Friday, January 31, 2020

Shabbat-O-Gram for January 31


Last Sat. night ,our 8th Graders'  Shabbaton. 
Note that in this photo they are inside a ga-ga pit
We do not cage our kids - all TBE children are are free-range!

Shabbat Shalom

Join us for services tonight in the chapel, where I'll be joined by Katie Kaplan in leading. At tomorrow morning's bnai mitzvah club, our students will be participating in the service and we'll be celebrating with Sophie Sigman, who recently became Bat Mitzvah in Florida.  Looking forward to Temple Rock tomorrow night, and the World Wide Wrap on Sunday morning.  A busy weekend!

- Tu B'shevat is coming a week from Monday - Download the Shalom Center eath Justice Tu B'Shevat Seder. 

- See this very disturbing story about a Jewish couple suing American Airlines for evicting them because a passenger complained that they smell.  This paragraph basically sums up the State of the Union in Feb. 2020:

Yehuda Yosef Adler, Jennie Adler and their then-19-month-old daughter were removed from a Jan. 23, 2019, flight from Miami to Detroit by an American Airlines gate agent, who allegedly said he knew that people of their race and religion only took baths once a week, according to a lawsuit filed in federal court Tuesday. The Adlers are Orthodox Jews.
I beg to differ.  I bathe at least twice a week!  And sometimes even with soap!

It's been a busy week, too busy for me to do justice to a Super Bowl prediction.  So 
like the Patriots, I'm taking a year off, and as a pastor, I have 12 reasons why I should stop attending sporting events altogether.  See if you agree!

The four huge stories of the week, the tragedy of Koby Bryant, the impeachment trial, the rollout of the Middle East peace plan and the indictment of Prime Minister Netanyahu, deserve much more attention than I can give here.  For one thing, I need to wait for Alan Dershowitz to fully realize the dangerous implications of his proposal, which I think is beginning to happen. In this week's portion, Pharaoh thought the enslavement of an entire people was in the public as well as his personal interest, but that didn't make it right or just. Dersh should brush up on Deuteronomy 17, which severely restricts the degree to which a leader can use his position for personal gain. 

טז  רַק, לֹא-יַרְבֶּה-לּוֹ סוּסִים, וְלֹא-יָשִׁיב אֶת-הָעָם מִצְרַיְמָה, לְמַעַן הַרְבּוֹת סוּס; וַיהוָה, אָמַר לָכֶם, לֹא תֹסִפוּן לָשׁוּב בַּדֶּרֶךְ הַזֶּה, עוֹד.16 Only he shall not multiply horses to himself, nor cause the people to return to Egypt, to the end that he should multiply horses; forasmuch as the LORD hath said unto you: 'Ye shall henceforth return no more that way.'
יז  וְלֹא יַרְבֶּה-לּוֹ נָשִׁים, וְלֹא יָסוּר לְבָבוֹ; וְכֶסֶף וְזָהָב, לֹא יַרְבֶּה-לּוֹ מְאֹד.17 Neither shall he multiply wives to himself, that his heart turn not away; neither shall he greatly multiply to himself silver and gold.
Meanwhile, below are a few articles lending some balanced perspective regarding the peace proposal.  Read 'em all.  And take a look at the official maps. It looks a little less like a contiguous Palestinian state than a big game of Chutes and Ladders. Plus, that tunnel from the West Bank to Gaza will be a doozy - with hopefully no off ramps near Sderot.  However one looks at it, this plan must be taken seriously, simply because it now exists.  It is now a "fact on the ground," like all those settlements that could soon be annexed.  Note to the White House printer: When you print out future versions of the map, you might want to color the long boundary between Israel and Jordan in red, since that enduring peace treaty, the most overlooked benefit of the Oslo Accords, could now be in serious jeopardy.

Note that, as important as this plan is for Israel, it didn't even dominate the news in Israel on the very day it was revealed.  That's the kind of week it was.

Shabbat Shalom!

Rabbi Joshua Hammerman

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