Archive for March, 2018

From The Rabbi – Parshat Vayakhel / Pekudei

Why marry Jewish?

Please join us this Sunday evening for an enlightening talk by visiting internationally acclaimed  author and speaker, Doron Kornbluth on this topic and the related issue of raising our children to love being Jewish. Please see information below in this regard and RSVP today!

What is the Jewish view about the notion of ‘Live and let Live’? At a recent lecture on the topic of ‘communication’, we came to the startling discovery that, according to western society, there is nothing illegal about ignoring the distress of another individual, even if they are in a life-threatening situation. According to Torah, however, there is a clear verse, instructing us ‘not to stand idly over the blood of our neighbour’ (Lev.19:16). In other words, we are morally held accountable for our lack of action in helping others who are in distress.

If we take into consideration the full ramifications of this principal, we come to the conclusion that we all have a moral duty to do whatever we can to encourage others to improve their lives and to positively influence society. The reason for this logic is that we are all in the same boat,with a common goal and mission to accomplish, namely to make our world into a place of goodness and holiness for the Divine presence.

The main content of this week’s double Parsha is the implementation of the building of the Mishkan(Tabernacle), which constituted the physical space created by the Jewish people to house the Divine presence.

Although, the physical Mishkan and Bet Hamikdash are no longer here, their spiritual implications and messages are eternal and ever-present in our lives and serve to remind us of our duty to make the world into  a spiritual sanctuary for Hashem.

This week we conclude the second book of the Torah and we again remove an additional Torah from the Aron Kodesh (ark) for the special reading of Parshat Parah (the Red Cow).

As in previous years, communal Seders will be conducted on both nights of Pesach in the Brisbane Synagogue Memorial Hall. Information in this regard will distributed please G-d next week, along with other Pesach (Passover) information. In the meantime, please see below information regarding Pesach products available in Brisbane and the Gold Coast.

Shabbat Shalom and may we share good news.             

Rabbi Levi and Dvorah Jaffe

From The Rabbi – Parshat Ki Tisa 5778

What a wonderful Purim we enjoyed at the Brisbane Synagogue, with a buzzing Shul, filled with Purim spirit, along with many children and their families, who enjoyed the Megillah reading followed by delicious Hamantaschen, graciously prepared by our dedicated communal volunteers, in the Memorial Hall.

As usual, our fancy dress competition was a highlight of the evening, with ‘Dr’ Mia Harpaz taking first place, followed closely by ‘Thing 1 and Thing 2’, Elovics sisters, Maya and Shelly, and Woolfy Zavodnik as ‘ET & Elliot’.

The celebrations continued the following day at Sinai College, with many members of the community in attendance for the exciting program, which was enjoyed by all.

Last Shabbat, we were honoured to welcome at our Shul Melbourne businessman and communal activist Dr Danny Lanzer and his wife Vivien, who joined us for the Kiddush, following the service in the Memorial Hall.

As per our standard practice, we invited the Lanzers to share a few words and Danny shared the following beautiful concept, beginning with a question, “Where do we find Haman mentioned in the 5books of the Torah? In the beginning of creation, Adam and Chava (Eve) were told that they may eat from the fruits of any tree they desired, with the exception of one tree. Following the incident when they ate the fruit of that very tree, Hashem appears to Adam and exclaims Hamin HaetzHazeh Asher Tziviticha levilti achal mimenu Achalta? Did you eat of tree which i instructed you not to?”.The word ‘Hamin’ has the same Hebrew spelling as ‘Haman’.

Drawing from his profession as a plastic surgeon, Danny shared with us the simple, but profound message that, from all the fruits they were permitted to eat, Adam and Chava felt compelled to eat from this particular tree, the only one that was off limits to them. Unfortunately many of us suffer from this ‘Haman’ syndrom, thinking that if we could only enjoy that one item which we do not have, we will somehow become happy and content.

I could not help myself from reflecting on the above message as we gathered last Sunday at the Mt Gravatt cemetery for the Hakamat Matzevah (Stone Setting) of our dear beloved communal legend, the late Reb Tzvi Hirsh (George) Frey OBM, who epitomised the concept of “Who is the wealthy man, he who is happy with his lot”, miraculously arriving in Brisbane all alone in 1939, from Germany, with a burning love for his heritage, Israel and Jewish continuity, throwing himself into communal life for decades, serving  humbly a whole host of communal and Zionist organisations, while raising a wonderful family. May his memory be a blessing and may we all be inspired to follow his shining example.  

Shabbat Shalom             

Rabbi Levi and Dvorah Jaffe

Shabbat and Festival Times


Fri  Jan 4th: Light Candles 6.29pm
Shabbat ends: Sat 5th 7.27pm

Fri  Jan 11th: Light Candles 6.30pm
Shabbat ends: Sat 12th 7.27pm

Fri  Jan 18th: Light Candles 6.29pm
Shabbat ends: Sat 19th 7.26pm

Fri  Jan 25th: Light Candles 6.28pm
Shabbat ends: Sat 26th 7.23pm

Fri  Feb 1st: Light Candles 6.24pm
Shabbat ends: Sat 2nd 7.19pm

Fri  Feb 8th: Light Candles 6.20pm
Shabbat ends: Sat 9th 7.14pm

Fri  Feb 15th: Light Candles 6.15pm
Shabbat ends: Sat 16th 7.08pm

Fri  Feb 22nd: Light Candles 6.09pm
Shabbat ends: Sat 23rd 7.02pm

Fri  March 1st: Light Candles 6.02pm
Shabbat ends: Sat 2nd 6.54pm

Fri  March 8th: Light Candles 5.55pm
Shabbat ends: Sat 9th 6.47pm

Fri  March 15th: Light Candles 5.47pm
Shabbat ends: Sat 16th 6.39pm

Thurs March 21st: Purim

Fri  March 22nd: Light Candles 5.40pm
Shabbat ends: Sat 23rd 6.31pm

Fri  March 29th: Light Candles 5.32pm
Shabbat ends: Sat 30th 6.23pm

Fri  April 5th: Light Candles 5.24pm
Shabbat ends: Sat 6th 6.16pm

Fri  April 12th: Light Candles 5.17pm
Shabbat ends: Sat 13th 6.08pm

Fri  April 19th: Passover Eve, First Seder: Light Candles 5.10pm
Sat 20th: Second Seder: Light candles after 6.02pm

Fri  April 26th: Light Candles 5.03pm
Shabbat/Passover ends: Sat 27th 5.56pm