Shabbat Parshat Vayetzei
Join Us for Indoor Services
Friday Night, Shabbat Morning, and Sunday Morning
As of this week, Shabbat Vayetzei, services at B'nai Israel are moving back indoors.
-- Shabbat morning in the Sanctuary.
-- Friday evening and Sunday morning minyanim in the Chapel in the Social Hall.
Indoors, masks are required for everyone regardless of immunization status.
Weekly Calendar
Shabbat
Friday, November 12
4:36 pm: Candle Lighting
4:46 pm: Mincha/ Kabbalat Shabbat/ Ma'ariv

Saturday, November 13
10:00 am: Shacharit
12:30 (approx.): Kiddush and Kabbalah with Rabbi Mintz.
1 - ? pm: Board Games at B'nai
See Announcements for details
5:36 pm: Havdalah
HaShavua/This Week

Sunday, November 14
8:30 am: Minyan

Wednesday, November 17
Noon - 12:45 pm: Zoom in for Torah Study with Rabbi Mintz
Click here to join the class.
Rabbi's Dvar Torah
Parshat Vayetzei

In what seems like a glaring déja-vu episode, the older and younger are reversed again, and this time Yaakov is outwitted. 

He has worked for seven years to marry Rachel, but Lavan at the last minute switches her for Leah, his oldest. In fact, when Yaakov confronts his father-in-law, Lavan retorts back, “Such is not done in our place, to give the younger one before the older”, an implicit if not explicit critique of Yaakov having stolen the birthright from his older brother Esav. 

The parallel is also not lost on Leah, who according to the Midrash (Breishit Rabbah), calls out Yaakov on his double standard.  “Behold, she was Leah!: [Yaakov] said to her: ‘Deceptive one, daughter of a deceptive one—all night, I called out “Rachel” and you responded to me!’ [Leah] answered back: ‘Is there a barber without students? Wasn’t your father calling out “Esav,” and you responded to him?’”.

Some might say this is the Torah concept of midah k’neged midah- measure for measure or what goes around comes around. Afterall, their very names bear a similarity – Yaakov – from “the other who tricked me (Yaakoveini) these two instances”, and Lavan Ha’arami – literally the Aramean, but also from the root Ramai – the trickster. The difference we will see, though, is the next chapters of the story.
 
Rather than try to kill Lavan, as Esav would have done to Yaakov, and rather than remaining embittered, Yaakov makes the best of the situation and recommits by working another seven years. Yaakov realizes that life is not always fair -- there are times we are even cheated of what is due to us -- but how we respond in dignity will ultimately determine our fate and legacy for generations to come.

Shabbat shalom!
Rav Etan
Announcements

Sponsored Kiddush

Shabbat Kiddush this week is sponsored by Kathleen Petersen and RIchard Baum. Todah Rabbah, Kathleen and Richard.
Board Games at B'nai
November 13 at 1pm
Come join us this Shabbat afternoon for pool, ping pong and board games in our Social Hall. Plus, you can also catch a Mincha-Maariv minyan while you're here! Connect with this Facebook event at this link.
Private Collection Book Sale
Fundraiser for B'nai Israel
Browse deeply discounted books on assorted topics and help the synagogue! 
New books are expensive, but none of these offerings costs more than $12, many less- and 30% of the price of these “used but not abused” selections is donated to your Synagogue! Titles include stories, history, Israel and many other topics.

Email larry.koch.2008@comcast.net, and a no obligation booklist will be return emailed to you for your inspection.
Upcoming and Ongoing
B'nai Book Club
Meets the second Tuesday of each month via Zoom.

Next meeting: Wednesday, December 15 at 8 pm.
(Date shifted because the 2nd Tuesday is a fast day.)
December Book of the Month: The Tunnel by A. B. Yehoshua
According to the Book Club moderator, Fred Shoken, it is a novel set in modern day Israel and deals with issues of dementia, Arab/Israeli relations, etc. Although the topic may seem depressing, the story is told with humor and insight about relationships.
Descendants' Day Events
A Descendants' Day Event
From Our Archives: Connections & Winding Paths
Sunday, December 12
2-3 pm
Online event (Zoom link to be provided)

Join us for a conversation with descendants of early B'nai families. Learn how family research, our historic cemetery, and the Jewish Museum of Maryland archives creates unexpected connections and deepens our understanding of B'nai Israel history.
A Descendants' Day Event
From Our Archives: The Teachings of Rav Forshlager
Sunday, January 9, 2022
2-3 pm
Online event (Zoom link to be provided)

Rabbi Mintz and guests will lead us on an exploration of the teachings of one of the most famous rabbis at B'nai Israel, Rav Michoel Forshlager, ztk"l.

Rav Forshlager's biography can be purchased online. Click here.
B'nai Israel is committed to maintaining a COVID-Safe Environment.
See our complete Covid policy here.
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B'nai Israel Congregation
27 Lloyd Street, Baltimore, MD 21202
www.jewishdownwtown.org