Shabbat Shalom Shaarei Kodesh,
As a rabbi who spent many summers in nature, surrounded by the voices and reverberations of constant Jewish song, learning and prayer (overnight summer camps have captive audiences), I have always been challenged by the following idea: how can I bring the spirituality of the moments shared in the beautiful mountain scenery home to my prayer space? The challenge, or opportunity, to find God everywhere has always been with us. During our Shabbat morning service, we say the words, “Kevodo Maleh Olam,” which means God’s glory fills the earth. This can be interpreted to mean that God is in everything, and we have the potential to experience it.
Over the last year, I have been part of the Institute of Jewish Spirituality’s Clergy Leadership Program (cohort 5). During this program, I engaged in meditation, other mindfulness practices, along with Jewish learning from Hassidic masters and contemporary Neo-Hasidic thinkers. In line with our congregation's vision, to engage ourselves at CSK by incubating new ways of building Jewish communal experience, I would like to share some of what I’ve learned and experienced with all of you.
Please join us for a new monthly program titled, “Spirits" of Shabbat. We will have a special service focusing on a spiritual practice and/or middah (value), using practices like meditation and chanting, along with the inclusion of traditional prayers and ending with Mourner’s Kaddish.
Along with the ‘spiritual’ aspect, we will also have actual ‘spirits’ during our special post-service oneg. Each Friday night will have a designated spirit that will relate to the Torah portion of the week or upcoming holiday. There will always be an equivalent ‘mocktail’ for anyone who does not drink alcohol, including all those under 21.
Join us next Friday for our first "Spirits" of Shabbat: Creating A Sanctuary Within. During our Friday night service, we will focus on the idea of awareness as a way of connecting with God and community, using mindfulness practices along with traditional prayers and ending with Mourner’s Kaddish.
We will begin the evening with a pre-neg with light appetizers and end with a joyous oneg Shabbat with hors d'oeuvre and drinks. We are grateful to the Jewish Federation of South Palm Beach County for awarding us a grant to make this special complimentary Shabbat program possible. We hope you will come...and bring friends!