Today is November 30, 2022 -

Congregation Sha'arey Israel

A Conservative Jewish Congregation serving the spiritual needs of the Middle Georgia Jewish community since 1904

611 First Street, Macon, GA 31201
Phone: (478) 745-4571
Email: sect@csi.mgacoxmail.com

A Word of Torah from the Rabbi

What’s in a Name?

  • Posted on November 5, 2022
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As I write these words the holiday season has passed and the Jewish calendar rocks along with the work week and Shabbat for a while. While this month is called Heshvan there’s an old tradition of calling this month MarHeshvan, which literally means “bitter Heshvan” — not a very nice thing to call this month! Continue Reading »

Today

  • Posted on September 5, 2022
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The word I want to share and dig into with you is Today. On the surface, all the word conveys is the unfolding conversation or scene that is occurring in the present — So, I’ll tell you that as I write these words, it’s a cool (72 degrees!) Thursday morning, and I’m gratefully soaking in Continue Reading »

How Do We Meaningfully Connect to Tragedies from Antiquity?

  • Posted on August 5, 2022
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For me, August holds the sadness of Tisha B’Av, the fast day commemorating the destruction of both Temples (the first, by the Babylonians, the second by the Romans), as well as a host of tragedies that befell our people long ago. Spending summers in Jewish summer camps, there were lessons to be learned, lessons to Continue Reading »

Your People Shall be My People

  • Posted on June 8, 2022
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The festival of Weeks (Shavuot) is just a few days away. We’ve been counting our way through seven weeks from the second night of Passover, and day #50 — Beginning on Saturday evening — is Shavuot. When we encounter this festival within the Torah, we find a harvest celebration of the first fruits – bikurim Continue Reading »

While We Pivot, What to Remember, What to Forget?

  • Posted on May 13, 2022
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The weathers warming up, some of us have ditched the masks, other people are trying to figure out if/when/where the masks are needed — and it’s confusing. We might have imagined some clear and definitive statement, like an old war ending with a surrender ceremony or a parade. No such luck — opinions about covid Continue Reading »

What does the Ritual Mean to You?

  • Posted on April 6, 2022
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The Torah already has the child asking their parents — — מה העבודה הזאת לכeht si tahwם meal all about? Why do you take the trouble to make everything special? What are we trying to say through the celebration? I believe that our answers evolve in response to the experiences which shape us. This Passover Continue Reading »

Rejoicing in the Midst of Chaos & Misery?!

  • Posted on March 2, 2022
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As I write these words Purim — the great celebration of the tables turned on our foes — is just a couple of weeks ahead. And at the same time, we’re witnessing the Covid numbers dropping precipitously, enabling those who have been vaccinated to emerge from this two- year pandemic paralysis. No, it’s not quite Continue Reading »

Indifference

  • Posted on February 4, 2022
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As you read these words, I’d like you to consider two current news items about books. 1 – Sales of the anti-Semitic forgery called The Protocols of the Elders of Zion — are selling quite briskly, which is another way of saying: lots of people continue to read this poison. 2 – As you must Continue Reading »

Turn of the Wheel

  • Posted on January 5, 2022
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As I share these words I’d like to express my gratitude for family and friends whose love and kindness is our shelter from the storm. In my ears I hear an echo of torah from my Buddhist teachers who speak about the ten thousand joys and sorrows, moments on each of our journeys — here Continue Reading »

Lights in the Window – Assorted Bits of Nostalgia and Whatnot to Ponder during this wonderful Festival

  • Posted on December 4, 2021
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Hanukkah (work the spelling out amongst yourselves, people) will always have a special place in my heart because I was born on the closing day of the festival (back in 1958). Until last year’s (covid) Shabbat of Hanukkah, Hillel Kaplan (who shared the same bar mitzvah haftarah with me) chanted Roni v’Simchi, the haftarah from Continue Reading »