Archive for October, 2023

From The Rabbi – Parshat Lech Lecha 5784

This week we commence reading about, and living with Avraham Avinu – the founding father of the Jewish people, with whom Hashem communicated His first instruction, Lech Lecha – “Go for Yourself, from your land….to the Land which I will show you”, the land of Israel, the eternal homeland of the Jewish people.

Thus began, not just a geographical journey to relocate homes rather, this was an invitation to make an existential shift. Leave yourself. Step away from your perspective. Stop living according to your habits and inclinations, and begin to live according to My Will.

Close to four thousand years later, here we are still heeding the call to step out of ourselves and to commit to that which is desired of us by Hashem.

As we are collectively dealing with, and trying to respond to the horrific circumstances facing our people, during these extremely challenging times, we reflect on the very first words conveyed to the very first Jew, Avraham, and we must draw inspiration to continue our journey with optimism and hope. Too many of us are allowing ourselves to wallow in our sadness and fall into despair and self pity. As challenging as the situation is, we must take decisive action to continue the mission for which we have been entrusted, to spread light and goodness to the world, with unprecedented drive and tenacity, as this is the only Jewish response to the darkness that threatens to engulf us, and with the help of Hashem, we will witness open miracles, and the safe return of all the hostages to their families in the very near future.

In the meantime, we must march forward in the spirit of Avraham and, as we read of the many challenges confronted by him and his wife Sarah, and their perseverance and deep faith in Harshen which pulled them through, we too will continue to survive and thrive, despite the horrific challenges we and the world are facing today.

We appeal to you to please continue to bring light and holiness into the world, though the study of the Torah and the performance of the Mitzvot, as this is the way we strengthen ourselves and  generate added protection to the people of Israel, wherver they may be.

Kol Hakavod to the many members and friends, who have signed up for the fascinating and empowering Kabbalah course, commencing this Monday evening, for which a few places are still available. Please see details and online registration link below.                 .

Wishing you Shabbat Shalom, and may we share good news

Rabbi Levi & Dvorah Jaffe

From The Rabbi – Shabbat Bereishit 5784

This time last week, we were sending our weekly message from a peaceful Yerushalayim, as its name suggests and, as we all know, Israel has since tragically turned into a horrible war zone, with too many casualties to bear, among them, family members and friends of our own community members.

While the whole situation is heartbreaking, it is heartwarming for our family to currently be here with the amazingly resilient people of Israel at this critical time. In addition to reciting extra prayers, and giving Tzedakah – Charity, we have been trying to do our bit to assist, by giving blood, and volunteering in various capacities, as are so many people here, from all walks of life. It was overwhelmingly uplifting to experience the long lines of people from all backgrounds, nationalities and ages, eagerly waiting to donate their blood, at the Magen David Adom building, with such incredible spirit, unity and camaraderie. The countless selfless volunteers there are truly like angels from heaven.

As we all try to come to terms with what is happening and to make sense of this completely incomprehensible situation, as Jews we turn to the guiding light of our Torah which, this week begins again from the book of Bereshit – Genesis, with an account of the creation of the universe, which began with the creation of light, which our sages explain, is a metaphor for goodness, which is deeply embedded in all of creation.

Our purpose in this world is to extract the goodness inherent in every creation and in all circumstances, which is sometimes so concealed that it requires superhuman resources to reveal. We are currently challenged with such a huge test and, if the unified spirit of the Jewish people and their deep desire to connect meaningfully with their heritage and traditions, to our Creator in heaven, and to each other, is anything to go by, then it is surely time for Hashem to please come out of His ‘Hiding Place’ and for us to finally hear the great Shofar, ushering in our long awaited redemption, and the era of enduring global peace and tranquility, Amen, Kein Yehi Ratzon – so may it be, immediately!                

We again express our deep thanks to Yossi White for graciously filling in for us in our absence, to assist with the leading of the services and reading the Torah over Sukkot and Simchat Torah, and to all our wonderful Shul attendees.

The well-known Yiddish adage goes, “Vi Mir Shtelt Zich Avek Shabbos Bereshis, azoy geit der Gantzer Yor” – “the way we establish ourselves Shabbat Bereshit, so follows the whole year”. Let us therefore infuse this Shabbat with a spiritual injection of added prayer and study and support for our community and for Israel., and may the coming year be filled with only revealed good for all.

Please make an effort to attend our Synagogue services and and see the flyer below regarding the Solidarity Rally being held in Brisbane this Sunday.

Wishing you Shabbat Shalom, and may we share good news.