Shul News: Reaching for Unity and Hear the 10 Commandments This Shabbat

Pico Shul is a growing community of passionate, life-affirming Jews coming together with the common goal of creating a purposeful, welcoming Jewish community committed to spiritual growth, helping others and living mindfully. 
We read this week that the Jewish people camped at the foot of the mountain, awaiting the word of G!d. How were they camped? "K'ish echad, b'lev echad, line one person with one heart."
Ever since, this has been one of the defining moments of Jewish unity. But how is it possible today to achieve such a level of unity? 
The description of the unity at the base of the mountain before the revelation of the Torah is connected with the word "vayichan," which reminds us of the word "chein," meaning "favor, grace(-ious), pleasant, precious."
There is a lesson we can extrapolate from this.
The unity of the Jewish people as they waited for revelation was connected to each person trying to find pleasantness and favor in each other's eyes. We acted in a mindful way, considerate of those around us. This consideration allowed a sense of unity of purpose to unify us with one heart.
Today we can reach for the same level of unity among our friends, families and our community and by infusing our actions with a level of "chein", to find favor in each other's eyes, and before G!d.

May you have a wonderful Shabbos, and we hope to see you at Pico Shul!

~ Rabbi Yonah and Rebbetzin Rachel 

In This Newsletter...

  • Shabbat Times
  • Shabbat Mindfulness Project
  • Marriage Seminar
  • and more!

Photo credit: Israel David Photo Art

Thank You - Hakarat ha'Tov! 

This week's Kiddush is generously sponsored by Hadassa and Michael May
in honor of the yarzheit of Yosef Ben Baruch.

Mazal Tov!

HAPPY BIRTHDAY to Raphael Sisa, Benji Elson, Medi Tesfay, Elmira Nick, Ona Green, Ida Juana, Sharone Askari, Jason Teutsch, Jamie Floyd, Penina Lowenstein, Yair Potolsky, Alona Alaluf Cohen, Vremmy Kahn, Jonathan Fronen, and Rena Feder!

Community Dvar Torah

Check out parsha blog Yisro - Women First, Men Later, written by Ben Elterman. 

Tomchei Shabbos Route Volunteers Needed

We urgently need volunteers for our Tomchei Shabbos Route #6! This is a critical need to help bring food to those in our community who need it. Driving route is 6:30-7:00 PM on Thursdays. Come early at 6:00 PM to help pack the food if you can! 

Here's how it works in 3 easy steps:

1) Click the button below to see our route's sign-up on VolunteerSpot.
2) Review the options listed and choose the spot(s) that works for you. 
3) Sign up! It's Easy - you will NOT need to register an account or keep a password on VolunteerSpot.

Thank you for helping serve the Pico Community!


Sign Up Now

Shabbat Schedule for Parsha Yitro

January 29-30, 2016 • 20 Shevat 5776

5:02 PM       Candle Lighting
9:45 AM       Morning Services Begin
10:30 AM     L'Chaim and Learning
                     Kiddush Following Services 
1:30 PM       Women's Tehillim
2:00 PM       Bikur Cholim (visit assisted living facility)
3:45 PM       Learning with Rabbi Yonah
4:30 PM       Mincha, Third Meal, Maariv
6:00 PM       Shabbat Ends - Havdalah

Shabbat Mindfulness Project

Saturday, February 6th, 11:00-11:45 AM at Pico Shul

Not "into" going to synagogue on a Saturday morning but would rather go to yoga? Or finding it hard to connect during prayers?

Pico Shul offers a special alternative Shabbat morning experience one Saturday per month in our back room.

What will transpire? Calm Your Mind. Stretch Your Body. Energize Your Soul. Join us for a 30-40 minute Shabbat Mindfulness session including meditation, yoga, tai chi, and mindfulness practices to enhance your shabbat experience and set you up for a powerful week ahead.
This session will run concurrent with main service on the first Shabbat of the month this winter. All ages, no experience needed, dress as you are. Classes will be taught by Marcus J. Freed, author of The Kabbalah Sutras: 49 Steps to Enlightenment.

Learn more about Shabbat Mindfulness Project here

Bagels, Bros, and Brachas

Sunday, February 7th, 9:00-11:00 AM at Pico Shul
Join the Pico Shul Men's Group for shacharit and Torah learning with Rabbi Yonah over fresh Starbucks coffee and delicious Bagel Factory bagels & fixings. A $5 donation is kindly requested at the door. 

Sponsorship opportunities available! This is a relatively low-cost event, but has huge zechut/merit for those who support davening and Torah learning. Consider (co)sponsoring this event for $54 in honor of or in memory of a loved one. For more information, Message Neuriel Shore, Men's Group Chair.

Marriage Seminar Series

February 7th, 21st, and 28th • 8:00 - 9:30 PM

Creating the Foundation for a Successful Marriage For Engaged and Newlywed Couples

Mazel Tov! You are engaged to the love of your life, you are walking on "Cloud Nine" and have to slap yourself twice a day just to be sure you are awake and not dreaming!
Rabbi Yonah and Rachel Bookstein have been teaching this 3-part seminar for over a decade to help couples build toward the successful marriage they want and deserve. This works!

Includes three, 90 minute classes with Rabbi Yonah, PLUS a one hour one-on-one counseling session with Rebbitzen Rachel Bookstein.

$180 suggested donation to the Shul. Scholarships available. Please register with Nicole at

Sisterhood Rosh Chodesh Event

Rosh Chodesh Adar I
Tuesday, February 9th, 7:00 PM at Pico Shul

Join the Pico Shul Sisterhood for an evening of Torah learning and craft making! Adar I is a special month in the "pregnant" Jewish leap year, and we look forward to celebrating the joy and potential of this time. Open to all women. Details about the craft activities are forthcoming.

Pico Comedy Night

Purim Katan, Monday, February 22nd
8:00 PM at Pico Shul
Performances by late night comedy veterans who have appeared on The Late Late Show, Comedy Central's Premium Blend, NBC's Friday Night!, and other comedy programs. Lineup details forthcoming.

$15 advance // $20 at the door (ticket price includes one drink).
Sponsorship available:
$100 VIP Sponsor - includes 2 tickets and bottle service.
$300 Event Underwriter - includes 6 tickets and bottle service.
Reserve a Seat

Refuah List

Alan ben Della
Almog bas Daniella
Arlene bas Anette
Avigdor Aryeh ben Batya Dvorah
Aviva bas Haya Fayga
Avraham Chaim ben Mohtaram
Baruch ben Raizel
Batsheva Chana bas Sarah
Bentzion ben Rachel
Chaim ben Rochel
Chaya bas Tafara
Harav Chaim Yisroel ben Chana Tzirel
Daphna bas Shoshana
David ha Cohen ben Sarah
David ben Zohara
Devorah bas Gitalia
Dovid ben Leah

Esther bas Tzelilah
Esther Monavar
Gavriel ben Misa Masu
Hendl bas Gittel
Israel Shimon Chaim ben Parvin
Jaclyn Esther bas Rachel
Leah Ariella bas Chaya

Mazal ben Tzipporah
Rachel bas Zahava
Rachel Yaffa bas Tamar
Ricka bas Shayna
Rivkah Simchonit bas Nechama
Rachel bas Tzelilah
Sara Devorah bas Manya
Sarah bas Simcha
Sarah Pearl bas Zlata Shandal
Sarah Tikva bas Sarah
Sepehr ben Zarin
Shayna bas Raizel
Shmuel ben Sun
Susie Kirchner
Tzipora bas Balka Raizel
Tzofie bas Sara
Tzvi Kalman ben Faygie
Yaish ben Hanna
Yechiel Chayim ben Rachel
Yehoshua ben Hinda Yehudis
Yonatan ha Levi ben Risa
Yosef ben Miryam
Zecharia ben Tzivia

If any names can be removed from this list, please let us know.
Add Name

Say Tehillim With Us

All women are welcome to join Rebbetzin Rachel and the Pico Shul Sisterhood for Tehillim reading every Shabbat at 1:30 PM. Submit names here for a shidduch, healing, or other blessings, and we will include it in our kavanah (spiritual intention). We have Tehillim in both English and Hebrew for your convenience and skill building! 

Learning With the Rabbi


Men's learning with Rabbi Yonah this week:

MondayFebruary 1st, and Thursday, February 4th
7:45 - 8:15 AM at Beis Betzalel.



Prayers for Israel 

Rabbi Yonah's book Prayers for Israel "will keep open the lines of communication with God, focus your thoughts and prayers on Israel, and connect you with those who pray for Israel the world over." 


If you are interested in buying the book, please email or click here.


Follow Rabbi Yonah

Read Rabbi Yonah's regular blogs via The Huffington Post and Jewish Journal and prolific Twitter stream. You can also explore Rabbi Yonah's Website and Facebook Page for articles, opinion and Torah insights.

Sponsor Kiddush

Sponsor a Kiddush, Third Meal, and other Pico Shul programming in honor of a life event or memory of loved one, to celebrate an achievement, or just because you want to give back to the community. If you'd like to reserve a special date or parsha, be sure to let us know!

Tomchei Shabbos

Great mitzvah opportunity! Sign up as a driver for Pico Shul's Tomchei Shabbos delivery route on Thursdays. Donating your time directly helps families in our community. If you have any questions, email us!

Sun, July 23 2017 29 Tammuz 5777