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Rabbi's Week In Review - 7/13/2021

07/13/2021 03:33:12 PM

Jul13

Tisha B’Av — the ninth day of the month of Av — comes this Saturday evening and Sunday.  It commemorates all of the Jewish tragedies that have befallen us throughout our history. On it, we read from Eichah, the Book of Lamentations. It is an unpleasant read.

If you can get beyond the horrific curses, however, you come to realize that the book does not position us as victims. Rather, in it we assume responsibility for being driven into exile and the destruction of our first Temple. While it is undeniable that some tragedies are inflicted upon us by the evil (and, yes, the anti-Semitism) that has afflicted, and still afflicts, our world, we must never use that reality as an excuse to avoid responsibility for our actions. We must always consider our own behavior, and how we can do better and do more to address the injustices in our world.

It is easy to live our values when things are going well. The challenge lies in living our highest Jewish values when we are under threat. May we have the courage to persevere through the inevitable challenges that will surely come, and live up to the charge of being an Or L’Goyim, a light to the nations.

Fri, July 30 2021 21 Av 5781