Parsha Thoughts: Rabbi Jay Kelman

Vayikra: G-d Is Near

March 27, 2009 By: Rabbi Jay Kelman
Perhaps Man’s greatest fear is his ultimate irrelevance, that we really don’t make a difference and that in the greater scheme of things, our lives are for naught. This is why people yearn to leave a legacy, and it is often for this reason that people have children. The historical tendency to value male babies over females is due to the fact that it was (is?) the male who would carry on the family name and legacy. Upon marriage, females were...
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Pekudei: Time and Space

March 20, 2009 By: Rabbi Jay Kelman
This week's d’var Torah is sponsored in commemoration of the second yahrzeit of our beloved wife and mother, Rochelle Muller; from Michael Muller, Jeff & Shira Muller, Janine & David Sherr.“And it was on first month of the second year on the first of the month that the Tabernacle was erected” (40:17). The first of Nissan is a most special time in Jewish history. It was on this date that Moshe and Aharon began preparing...
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Yitro: Nine Commandments

February 13, 2009 By: Rabbi Jay Kelman
 This week's d’var Torah is sponsored by Dr. Charles and Nathalie Piwko in observance of the yahrzeit of Charlie's mother, ob”m, and in celebration of the bar mitzvah of their children, Jeremy and Imanuel. Mazal tov to the extended family.It is customary in most shuls to read the aseret hadibrot in what is known as ta'am elyon, the upper cantillation. Whereas the ta'am tachton (the lower...
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VaEra: Status Quo

January 23, 2009 By: Rabbi Jay Kelman
"And they did not listen to Moshe, from short spirit and hard work" (7:9). Moshe had a daunting dual task before him. Not only did he need to demonstrate to Pharaoh that he must free his slaves, he needed to convince the Jewish people that they would be better off following him into the desert. And the latter was a prerequisite for the former."Even the Israelites will not listen to me; how can I expect Pharaoh to listen to me?" (7:12). Moshe...
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VaYechi: Dual Loyalty

January 09, 2009 By: Rabbi Jay Kelman
"If you really want to do me a kindness... act towards me with truth and kindness and do not bury me in Egypt" (47:29). So begins Yaakov's exhortation to Yosef as he realizes that the end is near. Though Yosef promised to carry out his father's request, Yaakov was not yet satisfied and demanded that Yosef take an oath that he would do as Yaakov asked. Could it really be that Yaakov could not trust his "favourite" son to carry out his will?...
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