August 12, 2011 Parashat Va’etchanan

S.T.A.R. News & Events

Here are S.T.A.R.’s upcoming exciting events:

August 16-18 Join the STAR teem for an unforgettable Camping trip. Registeration will close on Aug. 8th, 2011. SOLD OUT!

Join the STAR Gang on an unforgettable all night of fun ant the famous GOLF & STUFF. Great food, fun, friends, rides an much more!

This Shabbat

Shabbat Parashat: Va’etchanan

Candle Lighting: 7:26pm
Shabbat Ends: 8:22pm


Torah Message

Too Jewish?

"Surely a wise and discerning people are this great nation!" (4:6)

A true story.

A well-known Orthodox Rabbi was invited to a dinner at Buckingham Palace. The Rabbi replied that he would be honored to accept the invitation but he feared that his kosher dietary requirements would make it impossible for him to attend. The palace replied that far from being too much trouble, they would be happy to supply whatever food he needed and together with appropriate supervision.

The Rabbi happily accepted the invitation and a mashgiach (kosher food supervisor) was appointed to take care of his needs. In order to be unobtrusive, food was selected that appeared to be the same as the other guests’.

Before the other guests arrived, the mashgiach showed the Rabbi where he would sit. Themashgiach lifted a plate. Superficially it seemed identical to the other hundreds of plates in the dining hall. However on its underside was affixed a discrete sticker. The mashgiach had bought an entire new set of plates and cutlery. Everything had been toveled (immersed in a mikveh) and labeled.

The Queen, the Duke of Edinburgh, Prince Charles and others of the royal family entered the room. Everyone rose. The meal began in an atmosphere of stately grandeur. The Rabbi was not the only Jew at this dinner but he was certainly the most conspicuous in his large black kippa.

Immersed in conversation as the first course came to its end, the Rabbi suddenly noticed the lights dimming. "What’s happening?" he asked the famous pop-star sitting to his right. "Oh, I can see you haven’t been to one of these before. What happens now is that everyone changes table. That way everyone gets a chance to meet everyone." The pop-star may have noticed the cloud that momentarily passed across the Rabbi’s sunny countenance, but certainly he had no idea of its cause.

The Rabbi was now faced with a problem. He realized that he would have to carry his entire place setting to his next location. However, there was nothing for it, and to the bemused smiles of his fellow guests, he proceeded to gather up his plates, knives, forks and spoon and carried them ceremoniously to their next location.

Palace dinners are not short affairs. While carrying his decreasing number of plates between the fifth and sixth courses, one of the other Jewish guests hissed at him under his breath. "Will you please stop that! I’ve never been so embarrassed in my life." "I’m sorry" said the Rabbi, "but I keep kosher." "Well, make an exception!" said the other.

The Rabbi stuck to his guns. For all twelve courses.

At the end of the meal, the guests all lined up to take leave of their royal hosts. As the Rabbi was shaking Prince Charles’ hand, the prince said "Excuse me, but I couldn’t help noticing that you were carrying your dishes around the room." "Yes," said the Rabbi "I did it because of the Jewish dietary laws." "Yes," said the Prince "I know about kosher food, but I didn’t know it extended to the plates as well. How interesting! Please tell me more."

By this point, the master of ceremonies had come over to see what was holding up the line. In order to continue their discussion, the Prince beckoned the Rabbi to step out of the line and join him.

So there they were. The Rabbi and the Prince. Shaking the hands of the guests and discussing the laws of kashrut. Finally it came the turn of the Jewish guest who had objected to the Rabbi’s behavior to shake the hand of the Prince. As he was doing this, he mentioned confidentially to the Prince "I’m Jewish too."

"Really?" said the Prince, "I didn’t notice you carrying your dishes!"

When we keep the Torah properly with all its details, non-Jews know instinctively we’re doing what we’re supposed to, and they respect us for it. When we try and water down our Judaism to conform to our own preconceived secular standards, there will always be a voice asking us where our dishes are.

Community News


Em Habanim Congregation

Weekly Parashat Hashavua class with Rabbi Joshua Bittan on Wednesdays at 8:30pm for more info. visit

Em Habanim Congregation’s annual banquet will be held on Sunday  the 6th of November, 2011. The honored Guests are: Mark Castiel, Andre Chrique and Johnny Elbaz Deckel.
Em Habanim will be celebrating close to 40 years of service to the community.

Yom Kippur services will be held at the Century Plaza Hyatt Regency in Century City. More details will follow.

Sephardic Temple:

Talmud Torah registration for the new school year 2011/2012 is ongoing throughout the summer!

Mark your calendars:
Saturday, November 5th, 2011 A Gal celebration honoring the 2011 Sephardic Heritage award recipients Mr. Larry Clumeck and Dr. Samuel Newman.
For more info. visit

Sunday September, 3rd, 2011 Annual STTI Family picnic Mar Vista Park 10am -3pm Food, Music, Games and Fun!

Get Well Soon

We wish a speedy recovery for all the Jews that may need it where ever they may be and especially for:

Em Habanim:

Max Barchichat

From Sephardic Temple:

Al Azus,Buena Angel,
Elaine Leon,Itzchak Rachmanony

From S.T.A.R.:

Mordechai Chaim Ben Chana, Chaim Ben Buena,
Meshulam Dov Ben Chana Sarah
Bracha Eliza Bat Ehteram, Bracha Sara Chaya Bat Ronit


Our condolences to the Attar Family on the passing of Rachel Attar Z’L, we share the sorrow with the grieving family.

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