The New Shul

Parshat Sh’mini

This week’s parashah, Sh’mini, tells the story of Aaron and his sons’ first day of service as priests. The parashah begins: “On the eighth day [of the priests’ ordination], Moshe called to Aaron and the elders of Israel.”  Why were the elders included in Moshe’s call to Aaron, though they were not  involved in the priestly service? Rabbi Akiva explained: “Just as a bird cannot fly without wings, the people of Israel cannot exist without its elders.” The elders had to be included because, without them, the community could not “take off” on this new spiritual venture.

We know that children are our wings. Children energize us by connecting us to the future, and in that way help us to fly. Rabbi Akiva reminds us that our elders too are our wings. By connecting us to the past, by bringing us wisdom and perspective, they lighten our burdens and help us to fly as well.

Spiritual communities thrive by drawing energy and strength from all generations. May the awareness of how deeply we depend on one another always raise us higher and higher.

  • Shabbat services at The New Shul are on Friday evenings from 6 to 7 pm and on Saturday mornings from 9 am to 12 noon. The kiddush this Shabbat is sponsored by Jeffrey and Laura Karp in honor of Jacob’s 16th birthday and Benjamin’s 6th birthday.
  • Childcare is available from 10 am to noon on Shabbat mornings. Parashah study for teens is from 10:15 to 11:15 am.
  • “Finding Our Way,” Rabbi Wasserman’s class on the prayer book continues this Shabbat, April 6, after kiddush.
  • Minyanim during the week are on Sunday mornings is at 9:30 am, and on Wednesday mornings at 7 am.
  • On Shabbat morning, April 13, we will celebrate the bat mitzvah of Ryan Lamm. The kiddush will be sponsored by Jason and Carey Lamm.
  • On Shabbat morning, April 20, we will celebrate the bat mitzvah of Morgana Yellen. The kiddush will be sponsored by Cheryl Yellen.