby Weiner Dolinka at 949-6528.
If you have materials (especially photographs) that would be valuable for the archives, please contact Toby.

Family Promise

We provide meals and support to our partner congregation in the Family Promise shelter program, Trinity Lutheran Church, 2700 Fulton St E. Please help - we need volunteers to bring part of a meal and participate in organizing children’s activities. To help, contact Mort Hoffman, 616-949-6088 or 616-361-2738.

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