Shabbat Parashat Shelach Lecha Shabbat Mevarekhim HaChodesh Next Steps

Dear Friends,

This Friday night we will be celebrating Teacher Appreciation for our Religious School teachers! Thank you to Gavrielle Bargash, our Education Director, who has done a wonderful job leading us through a very challenging year, and to our teachers who have gone the extra mile to ensure that we are there for our students! Well done!

Additionally, this Shabbat is a true “Shehecheyanu” moment for our synagogue. We will be holding “regular” in-person Shabbat morning services for the first time in over a year! Yes, we will still be limiting our attendance. But, also, yes, we will be live-streaming our service for all who prefer not to attend in person. And, also, yes, we will be taking out the Torah from the Ark and reading from the Torah scroll. Yes, we will have people recite the Aliyot for the Torah reading and very importantly, yes, we will be celebrating Shabbat as we were so looking forward to doing for such a long time.

Yasher koach to the members of the Covid Task Force, and to the RST Board, to our leaders, to our volunteers and to our staff, who are continually monitoring the situation and updating us on the latest developments at our Shul.

Yasher koach to the Ritual Committee for stepping up to the plate to ensure that we have created space for all who asked to attend this first in-person regular Shabbat service and for ensuring that all the service parts and honors will be covered!

And, mazal tov to all of us for taking these “next steps”, and, in particular, to those who will be attending in person for the first time in over a year.

This Shabbat we read the Torah portion of Shelach Lecha. It is the portion that tells the story of the spies, the majority of whom came back from checking out the Promised Land, only to discourage our people from taking the “next steps” toward the Promised Land. It is understandable that when we contemplate taking the “next steps” we may be overcome by uncertainty and by fear. The future, by definition, is unknown. The unknown is sometimes frightening. But, the story of our people helps us to realize that, armed with our ideals, it is our destiny to take the “next steps” forward.

May we be blessed in this Shehecheyanu moment and in all of our “next steps” as we move forward into our shared future.

This Shabbat we will be reciting the blessing of the new Jewish month. Rosh Chodesh Tammuz will be on Wednesday night, Thursday and Friday of this coming week. May it be a month of more “Shehecheyanu” moments, a month of blessing, of health and of fulfillment for us, for all Israel and for all good people everywhere!

Shabbat Shalom!

Rabbi Gilah Dror