Rabbi Sherman’s Weekly Torah Commentary – September 25-26, 2020 (8 Tishrei 5781)

September 25-26, 2020
Parashat Ha’azinu
8 Tishrei 5781
Shabbat Shuva                          

Shabbat Shuva is the name given to the Shabbat between Rosh HaShanah and Yom Kippur. Shuva means “return” and is a form of the word teshuva, or “repentance.” During this time of year, we make serious plans for returning to our truest selves, returning to connect with the Divine, and returning to make amends with people we may have hurt during the year.

Our Torah portion for this special Shabbat contains a poem, the final words of Moses to the people of Israel. Moses reminds us that we are accountable for our own choices, and that we must hold each other accountable for pursuing holiness in our lives. The poem concludes with the hope that the Eternal will forgive Israel and will avenge our tragedies and losses.

These days, so much is out of our control. It may feel like we have no agency in our own lives. Yet, this season and this week’s Torah portion remind us that we can always turn things around. Teshuva motivates and inspires the choices we can make every day, making our lives a force for good in the world.

Please join our Shabbat Shuva celebrations on Channel 1960:

Friday at 4:30 PM – Shabbat Shuva Evening Service
Saturday at 10:00 AM – Shabbat Shuva Morning Service

Please join our Yom Kippur worship services on Channel 1960:

Sunday at 6:30 PM – Yom Kippur/Kol Nidrei Evening Service
Monday at 10:00 AM – Yom Kippur/Yizkor Morning Service
Monday at 5:30 PM – Yom Kippur Mincha Afternoon Service
Monday at 6:15 PM – Yom Kippur Ne’ilah/Havdalah Concluding Service

A machzor (Holy Day prayer book) was delivered to you last week for use during this season. Please leave it on your ledge for pickup on Wednesday, Sept 30.

Candle lighting times for the city of Mission Viejo:

Friday evening at 6:24 PM
Sunday evening at 6:22 PM
Monday evening holiday ends/break fast at 7:15 PM

Shabbat Shalom and G’mar Chatima Tova May you be sealed for good in the Book of Life

Rabbi Sherman

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