Rabbi Sherman’s Weekly Torah Commentary – July 29-30, 2022 (2 Av 5782)

 July 29-30, 2022                                                                                                                               Parashat Mattot-Masei
2 Av 5782

After 40 years of wandering in the wilderness, the main question on the minds of the Israelites probably would have been: “Are we there yet?” After such a long journey, they must have wondered if they ever would reach the Promised Land. But Rabbi Baruch Frydman-Kohl points out that simply arriving at their destination would not ensure success for the generations of wanderers; they had to make specific plans for their future. Indeed, they did—they set up ecologically-balanced urban centers, and they reviewed their laws. Our ancestors knew that in order to live in the land that had been promised to Abraham, they would have to behave according to the ideals of tzedek (righteousness) and mishpat (justice). Their model of urban planning and moral behavior applies to our own journeys. Not only do we need to know where we are going; we need to know what to do and how to behave once we arrive.


Guest Rabbis Teaching in August – Thursdays at 3:00 PM in the Synagogue

August 4: Rabbi Peter Levi, Regional Director Anti-Defamation League (ADL)

August 11: Rabbi Rick Steinberg – “You Shall Be a Blessing – Tell Me How!”

August 18: Rabbi Sarah DePaulo – “Finding the Blessings in the Brokenness of Our Lives”

August 25: Rabbi Brian Zive – “Wait – There’s a Blessing for That?!?”


Tisha B’Av (9th of Av, falls on August 7) – Day of Mourning

Tisha B’Av marks the destruction of both Temples in Jerusalem: the first by the Babylonians in 586 B.C.E. and the second by the Romans in 70 C.E. Some people mourn the destructions by sitting on low stools or on the floor chanting Eicha (Lamentations) and kinot (liturgical poems). Some people fast on this day.


Tu B’Av (15th of Av, falls on August 12) – Day of Love  

The Talmud refers to Tu B’Av as a festive day when “the young women of Israel would dress in white and go out to the fields and the young men would follow after them” (Ta’anit 4:8). The origins and meaning of Tu B’Av customs are unknown. Possibly this was a mid-summer festival filled with dancing and romancing. Some believe that Tu B’Av’s full moon inspired romance between young people.


Please join our Shabbat celebrations in the Synagogue (masks required) or on Channel 1960

Friday at 5:00 PM:                 Shabbat Blessings in the Dining Room

Friday at 6:30 PM:                 Shabbat Evening Service

Saturday at 10:00 AM:        Shabbat Morning Service followed by Blessings in the Dining Room


Candle lighting time for Shabbat for the city of Mission Viejo: Friday evening at 7:35 PM

Shabbat ends Saturday evening at 8:33 PM


Shabbat Shalom                                                                                                Rabbi Sherman