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Mazal Tov -- I'm engaged!

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  • Gili Houpt
    Dear Friends, I just got back from an incredible summer in Israel, learning Torah, seeking spirituality, and making important decisions: upon my return I
    Message 1 of 1 , Sep 7, 2001
      Dear Friends,

      I just got back from an incredible summer in Israel, learning
      Torah, seeking spirituality, and making important decisions: upon my
      return I surprised my girlfriend Chaya Lung by asking her to marry
      me, and after the shock wore off she happily agreed! We invite
      everyone for a leChaim celebration tonight, Friday September 7 at
      11PM, in Chaya's apartment: the Key West, 750 Columbus Ave #3L. If
      you can't make it to the oneg, come say mazal tov to me in shul: I'll
      be at Ramat Orah tonight to give the dvar torah after davening, and
      I'll be doing musaf Shabbos morning at the OZ Young Prefessional

      Saturday night, September 8, 9:30 PM there is a pre-Selichot
      Concert at the Carlebach Shul, 305 W79 St (btwn West End & Riverside)
      featuring Rabbi Moshe Shur & sons, and friends. Admission is $18
      (members: $15) For more info call 212-721-SHUL.

      Also 9/8 the annual pre-Selichot Concert at the Hebrew
      Institute of Riverdale feturing Eli Kranzler from D'veykus. This is
      a really great experience every year. The shul is located at 3700
      Henry Hudson Pkwy and 718-796-4730 and http://www.hir.org

      Sunday, September 9, at 4PM I'm leading a kumsitz in Central
      Park in conjunction with the Ohab Zedek Young Professionals. It's a
      picnic, with hero sandwiches and salads, so if you want food there is
      a cost of $15 ($10 in advance) but the kumsitz is free. Meet at the
      picnic tables near the Great Lawn at the 86th Street entrance. In
      case of rain, go to the shul instead, 118 W95 St. For more info or
      to reserve, contact Rob Rubin at 212-864-8147

      Also 9/9 at 2PM it's the 5th annual "Festival & Concert for
      Jewish Life" in Washington Square Park, (at the end of 5th Ave btwn 4
      St & 6 St) featuring "Jewish Funk Music" led by Isaac Bitton, who is
      known for his fusion of contemporary Rock, Andalusic, Berberian and
      Hasidic music (back in the day he toured with Aerosmith and the
      Who). The Rosh Hashana Expo also features exhibitions of honey,
      challah-baking, shofar-making, and much more. Free admission! For
      more info, call Rabbi Dov Korn at 646-336-7272

      Monday, September 10 at 7PM, I am starting a weekly Isralight
      class at Congregation Ohab Zedek, 118 W95 St (btwn Columbus &
      Amsterdam). I will be teaching different topics in Jewish Thought
      from Rabbi Aaron's books on Kabbalah, and of course I'll bring my
      guitar to start off with a few niggunim!

      Also 9/10 at 8:45 PM Andy Statman is playing his weekly
      performance of Jewish Bluegrass at the Greenwich Village Synagogue:
      three hours of great music and free refreshments. The shul is
      located at 53 Charles St. (near W 4th St.) and can be reached at 212-
      242-6425 (call to confirm). See http://www.citizenkafka.com/andy

      Also 9/10 at 8PM is another of the Monday night performances
      of the play "Twist of Faith," featuring Avi Kunstler playing original
      songs on guitar. In this play, "the characters confront the
      spiritual choices facing us today." The Producers' Club, 358 W44 St
      (between 8th and 9th Ave.) Admission: $15. For info: 201-567-6664
      or TwistMondays@...

      Tuesday, September 11 from 6:30 to 10PM, Manhattan Jewish
      Experience is celebrating their new East Side location with an event
      for Young Jewish Professionals at Decade, 1115 1st Ave. & 61 St.
      There's going to be live jazz, and I'll be there to do a niggun or
      two as a preview for the MJE East Side High Holiday Beginners service
      where I'll be the chazan this year. Admission: $15 in advance; $20
      at the door. For more info, call MJE at 212-787-9533 and see

      Wednesday, September 12, at 7PM Rav Binny Freedman is coming
      to New York for a huge Isralight event at the West Side Institutional
      Synagogue, 120 W76 St. The evening will start off with refreshments
      and shmoozing, and I'll provide the music along with the famous
      Yaakov Dov on guitar. Then Rav Binny will address us on the topic
      of "Looking for Love in All the Wrong Places: Secrets to Love and
      Relationships." This is his first lecture in NYC since he survived
      the Sbarro's bombing last month, and I'm sure it will be a very
      inspirational talk. Admission: $10 (students: $5); for more info,
      call toll-free 877-LIGHT-FL or see http://www.isrlaight.org

      Thursday, September 13, 8-11 PM Andy Statman is playing his
      weekly Music of the Mystics at the Greenwich Village Synagogue. He
      is renowned as a master of clarinet and mandolin, playing a great mix
      of klezmer, jazz and Chassidic melodies, as well original
      compositions. The shul is located at 53 Charles St. (near W 4th St.)
      and can be reached at 212-242-6425. Suggested donation is $10
      (students $7) which includes refreshments. See

      Saturday, September 15, "Klezmer Comes to Harlem" a melave
      malke concert featuring Michael Alpert, Sruli Dresdner and Lisa
      Mayer, at the Old Broadway Synagogue, 15 Old Broadway (1/2 block east
      of Broadway between 125th and 126th Streets). Admission: $12. For
      more info, call 212-662-9767 or see
      http://www.geocities.com/oldbroadway_shul !PLEASE NOTE: the issue of
      Kol Isha may be applicable -- consult your local Rabbinic authority!

      Sunday, September 15 at 9PM, Reality Shock is playing at
      Emeralds & Pearls Cafe, 535 Bangs Avenue, Asbury Park, NJ. For
      directions or other information, call E&P at 732-774-3522.

      Saturday, September 22, at 9:30 PM is a concert at the
      Carlebach Shul, "Singing at the Gates of Return," featuring Rabbi
      Avraham "Zimmy" Zimberg accompanied by Jonathan Rimberg's Kinor
      Orchestra. Zimmy will be playing many of Shlomo Carlebach's less-
      known tunes, from the 50's and early 60's, many of which use words
      from the High Holiday liturgy. The shul is at 305 W79 St between
      West End Ave & Riverside and 212-721-SHUL. Admission: $15 (students:
      $10) which includes a social with light refreshments.

      Sunday, September 23 from 1 to 3PM, join tens of thousands of
      Jews at a non-political rally to show our solidarity and support for
      Israel. Buses are coming in from all over the country so we have no
      excuse not to go: in front of the UN, 2nd Ave @ 47 St. We will be
      joining together in songs of unity and hearing speeches by Prime
      Minister Sharon, Foreign Minister Peres, Minister Sharansky, Knesset
      Speaker Burg, Elie Wiesel, and many more. For more info, call 212-
      983-4800 x160 and see http://ujc.org/wjewry_home.html

      I'd like to close with some info on Selichos, the prayer of
      forgiveness this time of year: The Ashkenazi custom is to begin
      saying the daily selichos prayers this Saturday night (Sephardim
      started a few weeks ago) and continue every day until Yom Kippur.
      It's best to say it sometime after midnight together with a minyan,
      but many congregations schedule it instead for the morning before
      Shacharit to ensure maximum attendance; however, most places will try
      to do at least the first day's selichos at night. The prayers,
      different each day, are written in beautiful poetry and center around
      the 13 divine attributes of mercy that G-d revealed to Moses in order
      to attain forgiveness for the terrible sin of the Golden Calf. This
      reminds us that forgiveness is always accessible to those who seek
      it, and there is not one, but 13 ways for us to return. The Hebrew
      word for sin, 'chet', actually means to miss the mark, because the
      true nature of our souls is to aim for spirituality, but when ego
      gets in the way it sends us off in the wrong direction and we lose
      sight of our original goals. Thus, repentance is not about
      recreating ourselves but rediscovering who we really are. In the
      merit of the selichos that are said these next few weeks, may we come
      to recognize our inner callings and heed the voice of our souls
      urging us to reach for Hashem.

      Have a good Shabbos!

      Gili Houpt
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