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Wednesday Wisdom & Wit

04/17/2024 02:25:49 PM

Apr17

Rabbi Daniel Sherman

            This week, Israel has been especially on my mind.  I was surprised, saddened, scared, angered, frustrated, and relieved by the news out of Israel on Saturday.  In an unprecedented attack, Iran launched over 300 drones and missiles directly at Israel.  Thankfully, Israel was prepared and its defenses held up.  99% of the drones and missiles were shot down. There was little damage and no loss of life in Israel.  I am grateful that Israel’s allies, the United States and the U.K., helped with Israel’s defense, as did neighboring Jordan.  Iran succeeding in sending a message to Israel and causing a night of terror: sirens were sounded throughout Israel, and much of the country was thrown into a panic as Israelis woke up and rushed to emergency shelters.

            It could have been much worse.  I worry about what might happen next and fear an escalation.  It is a reminder that it is not a return to “normal life” in Israel right now – and it has not been for over six months, since the Hamas on October 6.  Over 100 hostages are still being held in Gaza.  Israelis have been unable to return to their northern homes.  Too many soldiers have been killed.  And there has been such a loss of life and destruction and devastation in Gaza. It is all heart-breaking.  And as Jews we feel that pain and share in the shock and horror that Israelis have felt and continue to experience.

            Next week we will welcome Passover.  We will retell the story of how we were redeemed out of Egypt and began our journey to a better life in the Promised Land.  This year in particular we will pray for the people and land of Israel, and pray that L’SHANAH HABA’AH – that next year will be an even better year for Israel and for the Jewish people.

            With all of this fear, uncertainty, and anger, I am glad that we have good things to look forward to here in our community.  I am excited about our Installation Weekend.  I hope you are planning on joining us for a special and historic Shabbat Evening this Friday.  Our service will begin at 6:00pm, and we will officially welcome and install Cantor Rebecca Garfein as the Cantor of Temple Sinai.  The service will be joyful with lots of wonderful music, led by Cantor Garfein and joined by Cantor Colman, in addition to visiting colleagues, a quartet of voices from our choir, and band members, as well.  A celebratory Shabbat dinner will follow services – please make your reservation today.  The celebration continues on Sunday afternoon with a wonderful Cantorial Concert – “From Bimah to Broadway” – that everyone will enjoy.  Please buy your tickets and plan on joining us at Temple Sunday afternoon at 2:00pm.

            On Monday evening we will welcome our seven-day Festival of Passover.  We still have space available at our Congregational Seder on Tuesday, April 23 – but you must reserve your place today or tomorrow, please.

            I look forward to seeing you at Temple!  I want to wish everyone a very happy and meaningful Passover!  Chag Sameach!

Thu, May 30 2024 22 Iyyar 5784