Panim Hadashot-New Faces is committed to helping households host. We believe that hosting is a sign of freedom and an expression of dignity. But we also know that for some hosting can be stressful. Here are at least three reasons the thought of hosting can cause anxiety.
1. I have limited space.
2. I don’t have the Jewish background to feel comfortable as a host.
3. I cannot afford to entertain.
4. My home is not kosher.
Please speak to Rabbi Gartenberg if you would like to host, but feel that your living space is insufficient. We will find a way for you to host so you can experience the joy and fulfillment of Jewish hospitality. Panim Hadashot is also working to establishing a Hospitality Fund which will provide support for hosts living in small places to rent a room at a community center in their neighborhood to host a Shabbat dinner.
We collaborate with all our hosts so that the host has the option to ask our ensemble to lead the rituals. which they might not feel comfortable leading. We are also committed to helping anyone who would like to host to learn the essential Jewish traditions around hosting. There is no perfect way to host, nor is it necessary to master the Jewish rituals. It is the act of hospitality that is the most important dimension of hosting.
The Costs of Hosting
We support a potluck format for our events which spreads the costs of the food among all the participants and reduces the cost of hosting significantly. Hosts are welcome to prepare the meal or even to cater if they wish, but it is not expected.
We want to expand Jewish hospitality and are willing to make compromises from stricter standards to make it possible for more people to experience the joys of hosting a home Shabbat meal. We do request that hosts who do potlucks request that all the dishes are dairy/pareve without any meat options. Hosts are welcome to use their own dishes and utensils. Of course, we have hosts who keep a kosher home we honor their preferences regarding how the meal is organized. For specific questions, consult with Rabbi Gartenberg.