Category: Rabbi’s page

on the 70th anniversary of the end of WWII…

May 9th card - 2015

This year marks the 70th anniversary of the end of the WWII. This symbolic date is marked on different days in different parts of the world. It is a date that is recorded differently in the psyche of the nations that see themselves as participants of that massive conflict. Most likely there will be little to mark this occasion in the American and British media this spring. In Britain, it is Remembrance Day (11/11) that is widely used to commemorate the lives lost in the sacrifices of that generation. In United States, you may hear a reference to WWII around […] more

Shehecheyanu, or how to celebrate the moments of transition.

One Campus addition

Judaism is all about the sacred time. To be sure, space matters too, but time – now that’s really important. Minutes, days, weeks – all of it matters tremendously – just take a look at the Jewish calendar, its’ beautiful, complicated precision. Just look at how carefully we monitor time – on March 6 Shabbat begins at 5:34 pm and ends on March 7 no earlier than 6:19pm… Does it really matter? Why do we obsess over such seemingly trivial details as minutes of an hour? Does it really matter if our Yom Kippur fast lasts full 25 hours, and […] more

Walking in someone else’s shoes…


Last week together with a team of TE volunteers I participated in a poverty simulation organized by United Way and Jewish Federation as part of the Neighbor-to-Neighbor Lifeline campaign. I was assigned a role of a nine-year old boy, Roland, who lives with his father (who has a full time job and a paid off car), his 20-year old sister (who is in college and works part time) and her one-year old baby. We were given the details of the family income and expenses, as well as food stamps info and a little background. Having quickly added up the money, […] more

The power of music and the legacy of Debbie Friedman

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Music stirs our souls in a way that words often cannot, activating emotions within us that we did not know existed… Music is such a strong presence in Temple Emanuel worship style that it is almost unimaginable without it! Yet music in worship (especially instrumental music) has a complicated history in Judaism. Following the destruction of the Second Temple in 70 CE the rabbis placed a ban on the use of music in general, and especially in worship, as a sign of mourning. It is not hard to imagine that having witnessed the devastation, the last thing they wanted to […] more

And the Youth Shall see visions…

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I hope your first post-Thanksgivukkah Thanksgiving was a wonderful time to reconnect with family and friends. If you missed the latkes at your table, no need to panic – Chanukah is almost here! Over the last few years we have spent a lot of time and effort building up the TE programs for our post bnei mitzvah teens. There was a gap left by the demise of Makom, our local community high school, but even before it disappeared, only a few TE teens would join its programs every year. Our Confirmation program continued to attract students, and we had a […] more

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