December 2 2011, Vayetze

S.T.A.R. News & Events

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

December 25th:

STAR kid’s Chanukah party!!!

Join the STAR Gang as we journey back in time at Golf and Stuff. Unlimited games and rides for all, plus a special Chanukah presentation followed by Chanukah gifts!!!

January 6th-8th

STAR Teens will occupy Big Bear on this amazing retreat. A 3 day luxurious stay at a 5 STAR hotel accompanied by great food lots of crazy fun, skiing, snow boarding and much more.

January 15th:


Let”s go to the happiest place on earth, Disneyland!!! To top it all off, you will be with the happiest people on earth, the STAR Group!


This Shabbat


Shabbat Parashat: Vayetze

Candle Lighting: 4:25pm
Shabbat Ends: 5:29pm

Torah Message


Waiting To Rust

"Then Rachel and Leah replied and said to him, ‘Have we then still a share and an inheritance in our father’s house? Are we not considered as strangers… so whatever G-d has said to you, do’. " (31:14-16)

There’s a widespread misunderstanding about why people are religious. It runs something like this. Okay. I’m prepared to sacrifice something of my pleasure in this world so that I can get a piece of the action in the next. I don’t mind refraining from the occasional BLT or Macdonald’s because I believe the Big Macs are bigger on the other side.

Even those of us who like to think of ourselves as religious, if questioned, would probably subscribe to this line of thinking.

Nothing could be further from the truth.

A person should feel that he is giving nothing up of this world, because this world has nothing to give him.

Let me give you an example.

Tuesday morning. You finally get the call. You’ve waited for two full months. And now it’s here. Your champagne-metallic luxury turbodeisel 4×4 has arrived at the car dealer. Your heartbeat leaps to 120 beats a minute. Your mouth dries up. You jump into the nearest taxi and sit there lost in the glow of expectation. You arrive at the showroom. The car dealer hands you the keys. This is the moment you’ve been waiting for. You slide behind the wheel. The smell of leather and "new car" is more potent than the latest Parisperfume. You turn the key and the engine purrs into life. You ease the car out of the parking lot and cruise down the main drag of the city real slow.

Riding a wild set of wheels at an easy pace.


A couple of months later, you’ve already scratched the champagne metallic paint in more than a few places, and the front fender shows the battle scars of a shopping expedition to the mall.

Why can’t new cars stay new? What happens to that smell of ‘new-car’? Does the factory send out a fragrance recall on it? More. What happens to the feeling of new car? Why does it always turn into a gas-guzzling insurance-eating rusting heap?

Nothing in this world that is solely of this world brings you real happiness.

Compare this to the feeling that comes from praying, even with a little bit of concentration. Most of us, at some time or another, have had this beautiful experience. And that feeling is second only to the feeling of learning Torah. That’s the most exquisite experience in the world. And it’s a genuine pleasure that stays with you. Not like this week’s new purchase that fills you with pride and desire and then comes to collect from you a heavy debt, both physically and spiritually.

"Then Rachel and Leah replied and said to him, ‘Have we then still a share and an inheritance in our father’s house? Are we not considered as strangers? …So whatever G-d has said to you – do!’ "

You could very easily misunderstand what Rachel and Leah meant by the above statement. You could think that the only reason they were agreeing to leave their father’s house was because there was nothing for them there anyway, that they were considered as strangers.

What Rachel and Leah were really saying was that leaving their father’s house was in no way a sacrifice, for nothing in Lavan’s house held any real value for them. “So whatever G-d has said to you – do!”

Life’s true pleasure is to be close to G-d, everything else is like a heap of steel waiting to rust.

  • Source: Based on Lev Eliyahu

Rabbi M. Weiss                                                  Rabbi Y. Sakhai

Community News


Em Habanim Congregation

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

Volunteers needed

Volunteers are needed for mitzvot ofHessed including Bikur Holim . Pleasecall the office (818) 762-7779 to inform of your availability. Thank you

Sephardic Temple:

Talmud Torah and Youth Havadalah and Movie Nite will return in January after the completion of the remodel of the new Alcana Youth Lounge. Watch for upcoming dates and info!


Saturday, December 17, 2011 Shabbat Lunch and Learn "Funny, You Don’t Look Jewish: Jews from Exotic Places." Levy Hall – Immediately following Shabbat services $15 members $20 non-members RSVP to (310)475-7000 or

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

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