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Rabbi's Week In Review - 11/29/2021

11/29/2021 04:16:26 PM


With time away, and with the Joseph story taking center stage in our Torah beginning last week, I have been thinking about family. Fay and I celebrated the b’nai mitzvah of her cousin’s twin sons in Pittsburgh. We then headed out to the Los Angeles area for our annual Thanksgiving-week sojourn with Fay’s brother and family.

The Joseph story is the last piece of a long narrative taking up most of the book of Bereishit/Genesis. It is the story of what is arguably a very dysfunctional family. Yet, it is a family that strives against all odds to stick together, to work through significant conflict and to love one another.

I would not describe our Pittsburgh or L.A. family as dysfunctional, particularly in comparison with many other families I have worked with over the years. Yet, I think if we look hard enough, we can find some dysfunction in the most functional families. No one family is immune from difficult dynamics and moments of profound disagreement.

Our challenge and our task are to meet those challenges with honesty, commitment and love.  Spending the last 10 days with family was rewarding, rejuvenating and comforting. I realize, at the same time, that not everyone is blessed with a large family. That is why we see part of our purpose at Kol Ami to be extended family, and to seek out those households that are not perceived in the sense of the “traditional nuclear family.”  

You will often hear me speak of us as our Kol Ami family. They are not mere words but what I think is an accurate reflection of who we are as a synagogue community, and how we relate to each other.

May we continue to be blessed by and with our Kol Ami family. Chag Hanukkah Sameach — a Happy Hanukkah to one and all!

Thu, January 27 2022 25 Shevat 5782