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Parshat Tetzaveh
February 23-24, 2024

Candle lighting 5:51 pm
Havdalah 7:01 pm
8:45 am

9:45 am
Narrated Torah service

10:00 am
Youth groups

10:15 am
NCSY Juniors Donuts & Discussion
10:30 am
Rabbi's sermon

10:45 am
Parsha class

11:15 am
Kiddush is sponsored by
Mark Selent and Crystal Pickus
In gratitude of their daughter, Chana Liba Malka, "Libby"
Community News

Eden Burg
Daniel Gilad
Abby Raiz
Oliver Small
Cleveland Jewish News features our very own Rabbi Josh Grodko.
 See his CJN posts here
With gratitude to Hashem for the hostages
who have been safely returned to their families

We hope and pray for the remaining 
102 hostages to come home safely soon
Updated hostage list
Prayer for the hostages
Bring Them Home tags

Proceeds go to help the war effort in Israel
Available in the JFX lobby
$36 each

Stop by or reply to this email for more information
Picture Perfect
Sunday School made vegetable salads
as we learned the blessing to say when eating vegetables!
Upcoming Events
IDF soldiers are asking us to keep the Shabbat they can't keep.
They are protecting the country.
Our Shabbat is protecting them. 
Register here

Wednesday, February 28
4 pm at JFX

Come and hang out with fellow moms, dads, and kids for a fun and relaxed time with toys, games and a light dinner of yummy pizza and falafel

Register here
Sunday, March 10
3:30 pm

Mingle with other parents and bake
hamantashen with the kids in preparation for Purim
Register here

Sunday, March 17
7:30 pm at JFX

Come and hear first-hand from Clevelander Fariba Diamond
about her experience escaping persecution in Iran

Register here

Sunday, March 24
Megillah Reading 10 am at JFX

All royalty are invited! Fun for all ages
Royal court jester show | Come in costume
Decorate a crown | Costume contest | Royal photo
booth | Kid-friendly mixed drinks | Jewelry making

Register here
Monday, April 15
7:00 pm

Learn to make kosher for Passover cocktails
Enjoy wine and sushi, and some pre-Passover inspiration
Register here
Tuesday, April 16
6:00 pm

Men's night out
Cocktails, dinner and Passover inspiration
Mingle with friends and meet new ones
Register here
Learning Opportunities
Wednesdays 8:15-8:45 pm
at JFX

For learners of all backgrounds
In the merit of the Israeli soldiers

No class this week
Character Improvement Through Torah Wisdom

10:00 am
in Beachwood

7:30 pm
every other week
at JFX
Class is on this week

9:00 am

12:00 pm
12:00 pm
at JFX


Every other Wednesday
7:00 pm

Contact Rabbi Helman to confirm


Behind the Mask

With Purim just a month away, our home is buzzing with excitement! While all Jewish holidays hold a special place, it seems that my children are particularly thrilled about Purim. I can't help but wonder if it's the anticipation of candy or the dressing up that adds to the excitement. Truth be told, my boys enjoy dressing up year-round; it's not uncommon for me to return home to Spider-Man and Ninja greetings.

Choosing our Purim costumes has become a family event of epic proportions. We initiated discussions about potential costume themes roughly six months ago, and if we're lucky, we might settle on one before the next Ice Age. It's like planning a military operation, complete with strategy sessions and diplomatic negotiations. I can almost picture us at the United Nations of Purim Costumes, debating the pros and cons of going as a unified theme or embracing individual creativity. The struggle is real!

As with all things in life, it's crucial to understand the meaning behind our actions. So, what's the significance of dressing up on Purim? Is Purim simply a Jewish version of Halloween?

Back when I used to teach 12-year-old pre-bar mitzvah boys at Sunday school, I would conduct a fun exercise around the Purim holiday. I'd pull out a fresh, crisp one-hundred-dollar bill from my wallet, hold it up in the classroom, and distribute copies of Megillat Esther to each boy. The challenge was simple: whoever could find God’s name in the Megillah would take home the hundred-dollar bill. The boys eagerly flipped through the pages, searching and analyzing, hoping to find God’s name for the reward.

After a few minutes, I'd reveal the truth – Hashem's name isn't explicitly mentioned in the Megillah. Many rabbinical opinions suggest that whenever it says "Hamelech — The King," referring to King Achashverosh in the story's context, it also alludes to the (real) King of all kings – Hashem. But why not mention Hashem's name directly? Why use metaphorical language?

 As we are familiar with the basic Purim story, Haman and Achashverosh declared the "Final Solution" to annihilate all Jews. It seemed like the end for the Jewish people. The despair and terror felt by the Jewish nation at that time were unimaginable. Fasting and prayers followed, and through a series of unforeseen events, the decree was reversed, and the Jewish people were saved, while Haman and his sons were defeated. Looking back, the Jews of Shushan realized that Hashem was present throughout, guiding them from darkness to salvation. The hidden miracles of Hashem unfolded, and this is why His name is not overtly inscribed in the Megillah — because the miracle was hidden, and not open.

The story of Purim is about hidden miracles, and this is precisely why we dress up. We "mask" ourselves beneath costumes, concealing our true identities. Even though friends and neighbors may not recognize us, we are still present, observing in a hidden way. Similarly, in life, when facing challenges, one may wonder where Hashem is. In truth, Hashem is there, just as present during hardships. Purim teaches us that Hashem's ways are sometimes concealed. Things may seem "masked" and uncertain, but in reality, Hashem is there; we just need to seek Him out and find Him under the mask.

A story is told about someone asking Rabbi Menachem Mendel of Kotzk, the Kotzker Rebbe, where to find Hashem in their life. Without hesitation, the Rebbe responded, "Wherever you let Him in." The key to living with Hashem in your life is to actively seek Him out, to be conscious of Hashem during both the good and unclear times.

As the prophet Isaiah says, "Dirshu Hashem behimatso – Seek out Hashem, and He will be found." From the days of Haman's threat in the Purim story, to modern-day antisemitism, we, as Jews, must live with Hashem's relevance in our lives. The Purim story reminds us that whether in the highs or lows of life, Hashem is always there. May we all merit Hashem's salvation, bringing us out of our difficulties and rebuilding the Temple swiftly in our days. 

Shabbat shalom,

Rabbi Josh
Thank you to our corporate sponsors
NY prices with Midwest service only at Plaza Auto Leasing!

Call Moshe Henfield at
216-707-9000 ex. 202 or email for your next vehicle. 

Lease, rent, purchase, sell or trade! 
Looking to buy or sell a house?

Call Gavi 216-262-4700

Our program is supported by the Fund for the Jewish Future of the
Jewish Federation of Cleveland.

The Jewish Family Experience is a community of inspired Jews led by Rabbi Sruly and Ruchi Koval. We offer Jews of all ages, backgrounds, and affiliations a fresh look at Judaism in a way that offers education, inspiration and community.

Copyright © 2015 Jewish Family Experience, All rights reserved.
2200 S. Green Road, Cleveland, OH 44121 | 

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Our doors are open to all who seek to worship, learn and serve the community.

Services at  Jewish Family Experience are a learning experience.  During the service members of the Minyan are encouraged to raise their hand if they have a question regarding the structure of the service, the meaning of a prayer, the interpretation of the Torah portion or a comment regarding the practice of Judaism.

Our goal is to broaden the understanding of Judaism.  And through better understanding establish each individual’s relationship with G-d.  Join us to experience our interactive service.  Come learn with us.

Sponsor a Kiddush
The Kiddush following JFX Shabbat Morning Experience is a great way to socialize, catch up with old friends, meet new members, guests and be part of JFX's vibrant community. Sponsoring a Kiddush is a beautiful and meaningful way to pay tribute to a loved one, celebrate a simcha such as bar/bat mitzvahs, anniversaries, graduations and remembering the Yahrzeit of a family member. Share stories, laugh, be inspired and be part of fostering a strong sense of community at JFX.

We have three levels of Kiddush sponsorship. These costs are based on normal Shabbat attendance.

Standard Kiddush: $500
Includes: Includes kugel, chulent, herring, chips, dips, cake, drinks and fruit.

Deluxe Kiddush: $750
Includes all of the above plus cold cuts and lettuce salad.

Gala Kiddush: $1,000
Includes all of the above plus chicken fingers.

To sponsor a kiddush sign up here 
For more information please contact our office

Shabbat Schedule

8:45 am
Shacharit service with Rabbi Koval, Rabbi Josh Grodko and our cantor, Rabbi Nissan Blum

9:45 am
Narrated Torah reading

10:00 am
Youth groups

10:30 am
Rabbi's sermon

10:45 am
Mussaf service
Ruchi's Parsha class

11:15 am
Deluxe Kiddush

Tue, February 27 2024 18 Adar I 5784