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THE LODZER SYNAGOGUE

Shabbat Bulletin - February 20, 2016






Shabbat Shalom,

In the Shema, the Jewish pledge of allegiance, we are commanded to love God B’chol Nafshecha - “with all your soul.” You have to be willing to sacrifice your life rather than deny God.


If mitzvot are for our pleasure ... how does this give us pleasure?


This is the pleasure of clarity and commitment. If you can perceive something as so important that you will sacrifice your own life for it, then your life has weight and purpose and direction.


Because until you know what you are willing to die for, you have not yet begun to live.

Material pleasures are necessary and nice, though they do not compare to the higher pleasures of love and meaning. Imagine you’re offered 10 million dollars in exchange for one of your children. After rejecting the offer, you’d be overwhelmed with the precious value of that child! You may have always known his worth on an intellectual level, but now it becomes real to you.


Similarly, once you have found a cause so meaningful that you would forfeit your life for, when you indeed live for that cause, it is with unparalleled power and pleasure.


This is the secret of Jewish heroism. This is why so many Jews throughout history have sacrificed their lives for what they believe. Because dying for God is a higher pleasure… than living without Him.


excerpt: aish-meaningoflife-Rabbi Noah Weinberg




Congratulations to Zev Bell and his family on Zev’s wonderful leading of services, including his reading of the complete Torah portion and the Haftorah.



MEMBERS! We’d love to hear from you.

Submissions for the following would be appreciated:

  • “Shabbat Shalom”

  • Miss a Shabbat, miss a lot.”

  • “We will never forget!”

  • “Good news you wish to share”

email/replyTo: lodzercongregation@gmail.com



Miss a Shabbat, miss a lot -- ZEV BELL

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Your Bar Mitzvah

will Impact the

WORLD!

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Twinning Program

Imagine you are a 13 year old Jew and you have just arrived at a concentration camp.
What are you feeling?
What has happened to your family?
What are your hopes and dreams?

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“As a young adult, I feel that it is my obligation and duty to have the greatest amount of knowledge about this tragic time as possible. Many people do not know that 1.5 million children were tragically murdered in the horrors of the Holocaust. One of these children was Ze’ev Shpigler, z”l.

Thank you for celebrating my Bar Mitzvah with me.”

Zev Bell

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No Torah, No Life.


KNOW TORAH,

KNOW LIFE!


Cantor Marcel Cohen



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We will never forget! -- Teaching The Holocaust  (part 2 of 6)

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Haymishe Humour -- Excerpt from No Joke by Ruth Wisse

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Ruth R. Wisse is Professor of Yiddish Literature at Harvard University.

Born: May 13, 1936, Chernivtsi, Ukraine


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People who wonder how I got from Yiddish to politics have not paid enough attention to what Yiddish culture had to say.


Two Jews are riding along in a wagon when their horse suddenly stops before a boulder blocking their path.

They sit there pondering the situation until a wagon approaches from the other direction carrying two peasants, who get down and shove the rock away.


“There’s goyish thinking for you,” says one Jew to the other, “always with force.”


The penchant for Jewish self-congratulation is turned inward—with a vengeance—by the realization that some problems have an obvious and material solution.

Maybe it was time to stop mocking those who resorted to “force” and to attend a little more to the way things actually work in the world.


So take Yiddish humor seriously and you see the seriousness of the Jewish condition.


And maybe, once you stop laughing you will try to figure out what needs to be done about it.


Quotes of the Day - Sayings for Prayings




“I don’t think life is absurd.

I think we are all here for a huge purpose.

I think we shrink from the immensity of the purpose we are here for.”


Norman Mailer

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Daily Minyan

7 days a week at 9:00 am

Sunday – Friday: includes Breakfast following

Saturdays: Shabbat Service begins at 9:30 am and includes Kiddush Luncheon

Cemetery plots for sale to members in good standing (three years minimum).

If you are a member (3 years or more) and want to buy a plot, the cost per plot is $2500.

If you know anyone wanting a plot - the person can pay three years' membership dues and then be entitled to buy a plot.

This is an opportunity to purchase before prices increase.

Please call Sarah Senior, Lodzer Office Administrator,

for more information and to order:  416 636-6665


Contributions

Please consider sponsoring a kiddush, or contributing to the building, programming, or any specific interest fund, by phoning the shul office at 416-636-6665

Lodzer Sisterhood Cookbooks

Great Gifts – just $20 each

Contact the Office at 416- 636- 6665

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Tree of Life or Seat Plaques

Remember family and friends by purchasing a leaf on our tree of life or a sanctuary seat plaque. Call the office at 416 636-6665.


Chesed Committee

Please call the shul office if you need support or if you know of one of our members who may need support. It remains confidential.

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Office Hours

Monday through Thursday

9 am - 1 pm and 2 pm - 4 pm

Friday

9 am to 1 pm

Executive

Jeff Shabes, Pres.

Harvey Storm, 1st Vice Pres.

Jonathan Usher, 2nd Vice Pres.

Morry Nosak, Treasurer

Marilyn Richmond, Secretary                                              

Board Members

Joe Ber

Roz Greene

Henry Epstein

Rafi Remez

Frank Steiman

Arnie Yudell


Honourary Member

Leon Pasternak


Cantor: Marcel Cohen

B’aal Koreh: Harvey Bitterman

Gabbai: Arnie Yudell

Bulletin Editor: Jonathan Usher

Office Manager

Sarah Senior


More Info:

Who we are -- Contact Info

Memberships

Bar and Bat Mitzvah’s

High Holy Days 2016


Lodzer committee

members needed!

Help is always needed at the shul. Volunteer for a committee – you’ll be appreciated! Just call the office – 416-636-6665 and put your name in. The committee Chairperson will contact you.



Is it too late to say...

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Birthdays, Anniversaries, Yahrzeits

Birthdays

Feb. 21  Mary Gelman
Feb. 23  Cheryl Klein
Feb. 25  Esther Factor


Yahrzeits

Feb. 20  Harry Ber, father of Josef

Feb. 20  Henia Kreitzman, mother of

    Susan Gerhard and Sidney Kreitzman

Feb. 21  Paula Malet, wife of Dennis

Feb. 21  Leah Yudell, mother of Arnold



Book Revue -- The Whole Megillah

The Megilla sets out a threat to the Jews so that the Jewish audience can watch with glee and laugh with relief as it is overcome. The mad and threatening world of the beginning of the story fades into a happy ending where, for a brief moment, the Jews, through their two representatives, Esther and Mordechai, can play at wielding the highest power in the great empire to which they were in reality subservient and in which they were an insignificant minority.

The Megilla, like its accompanying festival, Purim, does what comedy and carnival are supposed to do. It confirms the belief that the power at work in the universe favors life and favors the success of the Jews. The Book of Esther affirms that all is right with the world and with the place of the Jews in it.

(credit: myjewishlearning - esther-as-comedy)



Events -- one stop shopping

Wednesdays

7:30-8:30 pm

Parsha of The Week

(POW)

with Judy Hazan

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Join this lively group every Wednesday night at 7:30 at The Lodzer where we study the week’s sedra together. Classes are informal and no prior knowledge or preparation is required. The purpose of the class is to learn the story of the parsha, determine its most important elements and tie its morals and lessons into our daily lives. This is open to the public and there is no cost.

For more information contact Judy Hazan 416-704-1693



There will be no “Parsha of the Week”

on Feb. 17

(Family Day was Monday, Feb. 15)



Shabbat

after the kiddush

Pirke Avoth

Discussion Group

with Jonathan Usher

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Every shabbat, after the kiddush there is a vibrant discussion of

one Mishnah of Pirke Avoth.



Read Jonathan’s Pirke Avoth Discussion Points for the week  at the end of this Shabbat Bulletin.



Saturday,

February 20


Kiddush Lunch

The Lodzer welcomes back

Rabbi Eli Courante



Rabbi Eli will again be conducting our services.


Come and enjoy his unique and stimulating leadership.


This week's kiddush is co-sponsored by

Rick and Eda Kardonne to honour the yahrzeits of Eda’s parents Gut’l Gulub and Malka Golub Moses. Also in  gratitude for Rick's recovery;

and by

Arnold Yudell to honour the yahrzeit of his mother, Leah Yudell


Torah Times

Shabbat Services: 9:30 am.

Based on a Triennial Year

Torah Reading: Tetzaveh:

Exodus 29:19 - 30:10  (Pg. 346)


Haftorah reading:

Ezekiel 43:10 - 43:27 (Pg. 350)


Candle Lighting: 5:35 p.m. – Friday

Havdalah: 6:44 p.m. – Saturday

Sunday,

February 21

2 PM


$10


Beth Tikvah Synagogue

FRIENDS OF YIDDISH

TORONTO


Promoting Mameloshn and Yiddish Culture




Sholem Aleichem Tribute Concert


RSVP

yiddish18@yahoo.ca

or

Lillian at 416-783-3603

“A Tribute to Sholem Aleichem”


featuring McGill University’s delightful lecturer and tuneful Yiddishist, Janie Respitz .

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She describes Sholem Aleichem’s wonderfully nostalgic stories set in our grandparents’ old Yiddish shtetls.


She interprets and sings many folkloric tales that evoke the lives of Tevye and the colourful characters of the author’s Anatevka as dramatized in “Fiddler on the Roof.”


Monday,

February 22

7:30 pm

Shul

Book Chat

with Cathy Zeldin


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Our next book is " Have a Little Faith" by the ever popular author, Mitch Albom.  This book, recommended by one of our regular Book Chat members, is a lighter read than our last book, "As a Driven Leaf", which provided much for discussion.  We'll meet on Monday, February 22, 2016 at 7:30 pm at the shul.  Please join us.

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For more information contact cathyrzeldin@gmail.com

Saturday,

February 27

Kiddush Lunch

To sponsor a Kiddush please call the office 416-636-6665

Shabbat,

March 11


1 ADAR II

Shabbat Rosh Chodesh dawns on this first day of the month of Adar II


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Adar is the happiest, most joyous month of the Hebrew calendar. In fact, its motto is “When Adar comes, joy is increased.”


The abundance of joy in Adar is primarily due to the presence within the month of Purim. That holiday commemorates the salvation of the Jewish People from a genocidal plot by the wicked Haman…


Our last picture of Haman and his ten sons are of them dangling from the very gallows which he had prepared for Mordechai, a leader of the Jews.


Pirkei Avot: “When your enemy falls, do not be happy, and when he stumbles, let your heart not rejoice,” an exception is made in the case of Haman. He represents the spirit of absolute evil…  (Orthodox Union)

Wednesday,

March 23


Beth Radom

$$$

Megillat Reading

at the Beth Radom


We are invited to the Megillat Reading Wednesday, at the Beth Radom.


Details to follow

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Megillat Esther, “The Scroll of Esther,” is a firsthand account of the events of Purim, written by the heroes themselves—Esther and Mordechai. The megillah is read twice in the course of the festival: on the eve of Purim, and during Purim day.

credit: chabad

Thursday,

March 24

9 AM

Lodzer

The Whole Megillah

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Lodzer will be having services for Purim on Thursday,  March 24, 2016, at 9 a.m. -- including Megillah reading.

Shabbat,

March 25

(Good Friday)

6 PM

Lodzer

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Adult Menu:

Butternut Squash Soup

Caesar Salad

Honey Garlic Chicken

Herb Roasted Potatoes

Baby Carrots & Snow Peas

Apple Strudel w/ Vanilla Sauce

Purim Oneg Shabbat Program

 

Services at  6.00 PM with a special dinner to follow.


Our Oneg Shabbats always feature prayer, friendship and good food.   

This is in conjunction with our Purim activities. Bring your family, children friends, grandchildren and let's make this the largest Oneg Shabbat we have ever had.  


$35 for members, $20 for children,

$40 for non-members.


Reserve by Monday, March 21st



Parsha of the Week -  Tetzaveh

The Torah Portion - Tetzaveh


Clothes Make The Person

The emphasis on the priestly clothes teaches us the importance of bringing honor and splendor to God and the commandments.

By Rabbi Jordan D. Cohen


Make holy garments for Aaron your brother, for dignity and splendor. (Exodus 28:2)


Drash


"Clothes make the man," the old saying goes. Well, clothes certainly do seem to impress us human beings. Nothing tells you more about a person, or makes a greater first impression, than how one is dressed. Its quite remarkable, really. A persons entire character can be summed up by someone who does not know them simply by how they are dressed.

Jobs have been won and lost, relationships continued or ended, all based on the clothes we wear. The fashion industry certainly understands this important detail of human nature. Thats how they make their money. And so do schools and the military.

The whole point of putting people into uniforms is to minimize their differences; to make individualization impossible, and to reduce independence. You are what you wear. When we dress the same as others, it is because we dont want to be seen as different. When we do want to stand out, we can do so through what we wear.

The Torah certainly understands this as well. In this weeks parashah, more than forty verses, an unusually high number for any single topic, are devoted to the subject of the Bigdei Kodesh, the holy clothing or ritual garments for the high priests. "Make Bigdei Kodeshholy garmentsfor Aaron your brother," Moses is told, "for dignity and splendor." Most of the rest of this text is elaboration of this command; details of how these garments are to be made.

So what is so important about the garments of the High Priest? Does not Judaism, particularly in a ritual sense, usually focus on the inner qualities, frowning on such outward materialism as clothing? How then can these garments be holy? How can they alone bring dignity and splendor?

It seems that Torah is indeed telling us that clothes do make the man, or at least the role in which the man is serving. Aaron, already well respected and loved among the people, is to be dressed as befits a Kohen Gadola High Priest. When he engages in work that is holy, he is to be suitably dressed in holy garments; clothes that add dignity and splendor to the work.

This is Hiddur Mitzvahthe enhancement of the fulfillment of a mitzvah (commandment), through the adornment of the act. This is why we say Kiddush over fine wine in a beautiful cup rather than over juice in a paper cup. Both will fulfill the minimum requirement of the mitzvahbut by adding beauty we add to the holiness of the act.

But Ramban (Rabbi Moses Ben Nachman) notes that the commandment to dress the High Priest in garments for glory (kavod) and splendor (tiferet) is not only to enhance the status of the priest himself, but also to enhance the glory of God.

Ramban notes that in the mystical teachings, kavod and tiferet are Sefirot, Kabbalistic terms for emanations of God. And so, through these very specific types of garments worn by the Priest, God is connecting with the people and Gods presence amongst the people is further demonstrated. In some way, the spark of God that resides in all of us is brought out in the priest and worn on the outside with his clothing.

Just as the crown and royal colors command the respect of a people for a king, and enhance his position among his people, so too the Bigdei Kodesh add much to the honor and esteem of the High Priest, and to the Divine One whom the High Priest serves.

Through dressing in special garments, the priest is constantly reminded of his special role, and the sanctity of his calling. It is a symbol, a reminder. But Bigdei Kodeshholy clothesare only holy when they cover Ish Kodesha holy person. To be an Ish Kadosh one does not need to be a priest. We all have the potential for such holiness. Perhaps we just need to dress the part.



Jonathan’s Pirke Avoth for the week

Pirke Avoth Perek 1 Mishnah 11


Note: In last weeks discussion  group there was an interesting difference between the mens and the womens opinions about the Jewish view of the importance and status of education.


Note: This commentary is taken from Ethics from Sinai by Irving M. Bunim and Visions of the Fathers by Abraham Twerski. Some sentences of the commentaries have been taken verbatim (in quotes) and others have been summarized. All relate to Mishnah 9. The Questions are my own.

Avtalyon said: O Sages, be careful with your words! You may incur the penalty of exile and be banished to a place of evil waters [heresy], and the disciples who follow after you will drink and die; and as a result the Heavenly Name will be profaned.


Ethics from Sinai


In the context of his own time, ruled by a dictatorial power, Avtalyon may imply a warning against indiscreet criticism of the ruling group, for it most certainly will lead to exile. Once in a hostile environment, saturated with the evil watersof strange philosophies, your disciples might succumb and imbibe the ideas. The ultimate consequences will be that the name of Heaven will be desecrated.


Question 1: Does this apply to everyone living in the galut?

Question 2: Does this apply to everyone living a secular life or who lives

                    away from the local Jewish community?


But in this teaching there is also an emphasis:You wise men , be careful with your words.


When we explain and interpret the Torah, part of our teaching may be our own: we may impute reasons why the Torah commanded this or prohibited that. It is of these explanations or rationalizations of our own that we must be extremely careful.King Salomon  argued that he was exempt from certain Torah rules because he was smart enough to avoid the pitfalls in not obeying them. He was wrong in this. The wise cannot exempt themselves from Torah because they feel they understand the realmeaning of the edicts and can avoid the pitfalls. Similarly we will run into problems if we rationalize and interpret commandments to mean what we want them to mean. An explanation for a Torah law is not necessarily the correct one and not necessarily the only one.


In reality, however, both the Biblical and Rabbinic law must be observed with equal punctiliousness. Both are integral parts of the Torah structure. It is often impossible to adhere to the Biblical law without observing the Rabbinic law which acts as its safeguard. The edicts f the Rabbis reflect a realistic knowledge of human nature.


Question 1:  We rationalize parts of the Torah we dont like or which we

                     feel dont apply to our modern lives. Is this unwise? Should we

                     stick to the letter of the law, as the Torah, all of it, comes from

                     Divine Revelation? Does this apply to Rabbinic Law as well?   

Question 2: How much of the Torah regulations  relate to some aspect of

                   human nature rather than the prohibitions themselves. i.e. could

                   the dietary laws reflect the tendency to lose ones faith if we eat

                   with others, rather than something being wrong with eating

                   pork?


There is yet another meaning to our mishnah: You wise men, be careful with your words; be preoccupied with your own Jewish teachings. Concern yourself primarily with the indigenous traditions of the Torah. i.e. do not validate Torah by the use of secular studies or the use of other philosophical or religious ideas. Doing so might drive Jews away from Judaism.


Question: Is this what happens when we study secular studies or other

                 religious traditions?


The text could also mean that we should not reveal the text to those without the wisdom or knowledge to understand it. It may be too subtle for the average mind and have negative effects. One must be able to gauge the capacity of his audience. Subtle philosophical concepts superficially understood can be most dangerous. Do not reveal profundities to those who are incapable of understanding them, lest they drink from murky watersand die a spiritual death.


It has been said, Never underestimate the stupidity of your audience.The capacity of people to misunderstand is truly gargantuan. When you teach, therefore, you must forever strive for clarity, for felicity of expression, for  precise wording. Ambiguous expressions, stories that are not to the point and matters capable of double meaning - of these be careful.


Words can piteously wound and epithets can mercilessly sting. The second Temple was destroyed because of internecine strife, among both people and leaders - a continuous baseless hatred. On the other hand, empty flattery and insincere praise can sometimes be as dangerous and irresponsible as an actual insult.

Question: Is this constant awareness and guardedness in speaking  necessary?



Visions of the Fathers


In todays world where words can quickly be spread, it is often very difficult to retract or explain words that have been said carelessly.



The Last Word -- The Lodzer, Then and Now

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