Or Ahavah welcomes you... x

Or Ahavah is a welcoming community dedicated to personal transformation and healing the world through Jewish practice.

Upcoming Services and Events

  • Celebrating the Light Sunday, Dec. 13th 4pm – RSVP by Dec 10th

    Please email a photograph you have taken of a place in nature or in any place that you sense is sacred for you-a place where you sense the Presence of Holy Light. Send the photo by Thursday, Dec.10th to Orahavahtampa@gmail.com . Photos will be displayed on Zoom. Each person will have an opportunity to tell their story of how or why they sense spiritual light within the surroundings in the photo.
    This is a fundraiser! 100% of your donation will go to Feeding Tampa Bay. Donate online at orahavah.org (Scroll to the bottom of the page)


  • Join Or Ahavah for a special presentation by Anael Atara Sunday, October 18th from 4-5 p.m.

    The gathering will include a fashion show of her one of a kind tefillinesque* accoutrements and an explanation of her inspiration and process. She will also share her Inspired 10 Commandments of Sacred Nature Art in addition to some of her chants. Anael has been fashioning ceremonial prayer garb and shamanistic creations for over two decades.

    Anael is wearing two of her creations in the picture and makes feminine tefillin for both head and hand. In addition, she makes energetically powerful and beautiful necklaces and Chuppot,

    * Tefillinesque refers to creations of Tefillin that are for women and retrofit with Jewish tradition.

    Donations are appreciated — suggested amount $18
    For more information and to RSVP by 10.16.20, email Orahavahtampa@gmail.com
    To donate by Paypal or Credit Card, contact Phil at P.shenefelt@att.net
    or mail your check made payable to Or Ahavah ◘ 15919 Nottinghill ◘ Drive Lutz, Fl 33548

  • Shelter of Peace: A Sukkot Concert – October 3rd 7PM

    Shelter of Peace: A Sukkot Concert – October 3rd 7PM

    Joy Katzen-Guthrie

    Congregation Or Ahavah ZOOM Room


  • High Holidays 2020

    Rosh Hashanah:
    High Holidays 2020

    Evening service: 09.18.2020
    7:00 PM- Candle-lighting, Blessings and New Year Meditation

    Day service: 09.19.2020
    10:00 AM- Includes Torah Reading and Meditative Musaf Experience

    Evening: 09.27.2020
    4:00 PM- Mikvah Meditation
    5:15 PM- Dinner together on Zoom
    6:30 PM- Kol Nidre Service including Meditation on Oneness

    Day: 09.28.2020
    9:30 AM- Morning service begins followed by services throughout the day. Services include special meditations developed for Yom Kippur and a very moving Yizkor service
    7:22 PM- Shofar Blowing and Havdalah followed by Break-fast on Zoom

    All of the services are virtual on Zoom. There will be several breaks given throughout the day. The cost for all of the holiday services is $360. A significant discount of $180 is given for those who are joining us for the first time. No one is turned away because offinancial constraints. Please contact Phil at p.shenefelt@att.net to arrange for a reduced rate.

    RSVP to orahavahtampa@gmail.com. Payment is due by Monday, 09.14.2020. Please make your check payable to Or Ahavah and mail to:
    Or Ahavah
    15919 Nottinghll Drive Lutz, Fl 33548

    You will be sent links for services, prayer books, and holiday related materials upon receipt of payment. Or Ahavah is a 501c3 non-profit organization.

    Please contact orahavahtampa@gmail.com if you have any questions.

    DOWNLOAD FLYER: high_holidays2020.pdf

  • The Alternative YOMKIPPUR… a Spiritual RETREAT – 2019

    Join OrAhavah for a day of reflection and transformation in a beautiful retreat setting  in Tampa, Fl. Experience the true meaning of the holiest of days – a time for return to your authentic self, a time for second chances.


    The Franciscan Center
    3010 N. Perry Ave.
    Tampa, Florida 33603-5345


    Tuesday, October 8, 2019
    4:00pm – Preparatory Meditation
    5:15pm – Dinner (fish/vegetarian meal)
    6:30:pm – Kol Nidre and Evening Services

    Wednesday,October 9, 2019
    8:30a.m.- Qi-gong with gentle stretching
    9:30a.m. – Services throughout day with times to rest
    7:15 p.m.—Havdallah followed by full Break the Fast Meal


    • Yom Kippur with Spiritual Integration
    • Kol Nidre and Experiential Yizkor
    • Meditation and Praye
    • Heavenly Music


    Registration and fees attachedbelow


    You are Welcome!

    Download High Holiday Information 2019


Mitzvah & Meaning from Rabbi Deb

  • A Remebrance of Reb Zalman

    Reb Zalman, z”l

    Reb ZalmanRabbi Zalman Schechter-Shalomi, z”l, died last week and, for me, his departure brought an end to an era of great rabbis who truly care about the people.  This is not to say that there are no longer any great rabbis who care.  Reb Zalman cared for people in ways that seem unique to the rabbis of his generation who came to the United States carrying with them the lights of a Euopean Yeshivah and Chassidic background.

    Reb Zalman was not my primary rebbe.  His colleague Rabbi Brod, z”l, whom we all called “Rabbi,” was my rebbe, my friend, the one who subtly taught me how to reconcile my soul to something better, and the one who taught me the heart of a rebbe.  He taught that a rabbi should be driven by the need to find flexibility to meet a person’s needs if traditional avenues are, for whatever reason, closed.  Reb Shlomo, another colleague and friend of Reb Zalman’s, had boundaries so thin that he was able to help a stranger as if his life depended on it.  These are the three rabbis who influence me beyond measure.

    Reb Zalman made openings in the Jewish world where spiritually hungry travellers could rest and maybe even take up residence.  The most valuable lesson that I learned from Reb Zalman was a different expression of something precious that I learned from Rabbi Brod.  Reb Zalman taught about retrofitting changes that we make as rabbis and spiritual leaders to traditions and Jewish laws that have developed over thousands of years.


  • Jewish Megatrends by Rabbi Sidney Schwarz

    Shalom all:
    One of my colleagues, Rabbi Daniel Siegel, wrote a review of Jewish Megatrends by Rabbi Sidney Schwarz that I found insightful and touching.  It is a tribute to the unsung heroes throughout the Jewish world.  Some of these invisible heroes have devoted their lives to making positive changes in Jewish culture and practice so that more Jews can come back to their religious or cultural home of origin and feel welcome and nourished.
    I hope you enjoy the essay as much as I do.  You can find it at http://rabbidanielsiegel.com/the-invisibles-reflections-on-jewish-megatrends/
    With blessings for a healthy and fulfilling New Year,
    Rabbi Deb

  • Women of Distinction Program

    Last Thursday, on December 5, 2013, Or Ahavah was proud to hear Dr. Linda Wexler’s name called as our honoree during the Women of Distinction program.  Several women from a variety of Jewish organizations were honored for the work that they have generously given to the Jewish community and beyond.  It’s a fabulous event.  It is inclusive of the mitzvah mavens so well known in the Tampa Jewish community and other mitzvah mavens who we are hearing about for the first time.

    Two pictures of Linda are posted on the website, one with Rabbi Deb and the other with her husband Colby.  Based on a write-up submitted by Or Ahavah, here is what was written in the program and spoken about Linda as she was called up to be honored: (more…)

  • Spa Day-Making it Jewish – Part 1.

    Yum!A couple of Sundays ago, Or Ahavah indulged in Spa and Schmooze Day.  Our very own Dr. Phil  talked about skin care and answed our many questions.  Two masseuses and a facialist offered spa treatments that were awesome and reasonably priced.  As we were waiting our turn on the spa table and chair, many of us gathered around a table filled with healthy but tasty food and drink offerings.  “What makes this Jewish,” I asked, and someone quipped “eating good food!”  I agree that enjoying and sharing Jewish-style food with others is a way of experiencing Jewish identity, but I wanted something more (more…)

  • Chanukah Gathering

    Our Chanukah gathering at Siesta Key Beach was fabulous!  Somebody remarked that it felt like she and her husband were with family.  I cannot think of better feedback to share than that.
    Here are a few pics from the party.