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‘For my house shall be called a house
of prayer for all peoples.’

- Isaiah 56:7

Temple B'nai Israel


Jewish Federation of New Hampshire

Union for Reform Judaism


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Planting parsley for Tu B'Shevat.

Saturday, January 23, 2016 - More than 20 hardy souls gathered at beautiful Prescott Farm to celebrate Tu B'shevat: the New Year of the Trees.

Despite chilly temperatures, all were warmed by our wonderful and knowledgeable guide Will, who taught us how to identify tracks and pointed out interesting sights. More importantly we had the pleasure of spending Shabbat together in nature and reconvening back at the Chertok Social Hall for snacks followed by a meaningful seder led by Rabbi Boaz Heilman.

This year our religious school students have revamped our Tu Bishevat haggadah with illustrations and their own wisdom. Many participants happily kept their haggadah as a souvenir of a lovely day.

The seder was followed by a pot luck meal and Adult Learning Movie Night featuring Nancy Speilberg's film "Above and Beyond." This film documents the story of a group of World War II pilots who volunteered to fight for Israel in the War of Independence and helped in the process of developing Israel's Air Force. The movie was moving and educational. Rabbi Heilman shared his feelings about his military service, and a lively discussion followed..

Snowshoeing at Prescott Park in celebration of Tu B'Shevat.

FRIDAY, DECEMBER 18, 2015 - Tonight was a she'hechiyanu moment for TBI families: It was our first (of many to come!) Tot Shabbat service led by Rabbi Heilman and our cantorial soloist, Melody Funk.

The two created an incredibly beautiful community amongst the parents and children, engaging families in prayer, learning and spiritual enrichment.

The prayer service was followed by dinner and playtime for all to rejoice in Shabbat together!

Temple B'nai Israel

Just a few of the friendly faces at Tot Shabbat on Friday, December 18!

Saturday, December 5, 2015 - Our thanks to the Jewish Federation of New Hampshire for bringing informal educator Mark Lazar to New Hampshire and allowing him to share an afternoon with us at TBI!

Mark is a native of Southern California who made aliyah in 1993 after a colorful coming of age in the late 60s and early 70s. His discussion of Zionism in the 21st Century was lively and engaging, and allowed each participant to examine their own feelings about Zionism and Israel's place in the world.

Temple B'nai Israel

Mark Lazar from the Jewish Federation of N.H. leads the discussion at an Adult Education gathering.

November 14, 2015 - TBI WE Care team closed out its 2015 program with a sold-out concert by the internationally renowned performance group, B.C. bOp! at The Winnipesaukee Playhouse in Meredith, N.H. They performed songs that spanned decades of musical hits from The Andrew Sisters to Bruno Mars and from Glenn Miller to Earth Wind and Fire.

BC b0p!

BC bOp! performs at the Winnipesaukee Playhouse.

The seven vocalists backed by the power of the 22-piece big band harmonized and danced the night away. In keeping with the TBI We Care philosophy to give back to the community, the net proceeds from this event will be given to Central NH VNA and Hospice organization.

As part of the performance, several band members talked directly to the audience and related who they were and what they were studying. As it turns out, only one of the 30-plus performers is a music major. The rest are seeking careers in law, engineering, medicine and science. They play because they love music and it showed. The audience recognized the students’ passion for playing their music by closing out the night with a standing ovation.

This concert was the seventh in a series that started in 2012. Plans for two more TBI We Care entertainment events for 2016 will commence shortly.

November 13, 2015 - Rabbi Boaz Heilman's officially installation foretold the coming years of rich interaction among young and old in our temple. Every part of the evening was filled with tradition and meaning. We joyously celebrated his arrival in our midst.

The tone of the evening was set at an installation dinner for one hundred people, temple members, community clergy and leaders of community social services. Collectively, members provided a sumptuous dinner, with a post-service Oneg that included a surprise birthday cake for Rabbi Heilman.

Highlights of the service began with a religious school offering... Read more...

Rabbi Heilman Installation - Friday November 13, 2015

Rabbi Heilman was officially installed on Friday, November 13, 2015.


The children and Arlene the Lab at TBI's first Shabbaton.

November 20 , 2015 - Henry Lipman was gracious enough to invite the TBI families, the Katzes, and Arlene the Lab to his home for our first families' Shabbaton.

We celebrated Shabbat with the Shabbat Blessings, challah, grape juice and a potluck dinner. Then Barbara Katz taught the children about the mitzvah behind Guiding Eyes, where dogs are trained to be service dogs for the blind. She brought in her own dog, Arlene, who had gone through training.

It was a fun night and one full of rich learning thanks to Barbara and Henry. (Did we mention Barabara even made Challah and Kugel!)

Do you have something interesting to teach our TBI kids? Let Glenna Lee know!

Gleaning of the Fields

Gleaning of the fields.

October 4, 2015 - Following tradition, the TBI religious school celebrated the harvest with the mitzvah of gleaning the fields.

We are very grateful to once again be invited to Beans and Greens in Gilford to fulfill this mitzvah.

Through a hayride full of singing, we went into the fields and collected vegetables. Then we brought the vegetables back to the synagogue where, with the help of Karen Rines, the children made soup to be served at the food pantry.

It was a wonderful way to kick off the new year.

Rattlesnake Hike

Shofar atop Mount Rattlesnake.

September 19, 2015 - To celebrate the high holidays, several dozen members of the TBI community, ranging in age from 4 to 75, journeyed together up the Rattlesnake Trail in Rumney, to a beautiful peak overlooking Sqaum Lake and the surrounding mountains.

Atop the mountain, the children and adults feasted on homemade challah. Then, all delighted in the mitzvah of hearing Shofar as both our TBI children as well as adults blew Shofar on top of the mountain.

Havdallah Cruise

Jonathan Lee offers homemade challah to Cantorial Soloist Melody Funk and Rabbi Boaz Heilman.

August 8, 2015 - On the evening of Saturday, August 8, approximately 90 people from around New Hampshire gathered on the deck of the M/V Doris E to participate in the Havdallah Cruise sponsored by Temple B’nai Israel of Laconia. Under a brilliant sunset, the Israeli flag was proudly hoisted as the M/V Doris E left the dock at Weirs Beach to cruise Lake Winnipesaukee.

Once three stars were sighted, Temple B’nai Israel’s new Rabbi Boaz Heilman and Cantor Melody Funk led the candlelight services, and attendees sang the beautiful traditional Havdallah songs as well as other favorites including Jerusalem of Gold and Hatikvah. After the blessing over bread, attendees enjoyed two varieties of homemade Challah: traditional and chocolate. In addition, Temple B’nai Israel hosted a dessert and soft drink table below deck for all.

This was an extraordinarily beautiful evening of spirituality and friendship in keeping with our traditions.

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