CHANUKAH SHAZOOM 7 PM (different time) December 3, 2021
Hanërot Halalu – הַנֵרוֹת הַלָּלוּ [these lights/candles]
WE KINDLE THESE LIGHTS because of the wondrous deliverance You performed for our ancestors. During the eight days of Chanukah, these lights are sacred; we are not to use them but only to behold them, so that their glow may rouse us to give thanks for Your wondrous acts of deliverance.
DECEMBER BIRTHDAYS, ANNIVERSARIES, AND SIGNIFICANT EVENTS
Mazal Tov – Mazal Bueno to all those celebrating a birthday, anniversary, or significant event during the Month of December. If we were together at Temple Kol Hamidbar, we would extend a Tallit over you, say a special prayer for you, and recite the following blessing (cf Num. 6:24-26):
- May the Eternal One bless you and protect you!
- May the Eternal One deal kindly and graciously with you!
- May the Eternal One bestow favor upon you and grant you peace!
KËIN YEHI RATZON (Let it be so!)
From ReformJudaism.org https://reformjudaism.org/torah/portion/mikeitz
Mikeitz (מִקֵּץ — Hebrew for “After [Two Years]”) – Gen. 41:1-44:17
Rosh Chodesh Hanukkah
At the end of two years’ time Pharaoh had a dream: there he was, standing by the Nile, when seven cows came up out of the Nile, handsome and fat. – Genesis 41:1-2
- Joseph interprets Pharaoh’s two dreams and predicts seven years of prosperity followed by seven years of famine. (41:1-32)
- Pharaoh places Joseph in charge of food collection and distribution. (41:37-49)
- Joseph marries Asenath, and they have two sons, Manasseh and Ephraim. (41:50-52)
- When Joseph’s brothers come to Egypt to buy food during the famine, Joseph accuses them of spying. He holds Simeon hostage while the rest of the brothers return to Canaan to retrieve Benjamin for him. (42:3-42:38)
- The brothers return to Egypt with Benjamin and for more food. Joseph continues the test, this time falsely accusing Benjamin of stealing and declaring that Benjamin must remain his slave. (43:1-44:17)
STRUGGLING WITH TORAH
From Wikipedia.org https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Miketz
Mikëtz (מִקֵּץ — Hebrew for “at the end”) – Genesis 41:1-44:17
The parashah tells of Joseph’s interpretation of Pharaoh’s dreams, Joseph’s rise to power in Egypt, and Joseph’s testing of his brothers.
In Modern Interpretation
Professor George Coats, former of Lexington Theological Seminary, argued that the Joseph narrative is a literary device constructed to carry the children of Israel from Canaan to Egypt, to link preexisting stories of ancestral promises in Canaan to an Exodus narrative of oppression in and liberation from Egypt. Coats described the two principal goals of the Joseph story as (1) to describe reconciliation in a broken family despite the lack of merit of any of its members, and (2) to describe the characteristics of an ideal administrator.
From “The Torah / A Women’s Commentary” edited by Dr. Tamara Cohn Eskenazi and Rabbi Andrea L. Weiss, Ph.D.
מקץ Mikeitz – Genesis 41:1-44:17
When Dreams Come True by Naomi Steinberg, p.233
Parashat Mikeitz (“at the end of”) marks the end of Joseph’s time in prison, traces his rise to power in Pharaoh’s court, and concludes when his brothers stand before him fearful for their fate. Earlier, in Genesis 37, Joseph’s dreams had provoked the envy of his brothers. In this parashah, dreams enable him to leave prison when he uses his gifts to interpret Pharaoh’s dreams. Joseph’s own dreams come true when his brothers–not knowing who he is–bow to him in supplication. How will Joseph respond? Have the brothers changed? The parashah concludes with the key question still unanswered: is this family doomed to relive a violent past, or will it show that transformation and growth are possible? In this parashah, Judah takes the lead as representative of the brothers. His rise to responsibility can be linked to his encounter with Tamar in Genesis 38 (see below).
Favoritism in Jacob’s household continues to propel the narrative. Jacob’s undying love for Rachel has led him to favor her sons, Joseph and Benjamin, over those of Leah, Bilhah, and Zilpah–resulting in virulent sibling rivalry for Jacob’s affection (Genesis 37). Years later, the brothers still must cope with Jacob’s blatant favoritism while he remains oblivious to the effect of his behavior.
In this parashah, women appear mostly indirectly. Unlike Sarah and Rebekah–who actively appeared in the earlier episodes about Abraham, Isaac, and their offspring–Jacob’s wives remain in the background and do not act. Rachel has already died (35:19), and Leah, whose burial is retrospectively recorded later (49:31), goes unmentioned. Nothing further is said about Zilpah or Bilhah. Only Asenath plays a direct role, as Joseph’s Egyptian wife and as mother of his sons. The name of her father, the priest Potiphera, echoes Potiphar’s name–evoking memories of Potiphar’s wife, the cause for Joseph’s incarceration in the previous parashah (Genesis 39).
At the same time, one notes several allusions or connections with the encounter between Tamar and Judah in Genesis 38. For example, in both stories, clothing serves as a disguise, hiding the true identity of Judah’s interlocutor; in both, the same verb (translated as “acknowledge” in 38:25-26 and “recognize” in 42:8) marks a pivotal moment; in both, also, the notion of pledge plays a role (see at 43:9). Possibly, Judah’s rise to prominence in this parashah results from the transformation he had undergone when Tamar quietly called him to account.
OPENING THE WINDOW TO INSPIRATION
Third paragraph of the D’VAR TORAH BY: RABBI KARYN D. KEDAR
Some say our dreams are born of fears and hopes, of an agitated soul. Others reply that they are visions of what can be, or premonitions of what will most certainly be. Maybe our dreams are channeled energy – energy that works its way through the mind and spirit, pulling the curtain back just a bit to reveal a Divine truth – a truth that is hidden by the waking mind. The waking mind must be trained not to forget and not to deny the night visions that come to visit.
THEME 2: FROM PRISON TO PALACE—JOSEPH’S TRANSFORMATION
From Women of Reform Judaism.org
Mikeitz, Genesis 41:1−44:17
by Rabbi Kim Geringer
In this section, Joseph experiences a transformation of status that informs every aspect of his being. It is particularly noteworthy that a woman plays a key role in his profound change, and this woman, Asenath, is a non-Israelite, the daughter of the most powerful Egyptian in the land. through her, Joseph’s line will continue, and their descendants will become the basis for future Israelite society. Asenath is a relatively minor biblical character, mentioned in only two verses in the entire Torah. Nonetheless, the implications of her role as the foreign wife of an Israelite man have reverberated throughout Jewish history and been explored from prophetic writings, rabbinic commentary, and Hellenistic literature all the way to a historic and groundbreaking 1983 decision by the Central Conference of American Rabbis. [The text of the 1983 resolution states: The Central Conference of American Rabbis declares that the child of one Jewish parent is under the presumption of Jewish descent.]
ROSH CHODESH CHANUKAH (TEVET)
Begins at sundown on Friday, December 3, 2021 and ends at nightfall on Sunday, December 5, 2021. Tevet is the tenth month of the Hebrew calendar and the fourth of the civil calendar.
When a Hebrew calendar month is 30 days long, such as the current month of Kislev, day 30 is considered Rosh Chodesh of the next month. Then Rosh Chodesh is two days long: day 30 of the old month and day 1 of the new month.
From “Mishkan T’filah / A Reform Siddur”:
ROSH CHODESH – INSERT (on Shabbat) p.174
OUR GOD and God of our fathers and mothers, on this first day of the new month [of Tevet] be mindful of us and all Your people Israel, for good, for love, for compassion, life and peace.
Remember us for wellbeing. Amen.
Visit us with blessing. Amen.
Help us to a fuller life. Amen.
FOR OUR COUNTRY p.516
THUS SAYS ADONAI, This is what I desire: to unlock the fetters of wickedness, and untie the cords of lawlessness; to let the oppressed go free, to break off every yoke. Share your bread with the hungry, and take the wretched poor into your home. When you see the naked, give clothing, and do not ignore your own kin.
O GUARDIAN of life and liberty, may our nation always merit Your protection. Teach us to give thanks for what we have by sharing it with those who are in need. Keep our eyes open to the wonders of creation, and alert to the care of the earth. May we never be lazy in the work of peace; may we honor those who have [served, suffered or] died in defense of our ideals. Grant our leaders wisdom and forbearance. May they govern with justice and compassion. Help us all to appreciate one another, and to respect the many ways that we may serve You. May our homes be safe from affliction and strife, and our country be sound in body and spirit. Amen.
We recite MI SHEBËRACH for the victims of abuse, brutality, conflicts, fear, natural disasters, pandemics, tragedies, violence of all kinds especially directed at individuals and specific communities including us, and war; for all those at home alone or lonely; for all those in need of physical, emotional, and mental healing. “R’fuah sh’lëmah” – a complete recovery!
We say KADDISH YATOM for those of our friends and families who have died and been buried this last week; those in the period of Sh’loshim (30 days since burial); those who have died in the last year; and those whose Yahrzeits/Anyos occur at this time; as well as the victims of brutality, conflict, disease, natural disasters, pandemics, tragedies, violence of all kinds, and war.
This coming week, 30 Kislev through 6 Tevet, we lovingly remember:
Father of TKH member Mary Caron
TKH Memorial Board, founding member
Those victims of the Sho’ah (Holocaust) who died at this time of year.
“ZICHRONAM LIV’RACHAH” – MAY THEIR MEMORIES BE FOR BLESSING.
CHANUKAH SHAZOOM – 7 PM
Chanukah began this year the evening of Sunday, November 28, and ends Monday, December 6, 2021. This evening, December 3, 2021, we will meet at 7 PM (different time) for a special Chanukah candle lighting and Shazoom Service including a sing along of various Chanukah songs. Have your Chanukiah (Chanukah Menorah) and favorite Chanukah food ready and at hand.
Zoom continues updating its security and performance features. Making sure you have the latest version of Zoom, please join us online this Friday evening:
Chanukah Shazoom – Erev Shabbat Service
Time: Dec 3, 2021 07:00 PM Arizona (different time)
To join the Chanukah Shazoom click on the following link [you may need to copy it into your browser]: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/72510500854?pwd=Z3VQZWF4U1BBZytNYmh3aHFTWkFDZz09
Meeting ID: 725 1050 0854
Hint: The last character of the password is the number zero.
Shabbat Shalom – Buen Shabbat and Chag Ha’urim Sameach – Hanuká Buena i Alegre!