Vayigash 5780 – It’s Time to Leave the ANGER Behind…

With the beginning of the New Year, many of us have already started writing down and thinking about what, if any, resolutions we might want to make. Knowing that some of our resolutions have appeared on previous years’ lists, we know all too well how easily we can forget our best intentions when other things […]

Vayashev 5780 – Judaism’s Lesson: Don’t Despair!

“A minyan of Comfort” is the name of a widely used prayer book in houses of mourning. It is an especially popular book in Conservative Jewish congregations. We gather to comfort those who mourn. And they, in turn, accept our comfort.

But in today’s parashah, we read, “And Jacob refused to be comforted.” He had been […]

Parsha Vayishlach 5780

Vayishlach… And he sent…     Jacob sent malachim- Angels/Messengers onto his brother Esau, and when they returned to him, they related that Esau had 400 men and flocks and more.  Jacob was to meet his brother Esau the next day and it had been 20 years since they had last seen each other after Jacob traded […]

Toldot 5780 – Loving Wisely and Our Legacy

Parasha Toldot is a story of unwise parental love and the tragedy. At the beginning of the story, Isaac and Rebekah spend many lonely years praying for a child, and then comes the twins – Esau and Jacob. Rebecca found that pregnancy was much harder than she had anticipated. She was in a great deal […]

Chayei Sara 5780 – Go Forward

How long do we or should we grieve and follow the process of bereavement for the loss of a loved one?

While I am not an expert on the topic of grieving nor follower/student of Dr. Joel Roffman or David Kessler (grief experts), I turned to what all of us Kehilah scholars may do to find […]

Vayera 5780 – Make Space for Yourself

In 5779, Joel delivered the dvar for Lech Lecha and I delivered the dvar the following week for Vayera. And here we are, in 5780 following the same pattern.

Are we in a rut? Following on the heels of Lech Lecha and Joel talking about “Go. Become.” I have to wonder if that is exactly what […]

Lech Lecha 5780 – Go.Become. The Essence of Judaism

Lech Lecha – what does it mean? it could simply mean, “Go forth,” but look, this is Jewish scripture. It has been parsed for centuries. For rabbis, the more cryptic, the better. And also, the words are followed by such evocative phrases like, “to a land that I will show you,” and, “I will bless […]

Noah 5780 – Did Noah Have PTSD?

In this week’s parashah we read the story of Noah. The parashah begins with the following statement: “Noah was a righteous man; he was blameless in his age.”  Rabbi Jonathan Sacks notes that Noah is the only individual in Tanakh described as righteous. No such praise is given to Abraham or Moses or any of […]

Shabbat Succot 5780 – Joy and the Torah

My grandfather (may he rest in peace) was named Simcha Natan in Hebrew. Simcha, meaning joy is the word I most associate with this time of year.  Each day of Sukkot in a traditional synagogue, you will see the hakafot, where the congregants dance around the building with the lulav and etrog in hand; seven […]

Haazinu 5780 – He Sang The Song That Made The Young Girls Cry

Haazinu Hashamayim Va’adaberah: “Incline your ear, O Heaven, and I will speak.”  This begins the song  that Moshe is instructed by G-d to prepare for the children of Israel. Why Haazinu rather than Shema?  The word haazin connotes a greater readiness to perceive and accept that which is being spoken than  does the word shema […]