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When We Cannot Be In Our Shul

The synagogue building holds a great deal of meaning and pride for so many of us. I have often spoken and written of the overwhelming importance of our acquisition and move into our building every thirty-eight years ago. I focused on the power of our holy home on the hill; our spiritual oasis, our point [...]

2020-05-08T14:46:44-04:00May 8, 2020|From the Rabbi|

Telling the Story Again and Again

We are often called the People of the Book as a result of our deep love and reverence for our sacred texts. More specifically, we are a people who cherish our story, which we often gather to retell. Shabbat after Shabbat, through pomp and circumstance, we read from our sacred Torah. We begin in Beresheit [...]

2020-03-20T20:45:52-04:00March 15, 2020|From the Rabbi|

Finding your Friday Night Rhythm

Ahad Ha’am, one of the founders of cultural Zionism, famously declared: “More than the Jews have kept Shabbat, Shabbat has kept the Jewish people.” This statement rings just as true now as when Ahad Ha’am made the statement. Shabbat has the ability to transform our lives, if we allow it to. The twenty-five hours of [...]

2020-03-20T20:46:06-04:00January 10, 2020|From the Rabbi|

The Quiet of Heshvan

It is the Little Moments that Make Life Big . . .This phrase was recently added to my office wall collection of sagely teachings. It is a powerful reminder of the importance of the little moments—of the mundane moments in time. We tend to get caught up in the big moments; in the metaphorical fireworks. [...]

2020-03-20T20:46:56-04:00November 10, 2019|From the Rabbi|

Finding our Connection

I have a new favorite restaurant. The food is good, but that is not why it is my favorite. As luck would have it, both times that we have gone to the restaurant, we were the only ones there. Each time, the owner greeted us at the door and asked each of my children their [...]

2020-03-20T20:47:32-04:00September 20, 2019|From the Rabbi|

Open Wide the Doors

“Make your home a regular meeting place for the scholars . . . open wide the doors of your home and make others welcome members of your home...” (adapted for Pirkei Avot 1:4,5). In a rabbinic utopian world, one’s homes was to be a regular meeting place of Torah study with the doors wide open, [...]

2019-04-29T12:00:06-04:00April 29, 2019|From the Rabbi|

From Start to Finish

We often think that we are midway through the year at this point in time, as we are six months away from the High Holidays. But in truth, in the next two months we will conclude the year and begin anew. In Judaism, we have not one, but four New Years. Passover marks the beginning [...]

2019-03-01T12:00:52-05:00March 1, 2019|From the Rabbi|

An Extra Month!

There are many days –in fact most days—that I wish there were another ten or more hours to the day. Time seems to race by and before I know it, the day is over. The things that I needed to or wanted to get done are put aside for the next day, because there just [...]

2018-12-27T21:32:10-05:00December 27, 2018|From the Rabbi|

One Hundred and One Blessings

The rabbis teach in the Talmud that it is forbidden to a man to enjoy anything of this world without a blessing (Berachot 35a). This idea is a part of our very core of how we exist in the world. We have blessings for the food we enjoy, for the rainbows that fill our sky [...]

2018-10-27T16:21:24-04:00October 27, 2018|From the Rabbi|

Welcome to Amsterdam

Yom Kippur 5779 Dear Mom and Dad, This year marks the fact that I have been living outside of your house for longer than I lived at home. Part of that is miraculous –because in truth –I do not think any of us expected that I was going to last that first night when you [...]

2018-09-19T12:00:02-04:00September 19, 2018|From the Rabbi|