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Rabbi's Weekly Message

Rabbi peltz - thursday, october 10

It is always wonderful to have the whole TBS mishpaha, the whole TBS Family, together during Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur. I hope that your time in shul gave you an opportunity to reflect, reaffirm and recharge yourselves for the new year. You all looked great from the bima, and I hope that we will have many other opportunities over the course of this year to have more meaningful conversations and experiences. As much as it is nice to have well over 2,000 people in the building for the High Holy Days, it is overwhelming. So many people, such long services, and such complicated family juggling doesn’t make sitting down and having a relaxing conversation so easy (at least on the bima). Enter Sukkot. Though these four days between Yom Kippur and Sukkot are hectic, the holiday that begins Sunday night is certainly worth it. There is something primal and peaceful about sitting in the Sukkah and enjoying time with family and friends. In fact, the phrase Sukkat Shalom, “Sukkah of Peace,” often appears in the bible. We even just read about it towards the end of Yom Kippur in the Book of Jonah. The books says that Jonah is protected from the hot Mediterranean sun by a Sukkah. We also read about this Sukkat Shalom over the course of the Israelites’ journey through the desert, where God served as a sheltering presence during their 40 years of wandering. Paradoxically, our fragile Sukkot are meant to provide us with a sense of shalom. Though it might be a little chilly, and the wind might knock down a few branches here and there, our Sukkot reaffirm our faith in God’s sheltering presence. We too seek to attune ourselves to God’s presence like Jonah and the Israelites. Like them, our faith might not be constant or perfect, but there are moments when we can feel God’s presence. For me, the sukkah is a wonderful place to do that, to achieve that sense of shalom, of peace, fulfillment, and wholeness after the meaningful yet hectic days of Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur.  Take a look at the many different programs and learning sessions we have going on in the TBS sukkah over the course of the holiday, they are listed here. I hope that you will come by, see the beautiful art on the walls and the decorations on the roof done by our young children, and get a sense of what the notion of Sukkat Shalom is all about.

Shabbat Shalom and Hag Sukkot Samaeh!

Mon, October 14 2019 15 Tishrei 5780