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Vaetchanan 5780

Life is filled with challenges and difficulties in getting along with others — family, friends, fellow workers. How can one successfully defuse a situation and find a creative solution?

Often a first reaction is: “He can’t do that to me. It’s not right. He should do the right thing!” We first look to blame others. There […]

Devarim 5780 Barbara Streisand Parody

In our Parshah, Moses began the first of three discourses to the children of Israel. He talks about the The Way We Were. It isn’t surprising that he started his farewell speech with the Memory of what he and the people have been through together.   He thought The Children Will Listen now.  He told them […]

Devarim 5780 – Before I Go

This is the first Parshah of the fifth book of the torah, Deuteronomy.  Because Israel’s primary duty to God is obedience of his laws, it is imperative that every Israelite be taught those laws. This is Moses’ main goal in Deuteronomy. Thirty-seven days before his passing, Moses begins his repetition of the Torah to the […]

Pinchas: Hero or Villian

Over the years I have listened to countless speeches criticizing our Biblical ancestors. How could Abraham sacrifice his beloved son Isaac? How could Moses abandon his role as father and husband to take on the leadership of the B’nai Yisroel? How could Jacob cheat his brother Esau and trick his father Isaac? How could Pinchas […]

Chukat-Balak 5780 – A Belief in G-d

So just how many people does it take to change a light bulb?
-reform synagogue two people (first man and then the woman turns the bulb)
-conservative synagogue – it’s done by committee
-orthodox synagogue – they don’t change anything

“People underestimate their capacity for change. There is never a right time to do a difficult thing.”

-Author, John Porter

For […]

Korach 5780 – All People are Created Equal

This parsha shares another complex but quite timely story. It deals with themes of equality, diversity, protests, and conflict resolution. It also deals with themes of holiness and personal ambition. These resonate with our current climate.

To help put context around all of this let me revisit a few points

The people left Egypt as slaves. […]

Shelach 5780 – No Good Deed Goes Unchallanged

Parshat Shelach. The story of the 12 spies. An oft told tale. Two good spies rewarded. Ten bad spies punished. Simple, right?

Let’s take a closer look at this intriguing story. What was the terrible wrong committed by ten of the spies? Didn’t they report what they saw? Maybe they exaggerated a little, but fear can […]

Beha’alotcha 5780 – Welcome to the Whine Country

In this parshah, the Israelites complain about the unpleasantness of their journey, exasperating both God and Moses.

First, the people complain that they are moving too fast. God sends a fire that consumes people at the edge of the camp. Moses prays and God withdraws the fire. Next, there are more complaints. The people are tired […]

Naso 5780 – Back to Camp

Shabbat Shalom.

This week has been very memorable for the Kehillah as we all came together as a community to discuss how we will meet again in person. The last time we met in person was on March 14 after some debate if we should follow the lead of others and even hold services.

It has now […]

Bamidbar 5780 – We are… Bamidbar

In Hebrew, Bamidbar means “in the desert” or “in the wilderness” but in English, we call this book of the Torah “Numbers”. This parsha represents both meanings. There is a focus on numbers in that God tells Moses to conduct a census. Once counted, the people broke camp and started out to the wilderness. There […]