RAB Spot

Rabbi Adam’s Rosh Hashanah Sermon, Day 1

Getting to the Tuna: Modeling Healthy Debate in Community

Rosh Hashanah 1, 5780

I look forward to this moment every year. First day Rosh Hashana- the first time we are all together in one space as a community- But what makes this community special is not that we are all sitting here today. We are not a community because we have filled out our paperwork, paid our dues, or given a generous Kol Nidre pledge- thank you in advance. We are a community because we strive to be a group of people who care about the person sitting next to us and will be there for one another when we need support.

Being a part of a caring community is one of the greatest gifts that we can cultivate in our lives. Think for a moment of a time when you felt the impact of community in your life. I know from my own experiences, and witnessing so many of yours, the power of receiving a hug when you are experiencing loss, the value of sitting together at a shabbat meal, the warm company of someone visiting you at the hospital, and the list goes on. Our chesed and membership committees have helped us connect to one another with caring outreach and as a result are helping us build our relationships as we develop into the community we strive to be.

The more connected we become, the more encumbered we feel to one another. We learn this sense of obligation in the Talmud, our Oral Tradition, with the teaching, kol Yisrael arevim ze bazeh– all of Israel are connected one to another. And our obligation to one another goes beyond care. We can, with practice –  provide each other an additional support- the opportunity to learn and grow from our different perspectives.

Unfortunately this is not something we can take for granted but a skill we must practice. Today’s world of global communication through social media makes it easy to remain in an ideological bubble, as we consume the news that we choose to read and witness the ever growing divide in our country over leadership, parties, policy, and ideology. We are out of practice and uncomfortable with discussing issues of politics with people who hold different views on any number of subjects, whether they be political in nature or the much more divisive question of what’s the all time better tv sitcom- Friends or Seinfeld? Careful of bringing that one up.Read more

Where Do We Go from Here?

Dear friends, This has been a week that calls for a Shabbat of rest to help us mourn, to heal, to dream, and to act.  In the aftermath of the mass shootings in El Paso and Dayton that ended 29 lives in an instant and injured so many others along with the news from Israel… Read more

Advocacy and Prayer Amidst Pain

Today, family members, friends, and admirers of Lori Gilbert Kaye z”l, age 60, will eulogize her at her funeral at Chabad of Poway Synagogue near San Diego, CA. They will speak of how she was always doing chesed, an act of kindness or giving tzedakah to someone in need. And they will speak about her… Read more

Religious School Highlights

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Update from our Education Director

At my alma mater, Penn State University, there is an annual event called THON, a student organized 46-hour no-sleeping, no-sitting dance marathon, which raises millions of dollars to fight pediatric cancer.  I participated as a student, and as an alumna, I watch the livestream each year. While there are many reasons to support this event, there is always a moment during this 46-hour event when I’m completely awestruck by the incredible efforts of the Penn State student body. It was at THON when I first realized what it meant to be a part of something great and how I could make a small impact on the world.

In the few months that I’ve been at Shaarei Tikvah, there have been many moments when I’ve been struck with a similar feeling. Sometimes it overwhelms me when I see a student connect to prayers that are an integral part of our tradition or when a student proudly remembers to bring in tzedekah or when the community comes together to honor the memory of a treasured synagogue member. In this community, we have each played our part, large or small, in our efforts to grow and continue striving towards greatness.

Our religious school specifically continues to strive for this greatness- and we are on our way! Since last year, we have welcomed 12 new families into our community and grown our religious school from 59 to 79 students. And I thank you, our families, who are not just signing up your children for religious school, but attending Shabbat programming, religious school events, and synagogue-wide celebrations- this is what makes our community incredible.… Read more

January 28- February 4, 2019 Kitah Gimmel had some fun with Hebrew letters last week! After reviewing Aleph-Bet through yoga, the class put their knowledge to the test in a game of “Shimon Omer” (Simon Says). This past weekend was filled with light and new experiences! On Saturday evening Kitot Gimmel and Dalet led us in… Read more

Calendar of Events

Week of Tue., Nov. 12 - Mon., Nov. 18

Wed. minyan 6:00pm
Thur. minyan 8:30am
Fri. services 6:00pm
Fri. candle lighting 4:20pm
Sat. services 9:18am
Havdalah 5:20pm
Sun. minyan 9:00am
Mon. minyan 7:00am

Parashat Vayera

God sends three messengers to visit Abraham, confirming that Sarah will indeed bear a son. They also announce the destruction of Sodom. Abraham challenges this decree, but when his conditions cannot be met, God destroys Sodom. Isaac is born. In response to Sarah’s demand, Abraham banishes Ishmael. God then tests Abraham’s devotion by commanding him to sacrifice his beloved Isaac.

Calendar of Events

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