KD Daily - The Count Ends

Today is DAY FORTY-NINE, which makes SEVEN WEEKS of the Omer.

Today is the last day of the Omer. Together, we have counted seven full weeks, from the day after Passover to today. Take a moment to think back to the beginning of these seven weeks:


How were you feeling then? And how are you feeling now?


What were you fearful about then? What are you fearful about now?


What were you grateful for then? What are you grateful for now?


In ancient days, we would have watched during these seven weeks as the grain grew and ripened in the fields. This moment would be a climax—a celebration to open the enjoyment of the harvest.


Our harvest is wholly unexpected: patience and resilience—who asked for these? We've grown new ways of experiencing the flow of time and new sensitivity to the invisible threads of our relationships.


Tomorrow on Shavuot, we bring these "first fruits" before God. In turn we receive Torah—all the guidance and inspiration our people needs to thrive in any weather. Though our counting is at an end, may we continue to mark the words of the Psalm, "Teach us to number our days, that we may acquire a heart of wisdom" (90:12).


Shalom,


Rabbi Noah

Torah for Today

Anat Katzir, Kol Dorot Educator


As we approach Shavuot, the holiday that commemorates the giving of the Ten Commandments on Mount Sinai, we are basing our day-by-day teachings on each of the Ten Commandments.


Commandment #9: "You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor."


It now seems like a moment from a previous life, but one of my favorite classes in law school was the psychology behind witness questioning and testimonies. Over and over again we learned why witness testimony can be extremely unreliable and easily manipulated. The class was meant to help us and give us professional tools, as lawyers, to understand both the pitfalls and potential of witness preparation and questioning, but we all left the class concerned with the dangers of systems that gives such power to the word of a single person.


Elyakim Rubenstein, an Orthodox judge on the Israeli Supreme Court, was asked why he thought this commandment belonged in the same set of laws as “you shall not murder” and “you shall not steal." He answered that this commandment combines the potential for harm of both stealing and killing. He has seen the damage done by false testimonies that ruined the lives of people, robbed them of their livelihood and dignity and even their life.


In the world we live in, many of us are spared the need to appear in an actual courtroom and may feel that this commandment does not apply to us. But the way our society operates, we have the ability to bear witness constantly - anyone who participates in any way on social media has the power to share testimonies about others in the court of public opinion, affecting their life in a very real way. It is often not a fair or balanced trial to begin with, and our ability to know the facts and truths is extremely limited. Anyone who chooses to testify, to share a message that can affect another person, needs to understand the responsibility that this commandment places on us.


Moreover, the commandment was expanded by the sages of the Talmud, who considered it a sin to stand by and appear to agree - or even say nothing - as falsehoods or questionable truths are shared.


In a world riddled by “fake news,” “alternative truths” and continuing challenges of expressed biases, hate speech and antisemitism, this commandment seems even more meaningful than ever as we make sure to watch out for our neighbors, avoid bearing witness that can cause them harm and speak up when they are being unfairly targeted.


All Shavuot activities will use the same Zoom link: CLICK HERE.

Check your daily email for meeting info.

*TONIGHT* Thursday, May 28th

7:00pm - Dairy Recipe "Show and Tell"


It's time to show off your favorite dairy recipes for Shavuot! We won't be able to taste each other's work, but we will "ooh" and "ahh" over what you make! Have a dairy recipe with a story? We would love to hear it! Need some inspiration? Here are some Kol Dorot-tested options: Mini Cheesecakes, Blintz Souffle, No-Churn Ice Cream. (Thanks, Heather Lorgeree!) You don't need to make anything to participate! (But it will be more fun if you do...)


7:20(ish) - Shavuot Study: "Why Dairy?" and Other Questions

Check your daily email for meeting info.


To start off our study for the evening, Kol Dorot Educator Anat Katzir will attempt to answer the question: "Why do we eat dairy on Shavuot?" It's more complicated than you think! (Including a "conspiracy theory.")


The Rabbis will close out the session with some favorite teachings about the giving (and receiving) of Torah.


Friday, May 29th

10:00am - Shavuot Festival Morning Service with Yizkor

Check your daily email for meeting info.


Festival morning services are a "hidden gem," and this is the perfect opportunity to try one out. Lots of music and special prayers. Includes the prayers of Yizkor.

Celebrate Shabbat

*LIVE* Candle Lighting and Shabbat Blessings

Friday, 5/29, 6:00pm

Check your daily email for details on how to join online.


*LIVE* Kol Dorot Shabbat Service

Friday, 5/29, 7:30pm

Check your daily email for details on how to join online.


Shabbat Morning Torah Study

Saturday, 5/30, 9:00-10:00am

Check your daily email for details on how to join online.

Havdallah with Morah Anat and Family

Saturday, 5/30, 6:00pm

Check Kol Dorot Facebook for link.


Important Congregational Meeting

Kol Dorot Congregational Meeting

Sunday, May 31, 11:00am

Check your daily email for details on how to join online.

See separate Kol Dorot email dated Thursday, 5/21 for meeting agenda

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