Friday, March 2, 2007

Shabbat Zachor

It's almost Shabbat here in NYC. I have developed a nice ritual here at the synagogue. About an hour before services begin, I turn off my big overhead flourescent light, and I turn on a gentler lamp in the corner. Ahhh - much more relaxing, and it helps me get into the right headspace. The room is dimmer, I feel more calm, and it helps me welcome the Shabbat bride before I go downstairs to facilitate it for others.

Tonight is a special Shabbat known as Shabbat Zachor - the "Shabbat of Remembering." This Shabbat always falls before the holiday of Purim. According to the WRJ Art Calendar, "Shabbat Zachor fulfills the biblical command to remember all those who have tried to wipe out our people, especially Amalek, who attacked the Israelites fleeing from Egypt."

There may be some of you out there who ask, "What does Amalek have to do with Purim," at which point I remind you that Haman (boooooo!!!!) was supposedly a descendant of Amalek. Thus, we remember that Amalekites are our enemies, going back thousands of years, and we must continue to be cautious of the Amalek currently in our midst (who could it be??).

Purim itself is tomorrow evening. We have such an exciting evening planned for our congregants. Events for all ages, concluded with a Purim Spiel for adults and older children. Our theme: Dreamgirls. It will be absolutely FABULOUS!! Wigs, heels, fake eyelashes.... the whole thing.

Until then, Shabbat Shalom and Chag Purim Sameach!

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