By Rabbi Alicia Magal
Sedona News – Shalom and greetings from the Rabbi, Board of Directors, and congregation of the Jewish Community of Sedona and the Verde Valley.
All the services, classes, and programs are listed on the synagogue website.
Come join us either in person or online. See jcsvv.org for instructions to register for in-person services or for online zoom links.
On Friday, May 20, a Friday evening service, led by Rabbi Alicia Magal, begins at 5:30 pm both in person and on Zoom, and livestreamed for members and their invitees. Congregants participate by lighting candles, offering a reading, or having the honor of an Aliyah for the Torah service. Verses from the Torah portion will be chanted from the portion of the week, Behar (Leviticus 25:1 – 26:2), including the balance between humans and the earth, based on the verse “The earth is the Lord’s.” Humankind is given the privilege of using it to sustain life and must never abuse the land. The calendar of Sabbatical years was established, decreeing the seventh year as a time of rest for the land, and every fiftieth year as a Jubilee year, for the land not only to lie fallow but also be returned to its original owners. This whole portion is about returning people and land to a natural state of freedom and renewal. The verse Proclaim Liberty throughout the land unto all the inhabitants (Leviticus 25:10) is inscribed on the Liberty Bell in Philadelphia. Blessings for those who are ill and a Mazal Tov for those celebrating a birthday or anniversary will be offered. Kaddish, the Mourner’s prayer, will be recited in memory of those who passed away either recently or at this time in past years. Shabbat offers a time out from work and worry, an opportunity to be grateful for our lives and the bounty with which we are blessed.
Rabbi Magal will offer the third of four sessions on “Kabbalah: The Mystical Tradition of Receiving” on Tuesday, May 24, at 3 pm. Registration is through the website jcsvv.org. No charge for JCSVV members. Donations gratefully accepted from non-members who wish to participate in this course.
Wednesday morning minyan begins at 8:30 a.m. on May 25 on zoom. Join the group to offer healing prayers, and to support those saying the mourner’s prayer, Kaddish, for a loved one who has passed away. Every person counts and is needed!
On Wednesday at 4:00 pm Rosalie Malter and Rabbi Magal lead a class on Jewish meditation on Zoom. Each session focuses on a different tool or aspect of Jewish meditation practices.
On Thursday, May 26, at 4:00 pm, Torah study, led by Rabbi Magal, will be held on Zoom. The Torah portion for that week will be Behukkotai, Leviticus 26:3 – 27:34, the last chapter in the Book of Leviticus, containing a listing of the voluntary contributions the Israelites made for the upkeep of the Sanctuary. That tradition of generosity towards preservation of houses of worship began with the Tabernacle in the wilderness, continuing with the First and Second Temples in Jerusalem, and ever since with support of synagogues throughout the world.
We will continue to count the days between Passover and Shavuot, the journey of 49 days culminating in the 50th day, the revelation at Mt Sinai when Torah was given through Moses to the Children of Israel. This practice of Counting the Omer is a spiritual preparation and refinement that enables each person to do a check-in of his or her personality qualities that form the focus for each day during this seven week period.
The Social Action Committee is continuing to collect food for the local Sedona food pantry. Please drop of cans or boxes of non-perishable foods in the bin outside the lower level parking lot entrance to the synagogue.
The Jewish Community of Sedona and the Verde Valley, located at 100 Meadow Lark Drive off Route 179 in Sedona, is a welcoming, egalitarian, inclusive congregation dedicated to building a link from the past to the future by providing religious, educational, social and cultural experiences. Messages to the office telephone at 928 204-1286 will be answered during the week. Updated information is available on the synagogue website – www.jcsvv.org.