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President's Message 8.5.22

Dear friends,

This week, we read Parshat Devarim on Tisha B'Av, the saddest day of the Jewish year when we mourn the destruction of both Holy Temples.

There are differing customs as to how to treat Shabbat Tisha B'Av. The most common tradition is to celebrate Shabbat Tisha B'Av as a regular Shabbat, with all of its inherent joy and spirituality, and then fast after Havdalah through the next day on the 10th of Av.

Rabbi Beryl Wein, in his commentary of the Parsha and the nine days, believes that the reading of Devarim may make up for delaying the fast, as it a listing of all of the mistakes and missteps that the Israelites committed through their forty years of wandering. The episodes not only bring the past into sharp focus, but are also the harbingers of the future disasters that will befall the Jewish people, including the destruction of the Temples. 
Throughout the retelling, however, Moshe displays disappointment but does not berate. He does not threaten the inevitable success of the Jewish people in attaining redemption. The same dichotomy we see with retelling the sins of the past while still referencing the promise of the future, it's the same lesson we see with Shabbat and Tisha B'Av. We see that when the two fall on the same day, Shabbat trumps Tisha B'Av. We mourn the destruction, but we also pray for redemption. 
Tisha B'Av is transitory but Shabbat is eternal. We have to remember our mistakes and learn from them, but more than that, we have to keep looking forward. And remember that prioritizing the lessons of Shabbat allow us to live more fully. 
• • • 

Culminating the nine days, we have a full Tisha B'Av roster of services and inspiring lectures throughout the day. See the flyer abovefor the full list. 
Speaking of the nine days, I want to thank everyone who came and celebrated our backyard siyyum barbecue with us. Now that we have done this twice, next year will be a chazakah and it will make a great tradition of siyyumim at CBA.

The shul’s Code of Conduct and the minutes from the previous board meeting were sent to the membership this week, and I hope to have the mid-year budget information available for next week. And I'm happy to announce that an assistant for the Rabbi started this week. 

The Israel lecture series dates are being confirmed, and the Rabbi is also planning lectures and Shabbatonim for after the Chaggim. Stay tuned for these dates.

Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur are right around the corner. The plan is to continue with outdoor davening in the tent. Feedback from last year indicates the tent was the overwhelming preference so we will be sticking with it. We will have Chazzan Goodman and Rabbi Shushan leining all of the services for both Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur. We are also considering auctioning off aliyot and Psichot for Yom Kippur this year. More to come on this.

Lastly, we’ve been in touch with the NYPD and they will be conducting a security survey in the next few weeks to provide recommendations about staffing and physical improvements we can implement. In the meantime, I urge everyone who uses the Synagogue building to make sure the front door is locked after coming in and to not allow entry to anyone they don’t know. Ask questions or tell someone if you see anything questionable. We all have to work together to protect our Shul. 

Wishing you all a peaceful and meaningful Shabbat Shalom as well as an
easy and meaningful fast.

Steven Inker

Tue, June 18 2024 12 Sivan 5784