RESPECTING DIFFERENCES

Rabbi Laurence W. Groffman Yom Kippur Sermon September 30, 2017 Temple Sholom of West Essex      Max and Isaac come to the Rabbi's study to settle a dispute.  The Rabbi's wife is also seated in the room.      Max explains his complaint to the Rabbi:  the story is such and so, and he has to do this and he has to do that.  He … [Read more...]

CHARLOTTESVILLE

Rabbi Laurence W. Groffman Sermon for Rosh Hashanah 5778 September 21, 2017      A few weeks ago, I sent you a letter discussing some of my reactions to the events in Charlottesville.  I wrote about the irony of hearing about the white supremacist, neo-Nazi march while spending time with my family at a camp for multiracial adoptive families, families … [Read more...]

STRENGTHENING OUR COPING MUSCLE

Rabbi Norman Patz Yizkor Yom Kippur 5778 September 30, 2017 Temple Beth Shalom of Puerto Rico      Many years ago, when I was just starting out in the active rabbinate, there was a terrible tragedy in our congregation. A wonderful child, the son of active members, was killed on a school trip when his sled veered off course and crashed into a tree. The boy … [Read more...]

VITAL JEWISH MEMORIES

Rabbi Norman Patz Yom Kippur Morning September30, 2017   Tishri 10, 5778 Temple Beth Shalom of Puerto Rico        The great Roman lawyer and political figure Cicero described memory as “the treasury and guardian of all things.”(1st century BCE)  No other animal carries in its brain so many memories of such complexity. No other living … [Read more...]

THE COVENANT ON YOM KIPPUR

Rabbi Norman Patz Erev Yom Kippur September 29, 2017   Tishri 10, 5778 Temple Beth Shalom of Puerto Rico      When I was nine years old, I was hired to be the boy alto in a choir that accompanied the cantor at High Holy Day services in Orthodox synagogues. To this day, I still remember a lot of the music we sang: the unison passages, the … [Read more...]