All chametz must be burned before 12:04 pm Monday, April 10. (Note: we need to stop eating chametz at 10:58 am). We will have a chametz-burning fire at the shul (along with directions on how to say the appropriate blessings, and some kabbalistic thoughts) at 10:30 am, sharp. Bring your chametz to burn, and please follow these three rules: (a) No plastic in the fire. Trash bags will be provided; (b) chametz wrapped in anything must be unwrapped before being thrown in; (c) squished/compressed chametz needs to be broken/opened up some before being thrown in.
Fast of the First-Born -- Monday, April 10
Firstborn males over the age of Bar Mitzvah (13) are obligated to fast on the 14th of Nissan, in recognition of the fact that during the "Plague of the Firstborn" (which occurred at midnight of Nissan 15) G‑d "passed over" the Jewish firstborn when He killed all firstborn Egyptians. If there is a firstborn male in the family under 13, the obligation to fast rests with the father. The prevailing custom, however, is for the firstborn to exempt themselves from the obligation to fast by participating in a seudat mitzvah (a meal marking the fulfillment of a mitzvah), such as a siyyum--a festive meal celebrating the conclusion of the study of a section of Torah). We will have a siyyum on Monday morning in which you can partake.
Message from the Rabbi
An elderly, wealthy gentleman fingered his top-quality woolen vest and told his children how he had struck it rich.
"It was 1932, the Great Depression had well and truly hit, and I was down to my last nickel."
"I invested that nickel in an apple, which I spent the entire day polishing. At the end of the day, I sold the apple for 10 cents."
"The next morning, I bought two apples with that 10 cents. I spent the entire day polishing them and sold them at 5:00 pm for 20 cents. I continued this system for a month, at the end of which I'd accumulated a grand savings of $1.37 (after spending most of my profit on necessities and more apple inventory)."
"Then my wife's grandfather died and left us two million dollars."
It's easy to believe that our actions determine the outcome of our business dealings. We mistakenly take ownership of all our successes and failures, walking tall when we succeed but becoming highly self-critical when we fail.
In truth, our financial standing is entirely out of our hands. The Talmud teaches that one's livelihood is predetermined at the onset of the Jewish year (Rosh Hashanah), and that everything other than moral choice is in the hands of Heaven.
In this week’s Torah portion, we are instructed to work for six days but rest on the seventh—Shabbat. The Torah uses the passive expression, “Six days a week work shall be done,” rather than simply, “You shall work.”
To teach us that work should be a passive experience. This does not mean one shouldn't actively pursue a means of earning a living. The Torah certainly wants us to work hard and create a channel for G‑d's blessing. But we shouldn't take the results of our efforts so seriously. Results are strictly in His hands.
So, go ahead, take a deep breath, relax, and place our bundle down on G‑d's wagon. Then, just have a little faith in the “Wagon Driver,” and He will take good care of us all.
Rabbi Sholom Deitsch
Thursday Night Torah Study -- Postponed until After Pesach
Rabbi Deitsch's Thursday Night Parsha Class will take a break until after Pesach.
On Thursday night, April 6, there will be a special Per-Pesach class. Same time, same place.
Stay tuned for more details!
Pre-Pesach Class, Thursday Night, April 6 - 8:00 pm
Service Times This Week
This shabbos is "Shabbos Mevarchim," the shabbos before the new month. Please join us at 9am in our custom to say the book of Tehillim (Psalms)
Pre-Pesach Class Apr. 6, 2017 - 8:00 pm - 9:00 pm Everything you wanted to know about Pesach -- including various "how to's". Given by Rabbi Dietsch.
Community Seder Apr. 10, 2017 - 8:00 pm Relive the exodus, discover the eternal meaning of the Haggadah, and enjoy a community Seder at Chabad of Northern Virginia, complete with hand-baked Matzah, wine, and wonderful dinner spiced with unique traditional customs. Please RSVP
Community Seder Apr. 11, 2017 - 8:00 pm Relive the exodus, discover the eternal meaning of the Haggadah, and enjoy a community Seder at Chabad of Northern Virginia, complete with hand-baked Matzah, wine, and wonderful dinner spiced with unique traditional customs. Please RSVP
Moses assembles the people of Israel and reiterates to them the commandment to observe the Shabbat. He then conveys G‑d’s instructions regarding the making of the Mishkan (Tabernacle). The people donate the required materials in abundance, bringing gold, silver and copper; blue-, purple- and red-dyed wool; goat hair, spun linen, animal skins, wood, olive oil, herbs and precious stones. Moses has to tell them to stop giving.
A team of wise-hearted artisans make the Mishkan and its furnishings (as detailed in the previous Torah readings of Terumah, Tetzaveh and Ki Tisa): three layers of roof coverings; 48 gold-plated wall panels, and 100 silver foundation sockets; the parochet (veil) that separates between the Sanctuary’s two chambers, and the masach (screen) that fronts it; the Ark and its cover with the Cherubim; the table and its showbread; the seven-branched menorah with its specially prepared oil; the golden altar and the incense burned on it; the anointing oil; the outdoor altar for burnt offerings and all its implements; the hangings, posts and foundation sockets for the courtyard; and the basin and its pedestal, made out of copper mirrors.
An accounting is made of the gold, silver and copper donated by the people for the making of the Mishkan. Betzalel, Aholiav and their assistants make the eight priestly garments—the ephod, breastplate, cloak, crown, turban, tunic, sash and breeches—according to the specifications communicated to Moses in the Parshah of Tetzaveh.
The Mishkan is completed and all its components are brought to Moses, who erects it and anoints it with the holy anointing oil, and initiates Aaron and his four sons into the priesthood. A cloud appears over the Mishkan, signifying the divine presence that has come to dwell within it.