How are you?

The most important text message

Dear Friend, 

I received this text early in the week. It was the most important thing I got all week & I want to share it with you.

Hi rabbi I’m feeling a little bit of anxiety and nervousness

Just wanted to reach out to someone

After we concluded a few minutes phone conversation, I got this:

Thank you for the time you took to talk to me it’s much appreciated.

Friends, this is real. The one who reached out is a young fellow and doing well, in general. But who isn’t overwhelmed these days?

So please, if you ever feel the need to chat, call me, I am here for you. If u more comfortable then WhatsApp or email, but stay in touch. We all need a bit more connection these days.

This week we hosted two special events and the reaction was incredible! The Q&A session with the Rabbis was very well attended and the interaction was beyond my expectation. Last night, Cantor Ivor hosted a musical evening and the attendance swelled even more; it was a delight to see so many kids singing along!

Most important, is the feeling of connection & upliftment that these opportunities create. Yesterday I helped a 91 year old get on to zoom for mincha (6pm during the week) and the joy as he saw everyone on the screen was indescribable.

If you don’t know how to use Zoom, please be in touch and I’ll help you. And if you are good with technology pls pop in to our events and get strength even as your attendance strengthens others.

On that note, pls join us this afternoon at 5:15pm for another virtual Shul service honouring the Shabbas! Cantor Ivor has improved his sound capabilities and this was evident last night, so we’re geared up now!

We will be reciting a ‘mi shebeirach’ prayer for all those who need healing, especially those suffering from Coronavirus. Pls send me the names or you can add them on the chat during the program itself.

Cantor Ivor will also chant the hazkara for those whose yohrtzeits are in the coming week. Pls send me those names (& fathers names) in advance and make your own private pledge to charity.

On Wednesday, erev Pesach, there will be a ‘siyum’ on Zoom at 8:30am. All firstborn males should participate to avoid the Fast of the Firstborn. Shkayach Mendel Wineberg who has returned from Baltimore Yeshiva Tomchei Temimim and will conclude the Tractate of Kiddushin. (Yesterday he finished his quarantine)

Our youth are not forgotten! Pls see the attached youth sheet arranged by Chanan Suiza and share with your kids. This is being sent each week. Shkayach!

Next week we will be distributing ‘Seder packs’ with ingredients of your Seder Plate to the older members of our congregation. (If you can volunteer, please contact me asap)

Everyone else, I’m sure you’re buying your ingredients, but you may not be sure how to RUN a seder.

Don’t worry, we will help! Please tune in to our Zoom channel on Sunday night 8pm for a 60 minute crash course on how to run a seder, led by yours truly. I will show the internal logic of the Seder structure so it makes *sense* and you’re not blindly jumping from thing to the next, and demonstrate each step. Get set for some power short vorts that you can bring to your seder.

As we have gone a-geographic, please feel

Free to share the zoom link with anyone anywhere so they too can tune in to these offerings.

And if you are not yet on the community WhatsApp group- you should be! Click here to join & please share with others who may wish to stay up to date & involved.

Shabbat Shalom & happy reading!

A font of blessing

Dear Friend

“Shabbas is the font that blesses the coming week”.

 As such, this Shabbas is special as it blesses the upcoming marriage of Robyn Ginsberg and Dovi Fittinghoff– mazel tov!

Mazel tov to David Ginsberg and to the late Debra a”h on Robyn’s forthcoming wedding, and to Mary Ginsberg on her granddaughter’s wedding. Yiddishe nachas is not geographically based and not really rooted in the material, and so I know how the heavens will also be shaking with resounding nachas at this beautiful union. Mazel tov to Dovi’s parents, Rodney and Beverly Fittinghoff. Enjoy the nachas!

Chanukah starts a week from this Sunday night so pull out those menorahs and get your candles (or oil & wicks) ready for the mitzvah!

Marais Road Shul is joining other Shuls in hosting a community celebration on Sunday night, December 22 6-8pm at the Weizmann School. Awesome activities and great food!

Ivor Joffe and Friends will be hosting a concert on Monday night (December 23) with a light supper starting at 7pm, followed by smash hit musical entertainment! It’s cheaper if you book in advance so call the Shul office asap on 0214397543.

And finally, join us for a pre-Shul Chanukah event on Friday December 27 with delicious Chanukah food, music and other fun stuff! Please tell your visiting friends and family so they could come to Shul early and enjoy a bit of Marais Road Shul excitement. (Do I smell Shabbat Unplugged on the horizon???)

Condolences to Daphne Leibowitz, and to her children, Beverly and Fran, on the passing of her husband, Jack Leibowitz. Jack was a much loved and committed member of the Shul, and he will be sorely missed. May Hashem grant the family strength and comfort.

Mazel tov to Hadassah Friedman on the birth of her grandson! Much yiddishe nachas.

Mazel tov to Harry & Marcia Blacher on their 65th Wedding Anniversary. What an achievement! Many happy healthy years together.

Mazel tov to Dorothy Bagraim on the Bar Mitzvah of her grandson, Samuel Bagraim! Enjoy the nachas…

Mazel tov to Sea Point fixture, Ellis Henen on the occasion of his 80th birthday. I don’t know what tablets you’re taking from the shop, but they’re working! Many happy health years…

Harry Faktor is my first “good Shabbos” wish each Friday night and we wish him a happy 86th birthday this week! Barney Len doesn’t miss a shiur and I see he’s celebrating his 87th birthday- kenehora and mazel tov! 

(people, if you know congregants who are celebrating birthdays in their 20’s and 30’s, let me know. We announce those too! Actually, happy birthday to Sam Stern on his 12th birthday. 1 year to go!)

Shabbat Shalom and happy reading!

Rabbi Dovid Wineberg

You will never walk alone

Mazel Tov to Judd Kilborn on his Bar Mitzvah this weekend! Mazels to his parents, Warren & Candy Kilborn. Judd & co walk surrounded by deep circles of family and friends. We are thrilled to be celebrating with you! Mazel Tov to grandparents, Graham Matthews, Dale Matthews and Margo Kilborn. Much nachas!

Ladies Tehillim circle, this Shabbas @ 6.40pm with Rebbetzin Sara Wineberg incl. shiur

Our annual Chanukah concert with Cantor Ivor Joffe & friends 23 Dec @ 7.30pm. Dinner & fabulous entertainment. Book through the shul office.

It’s not a twin, but close enough! Mazel Tov to Ivan & Ruth Goodman Paul Levy on the birth of their granddaughter- the second in as many weeks!- And mazel tov to Zelda Rutenberg on the birth of her great granddaughter, Sienna Rose. Enjoy the nachas! 

Some milestone birthdays this week- Mazel Tov to Rene Greenberg on her 50th Birthday and to Anton Marcow on his 50th Birthday! May it be a great decade of nachas & success.

Being the last Friday night of the month, all children with birthdays in November are invited for a blessing & chocolate tonight in Shul. 

Condolences to Barbara Ellison on the loss of her husband and to Ralph, Joel & Carmel on the loss of their father, Julian Ellison. May HaShem grant you strength in this time.

I’ll be joining Cantor Ivor at the Freda Davis Chanukah Concert at the Holocaust Centre, where I’ve been asked to deliver a Torah message as we usher in the Festival of Lights on Dec 22.

Shabbat Shalom & happy reading!

Rabbi Dovid Wineberg

Marais Rd. Shul

Cape Town

021 439 7543

Leave the ink!

Dear Friend,


No amount of soap could wash away the indelible feeling of freedom and empowerment from Wednesday’s elections.


Everyone I’ve met since Wednesday has worn the ink stain with great pride. Why some people would go to such lengths to erase it, is unfathomable to me.


I’ve also felt a lot of Jewish pride this week. The Yom Hazikaron commemoration at Herzlia Middle school was a powerful mixture of hope and sadness, as we recalled the thousands who lost their lives in defense of their people. Kudos to our Bachurim in Yeshiva of CT for their presentation.


And a great crowd gathered for Yom Ha’atzmaut at the Zip Zap circus to celebrate Israel and to wear their Jewish pride & joy very openly.


Speaking of Jewish pride, yesterday morning’s service must’ve topped the charts! Mazel Tov to Gabe Marsden on having his first Aliyah to the Torah! The crowd was so large, we moved to the Big Shul and you could really feel the energy. Mazel Tov to Gabe’s parents, Bradley & Karen and to his grandparents, Mike & Cynthia Marsden. Gabe will be celebrating his Barmy in Israel & we wish the gantze mishpocho Mazel Tov!


Then, to add to the joyous mix, Daniel Brauer came to Shul to name his baby girl! Mazel Tov to Daniel & Leigh on the birth and naming of Maya Chana. Mazels to the Grandparents, Harvey & Jenny Saunders & Martin & Audrey Brauer. Much nachas!


Jewish Pride continues with Lag B’omer on May 22! Join us at the Green Point Cricket Club for a fun filled evening for young and old. R50 donation. Booking on the Shul website. A number of Shuls will be joining us so get ready for a great crowd!


Condolences to Lucy Trouskalo on the loss of her mother, Valentina Tkacheva. May Hashem grant you strength and comfort


Our shul is proud to host this year’s PBM (Professional Beit Midrash) for women. New semester begins May 14 and includes courses by our very ownRebbetzin Sara & Rabbi Hecht. See the Shmooze of more info.


Speaking of Jewish Pride, Mazel Tov to Steve Amsdorf on his 60th Birthday! No matter how you are feeling when you approach our Shul on Shabbas, Steve’s hearty greeting is sure to lift your spirits. Many more decades, with much nachas & Joy!


Sticking with the number 60, Mazel Tov to Maureen & Roylton Summerfield on the occasion of their 60th wedding anniversary! Wow, what a blessing. Many many more happy healthy years together.


Mazel tov to Bernard Saven on his 70th Birthday! Bernard is an absolute Shul regular and a proud member of the Trop club. We looking forward to his Haftorah tomorrow to celebrate this special milestone.


 Shabbat Shalom and happy reading!

2 weddings and a….Batty!

Dear Friend,

King Solomon, the “wisest of men”, taught that all good things come in ‘threes’.

How appropriate when we celebrate three simchas in Shul this week!

Mazel tov to Aviv and Lindy Sachs on Lia’s Bat Mitzvah! Everyone knows that a girl turns Bat Mitzvah when she turns 12, but did you consider that 1 + 2= 3? Mazel tov to Grandparents, Matatyahu & Dalia Sachs and David & Cheryl Abromowitz. It was just 2 weeks ago that we were together celebrating a Torah donated to the Morasha community in memory of David’s brother and each family member had a chance to write a letter into the Torah. And today that celebration continues. Much nachas!

Mazel tov to Ryan Solomon on his forthcoming wedding to Janna Beck! Mazel tov to their parents, Hylton and Lee Solomon (pure Zimbabwe imports whom we’re honoured that they found their new home in our Shul) and Rodney & Sharon Beck.

And third, but not least, Greg Rubin celebrates his Ufruf this week in anticipation of his forthcoming wedding to Natalie Boas of Sydney- mazel tov! Mazel tov to Felicia Rubin and a special shout out to Greg’s late dad, Spike Rubin who was such a part of our Shul family. Felicia will be feeling the pride for both of them! Mazel tov and welcome to Natalie’s parents Harold & Beverley Boas. Enjoy the smachot!

But that’s not all the three’s:

Next Friday we welcome Major General Yaakov Amidror who will dress us on the mystery of the elusive peace with the Palestinians. Thanks to Vida e caffe for sponsoring their coffee truck and cappuccino’s for everyone! Friday, 22 February 7am shul and 7:45 breakfast and talk.

On Shabbas, next week, we will be hosting visiting personality, Rabbi Simon Jacobson! He is the bestselling author of the hugely popular “Towards a meaningful life” and a brilliant mystic and speaker. He’ll be delivering the sermon and shiur on Shabbas day, 23 February.

And all this leads up to Sinai Encore! Both these speakers will be joining a dozen other top personalities in a thrilling day of discovery and inspiration! While you could show up on the day, do yourself a favour and sign up early!

So, don’t good things come in ‘three’s’?

Here’s another one: Mazel tov to Maurice & Gertie Baskir on their 70th Wedding Anniversary! What; What’s that got to do with three? Well, 70 is threescore and 10:). May they enjoy long healthy years of nachas!

Women’s PBM starts their 2019 year of learning this Tuesday morning in our hall. Join rabbi Hecht and others as they offer the ladies delectable options in journeys of Jewish study. Professional Beit Hamidrash has a great reputation for quality learning and experiences so don’t miss out! Email today.

Condolences to Elana Rudnick on the passing of her mother, Freda Rachmel. May the family be granted comfort in this time.

Shabbat Shalom and happy reading!

Rabbi Dovid Wineberg

Is the Mashiach (finally) coming?

Dear Friend,


Just as I thought the Small Shull couldn’t get any fuller, Ben Isserow came along and packed it out! Since Ben will be performing his Barmy with Chabad in Mauritius, friends had an opportunity to celebrate together as Ben was called up for his first Aliyah to the Torah.


Normie always told me that when we’ll fill up the Small Shul, Moshiach will come. I guess he’s on his way!


Mazel tov Ben and mazel tov to your parents, Mark & Gina Isserow and grandmothers, Felicity Isserow & Joan Resnekov. It was typical of the community responsibility for which this family is well known, that they made the effort to celebrate locally, even while celebrating overseas. Much nachas!


This week, daven e caffe celebrates ‘No Lift Wednesday’! That’s right, with school holidays upon us, all the gents still in town can join us on Wednesday morningfor the monthly daven e caffe- without worrying about school lifts! Guys, hope to see you there. 7-8:15am


Next Friday our Shul hosts a Young Adults Shabbat Dinner at the Premier Hotel, with Rabbi and Rebbetzin Hecht. Theme is “the ’70’s” and it should be a great social and spiritual evening. Book through the Shul website


Condolences to Claudette Davis on the loss of her mother, Malka Galaun, and to Alan & Gary Shapiro and Janine Waltman on the loss of their mother, Freda Shapiro. We wish you strength and comfort in this time.


Mazel tov to Neil Gore on graduating with a BA LLB. Law Degree. With everything going on in his life, to add to his other qualifications, is some achievement. Shkayach!


On Wednesday night, Rebbetzin Sara hosted a group of brides and brides to be for a Challah Bake evening. Click here to check out the video (ty Pia Munitz) of some of her remarkable challah creations!


Huge mazel tov to Tevis & Hilary Joffe on their 50th Wedding Anniversary! This golden couple are also the parents of our Cantor, Ivor Joffe and are true stalwarts of our community. May Hashem bless them with much continued nachas and the good health to celebrate with us on their diamond anniversary.


Mazel tov to Joshua & Isobel Fleishman and Ivan & Linda Stone on their son grandson, Benjamin Stone’s Bar Mitzvah, in Johannesburg. A warm mazel tov to Benjamin’s parents, Stuart & Jackie Stone. Much mazel and brocha!


Shabbat Shalom and happy reading!


Rabbi Dovid Wineberg



360 degrees

Dear Friend,


While we’re in the afterglow of Purim, our brothers & sisters (& my daughter Esther) in Jerusalem are in the midst of Purim! (Jerusalem keep it a day later)


And what a happy Purim it’s been. Wednesday night’s service was filled with all ages celebrating the miracle and the kids gave ‘booing Haman’ some good stick! The community was well rewarded with an amazing circus evening (Shkayach Kerry!); the kids wouldn’t leave!


Once again Caprice in Camps Bay was alive with the sounds of the Megillah as Rabbi & Chani Hecht gathered the young professionals for a dinner and after party. The annual event is sponsored by the amazing folks at Caprice, Marais Rd. Shul, Gardens Shul & K space. Thank you so much and Shkayach to new talent Gilli Apter for providing the laughs!


Our community’s annual Purim Seuda (kudos to Rebbetzin Sara for organizing!) took place in our home and was filled with the sounds of all ages and all stages. Giant slides for the kids, delicious food and much l’chaim made for an event to remember!


From Purim we move into Shabbas and the return of Lacky! Lacky and Lauren Kaplan lived in Cape Town for a number of years before relocating to the U.S. And now they’re back to celebrate the wedding of their daughter, Teri to Fred Trigalo. Mazel Tov!


Mazels also to Fred’s parents, Camus & Marcelle Trigalo and grandparents, Omri & Irma Gelgor. Much nachas!


Happy birthdays to Louis Bank on his 84th birthday and to Sydney Nakan on his milestone 90th birthday. Both are regular shul goers and we wish them Mazel and good health. Mazel Tov to another regular shul goer, Joe Fisher on the birth of a great-Granddaughter in Johannesburg. Mazel Tov!!


Mazel Tov to Barry and Shareen Zetler on the birth of their son! Adam was brissed and named on Tuesday & we wish the entire mishpocho much joy & nachas.


Mazel Tov to Dale & Haidee Russak and Aaron & Nina Levin on the birth of their son & grandson! This family’s ties to our Shul runs very deep and their spirit of giving and volunteerism is an inspiration. Thank you and much nachas!


In keeping with the mitzvah & spirit of Purim I’m pleased to share that with your help we were able to disburse significant funds over the Chag.Thanks to all who contributed!


Condolences to Minette Minitzer on the loss of her brother, Clive Allen. Clive was a past President of our Shul and I know it’s been important for his family that our community be aware of his recent passing in Edmonton. We wish Minette and the whole family comfort in this time.


Sadly, Judy Benjamin passed away; the funeral will be on Sunday. Judy was a true Matriarch of her family & we wish her children and their families much strength in this time. Our condolences to her brother Michael Jaffe on his loss.


We are all heartbroken with this morning’s passing of a beloved member of our Shul and the wider Sea Point Jewish community, Urlene Abramson. There are no words at this time but I know that our hearts are with her husband, Stanley, daughter Simone, parents Eldred and Eva Polikoff and her brother Mark. May HaShem spare this family and all of us further tragedy and suffering.


A warm welcome to Rabbi Yehuda and Dina Kantor of Westport Connecticut who have come to celebrate the Kaplan Trigalo wedding with us.Rabbi Kantor will deliver the sermon tomorrow and we look forward to his words of wisdom.


Shabbat Shalom!


Rabbi Dovid Wineberg

Marais Rd. Shul

Cape Town

021 439 7543

What jumps on its own?

Dear Friend,

There’s only one physical property that moves on its own. It doesn’t require gravity, or sunlight and nourishment; it just naturally bounces about happily. That property? Fire. Watch the Chanukah candle and you’ll see nature’s dance as it flickers upwards and back down again, struggling with the bonds of its wick.

There is another physical property which bounces, and that is a child. As I watched countless kinderlach bouncing happily last night in Rush, I realised that each of those kids is like a little flame. And like a flame, they bring warmth and light wherever they go. Shkayach to Kerry Miller for coordinating, and to Rebbetzin Sara for the arts and crafts, at our community Chanukah party at Rush! From young to old, everyone had a blast.

The Chanukah calendar is just heating up. On Tuesday you can choose between…

Marais Rd’s Seasoned Citizens concert hosted by Ivor and friends.

Young Professionals drinks n dreidels by Torah Cocktail hour hosted by Rabbi Hecht and Omri Yedid Levi.

Chanukah concert at Ratanga junction- free entry from 3:30pm! Join Danny K and Choni G, and hosted by Chabad Blouberg, a not-to-be-missed family event!

On Wednesday, join us as we close off Chanukah, with a Torah at the top of Lion’s Head, including a full Shacharit and Torah reading. Marais Rd Shul’s annual Torah on the Top promises to be bigger than ever so come early, bring good shoes, suntan lotion, water, Siddur and Tallis/Tefillin for the guys. Climb starts at 6am, Minyan 7:15.

And it’s a week of Smachot!

Mazel tov to David & Michelle Shargey on the wedding this week of their daughter Jemma Shargey to Warren Beder. Mazels to Mia Feldman & Warren Weiner on their forthcoming marriage, and to their parents, Keith Feldman & Jacqueline Feldman, and Melvyn Weiner & Lydia Weiner. Mazel tov to Balfour & Connie Valkin on the forthcoming marriage of their son Gideon to Kesiah Frank. much nachas!

Congrats to Rory Gruss on the birth of his granddaughter, and to Barney Len on his 85th birthday! Barney is a committed regular to the Thursday Lunch Shiur and we dedicated yesterday’s Shiur in his honour.

Condolences to Abe Wollach on the loss of his sister, Rae Lewenstein, and to Lance Cohen on the sudden passing of his mother, Lorraine Cohen. Lorraine has been active in the Jewish community for many decades, whether in Johannesburg, Plettenberg Bay and then Cape Town. She was an absolute regular to Shul and will be sorely missed.

Tonight is the fourth night of Chanukah, and the earliest time to light is 6:23pm. First light your 4 Chanukah candles, ensuring that at least one of them will burn until 9pm, and afterwards light your Shabbat candles. Mincha begins tonight at 6:40pm to give you time to light and then get to Shul.

Shabbat Shalom and happy Chanukah!


Welcome home champs!

Dear Friend, 

Join us for a warm welcome to our Maccabi ChampionsRonen Cohen will be heading the boys and girls who just competed in the Maccabiah in our Youth Service, led by Rabbi Hecht. Shkayach!

Marais Road Shul is hosting a fabulous High Holy day series with some outstanding speakers. U.S. Rabbi Doron Kornbluth is the bestselling author of Why Marry Jewish, which creates a platform for rational discussion of what is a highly emotive issue. He’s talking in the Shul Hall for all ages this Thursday night August 24. Click here to book and for more info.

Alison’s tale is one of SA’s most dramatic stories of survival. Left for dead in P.E., she not only lived to identify her attackers but recreated her life in a tale that will inspire and move you. Meet and hear Alison on Thursday August 31 in the Shul Hall. Click here to confirm your spot!

Mazal Tov to Zara Wilder on celebrating her Bat Mitzvah this Shabbas! Zara stands head and shoulders above many (pun intended!) when it comes to concern for those less fortunate. Huge mazels to her parents, Darren & Heidi Wilder and grandparents, Jeffrey & Shirley Fabian and Liz & the late Richard Wilder. Jeff and Shirley are lifelong members, who are enjoying third generation simcha’s in our Shul. What nachas- mazel tov!

Mazel tov to Lily Singer on her 95th birthday! Lily’s grandson, Amos Levin is a member of the Shul choir and very involved in the Shul- mazel tov! Lily, May Hashem give you strength to keep up your good cheer and charm for many years to come!

Elul is the month of personal reflection. Moses spent the entire month on Mount Sinai pleading with G-d for forgiveness for the Jewish People (he was successful and returned with the second Tablets on Yom Kippur). We blow the Shofar throughout this “month of compassion” and examine ourselves carefully in anticipation of Rosh Hashanah. Rosh Chodesh is on Tuesday and Wednesday and this week is Shabbas Mevarchim. Women are invited to join Rebbetzin Sara for the Tehillim Circle on Shabbas at 5:20pm in the Shul hall.

Condolences to Jolene Roup on the loss of her father, Maurice Roup. His niece Sharlene and her husband chorister Norman Katzeff came back from Israel in  time for the funeral and shared with me how Maurice was an SA weightlifting champion and two time Maccabiah gold medallist with a soft sensitive heart. He will be missed.

This Sunday is the Bright Spots conference focusing on the Shul’s of SA. Shkayach to the Chief Rabbi for spearheading this. May it bring much success to our wonderful Jewish community.

Shabbat shalom and happy reading!


Rabbi Dovid Wineberg