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Friday, July 28, 2017 / 6 Av 5777
Light Shabbat candles at 7:13 p.m

Rabbi Sharfman
Dear Congregation Kehillah and Friends,

Parashat Devarim
is the beginning of the last book of the Torah. Moses reviews the history of the wandering in the desert as he prepares to say good-bye to our people, a journey that should have taken 11 days, but instead, took 40 years! A selection from this week's Haftarah* encapsulates a reminder of what Moses taught our ancestors during their desert years, precious values deeply embedded into the Jewish psyche:

A kavannah for candle lighting for Shabbat Devarim:
As I prepare to light the Shabbat candles, may the gift of this Shabbat renew and restore my energy and my soul so that I might embark on the wondrous journey of the new week that lies ahead. May the words I speak be rooted in love and caring for my family, my community and myself, rooted in the miraculous journey of life itself!  
*Haftarah sounds a bit like Torah, but the words are not connected. A haftarah is a selection from one of the biblical books of our prophets (historically, from when our ancestors were already in the Land of Israel, often teaching about key values and related, sometimes more clearly, other times tangentially, to the Torah selection for that week).
A note: Monday night/Tuesday is Tisha B'Av, the ninth day of the month of Av, on which date in our history both Temples were destroyed (the first by the Babylonians, the second by the Romans), the Jews were expelled from Spain in 1492 and World War I broke out in 1917. While it is a day of mourning and fasting, from that dark place understanding, growth, and healing might transpire through our actions. Can we commit to one act of tikkun (healing, repair) as our contribution toward increasing light in this gateway to our High Holy Days season? 

Shabbat Shalom,

Rabbi Bonnie Sharfman   
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