Library Minyan of Temple Beth Am   
February 2015
 The Minyan Monthly
From the Rosh
Our Governing Charter calls for an annual meeting, which is now scheduled for March 7. At our recent Steering Committee meeting, we decided to try an online survey of LM members, so we could present the results at the annual meeting as a basis for further discussion. We think this can be quite helpful if a good number of members fill in the survey (which will be anonymous through Survey Monkey). Please click the following button to start the survey in your browser when you have about 10 minutes free. 
— Carl Sunshine
DPL SDIGDH Shabbat Dinners
Our Shabbat Dinners in Geographically Dispersed Homes on January 9th, 2015 were a great success thanks to its hosts: Dale & Mark Bodenstein, Essia & Howard Fredman, Rachel & Norm Green, Lilia & Gary Hirschhorn, Tina & Leon Kaminski, Jackie & Jerry Krautman, Susan Laemmle & John Antignas, Nina Golden & Jason Rosenbaum, Sharon & Jonathan Swerdlow, and Janet & David Weissman. We thank hosts for opening their homes to nearly 60 guests. Also, we want to thank Miriam Prum Hess, Val Goldstein and Dafna Taryle for their time and advice with this event.
Everyone had an incredible time meeting with new Library Minyan families while deepening connections with old friends. We hope that the dinners will result in new and strengthened relationships that continue to blossom. We feel blessed to be part of the Library Minyan Family.
— Tina Kaminsky & Lilia Hirschhorn, 
    DPL Shabbat Dinner co–chairs

As the parents of a two-year-old, Ed and I relish programs such as Shir Kabbalat Shabbat — monthly services and dinners for families with preschool-aged children. We love seeing Maxie clap along to the songs; we appreciate that in the forum of a dinner for this age group, she can eat a few handfuls of challah and jump out of her booster seat.
But we are also long-time members of Library Minyan, so it is as least as important to us to be able to take her to an "adult" community Shabbat meal, where we get the opportunity to chat with people we usually wave to across the aisle as we rush Maxie out of the service, and she gets to witness an authentic Friday night experience. This month our hosts and their other guests made us feel so welcome as we schlepped diaper bag, booster seat and sippy cup into a pristine living and dining room. As Sharon and Jonathan Swerdlow, our wonderful hosts, lit candles and led Kiddush, Maxie's eyes lit up as if to say: "This stuff I learn at Shabbat class is real. Grown-ups other than my parents do it too."
Yes, she found it hard to stay at the table after the main course, but she came away from the meal talking about the new adults she'd connected with and the new "very big kids" she'd found to admire. It's important to us to be able to feel comfortable at Library Minyan as a family as well as a couple. All too often we have to take Maxie away; she is very talkative, and the Haftarah, Kaddish and prayers for the community do not lend themselves to toddler commentary. So we are deeply grateful for programs such as the Shabbat potluck dinners, where we can all sing and celebrate together. Thank you.

— Orly & Ed Garber

Thanks to our hosts for their warm hospitality, and thank you Tina and Lilia for organizing this event. Being relatively new to Beth Am and the Library Minyan, we find it really nice to have events where we get to know everyone a little better. Wonderful, wonderful program!   
— Jeff & Judy Gottesman
Glimpse into our Gabbaim
Serving as a Gabbai in Library Minyan is a dynamic and humbling experience. I imagine myself as conductor of an orchestra of talented, knowledgeable, and virtuous people, most of whom will likely turn “red” with embarrassment when reading my characterization. Many are incredibly generous with their time and if they plan to be in attendance, never refuse my call to serve!
As Gabbai, I arrange for all volunteers leading various components of the service, except for the Mishnah Study, Greeter, Drash, Haftarah and Torah readers. When there is a Simcha or holiday, I interact more intensively with participants to insure that the service achieves everyone’s expectations, including the kahal's.
When serving as Gabbai, I represent the Minyan's expectations as to how services should be conducted. This includes insuring that all sectors and demographics of our community are included in our services, and determining what necessary and unnecessary communications should be conveyed during or after services.
I think of my role as helping to meld the various parts of the service into a blended whole that is choreographed with thoughtfulness and perceived as a successful symphony. As I decide whom to invite into the lineup, I consider how their styles and timing will work together to achieve the whole service. 
There is a steep learning curve for a new Gabbai, and it goes on being a very dynamic experience.  I never can completely predict what will happen. Will one of my volunteers get sick and not show up? Will some demand from our larger synagogue community require creative changes to how the service is conducted? Will I succeed in advising all of the volunteers as to how to properly comport themselves and when to fulfill the various necessary steps, like holding the Torah Scroll or Scrolls during the Birkat HaHodesh and making sure one is passed over to the Shaliah Tzibor at the correct moment?
Every time I serve as Gabbai I learn more about the choreography of the various services and about how to better communicate with those serving as prayer leaders. I usually remain standing throughout the service because it gives me an opportunity to keep scanning the kahal to make sure that people are being reached and served by our Shabbat and Haggim services.
—Teri Cohan Link
Join in an Evening of Fun for All
Come to our annual Ice Cream Social — Melaveh Malkah on Saturday February 14, 2015 at 7:30 pm  for fun entertainment and desserts, including ice cream.
Please RSVP by clicking hereCost is $5 in advance, $10 at the door.
— Dafna Taryle
Shabbat Text-Based Lecture Series
Two more lectures remain in our monthly Shabbat after-Kiddush Lecture Series. Do put both dates into your calendar.
On February 14, Rabbi Ari Lucas will teach one of his favorite texts: B'reishit Rabbah 8:5. This text imagines discussion between God and the angels about whether or not humanity should be created. Their debate will become ours as we discuss its implications for living a life of holiness. Rabbi Lucas is entitling his talk "The Case For (and Against) Humanity." 
Rabbi Hilary Chorny will bring this wonderful series — created by Rachel Green and the Education Committee — to a conclusion on March 21. 
— Rachel Green

Save the Dates – Social Action Projects
Purim "Matanot L'Evyonim" (giving to the poor) Operation Survival Kits (formerly Operation PB&J) will take place on March 4 following the reading of the Megillah. Assemble survival kits for the homeless and make sandwiches (NOT peanut butter sandwiches).
March 5 – Deliver kits to the homeless.
Sign up at
JWW Walk to End Genocide
Sunday, April 19, Pan Pacific Park, 9:00 AM - 1:00 PM, Walk and participate in educational activities dedicated to the survivors of mass atrocities in Darfur, Chad, and Congo. Show your support by joining the TBA team.
Register at - Team Temple Beth Am.
For more info on either project contact Dianne Shershow at
Mishna study 9:20
Tefillot begin 9:45
Temple Beth Am
Dorff-Nelson Chapel
1039 S. La Cienega Blvd, 90035
The Library Minyan of Temple Beth Am, 1039 S. La Cienega Blvd 90035