Counting the Omer: The beauty of live theater

April 30, 2014

pic for omer

Count the omer and explore the attribute of tiferet, beauty, by witnessing the power of live theater at our production of The Fiery Furnace, Sunday May 4 at 4 pm at RS.

We are staging an original musical right here in this sanctuary on Sunday, May 4. The Fiery Furnace: A New Rock Musical was written for us and directed by John Rea, the director of MacGuffin Theater and Film Company here in Center City, and it features 30 of our Mercaz Limud students ages 5-15.

The story is based on an episode from the book of Daniel. It features big characters, heroic and brave acts, passionate proclamations of faith, and, best of all, dreams and visions. It lends itself so easily to a larger than life musical in the tradition of Joseph and The Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat (and wait until you see some of the costumes).

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Counting the Omer: Darkness to Light

April 29, 2014

These words from Rabbi Kuhn shine a light on the striving we do during the omer and every day, to bring our characters to the next level of goodness:  

One of the most beautiful ideas of Judaism is that we should strive to improve ourselves every day.  This is the purpose of the High Holy Days, during which we take the time to examine our lives and consider what we have done wrong in the past year, and what we can do to become better people in the coming year. Read the rest of this entry »


Counting the Omer: Counting Our Blessings

April 28, 2014

Last week, I had the privilege of having lunch with 2 different past presidents of our congregation, one on the occasion of his 90th birthday, and the other one younger than that.  But each one told me the same thing.  They each said they feel so blessed to have had such a good and meaningful life, and that each day they get up and thank God for their blessings.  They count each day as precious.  This is the real meaning of counting the omer.  Let us treasure the time we have and resolve to use it well, counting each day as a spiritual journey toward blessing.  –Rabbi Bill Kuhn Read the rest of this entry »


Counting the Omer: Courage Over Fear

April 27, 2014

crossing_of_red_sea___pastels_by_pawlis-d4b3hspWe all feel fear.  The question is, do we act on it?  When, in their escape from slavery, the Israelites are stuck between the Sea of Reeds before them and the Egyptian chariots behind them, what’s Moses’ message?  Don’t be afraid. Rabbi Alan Lew, of blessed memory, notes that perhaps the Israelites didn’t really need to be afraid: The Pharaoh sent 600 chariots, while the Israelites numbered more than a million.  Why would such an enormous group be afraid of an army of so few?  His answer is that they are not responding to what was really there, nor even to what they saw.  Rather they were responding to a phantom.  They were responding to a fear-inducing product of their own imagination.  So when Moses says “Don’t be afraid” he means “don’t panic” or “move forward” or “Don’t spend your life anxious about the things that seem scary or the demons you imagine.”   Read the rest of this entry »


Counting the Omer: Out of the Closet

April 26, 2014

 

https://www.ted.com/talks/geena_rocero_why_i_must_come_out

For the 12th day of the omer in this week of givurah, strength, the courage of one fashion model to speak her truth.

Baruch Ata Adonai, Elohenu Melech ha-olam asher kidishanu b’mitzvotav vitzivanu al s’firat ha’omer.  Blessed are You, Eternal our God, Ruler of the universe, who makes us holy with sacred actions and enjoins us to count the omer.

Hayom shenayim asar yom, shehem shavuah echad vachamishah yamim, la-omer.  Today is 12 days which is one week and 5 days of the Omer.

Wishing you a meaningful omer– Your RS Clergy


Counting the Omer: Voice

April 25, 2014

Is it ok to be angry?  Jewish tradition says yes–anger is valuable when it drives us to stand against injustice.  For today’s omer counting and this week’s focus on might, givurah, we celebrate these girls who raise their voices for the purpose of justice.

Baruch Ata Adonai, Elohenu Melech ha-olam asher kidishanu b’mitzvotav vitzivanu al s’firat ha’omer.  Blessed are You, Eternal our God, Ruler of the universe, who makes us holy with sacred actions and enjoins us to count the omer.

Hayom achad asar yom, shehem shavuah echad v’arba-ah yamim, la-omer.  Today is 11 days which is one week and 4 days of the Omer.

Wishing you a meaningful omer– Your RS Clergy


Counting the Omer: Listening

April 24, 2014

Sometimes, the mitzvah is just to listen.  For this week’s omer counting focused on strength, in reverence for next week’s observance of Yom HaShoah, Holocaust Remembrance Day, we give thanks for the many survivors who allow us to listen to them.  This Sunday (10:15 am at RS), we’ll welcome survivor Ralph Franklin to tell us his story.

Baruch Ata Adonai, Elohenu Melech ha-olam asher kidishanu b’mitzvotav vitzivanu al s’firat ha’omer.  Blessed are You, Eternal our God, Ruler of the universe, who makes us holy with sacred actions and enjoins us to count the omer.

Hayom asarah yamim, shehem shavuah echad, ushlosha yamim la-omer.  Today is 10 days which are one week and 3 days of the Omer.

Wishing you a meaningful omer– Your RS Clergy