Rabbi Howard Finkelstein

Chazan Yair Subar

President Howard Nadler

Parashat Miketz – December 15 & 16

Candle Lighting: 4:02 pm

Mincha & Kabbalat Shabbat: 3:45 pm


Sefer Torah Sponsor:

The Stevens/Luden Family

**Please note Mincha/Kabbalat Shabbat for Friday, December 15th is at 3:45 pm
Downstairs Minyan, December 16th at 8:00 am**

From the Rabbi’s Desk -Parashat Miketz-Shabbat Chanukah:   

If one were to compare the respective celebrations of Chanukah and Purim as depicted in ancient literature, one would notice that Purim is to be commemorated with parties and joy, while Chanukah is to be marked with Hallel and expressions of thanks. The Bach, Rabbi Joel Sirkes, explains in his commentary on the Tur Shulchan Aruch that the concomitant celebration of each of the holidays is a direct response to the sins that the Jews commit  leading them to their particular plight with the Persians and the Greeks.

In the case of Purim, the Jewish people of the Persian Empire are guilty of partaking in the king’s parties commemorating his ascendancy to power. Through the intervention of Esther and Mordechai, the Jews are able to thwart Haman’s plans to kill the Jews, engage in a process of repentance and fasting, and celebrate their victory over their enemies with food and drink. In other words, their festive meals are in contradistinction to the non-kosher feasts they enjoy as described in the opening chapter of the book of Esther.

In contrast to Purim, the Jews celebrate their victory over the Greeks with songs of praise and thanksgiving. The Maccabees’ ability to cleanse the Temple, and their discovery of a pure flask of olive oil in which to light the Menora, is commemorated today with not only the symbolic lighting of the Chanukiyah, but the recitation of Hallel. The Bach continues to write that the miracle of the oil is a direct response to the failure of Kohanim Gedolim (high priests) to properly observe Temple ritual due to the fact that a sizeable number of them are corrupt as well as Hellenistically inclined. Not only do the Greeks defile the Temple. The High Priests in the service of the Greeks do the same.

In retrospect, therefore, the Maccabees  engage in activity that can be described as above and beyond the call of religious duty. Rabbi Soloveitchik, quoting the Pnei Yehoshua, indicates that it is perfectly acceptable for the kohanim to have used impure olive oil on a temporary basis to light the menorah. However, their search for pure olive oil in which to perform the mitzvah of the lighting of the menorah reflects on their desire to go far beyond what the law requires, and to do whatever they can for the sake of Heaven. Thus, they are rewarded with the discovery of the flask of pure olive oil with the imprint of the Kohen Gadol, and the miracle of the oil which lasts for eight days, serves as the background for our celebration of Chanukah. At the same time, we remember the Maccabean victory over the Greek forces.

Chanukah and Purim are considered to be minor holidays on the Jewish calendar, but their respective motifs of physical and spiritual preservation of the Jewish people withstand the test of time. We, Baruch Hashem, are a faith community that continues to survive because of our devotion to the tenets and principles of Judaism.

Rivka, Judith, Tani and I wish you and your families a Chag Urim Sameach.

Mishna Berurah

There will be no Mishna Berurah class on December 19 or 26, 2017, nor
January 2, 2018.
The class will resume January 9, 2018.

* General Donations: $18
* Siddurim: Koren/Artscroll $50
* Koren Talmud Bavli: $100
* Wall of Honour/brick: $118

* Yahrzeit Board:  $300
* Eitz Chaim/Leaf: $180
* Eitz Chaim/Acorn: $300
* Eitz Chaim/boulder: $360


JFS VOLUNTEERS NEEDED: JFS is in need of Friendly Visitors for a few clients.  All are isolated seniors in need of a little companionship, whether visits at home, over the phone, or going on outings.  Some will be replacements for volunteers gone south for the winter. Students welcome.  Commitment is for only 1 hour at a time, every week or twice a month.  East and West end locations.  613.722.2225, ext.315 to help.
ESL teacher needed beginning January 2018.  Beginners’ conversational English for Russian-speaking seniors, on Mondays 1:00-2:30pm, at JFS on Carling Ave. Lesson prep, room set-up/clean up, and attendance taking.  Occasional replacement for 10:30am-12 class, as well.  Conversational Russian an asset, but not required.  Call 613.722.2225, ext. 315 to volunteer.
Russian-speaking volunteer needed to help plan and organize monthly day trips, cultural activities, picnics, and potlucks for Russian-speaking seniors. To help, please call Gohar at 613.722.2225, ext.425.
Drivers urgently needed to transport clients to/from Adult Day Programs, medical appointments, and social programs.  All areas of the city needed.  613.722.2225, ext.315.

15 Chartwell Avenue, Nepean, ON K2G 4K3
Phone 613-723-1800 / Fax 613-723-6567 
Rabbi Howard Finkelstein rabbihoward.finkelstein@gmail.com
Howard Nadler, President howardnadler@gmail.com
Elisheva Brantz, Office Administrator shul@cbto.org

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