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Shabbat Shalom from Rabbi Arnow 1/21/2022

Dear Kol Rinah Family, 

Please note: This Shabbat, we will not have services this Friday night or Saturday afternoon, but we will have services Saturday morning.  More details below.  

In the wake of the taking of hostages last Shabbat at Congregation Beth Israel in Colleyville, Texas, we're thinking so much more, even than we were amidst a resurgent pandemic, about safety at shul.  

We want to be together, to experience God's presence in community and to welcome anyone who would like to join us, as well as anyone who needs our help and support.  And we also need to be safe, to feel safe, from those people or viruses that would seek to harm us. 

The revelation at Mount Sinai that we read this Shabbat (Exodus 19-20) also balances safety and spirit.  God warns Moses, telling him that when God comes down, the people should not come to close, lest they die.  And Moses puts all sorts of security plans in place to prevent anyone from approaching too close and being hurt.  It would no doubt have been safer for everyone to be much further away, but then they wouldn't have been able to "meet God" (Exodus 19:17).  

God wants us to be safe.  But God also wants us to be close to enough to hear, to feel, to experience the revelation of God's self and the Torah at Mount Sinai. For the Israelites at this moment, being present and near to God's presence entails a measure of vulnerablility.  Love, relationship, encounter always make us vulnerable.  

Our challenge, as a synagogue, and each of us individually, is to figure out how to make ourselves safe while still making sure we can hear God's voice and feel God's presence, through being together in community, through welcoming the stranger, through building a world of chesed (kindness).  

This is the same challenge that was before us a week ago, and a year ago.  Only now, it feels both harder and more urgent. 

Today in Torah Talk at noon on Zoom, we'll look at some different readings of the commandment at the end of the parashah not to use iron tools (literally, swords) in shaping the stones we use in building an altar. 

This can be read as a small meditation on how we construct a spiritual home.  Over the coming weeks, we will be thinking more, spiritually and practically, about how to balance spirit and safety. 

Your thoughts and reflections on this balance are always welcome.  ​​​​​

For the coming weeks, we will only be having Shabbat services at Kol Rinah in person when we have twelve people signed up for that service by 3pm on Thursday.  Based on that, we will not be having services this Friday night or Saturday afternoon, as we do not have twelve people signed up to come, but we will have services Saturday morning this week, which you can stream from home using the link below.  

Please take note of our updated Covid protocols.

Candle lighting tonight is at 4:53pm, and Shabbat ends at 5:54pm.  

May we all stay safe and healthy.  Shabbat shalom,
Rabbi Noah Arnow

To join our Zoom Minyanim or classes, click on the desired meeting link, or call into either of the following numbers: 
+1 312 626 6799
+1 646 558 8656
Then, when prompted, enter the Meeting ID of the desired minyan/class then press #.  Then, when prompted, enter the password then press #.  
Services (all times Central)
Evening Minyan on Zoom
Sunday-Thursday evenings at 6pm (but not on Jewish holidays)
Friday evenings when not in person one hour before candle lighting

Morning Minyan on Zoom
Monday-Friday mornings at 7am; Sunday mornings and national holidays at 8am (not including Jewish holidays)

Learning Opportunities
Torah Talk with Rabbi Arnow or Rabbi Shafrin
Every Friday at 12pm
Join us for study and discussion of the week's Torah portion.  

Friday nights when in person and Shabbat mornings
Fridays, 6pm
Saturdays, 9:30am
Click the link below, then click the triangular "play" buttom:

You can also set your computer or device in advance so that this link will continue streaming continuously and you will not have to press any buttons on Shabbat. To make sure that your device will not shut itself down or do into sleep mode, follow the directions below to disable sleep mode:

For PC:
To disable automatic Sleep:
1. Open up Power Options in the Control Panel. In Windows 10 you can get there from right clicking on the start menu and going to Power Options
2. Click "change plan settings" next to your current power plan
3. Change "Put the computer to sleep" to never
4. Click "Save Changes"

For Apple Products:
1. On your Mac, choose Apple menu  > System Preferences, then click "Energy Saver."
2. Do either of the following:
          a. Set the amount of time your computer or display should wait before going to sleep: Drag the “Computer sleep” and “Display sleep” sliders, or the “Turn display off after” slider.
          b. Keep your Mac from going to sleep automatically: Select “Prevent computer from sleeping automatically when the display is off.”
Sun, May 22 2022 21 Iyyar 5782