Towards Liberation as the Light Returns 1210

President’s message – December 2010 – Kislev-Tevet 5771

Towards Liberation as the Light Returns

            During this month of December, the days grow as short as we ever experience.  Our tradition developed Hanukah to gather people together to celebrate our ever-rededication of ourselves to each other and to our community, illuminating our long nights with song and the warmth and brightness of our hanukiot.  We are planning to gather on the evening of Saturday, December 4 to welcome a new week and the coming winter season with a community Hanukah celebration.  We hope to light enough candles in our family hanukiot, sing enough holiday song favorites, eat enough latkes and snacks, and play all kinds of games – from the traditional dreidel game to poker, mah jong, board games, to display the warmth of our community.   All members of our community are invited as well as friends who might want to share in the joy of our holiday and to play games with us during the evening.  It will be a fun-raiser, with free-will contributions accepted to support the WAIM energy fund. 

            This month also features the Joseph novella, to be read in exciting installments on Shabbat mornings throughout December.  Joseph, the too proud dreamer, is brought low be familiar jealousies and household dramas, to rise through divinely-inspired insight to save the mightiest empire of his time and, importantly for Joseph and us, his people and their future.  The seeds of this family and political conflicts sprout into a minority people enslaved by a fearful majority, and the coming of a leader, Moses rabbeinu, Moses our teacher. 

If you are in the region on Shabbat morning December 25, please join us for the start of the reading of the Shemot (Book of Exodus).   And eight days later, on January 1, when a Jewish boy baby born on December 25 would be welcomed into the Jewish community with a brith milah, we will be continuing the readings about the struggles of a slave people, supported by might hand of the divine, as we become a nation heading into the bright light of freedom as the days also grow brighter.  And on January 1, there should also be the first 2011 bagel and bible discussion on a topic of great interest. 

Hope to share bright days with you in the coming month and in 2011.   Best wishes to you and yours for a healthy and happy 2011, filled with the memory of the joys of the Hanukah lights and the warmth of our community.

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