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‘For my house shall be called a house
of prayer for all peoples.’

- Isaiah 56:7

 
Temple B'nai Israel

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11/18/16 - A Sermon for Shabbat Vayeira - By By Rabbi Boaz D. Heilman

In our Scriptural readings from the Torah, this week we find ourselves studying the story of Abraham, the first patriarch of the Jewish People and also the father of the three Abrahamic religions-Judaism, Christianity and Islam. I find it interesting-and hopeful, especially in these troubled times in America and the world-that we all share this one forebear, that no matter how different our faiths may be, we all find in Abraham a common source of teaching and inspiration.

When we first encountered Abraham, he was picking up the pieces of his life. At the age of 75, Abraham was uprooting. Called by God, he was leaving behind his family, homeland and people, in search of something vague, a place he knew existed, but that he knew not where. All he knew was that God would tell him when he got there.

It couldn't have been easy for Abraham to undertake this journey. He was getting on in years; he knew that chances were that he would never see his family again. The Chaldeans-the people he was leaving behind-were among the most advanced civilizations in the world at that time. And what was he doing? He was leaving for the Wild, Wild West, a lawless place inhabited by people whose language, customs and ways he did not know.

So why did he leave? At age 75, probably not for fun or profit. He was already rich, successful and established. So why now?

He left because he felt himself endangered.

Abraham was different from his fellow Chaldeans, and times were getting dangerous for people like him, who shared his world views, and particularly his religion. As Abraham saw it, the gods that most people around him worshipped were mere idols, make-believe creatures whose main characteristics were that they were lazy, quarrelsome, jealous and ill-tempered, and that the best way to deal with them was essentially to appease them with wine and sacrifice, and pray that they would leave you alone, like wild animals after feeding time at the zoo....read more


Come celebrate Hanukkah with the congregation on Saturday, December 17, as we fill our temple with song, candlelight and prayer.

  • 5:30 Candle lighting Please bring your menorah and candles.

  • 6:00 Dinner The holiday committee will prepare the main meat portion of the meal. Please bring a dozen of your favorite latkes, a salad, side dish or dessert to share.

  • 7:00 Movie Rabbi Heilman will show a short film entitled LIGHTS followed by a brief discussion.

Hope to share an early Hanukkah with you on Dec, 17th. Please RSVP to Naomi Goldman


Food Festival 2016

Food Festival 2016

The 19th annual Jewish Food Festival that was held on July 10th was an overwhelming success. More than 600 people from far and wide attended the event.

Eat-in service included TBI's world famous cheese blintzes and knishes; selling more than 700 pieces of each, with only the crumbs remaining. The new suppliers of bread (Zingerman's) and the deli meat provider (Evan's Deli of Marblehead MA) were also huge hits with the final bits of meat leaving on the last two pieces of bread. It is hard to believe nearly 300 lbs of the various meats, 17 pullman loaves of bread, and 100 rolls were used.

The new take out area was just as successful. In addition to the preorder pick-ups, customers could take home frozen packaged goods to be heated whenever they felt the urge. This program consisted of stuffed cabbage, potato latkes, whole noodle kugels, chopped chicken liver, chopped herring, the world's best half sour pickles, and of course matzo ball soup. In addition, packaged meats, frozen knishes and blintzes were also available. When it was all over that freezer was also empty.

Naomi Goldman and Rhoda Goodman's inside serving teams did a terrific job handling the crowds, while Jerry Fleischman's checkout team quickly got customers through the payment process. Karen and Joe Lukeman's customer service teams adeptly handled the eating area which was confined by the inclement weather. None of this event would have been possible without the logistics genius of Gary Broom, the organizational skills of the cooking coordinator and purchasing manager, Sharon Fleischman and the dedicated group of cooking captains (Joyce Selig, Marilyn Lezberg, Karen Rines, Irene Gordon, Naomi Goldman, Leslie Aronoson, David Osmond, Heather Needleman, Sue Needleman) and their teams who put their heart and soul into each bite.

The weather forced the Nearly New Boutique inside, where hundreds of bargains awaited the eager shoppers. Barbara Broom and her team handled the crowds in somewhat confined space, and most shoppers left with many prized fin

For those who came early and those who preordered in May, there were no disappointments. Late comers found many items sold out. There is a lesson to be learned for 2017 when we celebrate 20 years of the Festival. Stay tuned for details in early next year.

Food Festival 2016

Food Festival Fun


Elton John Tribute

Elton Tribute 2016

A beautiful evening welcomed approximately 200 people to the McEvoy Theater on the bucolic campus of New Hampton School on June 18th for the 5th "We Care" concert organized by Temple B'nai and featuring acclaimed Golden Brick Road - Elton John Tribute Band. Pre-concert, the crowd feasted on a variety of delicious refreshments including homemade baklava. As part of the introduction, Executive Director Christine Santaniello of Lakes Region Community Services, the recipient of the net proceeds of this concert, spoke briefly about the wonderful partnership that has been forged between LRCS and TBI.

But once the lights were dimmed in the theater, the band demonstrated why they are the only Elton John Tribute Band endorsed by the International Elton John Fan Club. A magnificent performance and instrumental brilliance enhanced the songs and got the audience rocking from the very start.

Some of the attendees had attended past "We Care" concerts, but for some, this was their first. However, by the end of the evening, the overwhelming feedback was how fantastic this evening was, and that they will join us for the next "We Care" concert on Nov. 19 featuring North Shore Acappella, back by popular demand.

view pictures!


Temple B'nai Israel

Purim 2016

March 18, 2016 - On Friday, March 18, TBI held a Shabbat Yeladim (children's service) for a kids' version of the reading of the story of Queen Esther and Purim..

The following Sunday, there was a presentation of "Purim: The Spiel," a Purim skit written by Rabbi Heilman and presented by the Off Off Union Avenue Players! A Purim carnival followed, with fun and games for the entire family.

Photos capture the fun that lasted the whole weekend long!


March 1, 2016 - An imaginative approach to joint charitable fund raising has emerged from the root of the WE CARE program, sponsored by Temple B’nai Israel in Laconia. This year, ticket sales for two musical productions will go to selected social services that will also benefit from working with each other and garnering the joint public awareness of the critical community work these organizations perform. Temple B’nai Israel President Marsha Ostroff reports that the WE CARE program, begun just two years ago, has already donated in excess of $10,000 to local nonprofit organizations.

Find out more about our nonprofit partners for 2016...

From left: Ken Goodman (TBI), Barbara Katz (TBI), Jill Lieberman (TBI), Kristen Welch (Genesis Behavioral Health), Joanne Lang (Lakes Region Community Services), Marsha Ostroff (TBI President), Aileen Castillo (New Beginnings), Stu Needleman (TBI), Meg Kennedy Dugan (Voices Against Violence)


Planting parsley for Tu B'Shevat.

Saturday, January 23, 2016 - More than 20 hardy souls gathered at beautiful Prescott Farm to celebrate Tu B'shevat: the New Year of the Trees.

Despite chilly temperatures, all were warmed by our wonderful and knowledgeable guide Will, who taught us how to identify tracks and pointed out interesting sights. More importantly we had the pleasure of spending Shabbat together in nature and reconvening back at the Chertok Social Hall for snacks followed by a meaningful seder led by Rabbi Boaz Heilman.

This year our religious school students have revamped our Tu Bishevat haggadah with illustrations and their own wisdom. Many participants happily kept their haggadah as a souvenir of a lovely day.

The seder was followed by a pot luck meal and Adult Learning Movie Night featuring Nancy Speilberg's film "Above and Beyond." This film documents the story of a group of World War II pilots who volunteered to fight for Israel in the War of Independence and helped in the process of developing Israel's Air Force. The movie was moving and educational. Rabbi Heilman shared his feelings about his military service, and a lively discussion followed..

Snowshoeing at Prescott Park in celebration of Tu B'Shevat.


FRIDAY, DECEMBER 18, 2015 - Tonight was a she'hechiyanu moment for TBI families: It was our first (of many to come!) Tot Shabbat service led by Rabbi Heilman and our cantorial soloist, Melody Funk.

The two created an incredibly beautiful community amongst the parents and children, engaging families in prayer, learning and spiritual enrichment.

The prayer service was followed by dinner and playtime for all to rejoice in Shabbat together!

Temple B'nai Israel

Just a few of the friendly faces at Tot Shabbat on Friday, December 18!


Saturday, December 5, 2015 - Our thanks to the Jewish Federation of New Hampshire for bringing informal educator Mark Lazar to New Hampshire and allowing him to share an afternoon with us at TBI!

Mark is a native of Southern California who made aliyah in 1993 after a colorful coming of age in the late 60s and early 70s. His discussion of Zionism in the 21st Century was lively and engaging, and allowed each participant to examine their own feelings about Zionism and Israel's place in the world.

Temple B'nai Israel

Mark Lazar from the Jewish Federation of N.H. leads the discussion at an Adult Education gathering.


November 13, 2015 - Rabbi Boaz Heilman's officially installation foretold the coming years of rich interaction among young and old in our temple. Every part of the evening was filled with tradition and meaning. We joyously celebrated his arrival in our midst.

The tone of the evening was set at an installation dinner for one hundred people, temple members, community clergy and leaders of community social services. Collectively, members provided a sumptuous dinner, with a post-service Oneg that included a surprise birthday cake for Rabbi Heilman.

Highlights of the service began with a religious school offering... Read more...

Rabbi Heilman Installation - Friday November 13, 2015

Rabbi Heilman was officially installed on Friday, November 13, 2015.


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