Rabbi Melissa Crespy
Striking me, on this year's reading of Parashat No·ah, were the two following verses: God caused a wind to blow across the earth, and the waters subsided (Genesis 8:1), and But the dove could not find a resting place for its foot (v'lo matz'ah ha-yonah manoah), and returned to him to the ark, for there was water over all the earth (Genesis 8:9). On the first verse, the Etz Hayim Humash comments: "As the waters symbolize chaos and the undoing of Creation, so the movement of the wind forecasts the return of order." (p. 45) And of course we know that a few verses later, the dove sent out for a third time does not return. The dove has found a resting place on earth, and order has begun its return.
Each year, it seems to me, as we broaden our life experience, we see things in the Torah that had not touched us beforehand. This year, the juxtaposition of the chaos of the Flood, and the order that begins as the waters subside, struck me particularly because there is a good deal of chaos in my life at the moment - and the "ordered" moments in my life are to be treasured. As I thought about the dove in the verse, and the moments that bring me peace, I couldn't help but think of the Shabbat zemer, "Yom Shabbaton". In this special song sung at the Shabbat table, the refrain takes its wording right from our verse 9 above and says: "The day of rest should not be forgotten, its memory is like a satisfying aroma. On it the dove found rest (yonah matz'ah vo manoah), and on it shall rest exhausted ones."
The people Israel is often symbolized by the dove (see Song of Songs 2:14), and the dove in the No·ah story found rest on the "seventh day". Though the seventh day in the No·ah narrative may not be Shabbat - the seventh day of our week - the composer of the zemer intimates that the people Israel (the dove) have always found rest on Shabbat. The zemer is a catchy one - filled with rhyming verses, love for Shabbat, and remembrances of God's covenant with No·ah and with us. It's no wonder that it is a popular Shabbat table song.
But the deeper meaning of the zemer and its allusions touched me profoundly this year, because it speaks of a weary people, a people in chaos - the Israelite nation as a whole, and the individuals who make it up - and it teaches us that there is an antidote to this chaos - if only for a weekly 25-hour period. The order, the lack of pressure, the peace, and the inner calm which many of us seek is to be found in God's special gift to us - Shabbat. When we make the effort to prepare for it, when we set it aside as a day when we stop "wrestling with the world" - as Rabbi A. J. Heschel tells us - and instead "care for the seed of eternity planted in the soul" (The Sabbath, p. 13), we can find a haven from the chaos of the world.
Shabbat at its greatest can be sublime; for me - and I suspect for many of us busy, harried people - it is essential for restoring a sense of balance, a sense of order and a sense of peace.
These words of Torah were taken from The JTS Torah Commentary archive:
|May Their Memories Be For a Blessing
10/3/2013 (29 Tishrei)
10/4/2013 (30 Tishrei)
10/5/2013 (1 Heshvan)
10/6/2013 (2 Heshvan)
Sam Thomas Balkin
10/7/2013 (3 Heshvan)
10/8/2013 (4 Heshvan)
10/9/2013 (5 Heshvan)
10/10/2013 (6 Heshvan)
10/11/2013 (7 Heshvan)
10/14/2013 (10 Heshvan)
10/15/2013 (11 Heshvan)
Arthur Aaron Lovinger
10/16/2013 (12 Heshvan)
Joseph Irving FriedmanGertrude Nusholtz
10/21/2013 (17 Heshvan)
10/23/2013 (19 Heshvan)
10/24/2013 (20 Heshvan)
Naomi Lillian Markowitz
Irving A. Rubin
10/25/2013 (21 Heshvan)
10/26/2013 (22 Heshvan)
10/28/2013 (24 Heshvan)
10/29/2013 (25 Heshvan)
Fara Caplan Baer
10/31/2013 (27 Heshvan)
Mrs. Linda Kozlowski
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The Kapen Family:
Unveiling for Dr. Sheldon Kapen will take place
11 a.m., Sunday October 6th at Clover Hill Park Cemetery.
Please click here if you wish to permanently memorialize a loved one by purchasing a yahrtzeit plaque.
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This week there is a bar mitzvah at Temple Kol Ami. PLEASE USE THE SHUTTLE PARKING FROM PRINCE OF PEACE. SHUTTLE BEGINS AT 8:45 a.m.*
This week is also hazardous waste drop-off at WB Township.
Your patience on Walnut Lake Road is appreciated.
Friday, October 4th
6 p.m. Minha/Kabbalat Shabbat/Maariv, Chapel
Saturday, October 5th
9 a.m. Services, CHAPEL.
10 a.m., Youth Room for ages 12 and under.
11 a.m. "Reflections on the Siddur" with Dr. Mitch Parker, Lower level. All are welcome.
Next Shabbat, October 12th, we will celebrate the bar mitzvah of Sammy Saperstein, son of Susan Knoppow and David Saperstein, and brother of Miriam and Josh. Sammy is also the grandson of Sharon and Jerry Knoppow and Lynda and Dr. Stanley Saperstein. Mazel Tov!
Kiddush Lunch is available through the generosity of weekly sponsors. Please e-mail or call the synagogue office if you would like to sponsor a kiddush lunch. You may also make a donation to the synagogue specifically for the Kiddush Lunch Fund by clicking here.
*SHUTTLE PARKING NOTE: PLEASE DO NOT PARK in front of people's mailboxes in the neighborhoods or on Walnut Lake Road. Thank you in advance for your cooperation. PLEASE USE THE SHUTTLE to avoid any conflicts. Future Shuttle Dates: October 12, October 19th.
To our good friend Rabbi Eric Yanoff who will be awarded the "Guardian of Israel Award" at the Greater Philadelphia District ZOA Gala Dinner on October 9th in Philadelphia.
NEW CORNER: TIKKUN OLAM|
Repair the World
One of the outcomes of the September 16th meeting of our Sisterhood was members stepping up to chair additional committees and volunteer opportunities for our synagogue. those opportunities will be listed here. Additional ideas and volunteers are always welcome. Contact Betsy Wolf,
RONALD MCDONALD HOUSE, DETROIT
Prepare and serve dinner to families staying at Ronald McDonald House while their children receive treatment and care at Children's Hospital. This is a family friendly activity. Please e-mail Davida (DeDe) Robinson
if you wish to participate in this mitzvah. Available dates:
October 13, November 10th, December 8th.
DETROIT JEWISH COALITION FOR LITERACY
Tools to Teach Your Students to Love Learning
For new and Veteran Volunteers
Friday, October 4th, 10 a.m.-noon
West Bloomfield Public Library Meeting Room
Sponsored by the Jewish Community Relations Council, Detroit Jewish Colation for Literacy, Repair the World and Jewish Federation of Metropolitan Detroit
MITZVAH DAY 2013: December 25th
Registration begins November 1st. CELEBRATE THE STRENGTH OF COMMUNITY AND VOLUNTEER.
ONLINE SIGN-UP BEGINS NOVEMBER 1ST:
NEXT SISTERHOOD MEETING:
B'nai Israel Sisterhood is blooming with ideas to make our synagogue and community even better! Please join us at our next meeting:
MONDAY, OCTOBER 14TH, 7 P.M., CHAPEL
We will continue planning events and elect officers.
BOOK CLUB NIGHT at the Book Fair.
Monday, November 11th, 7:30 p.m.
West Bloomfield JCC
B'nai Israel Sisterhood plans to attend this event, when author Elizabeth L. Silver will discuss her book: The Execution of Noa P. Singleton.
Upcoming Youth and Family Activities
Upcoming Shabbat Youth Activities
Supervised Youth Activities, Room 3, lower level
provided for ages 12 and under
Shabbat mornings, 10-11:45 a.m.
To stay current on all youth and family activities, contact
Ilana Glazier to join the B'nai Israel Families Facebook Group.
TEEN MISSION 2014
JULY 1-AUGUST 1
2013-14 Grades 9-12 are eligible.
Registration begins September 23rd.
Questions? Contact Danielle S. Longo email@example.com or call
USY Summer Programs Registration is now open. 9-12 Graders eligible.
Programs include USY on Wheels, Mitzvah Missions, Israel Adventures, Italy/Israel Pilgrimage, Israel/Poland Seminar, Eastern Europe/Israel Pilgrimage.
Visit www.usy.org/escape/apply for more information and to download an application.
Upcoming Community Events
and TKA/BI Joint Opportunities
An Evening or Conversation and Song with Peter Yarrow (of Peter, Paul and Mary)
Sunday, October 6th, Temple Kol Ami
Doors open 6p.m., Show begins 7 p.m.
Tickets: $36.00 ($20.00 ages 13 and under)
$100.00 tickets include exclusive Meet and Greet with Peter Yarrow 5:30-6:30 and reserved seating. Buy tickets online: http://miipl.kintera.org/PeterYarrow or call Robin: 248-851-0463. Sponsored by the Michigan Interfaith Power and Light and Temple Kol Ami in support of Sustainability and Faith.
"Reflections on the Siddur," with Dr. Mitch Parker
Saturdays, 11-11:45 a.m.
October 5, 19 November 9, 23 December 7, 14
Mitch will focus on Ashrei, Aleinu, the Kaddish, Adon Olam, Yigdal, Hallel and Birkat Hamazon.
Class meets in the lower level, Room 9.
Additional Adult Education Information to be announced in October. Please check this space for future learning opportunities.
Caring Community Information
Refuah Sh'leimah/Wishing a Speedy Recovery. THE MISHEBEIRACH LIST IS BEING RESET. PLEASE E-MAIL NAMES YOU WISH TO BE ON THE LIST BY FRIDAY, OCTOBER 4TH. Please e-mail Michael Golob or call the synagogue: 248-432-2729 to add a name to our communal mishebeirach list.
Congregant looking for a ride to services
West Bloomfield congregant is looking for a ride to morning or evening minyan and/or Shabbat services. Please contact Rabbi Robbins at (610) 574-5179 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Thank you.
4 Ilene Miles
4 Emilie Weingarden
5 Beth Avadenka
11 Jonah Wolf
12 Naomi Reiter
15 Erin Graub
16 C. Michael Graub
16 Roxane Newhouse
16 Jordan Weiss
17 Lenny Jacobson
18 Steve Kaufman
19 Kenneth Brown
19 Ruth Kozlowski
20 Adam Marcotte
21 Annie Jacobson
23 Jerome Beale
23 Carrie Roth
24 Steven Dines
25 Ruby Robinson
26 Stacy Gittleman
28 Edith Wolok
29 Libby Beider
29 Adina Robbins
30 Philip Epstein
31 Benjamin Chudnow
31 Yael Duer
If your birthday or anniversary information is not listed, please email the synagogue so we can update our records.
B'nai Israel Synagogue is affiliated with USCJ,
United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism.