The last Shabbat in January, was the first full Shabbat back at Shabbos House for the Spring 2014 semester. (The first Friday Night of the semester was at Hillel in the UAlbany Campus Center). Friday night was full-house, amazing turnout. Rabbi Mendel did a pre-Superbowl Jewish message. After dinner, people hung out to sing, catch up, shmooze and there was also a late night farbrengen with Rabbi Mendel and 5 visiting Yeshiva boys from Morristown NJ. It was very special to have Raizy’s youngest sister Sara and brother Mendel (with his Yeshiva friends) for Shabbos. For the freshmen, it was their first time to meet Mendel Galperin!

Special on Shabbat Day:

On Shabbos morning we celebrated the Krieger’s Twin Bar-Mitzvah anniversary. They each read from the Torah Parshat Terumah and there was candy-throwing and dancing after each of their Aliyot. Their parents and younger brother at Rutgers came up for the occasion. There was a large Minyan and great vibe. During Lunch, Eric Krieger reminisced about his Bar-Mitzvah, and reflected on the growth since then, especially at college.

Rebecca Prince will be spending this semester abroad in Australia, but was visiting for the weekend. She spoke about her experiences on a recent trip to Ecuador over Winter Break working with volunteers to plant 1500 trees as part of a reforestation project.

After Lunch and the Mincha Prayer, nearly 40 students stayed on to study Mishna in memory of Lianne’s father Moshe Hikind, who suddenly passed away earlier this week. This was a student initiative, and meant a lot to Lianne who was down in the New York area sitting Shiva with her family. Rabbi Mendel and Larry G. picked about a dozen Mishnas that begin with the letters Mem, Shin and Hey, spelling the name Moshe. Student split up into groups to read and discuss the Mishnas. The visiting Yeshiva students joined some of the groups as well. Lianne said that her father was fond of Tehillim, so we also said the verses from Psalm 119 that spell the name Moshe.

After 17 tables on Friday Night, we were down to 2 or 3 tables for the 3rd and final Shabbos meal on Saturday late afternoon. Being that the Parsha talks about the construction of the Tabernacle (which was the first formal Jewish house of worship) Rabbi Mendel asked all present to share a unique synagogue or Shul-related experience. It was quite interesting to hear from everyone.

The Sat Night Jamming Night was cancelled/rescheduled due to the “Big Purple Growl” basketball games and festivity.