Shabbat and Candlelighting 
for Friday, September 2nd, 2022 / 7 Elul, 5782

 Light Shabbat candles at 6:34 p.m.

Dear Congregation Kehillah and Friends,

This week we read Parashat Shoftim ("judges") which includes the dictum: "Justice, Justice, shall you pursue" and describes how Israelite society and courts would operate. The opening verse is: "Appoint judges and officers at all your gates."
A rabbinic understanding of this verse personalizes the teaching by interpreting "your gates" as referring to those parts of our physical selves that serve as 'gates' through which we receive information (i.e., our eyes, ears, mouths). On the High Holy Days, the most frequently repeated sins/transgressions for which we atone are in the category of speech. The rabbis of the Talmud taught that "life and death are in power of the tongue". In Parashat Shoftim, the Torah uses the singular form of "your gates", implying that this is work for each individual to do - monitoring both what we 'allow to enter' our ears and consciousness and what we refrain from saying because of the power of our words to cause great harm, or hopefully, to heal.
A kavannah for candle lighting Shabbat Shofetim:
 From Rabbi Mar of Ravina:  Elohai n'tzor l'shonee me'ra....Dear God, protect my tongue from evil and my lips from telling lies. May I turn away from doing wrong and do what is good in Your sight. Let me be counted among those who seek peace. May my words of prayer and my heart's meditation be seen favorably....
Saturday night, September 17th

We are still in the process of planning our Selichot program. Since we only received High Holy Day surveys back from about half of our membership it still hard for us to gauge interest. We ask that you please RSVP by Wednesday, September 7th if you plan to attend either in person or on Zoom. Once we receive the responses we will be able to plan a program that is accommodating to all. Thank you in advance. Email,
Invite a friend to share the Kehillah experience. We're happy to welcome all to our 'family'. 

Shabbat Shalom,

Rabbi Bonnie Sharfman
Congregation Kehillah
Mailing Address: 21001 N.Tatum Blvd., Ste 1630, #439, Phoenix AZ 85050 
Physical Address: 5858 E. Dynamite Blvd., Cave Creek, AZ 85331
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