Jewish temple observes Shavuot holiday |

Jewish temple observes Shavuot holiday

Provided to the Tribune

Temple Bat Yam, 3260 Pioneer Trail, invites everyone to a Shavuot observance and a cheesecake bake-off, beginning at 3 p.m. June 8. Flowers and plants usually suggest the agricultural nature of this festival.

Bring your best cheesecake for celebrity judges. There will be a prize for the best one, and everyone will get a chance to eat the entries.

The holiday commemorates God’s giving of the Ten Commandments on Mount Sinai to Moses. The book of Ruth usually is read. She converted to Judaism to be with her mother-in-law, Naomi, after her husband died. The famous quotation from the Bible is, “Entreat me not to leave thee.” There will be a look at the themes of this holiday.

For more information, call Rabbi Jonathan Freirich at (530) 588-4503, e-mail him at, or visit From the Carson Valley, call (775) 267-2761.

In addition, on June 6 there will be a vegetarian/dairy potluck Sabbath dinner at 6 p.m., then a 7:30 p.m. worship service. Scholars-in-residence Rachel and David Biale will talk about “Revelation and Its Rebels: An Alternative View of Shavuot and Matan Torah,” and “Biblical Blasphemies: The People Challenge Moses in the Desert.” This event will take place at the North Hebrew Congregation, 7000 Latone Ave., off National Avenue in Tahoe Vista. For more information, call (530) 546-0895.

Another scholar-in-residence event will be from 10 to 11:30 a.m. June 7 at Temple Bat Yam. The topic will be “Rebellious Rabbis: We Do Not Listen to a Voice From Heaven.” For more information, call Freirich.

Also on June 7, there will be a lecture/discussion at Temple Sinai, 3405 Gulling Road, Reno. The topic will be “Uppity Women: Female Voices Confront the Rabbis.” A potluck dairy snack and brief worship/words welcoming Shavuot will follow. It should conclude by 4:30 p.m. For information on this event, call (775) 747-5508.

About the scholars-in-residence: Rachel Biale was born and raised in Kibbutz Kfar Rappin in Israel. She received her bachelor’s and master’s degrees in Jewish history from the University of California, Los Angeles, and her MSW from Yeshiva University. She is the author of “Women and Jewish Law” (Schocken, 1984) and the Bay Area regional director of the Progressive Jewish Alliance (

David Biale was educated at Harvard, UC Berkeley, the Hebrew University, and UCLA, where he received his Ph.D. in history. From 1986 to 1999, he served as Koret professor of Jewish history and director of the Center for Jewish Studies at the Graduate Theological Union in Berkeley. In 1999, he was appointed professor of Jewish history at UC Davis. He is author of “Power and Powerlessness in Jewish History” (Schocken, 1986) and “Eros and the Jews: From Biblical Israel to Contemporary America” (Basic Books, 1992), and editor of several other volumes of Jewish thought and history.

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