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Weekly Message 12.25.2020 Parashat Vayigash

Parashat Vayigash (he drew near) Genesis 44:18-47:27

HafTorah - Ezekiel 37:15-28




Dear friends,


As we approach the end of the calendar year, we also approach the end of the Book of Genesis (the portion of Vayigash) continuing the story of Joseph in Egypt and now, the reunification with his family. Joseph, the "spoiled brat" in his youth has matured as a servant and then as one of the most powerful people in the land, confronts the brothers who sold him into slavery and then told their father the lie that Joseph was killed.


Instead of revealing himself to them immediately, Joseph sets up tests to see if and how they might have changed over the more than two decades since they performed that most despicable deed. Joseph maneuvered his brothers into once again having the opportunity to abandon their father's favorite child, Benjamin. When Judah offered himself as a slave in place of Benjamin, it was clear that the brothers regretted their past behavior and would never again be partners to a crime like the previous one in which they abandoned Joseph by selling him into slavery. Only when Joseph’s brothers regretted their shameful behavior and refused to behave in the same manner again did Joseph reveal his true identity and invite his entire family to reside in Egypt as a famine still raged in their homeland. So, what do we learn from this famous episode? So many families these days are suffering from the effects of Covid on our physical selves and our emotional states through forced isolation. Perhaps, this is the time to rekindle our relationships with family members who for one reason or another have not been in touch with for a very long time? In many cases, we don't even know what might have caused the rift between us. If Joseph could see the good in his brothers and reunite his family after the most extreme hurt, why can't we forgive long time grudges as well?


Our Haftorah this Shabbat is from the prophet Ezekiel who was forced into exile in Babylonia at the time of the destruction of the Temple and kept the Jewish faith alive away from the Promised Land.


I am looking forward to spending this end-of-the-year Shabbat weekend with you. We will have our services tonight at 7:30 pm in-person and on Zoom

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JCC is inviting you to a scheduled Zoom meeting.

Topic: Shabbat Service

Time: Dec 25, 2020 07:30 PM Eastern Time (US and Canada)


Join Zoom Meeting

https://us02web.zoom.us/j/4979030958?pwd=YXJPT2FGVTdzVVV2bVQ3c1ZnS1lMZz09



Meeting ID: 497 903 0958

Passcode: 5QdVaA

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

JCC is inviting you to a scheduled Zoom meeting.

Topic: Saturday Morning Service

Time: Dec 26, 2020 09:30 AM Eastern Time (US and Canada)


Join Zoom Meeting

https://us02web.zoom.us/j/4979030958?pwd=YXJPT2FGVTdzVVV2bVQ3c1ZnS1lMZz09



Meeting ID: 497 903 0958

Passcode: 5QdVaA

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Shabbat Shalom!


Ron Becker

Spiritual Leader

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