Weekly message from
Rabbi A. M. Sufrin MBE
With five days left to go PG to the High Holy days, I’m sure we are all getting ready and planning where we will be going to be part of our beautiful people for Prayers and doing the special Mitzvah of the Day, listening to the Shofar.
Just remember when considering where to “feel welcome and at home” with song and meaningful prayers, your local Chabad Houses both in Gants Hill & Gants Hill will be delighted to welcome you.
Make yourself known to the Rabbis, and we can help to make this Yom Tov something special.
I am delighted to report that all our Educational classes resumed this week both during the day and evenings as well our Sunday morning Cheder. Our newest venture, Cheder in Westcliffe and Southend Synagogue began this past Tuesday evening with 16 children joining the first class, under the leadership of Mrs Devorah Sufrin and support of Shterni Sufrin. This is great news, please feel proud and celebrate with us.
This week's parshas are Nitzavim and Vayelech.
In the portion of Nitzavim, Moshe makes a new covenant with the Jews. Hashem wanted the Jews to once again accept the Torah with an oath before entering the land of Israel.
The question is asked, "Since the Jews already made a covenant with Hashem when they received the Torah, why did Moshe ask them to make a covenant again?"
The answer gives us some insight into our lives today. When the Jews first accepted the Torah they were living in utter isolation of the desert. Their food came down from heaven, their water came from Miriam's well and their shoes and clothing miraculously aged with them. They were totally dependent on Hashem and therefore were almost forced to keep the Torah because of their reliance on Hashem.
But now, forty years later, the Jews were leaving the desert and going to a land of material abundance and great wealth - to the land of milk and honey - where they would spend their time trying to support themselves off the bountiful and rich land. Moses wanted the Jews to reaffirm their oath that despite the distractions of acquiring and having wealth, they will nonetheless fulfil the Torah.
In today's day and age, when we have been blessed with so much prosperity and wealth we should understand that it can be harder to fulfil the Torah from wealth; more so than from poverty. The test of riches is that much greater, making it that much more difficult to fulfil the Torah.
This knowledge should encourage us to renew our commitment to fulfil the Torah and observe the Mitzvos regardless of our circumstances.
The series of Selichot recited in preparation for the "Days of Awe" of Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur begin this Saturday night, after midnight.
Wishing you a wonderful Shabbos, successful week and all the best for a very Happy Healthy and Sweet New Year!