Rabbi’s Messages

June 2019

Posted on June 1, 2019

SHALOM AND LIHITRAOT Thank you to the Temple Beth Sholom community for welcoming me and my family with such open arms during this year as your interim rabbi.  This has been a year of making new friends, learning from wonderful students and having the opportunity to experience the blessings (and some of the frustrations) of Continue Reading »

May 2019

Posted on May 1, 2019

ISRAEL: THE PLACE TO WHICH I RETURN I first travelled to Israel with my family in the summer of 1968 as a twelve year-old.  That winter I returned with my mother as a guest of the young state for my bar mitzvah at the Kotel in a newly reunited Jerusalem.  We were chosen to be Continue Reading »

April 2019

Posted on April 1, 2019

Themes for the Seder Night The highlight of the month of April is the celebration of Passover.  Our Seder nights are April 19th and 20th.  To help enhance your experience as you prepare to lead or join in at a Seder, I offer some thoughts to stimulate conversation. Acknowledging Slavery/Celebrating Freedom: HA LACHMA ANYA One Continue Reading »

March 2019

Posted on March 1, 2019

Why We Need Purim Judaism does not have a lot to say with certainty about what the messianic world to come will be like, but there is one thing we know – in a perfect world we will no longer need the holidays, except for one, Purim!  Why Purim?  Let’s start with why we won’t Continue Reading »

February 2019

Posted on February 1, 2019

Praying for the Government I recently saw Fiddler on the Roof in Yiddish in New York City and once again heard the rabbi share with the community his prayer for the Tzar, “May God bless and keep the Tzar – far away from us.”  That joke captures the ambivalence I have always felt about reciting Continue Reading »

January 2019

Posted on January 1, 2019

NEW YEARS AND THE HOLIDAY OF EVERY DAY Happy New Year!  While as Jews we celebrated the turning of the year back in September, January 1st is a helpful day to remember Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur and our hopes for a fresh start.  As we sat in the synagogue or around the table with Continue Reading »

December 2018

Posted on November 28, 2018

THE POWER OF MUSIC Reflecting on my 30+ years as a rabbi, the biggest change in synagogue life I have seen is the growing power of music to transform people’s Jewish lives. In the synagogue of my youth, we were taught that synagogue music was curtailed as an act of mourning for the Temple in Continue Reading »

September/October 2018

Posted on August 28, 2018

I am writing this message in mid-August during the first days of my year as your interim rabbi.  I am delighted and honored to join your community during this time of transition as you think about the future of Temple Beth Sholom.   Transitions are exciting and filled with potential, but they are also times of Continue Reading »

June 2018

Posted on June 1, 2018

I was recently asked about the importance of Tisha B’Av or the 9th day of the Av in the Jewish calendar. Most people aren’t familiar with it as it falls during the summer months. On the other hand, most Jewish campers do know about Tisha B’Av as it is the day when most of the Continue Reading »

May 2018

Posted on May 1, 2018

Towards the end of May, we celebrate the second of our three major festivals, Shavuot. It’s just two days compared to the weeklong festivals of Passover and Sukkot. But within these two days of Shavuot, our Beth Sholom celebration will be exciting and grand as we celebrate revelation at Sinai. We start off recreating the Continue Reading »