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Wednesday Wisdom & Wit

05/31/2023 04:11:42 PM


Rabbi Daniel Sherman

It’s hard to believe that today is the last day of May.  What a busy and exciting month it has been – with lots of wonderful moments and events at Temple.

            Now it is time to look ahead to the summer.  One of the highlights of every year is our Summer Union Shabbat Services.  I do not know of any other community where the local Reform Congregations join together for worship for the entire summer.  I think it helps us to get to know our neighbors and to reinforce the sense of community that we share.  I know that I look forward to worshipping in the chapels and sanctuaries of our fellow congregations.  A reminder of the schedule this year: Congregation Gates of Prayer will host the month of June, Temple Sinai will host July, and Touro Synagogue will host August.  All of the details can be found in our weekly e-blasts, the Temple website, and the June/July Bulletin.

            For many of our families, summer means camp.  I am excited that so many of our Temple Sinai students will attend the URJ Henry S. Jacobs Camp this summer.  We know that they will have a fantastic experience.  We are also excited to have students visiting Israel this summer – an unforgettable summer experience.  We look forward to hearing reports about all of our students’ activities and experiences this summer.

            I am also curious this week to read about the trial that has now begun in Pittsburgh, PA for the accused shooter from the Tree of Life Synagogue Massacre on October 27, 2018. I feel for the families of the victims and for the greater Pittsburgh Jewish community.  All of this is happening while we witness alarming rises in anti-Semitism throughout the country and around the world.  Please know that we take safety and security very seriously at Temple and throughout the Greater New Orleans Jewish Community.  I want to thank all who are working very hard to keep our community protected.

            I hope that everyone has a wonderful summer.  Wishing you safe travels, some rest and relaxation, new experiences, and lasting memories!



Wednesday Wisdom & Wit

05/17/2023 01:41:59 PM


Rabbi Daniel Sherman

            The countdown is on: only 2 more days until our special weekend honoring Cantor Joel Colman.  The weekend kicks off with a special Friday evening on May 19.  Our Shabbat Service will begin in the Sanctuary at 6:00pm.  Rabbi Cohn and I will both share some thoughts and memories about our beloved clergy partner.  There will be special music and presentations as we express our love and appreciation for Cantor Colman and all he has meant to Temple Sinai over the past 24 years.  A Congregational Shabbat Dinner will follow featuring some of Cantor’s favorites.  Please make your reservations for dinner as soon as possible.

            The fun will continue on Sunday, May 21 with CantorColmanFest 2023 at Temple from 11:00am until 1:00pm.  There will live music, games, a bounce house, a Second Line and more.  We will have a cookout lunch in the auditorium and outside – please make a reservation so that we can make sure we have enough food for everyone (there is no charge).  And since we are honoring Cantor Colman, there will also be a “candy bar” plus sno-balls and cotton candy.  Please plan on dropping by and expressing our gratitude to Cantor Colman.

            Cantor Colman will officially retire over the summer, and we look forward to welcoming Cantor Rebecca Garfein and her family to Temple Sinai and New Orleans in July.

            This evening is our final Wednesday Night Live discussion of the season.  We’ll talk about the state of Temple Sinai today, reviewing this past year and making plans for the future.  We will also discuss ideas and suggestions for future Adult Education classes and topics.  I hope you can join me this evening on Zoom at 7:00pm.

            I look forward to seeing you this weekend as we honor Cantor Colman at Temple!

Wednesday Wisdom & Wit

05/10/2023 11:33:13 AM


Rabbi Daniel Sherman

What a busy time this is at Temple!  There is lots going on – and I hope you will make plans to be a part of the activity.

            This evening during Wednesday Night Live (7:00pm on Zoom) we will discuss “What’s Next on the Jewish Calendar?”  We will take a closer look at special days this month (including Lag B’Omer, Yom Yerushalayim, and the Festival of Shavuot), as well as other important days that occur over the summer.  Please join us for an enlightening conversation.

            I am looking forward to this Friday evening, May 12, when we will hold our Annual Confirmation Service at 6:30pm in the Sanctuary.  I am very proud of our Confirmation Class of 5783: Adam Kirschman, Max Klein, Jackson Mendler, Dario Miranda, Nolan Rosenfeld, and Eden Rung.  These six 10th graders have studied with me every Sunday morning as we have explored adult Judaism today.  They are ready to lead our service and to confirm their commitment to living meaningful Jewish lives.  I hope you will join me in congratulating our students and their families for reaching this milestone in their Jewish education.

            Don’t forget: next week on Tuesday, May 16, is our Annual Congregational Meeting at 7:00pm.  We will discuss the state of Temple Sinai today, elect new officers and board members, and thank our outgoing leaders.

            The following weekend we will honor and thank our beloved Cantor Joel Colman before his upcoming retirement this summer.  On Friday, May 19 we will hold a special Shabbat Evening Service at 6:00pm as we express our appreciation to Cantor Colman for all that he has meant to us over the past 24 years.  After services there will be a Congregational Shabbat Dinner.  Please plan on joining us and make your reservations today.

            The celebration continues on Sunday, May 21 with CantorColmanFest 2023!  Join us at Temple from 11:00am – 1:00pm.  There will be music, games, fun, and a Second Line honoring Cantor Colman.  There will also be a cookout lunch, along with treats and some of the Cantor’s favorites.  It will be fun for all ages.  We hope to see you as we honor and thank Cantor Colman and begin to prepare for the upcoming transition this summer.

            I hope everyone is doing well and staying safe and dry.  I look forward to seeing you this month here at Temple!

Wednesday Wisdom & Wit

05/03/2023 01:39:58 PM


Rabbi Daniel Sherman

I am still struggling to accept that May is here.  But, as I look at the calendar, I am very excited about all that will be happening this month at Temple.

            A few things to point out here at the beginning of the month.  This evening there is a Jewish Community Town Hall Meeting with U.S. Representative Troy Carter.  The event will take place from 6:30-7:30pm at Touro Synagogue.  The entire Jewish community is invited to participate.  Please register at the Jewish Federation of Greater New Orleans website:  I will look forward to seeing you there.

            This Friday, May 5, band members will be joining us for a Festive Musical Shabbat Service in the Feibelman Chapel at 6:30pm.  We will also be celebrating our May anniversaries and birthdays.

            It is hard to believe that today is our last official day of Hebrew School, and Sunday will be our last morning of Chavurah@Sinai for this school year.  It has been a great year of learning here at Temple.  I especially want to thank Mollie Sloter, who has stepped in as our interim Religious School Administrator, and all of our teachers for all that they do for our students, families, and congregation.  I am looking forward to our Confirmation Service, which this year will be held on Friday Evening, May 12, at 6:30pm in the sanctuary.

            Please mark your calendars for our special weekend as we honor and thank Cantor Joel Colman for his 24 years of service to Temple Sinai.  On Friday, May 19 we will hold a special service of appreciation at 6:00pm, followed by a Congregational Shabbat Dinner (please make your reservations).  Sunday, May 21 is CantorColmanFest here at Temple from 11:00am – 1:00pm.  It will be lots of fun with something for everyone.  Please plan on joining us for these fabulous events in honor of our beloved Cantor.

            Happy May!  See you at Temple!

Wednesday Wisdom & Wit

04/19/2023 01:35:56 PM


Rabbi Daniel Sherman

            What a great time this is on the calendar here in New Orleans.  The weather is nice, and there seems to be a festival every weekend.  This is also the time of year when we have a number of modern holidays on the Jewish calendar.

            This week we observed Yom HaShoah – our Holocaust Remembrance Day, as we remember the 6 Million Jews who were murdered in the Shoah.  May we never forget, and may we be inspired to work towards an end to anti-Semitism, hate, prejudice, and violence in our world.

            Next week we will join with Jews around the world in marking first Yom HaZikaron – Israel’s Memorial Day on Tuesday, April 25.  We will remember all of those who have lost their lives creating, building, serving, defending and protecting the land of Israel throughout its history.  The next day, Wednesday April 26, is Yom HaAtzmaut – Israel’s Independence Day.  This year we celebrate the 75th birthday of the Modern State of Israel.  Israel has been through so much – and it has accomplished so very much.  There is much to celebrate, as we pray for peace, security, and prosperity for Israel. 

            We will discuss Israel of the past, present, and future during our Wednesday Night Live discussions this week and next week (April 19 & 26) on Zoom at 7:00pm.  We also have a special program and activities for our students during Chavurah@Sinai this Sunday morning, April 23.  There is a wonderful community ceremony and Israeli concert next Tuesday, April 25 at the Uptown JCC that I hope you will consider attending.  Next Friday, April 28 we will have an Israel-themed Shabbat Evening here at Temple.

            This Friday, April 21, we will have a special Musical Shabbat Service at 6:30pm in the Sanctuary.  Joining Cantor Colman will be members of the choir in our Vocal Ensemble, and we will feature Dr. Marcus St. Julien on the organ.  I hope you will plan on joining us for services.

            Stay well, enjoy Spring, and see you at Temple!

Wednesday Wisdom & Wit

03/29/2023 02:31:09 PM


Rabbi Daniel Sherman

Well, my joy from this weekend’s Gala unfortunately did not last as long as I had hoped.  I want to thank everyone who planned and worked so hard to make the annual event happen.  I want to thank everyone who attended and who supported Temple Sinai again this year.  I know that everyone had a wonderful time and enjoyed being altogether at Temple for our Casino Night on the Avenue fundraiser.

I am also excited because finally we are able to announce our plans for the position of Cantor at Temple Sinai moving forward.  We are so pleased to tell everyone that Cantor Rebecca Garfein will be joining Temple Sinai this summer.  She and her family cannot wait to get here and to get started.  Cantor Garfein will be an incredible addition to Temple Sinai – we are fortunate that she has chosen to become part of the Sinai family and community.

That’s the good news.  Now the bad news.

I am saddened to read the news of the storms and tornadoes that caused such devastating damage in our neighboring Mississippi.  I feel for all the families that lost lives and homes.  I hope that we can find ways to be good neighbors and to lend a helping hand.

I was heart-broken once again by the news of the school shooting in Nashville.  I just do not understand how we can allow these mass shootings, especially in our schools, to happen again and again and again – and not seem to do anything about them.  We need new gun laws, and we must find ways to keep our children safe.  Even sadder to me: how unsurprised our kids are when they here such news, and how surprised they are that I continue to be surprised when another school shooting takes place in our country.  We must demand change from all of our leaders.

I am saddened and worried about the news from Israel.  The last few months, since the election, have been filled with conflicts and rising fears.  The reactions within Israel have been fascinating to watch.  Hundreds of thousands of Israelis have protested in order to make sure the Israeli government hears their voices and keeps Israel a strong democracy.  I am grateful that Prime Minister Benyamin Netanyahu has temporarily stalled his government’s plans for judicial reform.  I hope that this will lead to rethinking and compromise, but I have my doubts.  I hope that you are following the news from Israel.  I want to encourage you to read the statement put out yesterday by our Reform Movement’s leadership: the link is*1hixfvr*_ga*MTgxOTQ0MzYwNi4xNjM4MzEwMjk5*_ga_6WX143SJW5*MTY4MDExNzUzMC4yOC4wLjE2ODAxMTc1MzAuMC4wLjA.

I also want to encourage you to join Jews throughout the United States in a campaign to fight anti-Semitism in our country.  Go to for more information.  It is a clear and straight-forward approach – now we all need to help spread the word.

Finally, what I thought the theme of this week’s message was going to be – Passover is around the corner.  Passover begins next Wednesday evening, April 5.  Our Congregational Seder will be held on the second night of Passover, Thursday, April 6 at 6:00pm.  I hope you will consider participating as we celebrate our springtime Festival of Freedom together.  Please make your reservations by Monday, April 3.  There are more details and information about Passover 5783 in our April Bulletin and on the Temple website.

I want to wish everyone a very happy and meaningful Passover!  Chag Sameach!

Wednesday Wisdom & Wit

03/15/2023 02:19:34 PM


Rabbi Daniel Sherman

A few things on my mind this week…

  • WEDNESDAY NIGHT LIVE: This evening I am beginning a new two-week discussion on the upcoming “holy days” of Passover and Easter.  What do the two holidays have in common?  What is their religious significance?  What do their symbols really mean?  We will attempt to answer these questions and more as we prepare for our Spring festival.  I invite you to join me on Zoom this Wednesday and next week at 7:00pm.
  • LIMMUDFEST: Limmudfest NOLA is happening this weekend.  I am excited to participate for my first time – this is the first in-person Limmudfest in four years.  It is not too late to register and to join in the learning and community that will be happening.  All events on Friday evening and Saturday will be held at Congregation Gates of Prayer.  Everything will shift to the Uptown JCC for Sunday.  There is an amazing assortment of classes, speakers, and topics – with something for everyone.  For more information, go to
  • TEMPLE SINAI GALA: Our Annual Temple Gala and Fundraiser is only 11 days away.  I hope you are planning on joining us for “Casino Night on the Avenue” on Sunday, March 26 from 4-6pm at the Temple.  You can bet that it will be a fun event and entertaining afternoon, as we gather together to support Temple Sinai.  The Silent Auction is live on-line right now.  Please buy your tickets (including raffle tickets for great prizes) and become a sponsor – and get ready for a spectacular time!
  • PASSOVER: Believe it or not, Passover is al most here.  Pesach begins three weeks from this evening.  So it is time to start making your plans and get ready.  I hope you will consider joining us for our Congregational Seder on the 2nd Night of Passover – Thursday, April 6 at 6:00pm.  Please make your reservations online or call the Temple office.
  • ISRAEL: There is a lot happening in Israel right now.  Mass protests have taken place across the country in response to the right-wing government that has been making plans and pushing new policies.  I am glad to see so many Israelis making sure their voices are heard.  It is important that we understand the issues and show our support as American Jews and as a community that loves and cares about the State of Israel.  Please stay tuned for more information.  And don’t forget – this year Israel turns 75!

I look forward to seeing you at Temple!

Wednesday Wisdom & Wit

02/15/2023 01:21:45 PM


Rabbi Daniel Sherman

            Yesterday was Valentine’s Day.  To be honest, it’s a day I have been known to forget.  Some years it barely crosses my mind (my apologies to Morgan).  I have issues with “Greeting Card Holidays” – especially as the price of those cards keeps going up.

            However, I love the idea of a day dedicated to love and to the ones whom we love.  We should never miss an opportunity to express our feelings for the most important people in our lives. 

            And as we read the news headlines, I think we could all agree that the world could use a little more “love, sweet love.”      Of course, yesterday was also the fifth anniversary of the horrific shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, FL.  A day I remember well, as we lived at the time in Broward County less than 30 minutes from Parkland.  How was the anniversary observed?  By mourning the victims of the shooting at Michigan State University.  Gun violence is still a plague upon our country – and it seems only to be getting worse.  We must work harder and take steps to stop gun violence and to make our schools, universities, grocery stores, movie theaters, neighborhoods, and homes safer.  How many more anniversaries will we spend mourning the loss of innocent lives?

            May we be moved by our love of life to stop the taking of lives by those with guns.  And in that spirit, we may also continue to protect lives by promoting reproductive justice and health care rights for all.  This Shabbat, the National Council of Jewish Women is promoting its annual “Repro Shabbat,” encouraging Jews across the country to stand up for abortion access and rights.  We must join the fight and make sure our voices are heard.

            Today is also Jewish Disability Advocacy Day, a day dedicated to standing up for those who need our help and support to stand and have access to everyday life.  Let us show our love for those who face challenges by being advocates for change.

            To find out more about all of these issues, I encourage you to check out and support the wonderful work of the URJ’s Religious Action Center ( in Washington, DC.

            Enjoy Mardi Gras, be safe, and help spread love as we work to make our world a better and safer place.

Wednesday Wisdom & Wit

02/01/2023 03:09:48 PM


Rabbi Daniel Sherman

            Last week ended with heart-breaking news: the murder of seven Israelis who were shot coming out of their synagogue in East Jerusalem following Shabbat services.  On Saturday, there was a shooting in Jerusalem by a Palestinian teenager with a gun.  We discussed the violence at our Torah Study on Shabbat morning.  At services we prayed for the victims and their families.  On Sunday morning we talked about the importance of Israel with our Chavurah@Sinai students and how we hoped all of them would be able to visit Israel one day.  We prayed for peace and sang HaTikvah – the Israeli national anthem, which means “The Hope.”

            The terror of last Shabbat concluded a few violent days in Israel and the West Bank.  And I fear that there will be more.  We mourn for the victims and pray for the healing of those who were injured.  “SHA’ALU SH’LOM YERUSHALAYIM – Let us pray for the peace of Jerusalem and for all those who live there.”  May all live there in peace and security.  May our Israeli family members know safety – and we pray for the leaders and all those who protect Israel.

            I look back on last Shabbat with fear and sadness.  But I look forward to this Shabbat with much joy and excitement.  This Shabbat is known as “SHABBAT SHIRAH – the Sabbath of Song,” as we read the Song of the Sea: the song we sang thanking and praising God after we successfully crossed the Red Sea to freedom.  We will have a special musical Shabbat service this Friday evening, Feb. 3.  Joining Cantor Colman will be Cantor Rebecca Garfein, and they have planned a joyous service as we celebrate this special Shabbat together.  Our pre-service Shabbat Shalom Nosh begins at 6:00pm and services will start at 6:30pm, followed by an Oneg Shabbat.

            And the joy and music won’t stop there.  I hope you will also join us for a fantastic Cantorial Concert on Sunday afternoon, Feb. 5 at 3:00pm in the sanctuary.  We are celebrating Cantor Colman, who will be joined by two very talented colleagues and friends: Cantor Rebecca Garfein and Cantor Steven Weiss.  The concert will feature Jewish liturgical music, along with some opera and Yiddish tunes, as well as favorites from Broadway.  I hope will you will plan on being there as we honor and thank Cantor Colman for all that he has meant to Temple Sinai.

            And don’t forget – Wednesday Night Live: Join me this evening at 7:00pm on Zoom for an “Ask the Rabbi” conversation. 

Wednesday Wisdom & Wit

01/18/2023 03:39:11 PM


Rabbi Daniel Sherman

How is it already the CHAI (18th) of January?  I hope everyone is doing well and staying healthy here at the beginning of this New Year. There is lots going on at Temple these days.  Here are just a few quick reminders:

  • WEDNESDAY NIGHT LIVE: Cantor Colman will continue his discussion on the new play Leopoldstadt this evening at 7:00pm on Zoom.  All are welcome to join in.
  • FRIDAY EVENING: Join us this week for a special musical Shabbat Evening Service featuring our Vocal Ensemble (members of our choir) and organ in the sanctuary.  Our Shabbat Shalom Nosh Reception begins at 6:00pm, followed by services at 6:30pm.
  • SATURDAY MORNING: Torah Study continues every week at 9:15am.  Afterwards, join us this week for our Shabbat Morning Service in the chapel at 10:30am.
  • SUNDAY MORNING: Chavurah@Sinai resumed this past week.  Every Sunday is a wonderful experience for our students from pre-K through Confirmation (10th grade).

And mark your calendars and make plans for:

  • Wednesday, January 25 (next week): Join Brotherhood for a visit to The Sazerac House.  Everyone is invited.  Come join us for a wonderful social evening.
  • Sunday, Feb. 5: Join us for a very special cantorial concert with Cantor Colman and Friends at 3:00pm.  Come for the amazing music as we honor Cantor Colman and thank him for his many years of service to our congregation and community.  You won’t want to miss out.  Make your reservations and get your tickets now.


Remember: all this information and more can be found in our weekly email blasts on Thursdays, in the monthly bulletin, and on the Temple website. I look forward to seeing you at Temple!

Wednesday Wisdom & Wit

12/21/2022 02:26:12 PM


Rabbi Daniel Sherman


            HAPPY CHANUKAH!  I hope that you have enjoying the first half of our annual Festival of Lights.  I always find that the days of Chanukah go by very quickly.  May our candles continue to add light and hope to our world at this darkest time of year.

            A few Chanukah reminders: This evening we will be celebrating Chanukah and lighting Candle #4 together on-line during Wednesday Night Live at 7:00pm on Zoom.  Please join me as we light candles, sing the blessings and songs, and talk about our favorite Chanukah traditions and the meaning of this holiday.

            Our Chanukah celebration culminates this year on Friday, Dec. 23 – the Shabbat of Chanukah – with our annual “Chanukah on the Avenue.”  Please plan on joining us at 6:00pm outside of the Temple as we light up our menorah.  Cantor Colman says this might be the coldest Chanukah on the Avenue that he can remember.  So then we will quickly come inside, enjoy our Latke Bar and Chanukah treats, sing songs, and wish each other a very happy Chanukah in the warmth of the auditorium.  Afterwards we will join together for our Shabbat of Chanukah Service in the Feibelman Chapel.  We will look forward to seeing you at Temple and celebrating with you.

            As many of you know, on Saturday, Dec. 24, Temple Sinai will be hosting Trinity Episcopal Church for its Christmas Eve services.  Trinity’s church building sustained damage from Hurricane Ida, and repair work in their sanctuary is still ongoing.  We were happy to extend an invitation to and to host our friends and neighbors as they celebrate their holiest night of the year.


Wednesday Wisdom & Wit

12/14/2022 02:55:22 PM


Rabbi Daniel Sherman



            I hope everyone remains safe and dry on this stormy Wednesday with the threat of severe weather.

            However, thunderstorms have not been the only source of darkness, gloom, and fear for our Jewish community.  There have been too many incidents and headlines involving anti-Semitism in our country.  The ADL is reporting record numbers of anti-Semitic threats and situations, which are becoming more and more a regular part of life for Jews across the United States.

            A number of organizations, including the ADL, the URJ, CCAR, JCCs, Jewish Federations, and more, have joined forces in the fight against anti-Semitism and hatred in all of its forms.  In the spirit of Chanukah, our upcoming Festival of Light, they have launched a campaign to “Dispel the Darkness.  Shine a Light on Antisemitism.”  For more information and ways to get involved, please check out the website: 

            We are excited about the beginning of Chanukah, which is only a few days away.  Tonight, assuming we have power, we will discuss Chanukah and its traditions, story, and message during Wednesday Night Live at 7:00pm over Zoom.

            The preparation for our annual winter Festival of Lights continues tomorrow, Thursday, Dec. 15 with a special get-together at Temple.  Join us at 7:00pm in person as we watch a performance by singer/songwriter Chava Mirel (over Zoom), brought to us by the Goldring/Woldenberg Institute of Southern Jewish Life and co-sponsored by both Temple Sinai and Touro Synagogue.  Come in your Chanukah attire and join us for Chanukah treats, including Chot Chocolate and Chai Tea.

            We will continue to get in the mood for Chanukah on Friday evening, with a Pre-Chanukah Oneg Shabbat Nosh with Latkes at 6:00pm, followed by our Shabbat evening service at 6:30pm in the Feibelman Chapel with Chanukah songs and more.

            Chanukah begins this Sunday evening, December 18.  Everyone is welcome to join us at Temple from 4-5:00pm as we welcome the holiday and light our outdoor Chanukah Menorah for the first time this year.  And don’t forget: Chanukah on the Avenue will take place next Friday, Dec. 23 on the Shabbat of Chanukah.

            Take care and happy Chanukah!

Wednesday Wisdom & Wit

11/02/2022 02:14:10 PM


Rabbi Daniel Sherman

            I am so excited about this Shabbat!  I hope you will plan on joining us at Temple this week.  On Friday evening, Nov. 4, we will begin at 6:00PM with a shortened pre-service Nosh Reception in the foyer.  Our Musical Shabbat Service will start at 6:15PM in the sanctuary and will feature members of our Shabbat band.  We will also celebrate all of our November anniversaries and birthdays.  So it will be a festive and joyous Shabbat Service together.  Afterwards, everyone is invited to join us for a congregational Shabbat dinner in the auditorium.  It will be a traditional Shabbat chicken dinner – please make your reservation so that we can properly prepare!  We look forward to socializing together with good food and good company.

            The joy continues Saturday morning as we celebrate Charlotte Kunian’s becoming a Bat Mitzvah during our Shabbat Morning Service, which begins at 10:30AM.  Mazal Tov to Charlotte and her family – we are very proud of you!

            Don’t forget: this evening is Part II of our Wednesday Night Live discussion of “Jews, News & Views.”  We will continue to exam anti-Semitism in recent headlines, and also discuss this week’s elections in Israel.  All are welcome to join us on Zoom tonight at 7:00PM.

            I hope everyone is doing well!  I look forward to seeing you at Temple.

Wednesday Wisdom & Wit

10/19/2022 12:06:07 PM


Rabbi Daniel Sherman

We did it!  We have made it through our Fall Holiday Season.  Rosh HaShanah and Yom Kippur, followed five days later by our week-long Sukkot Festival concluding with our Simchat Torah celebrations – all are now behind us.  With no more holidays to promote, what do we do now?  WE START ALL OVER AGAIN!

Now the New Year 5783 is really underway, and we turn back to the very beginning of the Torah.  This week our Torah portion – BEREISHEET – is the first few chapters of the book of Genesis.  We read the Torah’s stories of creation and of the first human family.

And we might be out of holidays to celebrate for the next couple of months, but each week we have Shabbat to look forward to.  It was wonderful to have so many people join us for High Holy Day services – what a feeling of community and togetherness we shared in our sanctuary.  I hope we can find ways for those feelings and spirit of holiness to continue in the New Year.  So please consider joining us for Shabbat Services.  On Friday evenings, we are continuing with our pre-service Shabbat Shalom Nosh from 6:00-6:30pm in the auditorium.  Our Shabbat Evening Service begins at 6:30pm.  On Saturday mornings, Torah Study begins at 9:15am in the library, followed by our Shabbat Morning Service at 10:30am in the chapel.

We hope to see you soon at Temple!  Shabbat Shalom!

Wednesday Wisdom & Wit

09/28/2022 03:05:48 PM


Rabbi Daniel Sherman

I want to begin by wishing everyone a good and healthy New Year: may we all be inscribed and sealed in the Book of Life for a Shanah Tovah.

It was wonderful to see so many people at Temple for Rosh HaShanah.  That’s the most worshippers we have had in the sanctuary for a service for three years.  I hope that everyone who joined us in-person and online felt good about being a part of our Kehillah Kedoshah: our holy congregation and community.  We have been through a lot over the past two years, which made it feel even better to be altogether to welcome the New Year 5783.

This Shabbat is known as Shabbat Shuvah – “The Sabbath of Repentance” or “Sabbath of Return.”  We will return to Temple this Friday and Saturday, and then return once again for Yom Kippur – our Day of Atonement – that begins on Tuesday evening, Oct. 4 and continues all day on Wednesday, Oct. 5.  We are excited to welcome everyone back to Temple Sinai as we pray for our families, our congregation, our people, our community, and our world here at the beginning of the New Year.  At this time, we seek forgiveness for our past sins and mistakes and make plans for living even better and more meaningful lives in this New Year.  Our goal is not just to be good – but to do good and to help make this world a better place.

As we did for Rosh HaShanah, we are asking everyone to make reservations for our Yom Kippur services.  This is part of our security protocols, and we appreciate everyone’s participation and patience.

I like forward to seeing you as we return to Temple Sinai.  L’shanah Tovah and Gemar Chatimah Tovah!

Wednesday Wisdom & Wit

09/21/2022 01:54:55 PM


Rabbi Daniel Sherman

            Happy beginning of Fall!  (I figured I would begin with that reminder since our highs are in the mid-90’s this week.). A new season is here along with our Holy Day Season, as well.  This will be my last message of the year.
            We are so excited to welcome everyone back home to Temple Sinai for Rosh HaShanah this year.  So here are just a few reminders.

            Rosh HaShanah begins this Sunday evening, September 25.  Our Evening Service will begin at 7:00pm as we kick off the High Holy Days and announce the beginning of the New Year 5783.  We are looking forward to everything about Rosh HaShanah: the beautiful and moving music led by Cantor Colman along with our amazing High Holy Day 12-voice choir directed by Dr. Marcus St. Julien (our first time to have the choir join us since 2019); the prayers and liturgy that help to inspire reflection, repentance, and renewal; the feeling of community as we gather altogether in our House of Assembly; the spirit of holiness that pervades this time of year; and, of course, the apples and honey, as well.  Following the evening service, we will gather in the Goldring Pavilion auditorium for a “Sweet New Year Reception” and to wish each a “Shanah Tovah.”

            Our Rosh HaShanah observances continue on Monday, beginning with our Temple Toddlers Rosh HaShanah Experience at 9:00am in the chapel.  Our Morning Service will begin at 10:00AM with more wonderful music, as well as the reading of Torah and the sounding of the Shofar.  Following the conclusion of the service, all are invited to our Rosh HaShanah luncheon in the auditorium.

            In the afternoon, we will continue with our Rosh HaShanah Family Service at 2:00pPM.  This service is aimed at our Chavurah@Sinai Students, grades 1-5 and their families.  All are welcome to join us in the sanctuary.  After the service, at 3:00PM we will gather outside and walk to Audubon Park to participate in the ritual of Tashlich, as we attempt to rid ourselves of sin while standing by living waters.

            We look forward to seeing you at Temple this year for Rosh HaShanah.  Please remember to make a reservation for all of our High Holy Day services and receptions.  For security reasons, we will be checking everyone in at the door.  All are welcome.  We also want to remind everyone that for those who are out-of-town or who are unable to join us in person, all of our services will also be available online through Zoom and livestreamed on our Temple Sinai website.

I conclude with this wish and prayer:

Our God and God of our ancestors,
Eternal God of all generations:
May Your Presence in our lives this New Year
Renew our spirits and renew our strength.
May it be a good year.
May it be a sweet year!

L’shanah Tovah Tikateivu,
Rabbi Daniel Sherman

Wednesday Wisdom & Wit

09/14/2022 12:46:45 PM


Rabbi Daniel Sherman

            Somehow we are already halfway through September, and there is already a lot going on at Temple Sinai.  It was wonderful welcoming all of our students back for the first day of Chavurah@Sinai this past Sunday.  We are excited about another wonderful year of learning here at Temple for our kids.

            This evening I will wrap up our first Adult Education Class of the season as part of Wednesday Night Live.  We will continue our discussion about preparing for this year’s High Holy Days.  Please consider joining us at 7:00pm this evening on Zoom.

            Rosh HaShanah is less than two weeks away, so it is really time to get ready.  I hope that everyone will take some time to reflect on this past year (5782) in order to help us prepare for the New Year (5783).  We have two special services this week to help us get ready for our High Holy Days.  Plan on joining us on Friday, September 16 for our Musical Shabbat Service.  This week we will feature our wonderful choir and organ and begin to introduce the melodies of the Days of Awe.  Services are at 6:30pm in the Sanctuary, with our pre-service nosh beginning at 6:00pm in the auditorium.

            This Saturday evening, Sept. 17, we will hold our Selichot Service.  The purpose of this special evening is to help get us in the mood for the High Holy Days and to introduce us to the music, prayers, and themes of these Days of Awe.  We will begin with a dessert reception in the auditorium at 7:30pm, followed by our Selichot Service at 8:00pm in the Sanctuary.  Don’t let Rosh HaShanah sneak up on you – now is the time to prepare.  Our Selichot Service is a wonderful way to help prepare.

            I hope that you will check the Temple Sinai website, our weekly email messages, and the September bulletin for all of our High Holy Day information.  A friendly reminder: please make your reservations for Rosh HaShanah and Yom Kippur services this year.  We are so excited to welcome everyone home to Sinai this year.  Please let us know when you will be joining us so that we can be prepared – we cannot wait to see you.

            L’Shanah Tovah!

A High Holy Days Message

09/07/2022 01:58:27 PM


Rabbi Edward P. Cohn

Dear friends,

Believe it or not, I have already noticed some subtle changes from Summer to early Autumn here in Rockport. I’m keenly aware that the High Holy Days season will soon arrive and my mind returns to special memories from my youth.

            For instance, one crisp September evening, when I was perhaps nine or ten, I was waiting expectantly on the front porch of our home in Glen Burnie, Maryland. I was waiting for my father who had gone to pick up my grandmom who lived only six blocks from our home and I was full of anticipation on that Rosh HaShanah evening for a new Jewish year to arrive.

            Waiting for them, I was able to see the festive dining room table set with candles, wine, and a bowl of sliced applies with honey. I knew that following that family dinner we would all ride together twenty miles or so into Baltimore where our temple was located. We made sure to bring our copies of the Union Prayer Book II! Even then I was overwhelmed by the beauty of the music – the organ and the choir!

            There was one other realization that was forever set on that September evening. Looking up and down our street and surveying the familiar homes of my best friends, I understood that for them this was a “nothing special night.” And THAT knowledge increased all the more my awareness how much our Jewish faith meant to me.

            No doubt, there are memories which each one of you also treasure of precious dear ones, gathered around the festive holiday table, who once you delighted to see in the glowing candles’ rays. In this increasingly perplexing and challenging world, perhaps we need all the more to embrace our memories and our Jewish traditions, and from them, renew our strength, our faith, and our sense of purpose for the next chapter of our life’s journey.

            To each and every one of you in our temple family, Andrea and I send our very best wishes and most heartfelt Shanah Tovah for a sweet and blessed 5783!

Faithfully yours,
Rabbi Edward Paul Cohn

Wednesday Wisdom & Wit

08/31/2022 11:13:46 AM


Rabbi Daniel M. Sherman

On one calendar, the month of August is coming to an end. On the Jewish calendar, the month of Elul has just begun. Elul is the last month of the year and is meant to be a period of preparation before the upcoming High Holy Days and start of the New Year. During Elul we are encouraged to reflect on the past year: what were the high points and low points, what did we learn, what did we experience, what are we proud of, what do we wish we could change or take back? I want to encourage everyone to take some time over the next four weeks for some self-examination and reflection. The more we put into our preparation for the High Holy Days, the more we will get out of our Days of Awe.

To help us with our preparations, I am beginning a new Wednesday Night Live discussion on “Getting Ready for the New Year.” I invite you to join me online for the next three Wednesday evenings at 7:00PM on Zoom. I will try to answer your questions about the themes and traditions of this holiest time of year.

We are busy getting the Temple ready for Rosh HaShanah, as well. Please know that all of our High Holy Day information will be available in the September 2022 Bulletin and on the website starting this week.

We are also busy getting ready for another year of Religious School. We had a wonderful kick-off event this past Sunday. Today marks the first day of Hebrew School. Chavurah@Sinai will begin on Sunday, Sept. 11.

It was wonderful welcoming our Greater New Orleans Reform Community to Temple Sinai for our Summer Union Shabbat Services the past four weeks. This Friday it will once again just be us for services. Join us at 6:00PM for our Pre-Service Nosh in the Auditorium, followed by services at 6:30PM in the Sanctuary. This week we will be celebrating our September anniversaries and birthdays.

Don’t forget: we are still collecting hurricane supplies for the New Orleans Women and Children’s Shelter. Please feel free to drop items off at Temple this week. Thank you!


08/10/2022 02:47:12 PM


Rabbi Daniel Sherman

It has been a while since we posted a Wednesday Message.  I hope everyone is doing well, having a good summer, and staying dry and safe.

            It was wonderful this past weekend welcoming so many people back to Temple with our Summer Union Shabbat Services.  We will be hosting our community Shabbat services throughout August.  Join us in the auditorium at 6:00pm for our Nosh – our pre-service Oneg Shabbat – and to wish each other a Shabbat Shalom.  Services will begin at 6:30pm in the Sanctuary.  This week is our “Back to School Shabbat” and School Supply Drive.  We are collecting needed school supplies for Kingsley House as we prepare for the beginning of a new school year.  Please stop by Temple this week to drop off donations or bring them with you on Friday evening.  We hope you will support this important drive for our community.

            While it was a feel-good weekend here at Temple, it was a very difficult time for those living in Israel.  Islamic Jihad in Gaza fired over 1000 rockets into Israel.  We pray that the cease-fire will hold and that Israelis will not have to live in fear for their safety and security.  SHAALU SHALOM YERUSHALAYIM – Let us pray for the peace of Jerusalem and all Israel, and may all of its inhabitants know joy and safety.

            I hope you will consider joining us this evening and on Sunday morning for our “Congregational Conversations,” as we discuss our upcoming clergy search and plans for the future.


Rabbi Daniel Sherman


Wednesday Wisdom & Wit

05/18/2022 03:04:56 PM


Rabbi Daniel Sherman

I hope that everyone is staying healthy.  At Temple we are monitoring the rise of COVID cases in our community and are recommending that people reconsider wearing masks inside.  It is our goal to keep our community and congregation healthy and safe.  Please get your boosters and get tested if you are not feeling well.

            I want to wish a MAZAL TOV to our Confirmation Class of 5782.  We are so proud of you.  Thank you for leading our Confirmation Service this past Friday evening.  I also want to wish a MAZAL TOV to Rabbi Ed Cohn for receiving the prestigious ADL Torch of Liberty Award last week in recognition for all of his work in and for the greater New Orleans community.

            On one hand, last weekend at Temple was so nice: we went from Confirmation to Brotherhood’s Bingo & BBQ event, to an end of the year picnic for our Chavurah@Sinai families.  On the other hand, the news from around the country made it a very difficult and scary weekend.  As we read the headlines from Buffalo to Southern California (as well as to the continued and growing violence in our own city), our hearts go out to all of the families of the victims.  Again we see a rise in hate and violence – and what inaction to stop the spread of prejudice causes.  I want to share with you the important statement that the CCAR put out yesterday in response to the massacre in Buffalo that targeted the African-American community.

            I also wanted to point out that yesterday in Washington, SC there was a very important Jewish Rally for Abortion Justice, sponsored by the National Council of Jewish Women.  A link to a news story on the event is included.  I am proud of our Reform Movement for being well-represented, and for being on the forefront of these fights for social justice and equal rights.

            There is so much more work to be done.  As the Talmud teaches us: it is not up to us to complete all the work, but neither are we free to abstain from doing our part.

Wednesday Wisdom & Wit

05/04/2022 01:28:33 PM


Rabbi Daniel Sherman


            Today and tomorrow are very important day on the Jewish calendar.  Today in Israel is YOM HAZIKARON – Israel’s Memorial Day.  Tomorrow is YOM HAATZMAUT – Israel’s Independence Day.  On Yom HaZikaron, the entire country of Israel stops to remember and to honor all of those Israelis who have lost their lives in the creation and defense of the Modern State of Israel.  It is a very somber day that includes a national moment of silence, as well as visits to military cemeteries throughout the land.  Almost every family or neighborhood has suffered some type of loss of a soldier due to war or terrorism.  Before Israel celebrates its independence, Israel remembers those who lost their lives to make sure that Israel exists still today.

            Then on Yom HaAtzmaut, the entire country celebrates.  This year Israel, which was founded on May 14, 1948 (5 Iyar, 5708), marks its 74th birthday.  We join with Jews all over the world in giving thanks for our Jewish homeland and praying for its safety and well-being.  We pray that this 75th year may include peace and prosperity for all who dwell there.  Let us take advantage of this special day to strengthen our relationship with the land and people of Israel. 

I encourage you to join in our Community Yom HaZikaron observance and Yom HaAtzmaut celebration this evening at the Uptown JCC beginning at 5:30pm.  We will also talk about and celebrate Israel during our Wednesday Night Live discussion on Zoom at 7:00pm tonight.


            We all read with horror the leaked draft opinion from the Supreme Court regarding Roe v. Wade and abortion rights.  This was truly a wake-up call for all who are serious about protecting abortion rights and reproductive health and justice for all.  I would like to share with you the statement issued by leaders within the Reform Movement.  We clearly have much work to do.  This is an important issue and a Jewish issue – we cannot stand idly by.

Reform Movement Leaders Decry Supreme Court’s Apparent Plan to End Abortion Rights


04/27/2022 03:39:37 PM


Rabbi Daniel Sherman

Passover ended this past Friday evening (and I want to congratulate our Temple Sinai Sisterhood on leading a beautiful Sisterhood Sabbath Service).  We always conclude Passover by remembering – first remembering the story of our people, and then remembering family and friends whom we have loved and lost over the years.

Now, less than a week later, we take a day to remember once again.  This evening marks the beginning of YOM HA’SHOAH – our annual Holocaust Remembrance Day.  Every year on Yom HaShoah we stop to remember the 6 Million Jews who were murdered in the Holocaust, and we make a pledge never to forget.  It is up to us and to those who will come after us to remember those who were killed and to work to bring an end to genocide, as well as an end to hatred, bigotry, and prejudice and the violence that all too often goes with it.  We know what happens when no one stands up for those who are targeted and persecuted, those who are seen only as “different” or the “other” – and we have an obligation to stand up and fight for the rights and equality of every person.

May this year’s Yom HaShoah inspire us always to remember and never to forget – and may it lead us to do our part to help create a world of hope and peace for every individual, regardless of race, religion, nationality, sexual orientation, or anything that may divide us.

Our community-wide Holocaust Memorial Program will take place tomorrow, Thursday, April 28 at 7:00pm at Congregation Gates of Prayer in Metairie.  We will join together to remember and to hear the story of our local survivors.  For more information, please call the JCC or visit

Wednesday Wisdom & Wit

04/20/2022 02:28:00 PM


Rabbi Daniel Sherman

I hope that everyone is enjoying Passover this year.  That’s right – it’s not over yet.  Though for many of us, we have moved from the “yummy” stage of Matzah to the “crummy” days of Matzah!  This evening is already the 6th Night of Passover – only one more evening after that.  Passover ends Friday evening with the beginning of Shabbat (except for those who choose to celebrate eight days of Passover, for whom Passover will end Saturday evening).

Speaking of Friday evening, we have a very special service this week.  Please join us for Sisterhood Shabbat on Friday, April 20.  The service will be led by members of our Temple Sinai Sisterhood, whom we will honor and thank for all that they do for our congregation and community.  Our Vocal Ensemble will also participate and help to lead some special music for our service.  Following services, we will gather in the auditorium for an Oneg Shabbat reception.

Please join me this evening for Wednesday Night Live at 7:00pm on Zoom as we will continue to discuss Passover celebrations and traditions.

Chag Sameach – Happy Passover!

Wednesday Wisdom & Wit

04/06/2022 03:42:37 PM


Rabbi Daniel Sherman

Following the conclusion of the NCAA basketball tournament that took place here in New Orleans this past weekend, here are my Final Four thoughts for this week:

  1. OUR GARDEN PARTY GALA: What a fabulous event we hosted this past weekend!  How wonderful it was to be altogether and to gather in celebration of our beloved congregation and Temple!  I want to thank everyone who planned this great event and made it happen for all of us.  I also want to thank everyone who attended and all who showed their support for and love of Temple Sinai.  Todah Rabbah – thank you so very much!
  2. IT’S TIME TO PREPARE FOR PASSOVER: The beginning of Passover is just over a week away.  It is time to get ready.  That means it’s time to make our seder plans, prepare our homes, and to buy some matzah.  This evening during Wednesday Night Live we will discuss the upcoming holiday and how we can best prepare for and get the most out of our Passover observances this year.  Reminder: our Congregational Seder will be on the First Night of Passover – Friday, April 15.  Thank you to everyone who has already reserved spots.  If you are planning on joining us for seder, please make your reservations this week.  Thank you!
  3. SPECIAL MUSICAL SHABBAT EVENING SERVICE: Please plan on joining us this Friday evening, April 8, at 6:00pm for a special service featuring some local musicians – including our own Barry Spanier, Ben Schenk, and vocalist Meryl Zimmerman.  Come in person as we welcome each other back to Temple.  Services will also be available online and via Zoom.
  4. TIME TO LEND A HAND: As we prepare for Passover, and as our community continues to recover from storms, let's remember to share what we have with those who are in need.  Those hit hardest by the storms could still use our help.  And let’s remember all of the innocent victims and refugees in and from Ukraine, and let’s do our part to help them, as well.


Wednesday Wisdom & Wit

03/30/2022 03:36:45 PM


Rabbi Daniel Sherman

Can you believe that April is almost here?  Where did March go?  But if this weekend is the beginning of April, then you know what that means for our community?  No, not the Final Four.  I’m talking about the Temple’s Annual Gala.  I am so excited to see everyone at this year’s Garden Party Gala on Saturday afternoon, April 2, at Longue Vue Gardens.  Rain or shine – it will be a beautiful event.  It will be wonderful to be altogether in this special location that is an important part of our community and congregational history.  We will not allow some potential rain to dampen our spirits or enthusiasm.  We will come together to celebrate Temple Sinai and the amazing people who make up our congregation.

            Don’t forget: the auction and raffle are live on our website.  Be sure to check out all the fabulous offerings this year.  Be sure to check out all the fabulous items this year. Your participation is an important and wonderful way to support our Temple.

            An additional reminder: April 1st might be April Fools Day to some, but for us it is the beginning of a special Shabbat.  We will begin with our Temple Toddlers at 5:30pm and then our 6:00pm Shabbat Evening Service which will include our blessings for those celebrating anniversaries and birthdays this month.  And on Sunday, April 3 Chavurah@Sinai is meeting at the Museum of the Southern Jewish Experience for a fascinating morning.  I really recommend a visit to the museum for everyone – and let’s be sure to do our part to support this new addition to the New Orleans Jewish community.

Wednesday Wisdom & Wit

03/23/2022 01:12:08 PM


Rabbi Daniel Sherman

            Oh, what a night!  Yesterday evening was quite scary here in New Orleans.  Our hearts go out to all who were affected by yesterday’s tornadoes in our greater area.  We pray for a complete and speedy healing for all who were injured or hurt in any way.  If you were affected or know of anyone in our Temple Sinai family who is in need of help, please let us know.

            For those of us who were not targeted by yesterday’s storm, we went to bed last night breathing a little easier and full of gratitude.  I am pleased to report that the Temple did fine, as Uptown was spared much of the wind and rain of the greater storm.

            In the Jewish tradition, we have many blessings of praise and thanksgiving.  There is something for every occasion – though I could not find a blessing that speaks directly about tornadoes.  The blessing for seeing lightning or other natural wonders is: “Praise to You, Adonai our God, Sovereign of the Universe, Source of creation and its wonders.”  The blessing upon hearing thunder is: “Praise to You, Adonai our God, Sovereign of the Universe, whose power and might pervade the world.”  Both blessings remind us of God’s great power and God’s role as Creator of this world.  They should also remind us of our role as God’s partners in the work of creation – and inspire us to take good care of God’s creations and of each other. 

There is also a blessing with which we say “thank You” to God after escape from danger or recovery from serious illness: “To You, Adonai, I offer my thanksgiving and glorify Your name.  Blessed are You, Adonai our God, Sovereign of the Universe, who has bestowed every goodness upon us.”  We call this “benching gomel.”  When offered in public, after an individual has recited the first line, the congregation responds: “May the One who has bestowed goodness upon us continue to bestow every goodness upon us forever.  AMEN.”

The best way to show our gratitude and share that goodness is by helping those who are in need.  I hope that we will all look for ways to reach out to individuals and organizations that are helping the victims of yesterday’s storm, including the Red Cross, the United Way, Second Harvest, and more.  There are so many in need in our community; let’s do our part to help take care of each other.

Here at Temple I want to remind everyone that Cantor Colman will continue to share stories from his road trip across the Jewish South during Wednesday Night Live this evening at 7:00pm on Zoom.  This Friday Evening I invite you to join us in the Feibelman Chapel for Shabbat Services at 6:00pm.  Masks are optional.  Sunday afternoon come to Temple for a fabulous concert at 2:00pm with the New Orleans Symphony Chorus, featuring our very own Cantor Joel Colman.  And don’t forget: our Garden Party Gala is only a week away!  Please reserve your tickets and check out the on-line auction.

Wednesday Wisdom & Wit

03/09/2022 01:52:27 PM


Rabbi Daniel Sherman

I hope everyone is well and staying healthy.  I am thus far encouraged by where we are with COVID following Mardi Gras and hopeful that we will be able to keep up our forward progress.  Please know that we are in the process of reevaluating all of our COVID and mask protocols and making more plans for upcoming future events.

            That’s the good news.  The bad news, the heartbreaking news is what we read coming from Ukraine, as the crisis there continues because of the aggressive attacks by Russia.  Our hearts go out to all of the innocent victims in Ukraine.

            Ukraine is not just any other country to us Jews.  It currently has a Jewish population of over 100,000 people.  And so many Ashkenazic Jews in this country and all over the world can trace their roots back to the cities and towns of Ukraine.  Many Jews are trying to escape.  The Jewish communities there are doing everything they can to survive – including providing shelter and needed supplies – but they need our help.  Let us be among those whose broken hearts move them to action.

            I believe there are many ways that we can help.  I am grateful to Arnie Fielkow, CEO of the Jewish Federation of Greater New Orleans, for his leadership and passion in helping out those in Ukraine. I want to encourage you to go to the Jewish Federation website ( where you will find ways that we can support the important work of the Jewish Federations of North America, who have people on the ground lending a hand in Ukraine as we speak.

            2 other very important ways we can help out:

  • World Union for Progressive Judaism ( – The WUPJ is the international network of Reform and Progressive Judaism.  The WUPJ supports congregations across the globe, and has long been involved with communities in Ukraine.  The World Union has set up a Ukraine Crisis Fund and they need our support.
  • Hebrew Immigrant Aid Society ( – HIAS has been supporting Jewish refugees and immigrants for over 100 years.  They are currently helping to get Jews out of Ukraine and to Israel and to closer safe havens.  They are doing wonderful work and need our support.


Our tradition teaches us that it is not up to us to complete the work, but we are not free to turn a blind eye and not do our part.  I urge you to lend a hand, get involved, and do all that we can to help.

Thank you for your support.  See you at Temple!

Wednesday Wisdom & Wit

02/16/2022 02:24:48 PM


Rabbi Daniel Sherman

            Shalom from Temple Sinai!  I hope everyone is doing well and staying healthy.  This is an exciting time here in New Orleans.  The countdown is on.  People are preparing floats, costumes and especially MASKS.  Laissez les bon temps rouler – because Purim is exactly one month away!

            Purim and Mardi Gras actually have a lot in common.  The worst part of the winter is behind us, spring is not that far off – it is time to celebrate and have fun, which is an important part of both holidays and observances.  So mark your calendars: we will be celebrating Purim at Temple on Wednesday evening, March 16 at 6:00pm and on Sunday morning March 20 with our Chavurah@Sinai students and families.  Stay tuned for information on community celebrations, including the JCC’s annual ADLOYADAH on Sunday, March 13.

            In the meantime, I hope that everyone enjoys the parades and festivities of this time of year in New Orleans.  Please stay safe and be careful!

            A reminder that our Shabbat Services this Friday evening will begin at 6pm and are available both in-person and online.  Our Vocal Ensemble will help to lead the music this week.  I look forward to seeing you at Temple.


02/09/2022 04:13:13 PM


Rabbi Daniel Sherman

            Shalom from Temple Sinai!  I hope everyone is doing well and staying healthy.  There are 3 items that I would like to bring to your attention today.

  • WEDNESDAY NIGHT LIVE: This is week #2 for our “Modern Issues, Modern Beliefs” discussion.  Last week we talked about Jewish views on abortion as well as the rise of anti-Semitism.  I invite you to join us this evening and next Wednesday at 7pm on Zoom to discuss more issues that are on your minds.
  • February is Jewish Disability Awareness and Inclusion Month.  In honor of this, we are joining with the Goldring/Woldenberg Institute of Southern Jewish Life for a special program entitled, “Being Heard,” on Thursday, Feb. 10 at 7:00pm.  The program is being led by Nick May, who grew up here in New Orleans, and is a singer/songwriter, educator, songleader, and inclusion activist.  I hope you will be able to join us.  We want to thank Ann Kientz and the ISJL for continuing to make such wonderful programming available to us.  For more information about Jewish Disability Awareness and Inclusion Month and Jewish Disability Advocacy Day (JDAD, Feb. 23-24, 2022), I encourage you to visit the Religious Action Center website ( or
  • SHABBAT SERVICES THIS WEEK: On Friday we are looking forward to “Summertime in February.”  Join us this week at 6pm for a special Camp-Inspired Shabbat Evening Service on Friday, Feb. 11.  Two of our Chavurah@Sinai teachers, Mollie and Caroline Sloter, will help lead services.  Both sisters grew up in Ft. Worth, TX active in Beth-El Congregation and NFTY.  Caroline was a songleader at the URJ Greene Family Camp in Texas this past summer and helps to lead music on Sunday mornings.


I look forward to seeing you online and at Temple.  Please take care!




Fri, June 9 2023 20 Sivan 5783