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April 29, 2010 - Image 46

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 2010-04-29

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.

t./141iv

Grad bike

Lve .st
BMX It
Showy

Spirituality

TORAH PORTION

An Open Invitation
To Visit A Synagogue

Parshat Emor: Leviticus 21:1-24:23;
Ezekiel 44:15-31.

At the
19301
fBetween-Evergreen & Skouthielld

p

1:30 pm Cl#1drens rally
2:00 pm-Bike stunt show
2:45 pm-A great carnival
4:00 pm Grand Itsffle

f

Ps;TC;7110
11.

/10
available for purekase

for more information log on to
www.CitabacH3ingitatrifarms.c om

a project of Chabad of Bingham Farms in conjunction with Yeshivas Lubavitch

JN Community Forum
Featured Blogger:

Set aside time
on Shabbat for
an appointment
with God.

Meet
Rabbi
Jason Miller



His blog is about sports, technology, politics, pop
culture, and current events all through a Jewish
perspective. Read his latest blog at:

http://thejewishnews.com/community

Check out his recent blog:

Living in a Post-Denominational World

1567310

46

arshat Emor
munity together. The Jewish
begins with laws
Encyclopedia translates
pertaining to the
Ohel Mo'ed as the "'tent of
priesthood (Leviticus 21
mutual appointment, that
& 22). The 23rd chapter
is, [the] place of meeting?'
of Leviticus is the festival
All too often, people have
calendar. We find descrip-
complained to me that they
tions of holidays in various
were not welcome in a con-
places in the Torah, but the
gregation because they were
calendar in Leviticus 23 is
not wealthy. I have heard
the most complete.
people tell me that they
Rabbi Amy B.
It begins with the weekly
would have liked to become
Bigman
day of rest, Shabbat, and
Jewish, but were told that
Special to the
includes the pilgrimage
they had to be born Jewish
Jewish News
festivals (Pesach, Shavuot,
and could not convert to
and Sukkot) as well as what
Judaism.
we now know as the High Holidays or
I would not want to be part of a
the Days of Awe (Yamim Nora'im). The
congregation or a religion that didn't
24th chapter contains a variety of laws.
welcome people. Indeed, we are told in
The calendar found in Leviticus
the Torah numerous times to welcome
23 begins with the words "The Lord
the stranger, to welcome those who
spoke to Moses, say-
feel or perceive them-
ing: 'Speak to the
selves as unwelcome.
Israelite people and
Perhaps that is why
say to them: These
I prefer the transla-
are My fixed times,
tion of mo'ed as an
the fixed times of the
appointment: We
Lord, which you shall
make appointments
proclaim as sacred
all the time — with
occasions." The word
our doctors, with our
that is translated into
clients, with our rab-
English as "fixed time," mo'ed, can also bis. All we have to do is pick up the
be translated as "appointment."
telephone and make an appointment.
We could now translate the text
So, too, with God: all we have to do
as follows: "... These are My appoint-
is make an appointment. Set aside
ments, the appointments of the Lord,
time on Shabbat for an appointment
which you shall proclaim as sacred
with God. Come worship with your
occasions."
Jewish family at the synagogue of
This sounds more like God is invit-
your choice. Study the weekly par-
ing us in rather than commanding us.
shah with a friend. Judaism is easily
Rather than looking at the holy days
accessible.
and festivals as fixed times, as times
where duty compels us to come to the
Amy Bigman is a rabbi at Congregation
synagogue or to partake of certain tra- Shaarey Zedek in East Lansing.
ditions in our homes, we should look
at this as an invitation.
God is inviting us to return to God,
to our people, and to our traditions,
Conversations
even if we may have absented our-
How many people do you know
selves from them previously. We may
who are waiting for an invitation
not have stepped foot in a synagogue
to return to the synagogue?
recently, yet there is God inviting us to
What can you do to make
come back in.
newcomers feel more welcome
Indeed, our Torah tells us of the
at your synagogue?
Ohel Mo'ed ("Tent of Meeting") which
our ancestors built to bring the com-

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