Rabbi Gartenberg’s Year End Appeal for Support



“We did not want the evening to end. It combined friendship, singing, learning, joy, and seeing “new faces.”  We look forward to participating and hosting another Panim Hadashot evening…”

Dear friends,

Panim Hadashot-New Faces and our Heart of Shabbat Ensemble is in such demand that we are finding it hard to keep up. The quote above is an example of the excitement and appreciation of the Shabbat experience we are sharing in homes and in many venues, all around Seattle.

In the summer of 2016 we made a major decision to focus Panim Hadashot-New Face on revitalizing Shabbat home hospitality among liberal and culturally identified Jews. With my music leader, Ari Joshua, we decided the best way to do this was to share our talents for making Jewish music, facilitating group singing, enthralling people with our storytelling and Torah insights in people’s living rooms on Shabbat all around Seattle.

We created the Heart of Shabbat Ensemble and set about recruiting hosts in our new Shabbat Hospitality Partnership Program. Now after a year, the ensemble has brought Shabbat joy to 49 hosts, groups, and community venues all over Seattle.

Wherever we went, we asked our hosts to share their tables with friends, family, and “new faces”, to practice Shabbat hospitality. Our groups ranged between 15 and 45 people as we brought an experience of joyful singing, music, and storytelling either in a Friday evening service, a Havdallah, or at a “musical tish” format between the courses of a Shabbat meal.

Guests who attended these in-home Shabbat events or people who heard about them asked me if they could have a Shabbat event in their homes. The signups for Shabbat Hospitality Partnerships snowballed.

Since our home events are limited in size, we started holding in February 2017 once a month community Friday night events, open to all, featuring the music, group singing, and storytelling that the Heart of Shabbat Ensemble offered in homes. These have also grown and became the reason for Panim Hadashot to offer community High Holiday services this past fall.

You can see the results of the past year of in our one page annual report.  Nearly 1400 persons participated in 49 events held between October 2016 to October 17. Click HERE to see our growing impact.

I need your help to make it possible for Panim Hadashot-New Faces to build on the success of the past year and to reach more households and welcome the community to our unique Shabbat programming. I seek your support to help us sustain and spread our innovative approach to Shabbat and to Shabbat hospitality.

Please consider giving an end of the year online tax-deductible donation to Panim Hadashot-New Faces at http://panimhadashot.org/donate/ .   Even better, please consider becoming an annual subscriber to Panim Hadashot at http://panimhadashot.org/subscribe/ . We have introduced subscriptions as a new model for association and a way you can help us bring Shabbat joy and hospitality to seniors, persons with special needs, and prospective hosts who have limited space or resources.

Thank you in advance for your generous support of Panim Hadashot-New Faces. Help us bring Shabbas joy to more people.

Kol Tuv (all for the good),

Rabbi Dov Gartenberg, Convener and Director of Panim Hadashot -New Faces