Today is April 18, 2021 -

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

A Word of Torah from the Rabbi

Taking a Measure

  • Posted on April 4, 2021
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Jewishly speaking, we’re in the thick of doing the numbers. As I write these words, we’re heading into the finale of Passover. The Haggadah provided us with the wonderful who Knows One Song — the numbers are powerful shorthand for core ideas that we pass along. A six-digit figure that morphs along at blazing speed Continue Reading »

Taking Ancient Wisdom into a Challenging New Year

  • Posted on January 7, 2021
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Shalom & Happy New Year! The past year has been such a blur in many ways, and each of us has felt tested as we make adjustments and lean into a changed world amidst a pandemic. In every aspect of our lives — work, entertainment, prayer, dining out – we’ve made adjustments. And, no, we Continue Reading »

Resolution & Dedication

  • Posted on December 4, 2020
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December 2020 — unlike any other that we can recall. Regarding the vaccine(quite possibly more than one), we all know that ‘help is on the way.’ In the meantime, we hope and pray for a peaceful and orderly governmental transition, and — perhaps, more daunting— the ability and desire to heal deep wounds felt by Continue Reading »

Faith in the Midst of a Precarious Time

  • Posted on October 3, 2020
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Sukkot begins this coming Shabbat evening. Through the ages, we’ve (gently) leaned into the symbolism of faith amidst fragility — a sukkah, by its very nature, is the antithesis of a fortress. This is why the King James rendering of God’s Sukkah in Psalm 27 is a royally awkward translation — His Pavilion(!). Granted, if Continue Reading »

Faith and Uncertainty

  • Posted on September 7, 2020
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September is here, and before too long we’ll be wishing each other a sweet new year.  The coming High Holy Days will, undoubtedly, feel unusual. Just as zoom has found its way to so many aspects of our lives — that will be true for Rosh HaShannah and Yom Kippur. Last week, Sharona, Zohar and I took Continue Reading »

From Grief toward Hope

  • Posted on August 4, 2020
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As I write these words it is late in the afternoon of Tisha b’Av תשעה באב, the 9th of the month of Av. A quick, worthwhile visit to Wikipedia will yield a description of several large-scale tragic events in Jewish history — events that unfolded on this day. Long story made short: this is our Continue Reading »

Is Everything OK?

  • Posted on June 6, 2020
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Shalom, everyone — as in greetings as well as, I hope all is ok with you. It’s June, the weather is warming up (grateful for whatever breezes float by!), and each of us is figuring out or wrestling with (or both) the new routines. Work is different, play is different, sleeping and eating — they’re Continue Reading »

Beyond Bricks and Mortar

  • Posted on May 10, 2020
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In the book of Exodus, God sets up a classic question for the Israelites shortly before they leave Mitzrayim, the place of their confinement: “And when your child asks you tomorrow, mazot — what does all this mean?” As that question made its way across many centuries from the Torah into the seder, it became a great Continue Reading »

Our Children are our Builders

  • Posted on February 6, 2020
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Hello, y’all I want to pull together a few bits of Torah from the parasha, Bo בא, as well as a piece of beautiful (sadly, overlooked) prayer, and finally, a personal thought — 1 Listen to the opening of the portion: God said to Moshe, ‘go to Pharaoh; I’ve hardened his heart and the hearts Continue Reading »

Light in the Darkness

  • Posted on January 1, 2020
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1 Our sages in the talmud strangely inquired: Mai Hanukkah מאי חנוכה —which means, What does this celebration mean? And they avoided giving the Maccabees any limelight. True, they purged the Temple of the foe (the Greeks יונים, mention in the song Mi Yemallel and in the prayer Al HaNisim), but the Rabbis emphasize the Continue Reading »

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