Tuesday, April 13, 2010

What happens at Fri. night Zoo Minyan?

Here's a description of some Spiritual & Physical aspects of a Fri. night Zoo Minyan.

For the *Physical*,
>>> see below for details about dinner -- it's not just a pot-luck!

For the *Spiritual*,
>>> here you go...

A few things to expect (besides the unexpected)

  • Creative rituals and Kavanot
For example: To add sweetness from the week to shabbat, we will pass around the kiddush cup during kabbalat shabbat. For each of the mizmorim (psalms, corresponding to each of the days of the week), a few people at a time will share something from their week to add to our overflowing cup of joy.
  • Nigunim

Both soulful and spirited tunes, with lots of repetition and space to sink into the melodies. (Sometimes, you don't really start singing a good melody until you've been singing it for 20 minutes!)

  • Nusach shivyoni

Davenning leaders will be using our photocopied siddurim with egalitarian language (see the Guide for the Perplexed). Other siddurim will also be available, and everyone is welcome to daven from their own siddur. Certain kinds of cacophony / pluralism create their own harmony.

  • Raza d'Shabbat ("the mystery of shabbos")

Between Kabbalat Shabbat and Ma'ariv, where Nusach Sefard has a passage from the Zohar and Nusach Ashkenaz has a passage from the Mishnah, we will have a (three minute) drash. Drawing on the text of the tefillot (or parshat shavua or other relevant texts), we aim to provide kavannah for davenning and for our entry into shabbos.

About Dinner

We will have main courses from Siena's! Kosher, lots of dairy plus at least one non-dairy option, all veggie, and all yummy! Vegetable lasagna, eggplant parmesan -- send in your requests.

For shabbat dinner, the community provides some hearty entrees. You can:

  • Contribute to the kitty to help pay for the entree,


  • Bring a side dish, salad, or entree as a dairy / veggie pot-luck contribution.

Don't worry about whether your kitchen is kosher (or “kosher enough”), everyone gets to contribute. But please be prepared to explain what's in your dish, to help people avoid allergy or kashrut issues.

If you're worried about whether you'll be able to eat at Zoo Minyan, there is always a critical mass of pot-luck contributions with a heksher or cooked in someone's heksher-only kitchen. There are always hekshered challot and grape juice. The entree is hekshered, and (for the l'mehadrin) heated while double-wrapped. And you'll get to know people as you ask who brought which dish.


Helping out:

  1. Picking-up dinner entrees from Rockville
  2. Schlep siddurim, pot-luck plates & utensils, and benchers
  3. Helping to organize set-up and clean-up
  4. Leading Kabbalat Shabbat
  5. Raza d'Shabbat: Kavanah / Torah between Kabbalat Shabbat and Ma'ariv
  6. Leading Ma'ariv

Write back to Fridays@ZooMinyan.org to help out!


Any questions, about this or anything else, please contact info@ZooMinyan.org.

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