Archive for the ‘From The Rabbi’ Category

From The Rabbi – Parshat Vayeshev 5778

The past few days have been eventful, with the announcement of the US to formally recognize Yerushalayim  (Jerusalem) as Israel’s official capital and the intention of Donald Trump to move the US embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.

As usual, the international media have gone to town with this on grand scale, as my esteemed friend, Harold Garfield put it “Jews are News”.

Not that we require the US President to confirm the fact that Jerusalem has always been the focal point of the Jewish people, and the location towards all which our prayers are directed and, considered to be the gateway to heaven since the very genesis of our nation, from the days of Avraham Avinu and throughout Jewish history. The name Yerushalim is a combination of two words “Yare” (awe) “Shalem” (complete), representing the idea that the Holy atmosphere of that city, evokes great spiritual feelings and awe, which those who have ever visite the Old City of Jerusalem, particularly the Kotel  (Western wall), will attest.

At some of the most significant moments in the Jewish calendar,such as the conclusion of the Pesach Seder,and the Yom Kippur service, we declare our wish and prayer to return to YerushalyimLeshana Habba’ah BiYerushalyim – Next year in Jerusalem!

At the centre of the Chanukah story,which we begin celebrating next week, is the re-dedication of the Bet Hamikdash – Temple in Jerusalem, the complete restoration of which, we include in every service and Grace after Meals.                     

With Chanukah commencing this coming Tuesday evening, please see information below regarding the first night Chanukah Menorah lighting at the Brisbane Synagogue on Tuesday evening,and various other    Chanukah events and information.

As we enter the holiday season, with many members going away, please make an effort to support your Shul by attending services so that we may ensure ongoing Minyanim.

May we merit to witness once again the complete restoration of Jerusalem and lighting of the Holy Menorah in the Bet Hamikdash (Temple) in a world filled with much light, peace and harmony. 

Shabbat Shalom and happy Chanukah

Rabbi Levi and Dvorah Jaffe

From the Rabbi – Parshat Vayishlach 5778

There has been a long-standing debate within the Jewish community regarding the manner in which we ought to engage society and the world at large. On the one hand we know that we are Jewish and wish to uphold our values and way of life, and ensure Jewish continuity, whereas on the other hand, as members of a larger society, should we not blend in more and adopt the ways of the world. There are those who believe that we should withdraw from society and lead reclusive lives from the outside world, whereas others believe that we must engage and assimilate fully within society.

This week we read in the Torah of the meeting between Yakov and Esav. Many years have now past since Yakov fled home from his angry brother Esav, who felt cheated by Yakov’s for having received the first-born blessings, which Esav felt were rightfully his.

The biblical characters and stories of out forefathers and mothers, are not merely individual stories, rather prototypes for the future of Jewish history, and represent physiological, spiritual and emotional guidance to us all.

Our sages point out many lessons we can learn from the manner in which Yakov prepared himself for his confrontation with his brother Esav, and many Jews actually recite this Parsha at the beginning of each week, as preparation to their engagement with the material world.

Our goal in life is to engage the world, and infuse it with a sense of purpose and meaning, as it is for this reason that the world was created. This is not an easy task but, as demonstrated from the story of Chanukah, which we will celebrate soon, each small additional light and goodness that we ignite, will lead us to the ultimate re-unification of Yakov and Esav, and the final redemption.

With less than two weeks to Chanukah, please see flier below regarding Chanukah in the City and may the light and miracles of Kislev be a source much blessing to you and your family for good health, happiness, Yiddisher Nachas,

Shabbat Shalom and may we share good news

Rabbi Levi and Dvorah Jaffe

Shabbat and Festival Times

Fri 20th October: Light Candles 5.40pm
Shabbat ends: Sat 21st 6.35pm

Fri 27th October: Light Candles 5.45pm
Shabbat ends: Sat 28th 6.40pm

Fri 3rd November: Light Candles 5.50pm
Shabbat ends: Sat 4th 6.45pm

Fri 10th November: Light Candles 5.55pm
Shabbat ends: Sat 11th 6.51pm

Fri 17th November: Light Candles 6pm
Shabbat ends: Sat 18th 6.57pm

Fri 24th November: Light Candles 6.06pm
Shabbat ends: Sat 25th 7.03pm

Fri 1st December: Light Candles 6.11pm
Shabbat ends: Sat 2nd 7.09pm

Fri 8th December: Light Candles 6.16pm
Shabbat ends: Sat 9th 7.15pm

Chanukah Tues 12th eve – Wed 20th

Fri 15th December: Light Candles 6.21pm
Shabbat ends: Sat 16th 7.19pm

Fri 22nd December: Light Candles 6.25pm
Shabbat ends: Sat 23rd 7.23pm

Fri 29th December: Light Candles 6.28pm
Shabbat ends: Sat 30th 7.26pm

Fri 5th January: Light Candles 6.29pm
Shabbat ends: Sat 6th 7.27pm

Fri 12th January: Light Candles 6.30pm
Shabbat ends: Sat 13th 7.27pm

Fri 19th January: Light Candles 6.29pm
Shabbat ends: Sat 20th 7.25pm

Fri 26th January: Light Candles 6.27pm
Shabbat ends: Sat 27th 7.22pm