May 30, 2024/ 22 Iyar 5784

June Monthly Newsletter

Included in This Newsletter

Shabbat Service - 6/7

Beach Shabbat - 6/21

Erev Shavuot Home Request

Weekly D'var Torah

Counting the Omer

Social Action Opportunities

Spotlight Calendar

Members and guests are always welcome to attend our Shir Ami Services, Classes and Special Events (fees may apply)


Soul Spa: The Torah Cycle (virtual)

(a yearlong weekly series)

Saturdays, June 1st, June 8th, June 15th and June 22nd

Soul Stretch – Counting Omer for Character Where it Counts (virtual)

Tuesday, June 4th

8:00 PM

Shabbat Service (in person)

Friday, June 7th

7:00 PM

Shavuot Service (in person)

Tuesday, June 11tth

7:00 PM - See Below

Pirkei Avot Class (virtual)

Wednesday, June 12th - Shavuot

7:30 PM

Shir Ami Board Meeting (virtual)

Tuesday, June 17th

7:30 PM

Beach Shabbat - Tod's Point

Friday, June 21st

6:00 PM


Shabbat Service (in person)

Friday, July 19th

7:00 PM - Details to follow

2023-24 Calendar is now available on our website. Click here (updated 3/27/24)

Contact Us:

Email Address


Donations and Payments

Mailing Address

1273 E. Putnam Ave

​PO Box 312

Riverside, CT 06878

Erev Shavuot on Tuesday,

June 11th Needs a Home!

Shavuot is a celebration of the giving of the Torah on Mt. Sinai. This year Erev Shavuot falls on Tuesday, 6/11 at 7 pm. We'd love to celebrate it as a congregation -- can you help us by hosting it in your home? This is an easy and fun celebration -- come and find out why we eat cheesecake (hint: the land of milk and honey!). If we do not find a venue by Sunday, June 2nd, we may sadly have to cancel the service. Please email if you are willing to host this important service in your home.

Shabbat Service

Friday, June 7th

7:00 PM

Please join us for a musical Shabbat as we open the Book of Numbers and prepare for Shavuot.

Thank you to Linda and Stanley Gratt for hosting the Oneg.

On Erev Shavuot, June 11th we'll stand at Sinai again to receive Torah (and enjoy cheesecake). More details will follow.

Register for June 7th Shabbat

Beach Shabbat Service

Friday, June 21st

Gathering and Picnic at 6:00 PM/Service at 6:45 PM

Tod's Point Beach

New spot - Seaside Garden

Please join us for our June 21st Friday Night Shabbat Service.

Specific details will be sent to those who register, including a copy of the beach permit for non-residents to enter. Bring your own beach chairs, food and drinks.

More details will follow regarding the exact meeting place and location for the service.

As in the past, if there is inclement weather, a decision to move the service to Zoom will be made no later than Friday, 6/21, at 4:00 pm. An email will be sent to all members, in addition to those who registered.

Register for June 21st Shabbat

Weekly D'var Torah

D'var Torah by Rabbi David

Parashat Behukotai  5784 (2024)

Life Upright and the If/Then of Spirituality

Why live spiritually? Why live as a Jew – or, for that matter, in any community or system of faith or doctrine? These are questions for the ages, ones that modernity places in particularly sharp focus.

They're worth wrestling with, especially now.

Shir Ami Classes

Soul Stretch – Counting Omer for Character Where it Counts

Tuesdays at 8:00 - 8:30pm via Zoom

April 30 - June 4

Passover launches two journeys at once. In spiritual history, it's the start of our ancestral journey from enslaved hopelessness without a future toward becoming a free people heading to the Land of Promise.

In Judaism's annual holiday cycle, Passover also launches a seven-week journey of the heart from "liberation" to the "revelation" we call Shavuot, when we celebrate standing together at Sinai anew. This springtime season offers a community pathway to refine our characters together.

If this sounds like another planet's Judaism, you're in for a treat! Read more...

Click here for Zoom link

Please note that unlike all other online offerings, Soul Stretch will not be recorded to ensure a safe space for authentic participant sharing.

Omer Week 6 - Foundation: Generativity and Truth

For five weeks of our Omer journey from Passover (liberation) to Shavuot (revelation), we aligned with our capacities of love (hesed), strength (gevurah), balance (tiferet), resilience (netzah) and splendor (hod). 

In important ways, these five weeks have been lead-ups to the culminating two weeks that start now as we round the corner and approach Shavuot. This sixth week focuses us on foundation (yesod) – the traits of physicality, creativity and truth. Our next and final week we reach presence (malkhut), bringing our full selves into the world so that we can receive Torah anew with our full selves.


Soul Spa is open to all.

Our Torah study each week on Shabbat morning has become a mainstay of our programming. As we examine the parashat each week under Rabbi David's guidance and questioning, our sacred writings become more familiar, the stories clearer, and the teachings more meaningful.

Soul Spa is free for members and non-members alike. You may drop in as frequently or as infrequently, as you like. Please click here to find the weekly Zoom link and for recordings of previous discussions.

Join Rabbi David for a first foray into the Jewish wisdom and ethical tradition, centered on Pirkei Avot. Together we'll explore ancient Jewish principles for just and good living – and bring those principles to life among us and in a world straining for justice and goodness. No experience necessary: all materials will be presented with English translation.  

Classes from 7:30pm - 9:00pm. Last class is June 12th

The class is free for members and $120 for non-members. Classes will be recorded and posted on our website.

Register for Ethics & Jewish Wisdom Tradition

Social Action

Interfaith Blood Drive

Saturday, June 15

8:00 AM-1:30 PM

First Presbyterian Church

Calling all blood types! Patients count on American Red Cross

blood donations year-round. But soon, schedules will get

hectic with time off and fun summer activities which can sometimes lead to a drop in donor appointments. Your donation can help avoid critical blood shortages. Schedule your appointment at and use code: FPCG. You’re just our type ❤️

Freedberg Kosher Pantry

New Date - 6/26

We Need Volunteers!

The JFS Freedberg Pantry in downtown Stamford serves all people in need, and they are sorely in need of volunteers. Shir Ami can help by volunteering.

Thank you to those who have already volunteered over the last couple of months by distributing food at their pantry on Greyrock Place.

Next volunteer opportunity is:

Wednesday, June 26. We hope to have a group that will sit around a table and fill spice bottles, fill out greeting cards, or package toiletry kits, etc. 

Please contact Ronny to let her know if you would like to volunteer.

Ronny Kaplan


Sometimes the stresses and challenges of life can be more than you can handle alone. JFS of Greenwich is offering a new women’s support group offering the opportunity to meet with other women exploring life challenges in a safe circle of support Gain perspective, heal through shared experience and feel empowered. Meets weekly on Mondays at 6:30 pm evenings at JFS of Greenwich. For more information, contact Cynthia King at or call 203-622-1881.

Community News

April/May Issue of

Greenwich Jewish News

Please click here to read the digital version. Please see Shir Ami articles on pages 6, 7 and 8.

May Issue of

New Jewish Voice

Please click here to read the latest digital version.

Blessings and Simchas

Blessings for a Happy Birthday to all of our members with end of May/June birthdays:

Fran Pribish - 5/30

Richard Preng - 6/3

Jay Polansky - 6/14

Rick Mason - 6/15

Gary Meisel - 6/22

In our weekly Blessing and Simchas, we invite members to offer congratulations on a special event in someone’s life, blessings for healing, or to remember a loved one.

If you make a special donation and would like to share it in the newsletter’s “Blessings and Simchas, let us know by emailing with the subject line, "Blessings and Simchas" no later than 9:00 AM on Monday. Be sure to include the wording for how you want the donation and the donor to be recognized including your name, the occasion and the recipient's names.

You are not required to make a donation but if you chose to, you may do so on our website's donation page or by mailing a check to Congregation Shir Ami, 1273 East Putnam Avenue, P.O. Box 312, Riverside, CT 06870-9998. 

2023-2024 Membership Drive Continues

For those of you who are not yet Members but are considering joining Shir Ami, we warmly welcome you!

The Benefits of Membership:

Being a Member of Shir Ami, allows you special access to

  • practice our faith together and learn from the Torah and each other
  • help shape our community
  • support Shir Ami's mission
  • find inspiration in our diverse offerings of services, classes and events where there is something for everybody
  • participate in rituals, group trips and events reserved for members
  • have access to our wonderful clergy for pastoral care
  • recognize our loved ones who have passed during our Yizkor service each year

We hope you will join our community at Congregation Shir Ami. The Membership Policy has details on dues, benefits, events, life-cycle and pastoral care and general involvement in congregational life. And if you already are a member, it's a good time to revisit the policy and refresh your memory on why you joined. 

If you are interested and would like to know more, please look for membership information which can be found on our website's membership page. The easy to fill out form may be completed online and submitted with a button, or can be printed out and sent to our mailing address: Congregation Shir Ami | 1273 E Putnam Ave, PO Box 312, Riverside, CT 06878

Contact us if you have any questions or would like to speak with an officer or our clergy,

All are welcome to join our community!

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