New Course: Dr. Binyamin Mehler - The Korbanot Service

When: Tuesday January 10, 17 and 24 between 3-4:30 pm. The course will be offered by Zoom. The recording will be available for those who wish to register but cannot attend live. Advance registration required by Monday, January 9. Contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. to register.

For those who have never studied with Dr. Mehler – you will be entertained, you will be astonished, you will be challenged, and you will learn!

This seminar will be an exploration of a part of the morning service no longer included in the Sim Shalom. The Sim Shalom begins the morning service with the morning blessings followed by “Rabbinic texts.” After the morning blessings in the traditional siddur comes the “Korbanot” section containing 19 paragraphs mostly biblical paragraphs describing the various offerings (e.g. sin offerings, thanksgiving offerings) and a recipe for the incense.

“For me, the most esoteric parts of the morning service are the most meaningful. We read the recipe for incense that has not been burned in 2000 years, details of services abandoned for centuries, whose memory was rescued from oblivion by the heroic efforts of teachers who believed that if the incense could not be smelled, at least the recipe could be recited. If the meal could not be eaten, at least its preparation could be recalled, reminding us always of how much we have lost; of our hunger.” – Dr. Mehler, 4/5/2011.

According to “Peninei Halakha (

“When someone does not have time to say the Tamid paragraph, the verses of the Ketoret, and all of Pesukei d’Zimrah, it is best that he omit Psalm 30 (“Mizmor Shir Chanukat HaBayit L’David,” and Sephardim begin “Aromimcha Hashem”) so that he can recite them. If time does not allow him, he should also omit Hodu LaHashem. It is even permissible to skip Vayevarech David, Az Yashir, and Yehi Chevo in order to recite the paragraph of the Tamid offering and the verses of the Ketoret. This is because the foundation for the recital of the Tamid passage and verses of the Ketoret is in the Talmud, whereas the other passages were added to Pesukei d’Zimrah by the Savora’im and Geonim.”

Dr. Mehler will explore the meaning of these esoteric texts and why the reading of the Tamid and Ketoret (recipe for the incense) was so much more important to read than Psalms 30, which we would never think to skip.

Those who sign up will receive a pdf of the Korbanot service with Dr. Mehler’s notes compiled in 2011.

Introduction to Judaism Fall/Winter, 2022-23

Taught by Rabbi David Krishef

First Class: Monday, November 28, 7:00 - 8:30 p.m. Meets every Monday (except as noted on the syllabus) through March 20, 2021, 15 sessions.

Cost:  $50/members and B’nai Noah affiliates, $75/non-members

A basic introduction to Jewish history, beliefs, rituals, holidays, and life cycle celebrations. The syllabus can be download hereContact the Ahavas Israel office, 616-949-2840 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. to register.

Foundations for a Thoughtful Judaism

Foundations for a Thoughtful Judaism, Sundays, 10:30 - 11:30

Thousands of years after Abraham and Sarah set off on their Biblical journey, we, their descendants, are the inheritors of a Judaism which contains the four elements of Peoplehood, Practice, Faith, and Ethics. Parents and grandparents have a particular sacred responsibility to transmit a love of Judaism to their children and grandchildren. I want to invite you to spend time this year digging into this Judaism that we have inherited and chosen. I want to unpack the meaning of our rituals and practices, our ethics, our faith, and our sense of peoplehood.

Foundations for a Thoughtful Judaism is a curriculum designed by the Shalom Hartman Institute, a highly regarded institute of Jewish thought and education serving Israel and North America. The curriculum is pluralistic and rigorous and thoughtful. The goal is to engage you and provoke you to think seriously about the big questions at the heart of Jewish tradition. Foundations for a Thoughtful Judaism presents our customs in a way which will invite you to make considered choices for yourself.

Beginning, September 18, we’ll meet from 10:30 to 11:30 each Sunday morning that UJS is in session at Temple Emanuel (unless Rabbi Krishef indicates otherwise) in the second to last classroom on the left side of the hallway. Note: This is the same curriculum that Rabbi Krishef taught from last year, but we’ll cover a different set of topics and texts this year.


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