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how is this night different?

04/14/2022 08:56:14 AM

Apr14

Rabbi Jeffrey Myers

A rite of passage that many children experience in Judaism is the first time they are called upon to chant the Four Questions in Hebrew. It is a source of great pride for the entire family to watch this young member of the family take their rightful place with every else at the table who has done the same thing over the generations. The moment is one that frequently leads to recalling when...Read more...

genocide

04/07/2022 09:26:30 AM

Apr7

Rabbi Jeffrey Myers

Raphael Lemkin was born on June 24, 1900, in the village of Volkovyssky in what is currently the country of Belarus, part of the Russian Empire at that time. He was interested as a youth in the subject of atrocities, and is quoted as having said a line of blood led from the Roman arena through the gallows of France to the Bialystock Pogrom. His lifelong writings express the belief that the...Read more...

joy

03/31/2022 08:19:55 AM

Mar31

Rabbi Jeffrey Myers

I had the honor and privilege this past weekend of officiating at the wedding of a former Bat Mitzvah student of mine.  Just to be asked was indeed thrilling, for it meant that at this very important moment in her life, she wanted me there once again to make it happen. I’ve known her for many years, and when I saw her being escorted down the aisle by her parents, I felt as though it was...Read more...

now what?

03/24/2022 08:33:06 AM

Mar24

Rabbi Jeffrey Myers

We so desperately want to return to normal, but frankly, we don’t know what normal should look like? Might any of our regular habits be permanently changed, such as dining out, gathering with people, greeting people warmly, going to events with a large number of people, and attending religious services in-person? Most of us have more questions than we have answers. Tree of Life resumed...Read more...

go to shul on purim

03/16/2022 09:45:59 AM

Mar16

Rabbi Jeffrey Myers

I have a colleague who is not very enamored by Purim. In fact, he seriously dislikes it. I, on the other hand, have always liked Purim. I have been given the opportunity to write, direct and produce Purim shpiels over the decades, something I would have never expected that I would be doing when I assumed my first pulpit. I have appreciated the support and encouragement of leadership and...Read more...

the inhumanity

03/10/2022 09:16:46 AM

Mar10

Rabbi Jeffrey Myers

Words escape us as the horrors taking place in the Ukraine continue unabated. Human beings are obliterating other human beings for no reason. Families are hiding in subway stations. Infirmed children are put on trains to safely take them to Poland, reminiscent of the Kindertransport. Europe continues to be the central story in yet another war where neighbors are unable to live in peace and...Read more...

Therefore choose life

03/03/2022 07:18:21 AM

Mar3

Rabbi Jeffrey Myers

Have you ever wondered if an alien species posted a beacon outside of our solar system with the warning to avoid Earth? While there have been incredible accomplishments by humanity, it is the tragic and evil ones that weigh us down and garner the most attention. Despite my continually upbeat declarations that the vast majority of humanity are good and decent people, our propensity for war seems...Read more...

i will dwell amidst you

02/24/2022 07:13:58 AM

Feb24

Rabbi Jeffrey Myers

It is not always easy to find the inspirational lesson or message in a Torah portion after having read them for decades. Some of the detailed portions are less engaging than the narrative portions. Reading about the precise nature of the sacrifices or the construction of the mishkan, the portable sanctuary, can be challenging year after year. I’ve been surprised that this year has been...Read more...

our idols

02/17/2022 08:43:32 AM

Feb17

Rabbi Jeffrey Myers

This week’s Torah portion features the ultimate rejection of God by the Israelites. Moses ascends Mt. Sinai to receive the word of God, leaving Aaron in charge. Moses’ long absence makes the Israelites question if he will ever return, and despite having just experienced the Revelation of God at Mt. Sinai, and responding as a collective with the immortal words Na-aseh v’Nishma, we will do...Read more...

Life after "maus"

02/10/2022 09:10:00 AM

Feb10

Rabbi Jeffrey Myers

As is the normative life cycle of a news event, things quiet down and we move on to the next big news story, a veritable life of connect-the-dots moments that does not necessarily end with a pretty finished product. If I take a view from 30,000 feet, I think that the poor decision by the McMinn Board of Education is symptomatic of a far greater problem: the watering down of the...Read more...

Sat, July 2 2022 3 Tammuz 5782