A Weekly Message from Rabbi Sam Levine 1.22.21

A Weekly Message from Rabbi Sam Levine 1.22.21

It is a cornerstone principle of Jewish faith that God created the world and all that is in it. In the kiddush for Shabbat, we state that God gave us Shabbat as a zikaron l’ma’aseh v’reishit / “reminder of the work of creation.” Once a week, we are to reflect … READ MORE

A Weekly Message from Rabbi Sam Levine 1.15.21

Last Shabbat, I delivered a sermon about the five women characters who are featured in the opening chapters of the Book of Exodus: the two midwives (Shifra and Pu’ah), Yocheved (Moses’ mother), Pharaoh’s daughter, and Miriam. I made the argument that all of them, at great personal risk, moved the … READ MORE

A Weekly Message from Rabbi Sam Levine 1.8.21

Wednesday’s events in the nation’s capital have sent shockwaves throughout the country. Like me, you have likely been consuming the news, watching the networks, reading op-eds, and generally agonizing over the situation. Among the responses that I have read coming out of the Jewish community, there have been calls to … READ MORE

A Weekly Message from Rabbi Sam Levine 12.24.2020

As an observing Jew, I always find this time of year a little confusing, especially when Chanukah has already passed. We wish each other “Happy Holidays,” which is, for all intents and purposes, a “pareve” way of saying “Merry Christmas.” We say “Happy New Year,” which of course makes sense, … READ MORE

A Weekly Message from Rabbi Sam Levine 12.17.2020

I’ve been focusing a lot this year on the relationship between faith in God and human action. My own belief system, simply put, has us (human beings) endowed with agency – we are actors in our own drama – and we are guided and informed in our actions by the divine – God/Torah. … READ MORE

A Weekly Message from Rabbi Sam Levine 12.10.2020

Chanukah is here! A little light, a little joy for our otherwise blackened moods. Just in time! I am happy and grateful: my family will be all together, I will eat latkes despite my calorie-counting campaign, I will spin dreidels. I most likely will not eat any sufganiyot (jelly donuts – … READ MORE

A Weekly Message from Rabbi Sam Levine 12.3.2020

This week’s parasha tells of a momentous occasion in the history of the Jewish people. On his way back to Canaan after a 20-year sojourn in Haran, the patriarch Jacob wrestles with a man (an angel?) through the night. In the morning, having prevailed over the stranger, Jacob insists that … READ MORE

A Weekly Message from Rabbi Sam Levine 11.25.2020

With Coronavirus cases spiking across the country, I once again have our first responders very much in mind. As Covid fatigue continues to congeal, the springtime practice of lauding our medical workers every night at 7pm has largely fallen by the wayside, but the troops of doctors, nurses, and medical … READ MORE

A Weekly Message from Rabbi Sam Levine 11.19.2020

Unsettled.  That seems to be the operative word right now.  We feel unsettled.  President-Elect Biden has won the election, but for the first time in our history the current president refuses to acknowledge his victory and concede. Does this flagrant violation of norms endanger us? Almost certainly. What damage, in … READ MORE

A Weekly Message from Rabbi Sam Levine 11.12.2020

As I write this, there are still a few hours left of Veterans Day. I have a deep appreciation, a reverence, even, for veterans. The election last week and all the subsequent shenanigans – indeed, so much of what has transpired over the last 4 years – has put into stark relief … READ MORE