While digging deep into our Torah portion for this week, Tetzavah, I found an abundance of text that relates beautifully to our mission of WRJ.
In this Parashah, it states God commands “you shall command his sons of Israel to use pure olive oil for kindling the light of the lamps. Aaron shall set up this light to burn continuously in the sanctuary. It will serve as a light for God for all generations.”
It is explained that the oil represents the spiritual potential in every Jew. We, as members and leaders of WRJ, are the lights for our movement. As the “lights,” we are...Read More
Representing 51% of the population, 102 seats in the U.S. House of Representatives, and 88 seats in the House of Commons of Canada, women are finding themselves in more and more leadership positions. Nevertheless, we have a long way to go until true gender equality is reached. On March 8, we celebrate the social, economic, cultural, and political achievements of women around the world with International Women's Day. Each year the day also is given a theme around the issue of gender parity; this year’s theme is #BalanceforBetter. The theme focuses on how balance is not a women’s issue... Read More
On February 8, 1974, a very snowy evening 45 years ago, I became a Bat Mitzvah. On that Friday night, I chanted Haftorah, led the congregation in worship, and talked about my commitment to Judaism and plans to continue my Jewish education. After services, family and friends traveled the short ½ mile to our home for “supper after services.” The kids hung out in the playroom, the grownups circulated through the formal living room and den and food was served in the dining room. My cousin Tony served as bartender and a friend of the family was our photographer. When I reflect back, I recall...Read More
The United Nations 2019 Holocaust Remembrance Week focused on demanding and defending human rights around the world. Sandy Abramson serves as one of the WRJ representatives to the United Nations. She represents the organization in coalition and caucus meetings centered around our high priority social justice issues. The following piece is a recap of a UN event during the remembrance week.
I attended a moving UN briefing, where I learned about something totally new and astonishing! Jews who were living in Albania, and those from other countries in Europe who ended up there by some...Read More
This Torah portion appears immediately following the giving of the Ten Commandments.
Beginning with “These are the rules you shall set before them,” God instructs Moses to impart specific rules governing various aspects of day-to-day life. Beginning with the treatment of slaves, punishment for killing or injuring another in a brawl, etc., very specific examples of crimes are referred to throughout the portion. (goring by an ox, kidnapping, murder through violence or treachery, theft)
It is interesting that the fate of women is taken into account in various ways. First,...Read More