For the second time in my life, I witnessed a baby being redeemed from a life of service in the priesthood at the Temple in Jerusalem. The first, I was that baby. At this, my second Pidyon haBen, Raffi Shane Wolfe, the grandson of our WUPJ Chair Carole Sterling, was redeemed. As a staunch Liberal […]
To Lift Up and be Lifted Up (Parashat Naso)
The Hebrew word “Naso” means “to lift up” and with this word God commanded Moses and Aaron to “lift up” the Children of Israel by concluding the census. It is a curious idea at first glance, to “lift up” in order to take a census, but it makes sense.Read More
Jackie Robinson was hired in 1947 as the first black Major League Baseball player. Despite malicious racist harassment and constant verbal and even physical attacks, he always played fearlessly and professionally. He knew he was the equal of any white player. Throughout his career, he managed to ignore the racism that raged around him, and […]
“When you set the lamps, let the seven lamps give light at the front of the lampstand” (Bamidbar 8:2). Aharon has been told by God to place the golden menorah in the Mishkan in such a way that the light will shine to the front. Aharon could have made the angle of the menora so […]
The Hebrew word “Naso” means “to lift up” and with this word God commanded Moses and Aaron to “lift up” the Children of Israel by concluding the census. It is a curious idea at first glance, to “lift up” in order to take a census, but it makes sense.
There are periods in our lives in which we are neither here nor there. When we leave home, our land or our community and take Avraham Avinu as our example of Lech Lecha, moving toward a place we do not know, everything is seem to be difficult. We were accustomed to the people, to our home, to the streets and avenues of our city, and above all we knew how to deal with known troubles, for we knew o ground and how to keep walking there.
A month ago I was sitting in an elementary school classroom on plastic chairs waiting for Friday night Shabbat Services to begin in the town of Gedera, which is south of Rechovot. This is an amazing congregation which has fought in court against the local government in order to win the right to hold their Shabbat services in a local elementary school.
Who will we remember? Parashat Tzav (Leviticus 6:1-8:36) / Shabbat Zachor 5771-2011 By Rabbi Robert H. Loewy, Congregation Gates of Prayer , Metairie, LA, USA This is the week that Jews around the world are preparing for Purim. Shelach Manot gifts are ready for delivery. Costumes are prepared. The Purim shpiel is in final rehearsal and […]
Sukkoth and the challenge of refugees Recent Issues By Rabbi Michel Schlesinger A young man came to a rabbi for a chat. “I’ve bought a new car” said the young man to the rabbi. “Congratulations”, he replied. And the young man went on, “It has been a while since I have been saving to achieve […]
Temporary Homes, Permanent Homes: Reflections for Sukkot by Rabbi Danny Burkeman , The Community Synagogue , Port Washington, NY Many of you will know the story of the three little pigs, each one of whom built a home; one out of straw, one out of wood and one out of brick. A wolf came along […]
Torah Commentary for Chol Hamoed Sukkot (Kohelet) by Rabbi Dr Charles H Middleburgh , Director of Jewish Studies at Leo Baeck College , London, and rabbi to the Cardiff Reform Synagogue in Cardiff, Wales. Remember now thy Creator in the days of thy youth, while the evil days come not, nor the years draw nigh, when […]