Monday, February 8, 2010

So this is Kabolas Shabbos !?

Posted by Shul Gabai:

Has the interest in Davening reached such a low that only by offering sushi and booze will the Shuls get the crowds in? And will feeding and shikkering young people really help turn them into better [and Shul-going] Jews?

I have no idea. Maybe rabbis Gutnick and Feldman can inform us of the successes or otherwise of these tactics.

And the question that will be asked is, how will these gimmicks affect the traditional,  loyal and regular Shul-goers? It would be no surprise if many of them would find this almost sacrilegious.

And of course in America things are no better:


  1. So what exactly is your problem? You ask whether the interest in davening has "reached such a low" as to need new gimmicks to get people to set foot in a shul, as if you were unaware of how many Jews haven't set foot in a shul — other than for weddings or barmitzvahs — in years, and to whom it would never even occur to do so. Jews who, even if they are completely bored on a Friday night, would not think of shul as a possible option, any more than they'd think of taking a course in lion taming or in fixing sewers. And this isn't a new "low" that has been reached; it was reached decades ago, but nobody did anything about it and these people stayed away. So I repeat, what exactly is your problem if a shul finally comes up with a way that might interest them in coming.

    Is the shul compromising halacha in any way? Minhag? Mesorah? Of course not. All they're doing is changing things from how they were when you were a child. Nu, so you must decide, are you Orthodox or (small-c) conservative? Is your guide the Torah, or a fear of change? Do you look back to Sinai, or to the happy years of your primary school experience? And don't even try to parrot "chodosh ossur min hatorah", when you're talking about kabbolas shabbos!

  2. Neither is Melbourne immune from this:
    "Spiritshul Shabbath Services
    Friday Night
    6:30 pm. Followed by Sushi and Sake Kiddush."

  3. "AJN WATCH observes & comments (mainly) on prejudice, misrepresentation and monopolistic abuse of power in the pages of the Australian Jewish News - especially regarding the observant community"

    I know you end off with the point that you also post things of interest. But a post like this is just an invitation for Jews tridacule other Jews.

  4. The blogger shgould change the name of his blog to becasue it seems all he/she does is find things to kvetch about.

    obviously, the event advertised may not be for everyone and may not be for you, but surely it will attract some people who would have otherwise never gone to shule, and therefore bring them closer to Yiddishkeit--so what is your problem with that Kvetcher?

  5. Dear All,
    This is directed at members of Anash and people who daven (or used to daven) at Yeshivah Shule. Our apologies if you have received this email and do not consider that the issues raised impact upon you in any way.
    As you may be aware, we are running a petition directed to Rabbi Telsner and the Yeshivah Executive calling for the removal of the Yechi sign affixed to the back of Yeshivah Shule. We are aware that given the track record of the Executive, it is unlikely that they will respond to this petition, yet we believe it is important that they get a feel of the level of opinion that exists concerning the ongoing presence of the sign in the shule.
    By this initiative, we certainly do not seek to persuade anybody as to how they should feel about the philosophy which stands behind the Yechi sign or, chas vashalom, provoke disharmony.
    We believe that the sign is divisive and our aim is to restore Achdus to our Chabad community and, potentially, restore some pride and dignity to Yeshivah Shule and Chabad in Melbourne. Recent developments (the Asarah B’taives incident and response) have brought this issue back into focus.
    From the outset, we have respectfully informed Rabbi Telsner and the Executive that we are running this petition and that we would like an opportunity to present the results to them. We have asked them to recognise that currently there is no other way for people to voice their opinion on this issue or generally.
    Accordingly, we attach to this email a copy of a blank petition form for you to print off and sign (include name).
    Upon signing you can either scan and email to one of the addresses below, or contact us via email and we will arrange to collect.
    We can be contacted via email on or
    We recognise that this is an emotive issue and people have strong opinions each way. Please do not feel under any pressure to sign our petition or join the group. Once again, our aim is to restore unity.
    Please feel free to pass this on to others to whom it may be relevant.
    Once again, apologies to anyone who may be offended by receiving this message.
    Yudi New and Menachem Vorchheimer

  6. Shosh the name Kvetch is probably taken..But really, I think it is great that we now have a blog where we can comment and discuss various POVs in the frum community. Aussie Echo started a bit like that but ended up dying a boring death.
    Shul Gabai wrote a legitimate post. For most regular shulgoers sushi and vodka are not part of the ritual. So it does need a fair bit of digesting. My wife asked -what next? Belly dancers and AFK footballers at our shuls? I suppose the NY West Side institutional would say - yes , of course! If they can have rock and roll why not?
    Lee Kernaghan as chazan on a Carlbach Shabbos? or what about the new Jew - Jimmy barnes?

    To Ajnwatch I say - keep it up and continue to allow guest bloggers - even for topics that may be controversial. To the commenters I say - let's hear it from you. We need diversity in this place and currently it seems that only Ajnwatch is the place for it.
    hatzlacha rabba

  7. Shosh said...
    The blogger shgould change the name of his blog to becasue it seems all he/she does is find things to kvetch about.
    ==Hey Shosh aren't you too just kvetching?

    In any case how boring would this blog be if it simply approved and agreed and praised everything and everyone?

    Being shaken up from your comfort zones is pretty healthy. In any case since I began follwoing this blog in December, I have found that most issues raised need to be discussed by so-called frum Jews and rabbis. Sadly they are not and only here on this blog do these matters come up.
    So mr Blogger - keep on kvetching

  8. Can someone explain to me how these Friday night Kiddushim work? Do people wash for bread or simply scoff the sushi and drinks?

    If the former, isn't their a chiyuv of kiddush bemakom seuda?

    Can a rabbi or 2 let us know of teh proceedings there? or even someone who has partaken?

  9. We are unsure why Anon 12.52 sent us a copy of the Yechi petition.
    We decided to publish it as it has had a pretty wide circulation already and is something on which everyone in Melbourne has an opinion.
    From the private emails that we have received it is obvious that many, if not most, members of Melbourne Chabad support this petition either openly or quietly.

    It is not on Ajnwatch's agenda to take a stand on this issue and we leave it to our readers.

    We shall consider posting all replies and comments submitted, but only if they are in respectful language and non-abusive tone.

  10. As someone who was mekareved by being offered latkes in the student union of the uni I was attending and then by attedning a Chanukah party,(my original encounters with frum Jews) I can attest to the FACT that yes, these methods of offering up nice food and entertainment does indeed work--there are literally thousands of Yiden today who are keeping Torah and Mitzvot because they went to a party or wanted to hear some music or make new friends or eat sushi...or whatever it took to get them to initially meet frum people and make friends with them....that is the start.

  11. Yeshivah Executive Don’t give into blackmail.
    tell them to leave the Shul

  12. What blackmail? Don't we have a right to ask for something? Democracy should be encouraged rather than attacked

  13. I'm not a meshichist or Chabad.The shul has a rov-let him pasken.
    If someone doesn't like it, there are alternatives.


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