Friday, August 26
- 06:50 am – Shacharit
- 07:00 pm – Mincha
- 07:10 pm – Candle Lighting
Saturday, August 27
- 07:45 am – Shacharit at Salem Towers
- 08:45 am – Shacharit
- 09:24 am – Latest Time for Kriat Shema
- 10:30 am – Junior Congregation
- 11:15 am – Kiddush
- 06:40 pm – Mincha
- 07:10 pm – Se’udah Shlishit
- 08:00 pm – Ma’ariv
- 08:17 pm – Shabbat Ends
Week of August 28 – September 2
- 08:00 am – Sunday
- 06:40 am – Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday (Rosh Chodesh Elul) and Thursday
- 06:50 am – Friday
- 07:00 pm – Sunday – Thursday
- 07:00 pm – Friday
- 07:30 pm – Sunday – Thursday
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Weekly Words of Torah
United in the Service of Hashem
Insights into Parshat Re’eh of Mr. Yechiel Bresler of Yeshivat Sha’alvim, by Rav Re’uven Ungar of Sha’alvim.
In this week’s Parsha, Parshat Re’eh, the Pasuk tells us we are Children to Hashem. The next part of the Pasuk tells us literally not to “cut ourselves or make a bald spot between the eyes of a dead person” but the famous Midrash gives us a another meaning of the remainder of the Pasuk. The Midrash tells us that the second half of the Pasuk is telling us not to “make bundles and be separated.” It is the commandment of a Tzibbur, that of a community. That all Jews must remember at the core we are all connected and we can not separate from each other.
It is recorded in the Sefer “Chofetz Chaim Al HaTorah” that someone once asked the Chofetz Chaim why it is necessary that there be “Chassidim” and “Mitnagdim” and even within these groups themselves they are even split up into more segments? Why are there so many ways for people to serve Hashem? What would we be missing if there was only one group of Jews who all davened the same and served Hashem in the same way?
The Chofetz Chaim answered this man with a perfect example. He told this Jew to go ask the head of the Russian army why he needs so many different units in his army. Why does he need a navy, air force, foot soldiers, etc. why not just put everyone in one unit? This answer is obvious. In order to defeat the enemy, you need to attack in many different ways. If you only attacked in one way it would never work. Each unit has a strength that another unit doesn’t. Without one of the units, the attack would fail and the army would be wiped out. But with the many different units, as long as they are working together, they will be able to win the war. So too, says the Chofetz Chaim, with all the types of Jews. The different types of Jews each have their way of serving Hashem and fighting the Yetzer Hara. Some focus more on their davening, some on learning, etc. But the main thing the Chofetz Chaim emphasized is that they are all doing it with the Kavannah of serving Hashem. Together, we will defeat the enemy and overcome the Yetzer Hara.
This is a lesson that is very relevant today. Unfortunately, today we think that if someone doesn’t serve Hashem the way I do then the other person is wrong. If someone has different views about a matter we quickly disregard their opinion and don’t listen to what they have to say.
The Chofetz Chaim points out that the message of this week’s Parsha is that not only are we allowed to have different opinions and different Hashkafot but we need it. If we all served Hashem the same way we would be missing so much of the Avodat Hashem necessary. Instead of looking at someone with a different opinion as our enemy we need to embrace them and view them as our teammate and realize that without them we could never succeed. The main point though, as the Chofetz Chaim made clear, is that it is all within Halachic boundaries and with the right Kavannot. If we do this then we will have the key to success.
May we be Zocheh to recognize this message and all come together to serve Hashem each in our own way and through this bring about the ultimate Geulah B’meheyra B’yameinu.