Embracing Judaism in Chico
Celebrating at CBI
Hanukkah at CBI
Celebrating Purim
Passover at CBI

We are a warm and friendly Jewish community in Chico, California

Congregation Beth Israel is an open and welcoming Jewish community dedicated to the principle of Klal Yisrael, the unity of the Jewish people. True to that spirit, our historically rooted congregation embraces a diverse membership of Jews from all backgrounds as well as interfaith couples and those exploring Judaism. The ideal to which we strive is Rabbi Mordecai Kaplan’s concept of the “synagogue center,” in which a congregation serves as both a house of worship and a community center for Jewish life. We seek to engage the “head, heart, and hand”: the head through learning, the heart through meaningful spiritual and cultural experiences, and the hand through service. CBI is a place to find community, raise kids to love Judaism, and call your spiritual home. With inspirational and innovative leadership from Rabbi Sara Abrams, we are shaping a dynamic and vital future for Judaism in the Northstate.

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Upcoming Events at CBI

Mark your calendars for these upcoming events at CBI:

Wednesday, August 3, 12:00pm: TV interview

Rabbi Sara Abrams and David Halimi were interviewed on Action News Now, local Chico channels 12 and 24. If you missed it, you can watch the interview here.

Friday, August 26, 7:30pm: Kabbalat Shabbat Service

Led by Cantorial Student Steve Margolin and our lay leaders. A potluck dessert oneg will follow.

Please join Rabbi Sara this month on the occasion of her Hebrew birthday and bring donations for the Torres Shelter.

Sunday, August 28, 11:00am to 2:00pm: Haverot-Sisterhood Annual Kickoff

Women of CBI, please join the Haverot-Sisterhood for our annual Kickoff party. Please check you email for details in an Evite from the Sisterhood. If you did not receive the Evite please contact Renee Everett.

Friday, September 2, 7:30pm: Kabbalat Shabbat Service

Led by Rabbi Sara.

Friday, September 9, 7:30pm: Kabbalat Shabbat Service

Led by Rabbi Sara.

Saturday, September 10, 9:00am: Torah Study

Led by Rabbi Sara.

Saturday, September 10, 10:00am: Torah Service

Led by Rabbi Sara.

Friday, September 16, 5:30pm: Tot Shabbat


Friday, September 16, 7:00pm: Family Kabbalat Shabbat Service

Led by Rabbi Sara. Consecration; recipients of Gert Lenner Scholarship talk about their experiences,

Saturday, September 17, 10:00am: Contemplative Service

Led by Rabbi Sara.

Saturday, September 17, 11:00am: Torah Study

Led by Rabbi Sara.

Wednesday, September 21, 11:00am: Brunch Bunch

The Brunch Bunch meets at Nash's on the Esplanade for good food, good conversation, and great company. Everyone is welcome to attend.

Friday, September 23, 7:30pm: Kabbalat Shabbat Service

Led by Rabbi Sara.

Saturday, September 24, 9:00am: Torah Study

Led by Rabbi Sara.

Saturday, September 24, 10:00am: Torah Service

Led by Rabbi Sara.

Saturday, September 24, 7:00pm: Selichot Havdalah Potluck

Led by Rabbi Sara.

Saturday, October 1, 10:30am: Machzor Study Session

Steve Margolin leads a “walk through the Machzor” study session.

CBI welcomes Rabbi Sara Abrams !

Rabbi Sara Abrams

Rabbi Sara Abrams begins August 1 as the new CBI Rabbi !

We are very pleased to welcome Rabbi Sara Abrams as our congregation’s rabbi. The position will be three-quarter time, starting on August 1, 2016.

Rabbi Sara joins CBI from Westchester, New York, as Rabbi and spiritual leader. Rabbi Sara brings her passion for teaching children and families. She will provide pastoral care, and spiritual growth for CBI and will cultivate opportunities for social action in the greater Chico community.

Rabbi Sara holds a Master’s in Hebrew Letters and ordination from Hebrew Union College, a Master of Arts in Religious Studies, and a Master of Science in Elementary Education. She has worked as a hospital chaplain, and is a teacher of all ages.

Rabbi Sara practices and instructs others in yoga, kabbalistic meditation, and has written her own prayers, poetry, and music–all with the purpose of uplifting the spirit and elevating the soul. She is deeply committed to a philosophy that transcends human­made boundaries and spreads the message of achdut (unity) and chesed (loving­kindness).

We welcomed Rabbi Sara at her first Shabbat Service on Friday, August 5! Thanks to all who participated and made this a memorable event.

CBI & Annie B's Community Drive

Annie B Community Drive

CBI is once again participating in the Annie B’s Community Drive. The Drive allows us to take advantage of an exceptional grant program from AnnieB’s sponsor, the North Valley Community Foundation. The Foundation will add an additional percentage to donations made to CBI between Aug. 1 and Sept. 30, 2016. Both members of CBI and non-member friends of CBI are encouraged to participate.

Although our operating funds (membership dues and religious school fees) are not subject to this match, all other donations to CBI, such as the General Fund, Building Fund, Yizkor and Yahrzeit donations, Gert Lenner Fund (youth camp), Rabbi’s Discretionary Fund (for community welfare needs), Religious School Fund, and High Holy Day donations are subject to the additional dollars.

Your donation check should be made out to “Annie B’s/CBI” and sent to or dropped off at CBI (see address below).  We will then submit the checks to Annie B’s foundation. All of the funds contributed to CBI through Annie B’s Community Drive are then returned to CBI along with the funds added by the Foundation.

This is the last year of Annie B's matching fund drive, so let's make this our best one yet!

Transition at CBI

A transition has occurred at CBI as we have said goodbye to Rabbi Julie Hilton Danan. We wish to thank her and Avraham for their many years of service to our community and wish them well in their new adventure. Rabbi Danan has become the rabbi at Pleasantville Community Synagogue, and can be reached via email at rabbi@shalompcs.com.

In October 2015 through May 2016, we welcomed Rabbi David Zaslow as our interim rabbi. Serving half-time in his home community in Ashland, OR, he specializes in working in a part-time capacity as an interim rabbi. Please see Our Rabbi for more details. Thanks to Rabbi Zaslow for his help and support during this transition period.

The transition continued in August 2016 as we welcomed Rabbi Sara Abrams as our new rabbi. Stay tuned as this next chapter at CBI has begun.

If you need to contact CBI (urgent or otherwise), email co-president Carol Edelman at cedelman@csuchico.edu or co-president David Halimi at david@halimi.com.

CBI Newsletter

CBI Newsletter

The CBI Newsletter is being redesigned and will debut soon. Until that occurs, continue to read the "Weekly Update" emails for the latest information. Previous versions of the newsletter and a link to the recently retired newsletter site are available on the Newsletter archive page. In addition, news is available on the old CBI News column CBI News page.

To submit articles and suggestions for future newsletters, please send email to admin@cbichico.org .