The New Shul



One of the themes of parshat B’har (the first of this week’s two parshiyot) is the responsibility that members of a community have to care for one another. “If your brother, being in straits, comes under your authority. . . let him live by your side.” Focusing on the words “by your side,” Rabbi Shlomo of Karlin taught that, if we wish to help a person who is stuck in the mud, we must get down into the mud with him/her. We cannot save someone from above, but only side-by-side.

Why is that? Because, when people struggle, when they feel isolated and cut off, their deepest need is to know that they are not alone. Tangible help, which can be offered from a safe distance, is important. But empathy, which can be offered only up close, is often more important. By being present with people where they are, we help them to recover their sense of self, their dignity as human beings. By standing side-by-side with them, we help them in a way that we cannot from above.

May we, as a community of hesed, of loving-kindness, help each other in that deepest sense in times of need.

  • 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 Fay and Aubrey Palestrant.
  • Childcare is available from 10 am to noon on Shabbat mornings.Beyond Bim Bom I for grades K to 3 is from 10:15 to 11:15 am this Shabbat. Parashah study for teens is from 10:15 to 11:15 am.
  • Minyanim during the week are on Sunday mornings at 9:30 am, and on Wednesday mornings at 7 am.
  • Shavuot begins on Tuesday evening May 14. Join us for our Tikkun Leil Shavuot — our all-night vigil of learning and discussion — beginning at 9 pm. Morning prayers for the first day of Shavuot, Wednesday May 15, will be outdoors at 5 am. The service for the second day of Shavuot, Thursday May 16, will begin at  9 am and will include Yizkor, the memorial prayer.