Every relationship contributes to a deeper wisdom, and farewell is a promise to return

By Student Rabbi Remy Liverman

Since the beginning of the secular New Year, our country has seen a great deal of turmoil. The U.S. is fraught with devastation, loss, anger and grief as we add deep civil unrest to a worldwide pandemic.

I talked about closure during my final sermon to the congregation. Now, as I wish you farewell, I’m reminded that Judaism’s method of saying “goodbye” requires some examination.

The term “goodbye” itself dates to the early modern period (occurring during the late 16th century) stemming from the expression, “God be with you”.

Although we can accept the “God” part, this is not a Jewish traditional farewell. The common term for goodbye in modern Hebrew (as I frequently heard during my year in Israel) is l’hitra’ot, meaning, “see you later.”

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What’s next after we count the Omer? Pay the bills and schedule another virtual Shabbat!

By Betsy Frank

Some Jews count the Omer. I sometimes do, but I am also counting weeks of self-isolation.

We have just concluded 49 days of counting, which began April 9 and ended May 28 (between the second night of Passover and the Shavuot holiday).

I could say, “Where does the time go?” But time does seem to pass a bit more slowly these days.

Our regular routines are disrupted. If we normally employ a cleaning person, that person isn’t coming. Book clubs may meet via Zoom or may not meet at all.

Still, technology has allowed our congregation to remain active. We hold weekly services, engage in Torah study with our student rabbi and hold virtual board meetings.

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Patty’s plan for the day — cast worries aside and play in the yard with Robert

By Patty Lewis

I find myself checking the calendar these days to try to fix my place in time. But I guess time loses its meaning as this Covid-19 has really messed up the days and months in our lives.

Every evening, Ralph wants to know my plan for the next day.

Sometimes I tell him I think I will take a long trip and I will be back when this is over.

Of course, I know my family needs me here and we have no idea when our predicament will end. We just live day by day and stay home until it’s necessary to go out.

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Try Daf Yomi with Betsy and discover a page of Talmud a day

By Betsy Frank

f you’re looking for a sustaining project you can tackle one day at a time, I’d like to suggest joining me for Daf Yomi, a culturally enriching scholarly exercise where Jews all over the world study a page of Talmud a day.

January 5, 2020, began the latest 7 1/2-year cycle of Daf Yomi, which myjewishlearning.com describes as “the longest-running Jewish book club“.

Rabbi Meir Shapiro founded the movement in 1923 in Poland. The Talmud’s 37 volumes take 7 1/2 years to read on a page-a-day schedule, placing us in the 14th repeating cycle of Daf Yomi.

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