Adult Education classes will be resuming starting tomorrow night after minyan. I am calling the session “American Orthodoxy Confronts Contemporary Society.” We will be looking at the recent New York Times article on the lack of secular education in New York Hasidic yeshivas as well as the lawsuit seeking to require Yeshiva University to recognize the undergraduate Pride Alliance. Time permitting, we will also look at the recent departure of a trans woman educator from a Jewish day school after having been outed and harassed.
It was really lovely on Monday to celebrate the first day of Sukkot with a very nice crowd at the synagogue followed by a pizza lunch in the Sukkah. Thanks in particular to Charlotte and Terry Strauss for all of their work in making the lunch possible. Slowly but surely, we are returning to a more normal state of affairs. I also want to apologize to those who tried to join our services by Zoom that morning -- early in the service the settings on the equipment in the synagogue did not allow the service to be heard. If you joined later in the service, that problem was resolved.
Services for Shemini Atzeret withYizkor will be in person and on Zoom next Monday morning. Simchat Torah services will be on Zoom only.
On Shabbat morning we studied some midrashic texts about the death of Moses:
On Monday morning we discussed the question of the proper blessing to be said before eating pizza:
As a reminder, I am having drop-in hours on Thursday afternoon from 2 to 4 at the shul. You do not need to make an appointment -- that would negate the whole point of drop-in hours -- but I’d urge you to check and make sure I am there regardless as sometimes there are unavoidable pastoral or other emergencies which might take me away from the building.
As always, if I can do anything for you or you need to talk, please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org or 301-977-0768 rather than through the synagogue office. I am happy to meet you at the synagogue by appointment. I have been spending more time in the synagogue recently but if you want to speak with me it’s best to make an appointment rather than assuming I will be there when you stop by.
Rabbi Charles L. Arian