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Honor your Elders

This Shabbat we begin the Reading of the Book of Exodus which highlights the stories of the Israelites struggle through the slavery in Egypt as well as the Exodus from Egypt. In a few weeks, we will read the events of Mt. Sinai when God presents the Ten Commandments to the Children of Israel. One of the most often quoted of these commandments is the fifth commandment - Honor your Father and Mother. So much has been written through the years about the important relationship between parents and children and today I want to expound upon this mitzvah a bit.
 
In addition to the respect and honor we are obligated to show our parents, the rabbinic commentators emphasize that we also need to show honor and respect to grandparents as well as elders in our community. There are other mitzvot in the Torah that instructs us to show respect to the senior members of our community including Leviticus 19:32 which tells us that we need to stand before the aged and show deference to the elders in the community. This honor we demonstrate to elders is something that needs to be done both on and individual level for members of our family but also on a communal level for senior members of our community.
 
Here at The Jewish Center we are very proud of the fact that we have a growing number of members of our community who are involved in our senior programming. A number of these members have joined the congregation in recent years and a number of them have been with us for five or six decades including one couple who were amongst the founders of our synagogue 63 years ago. They are part of our Shabbat community and are involved in many other aspects of TJC life.
 
Tomorrow morning, we will be honoring the senior members of our community with Senior Shabbat. Members of the Silver Circle and other seniors will be participating in our service and we even have a special presentation to honor them by another important group at TJC. I hope you will do your best to join us tomorrow as we honor our seniors. They represent our past and present life of TJC and we hope and pray that they will be with us long into the future as well. We should all strive to honor and respect our senior members throughout the year but just as we do for other important groups at TJC, tomorrow will be a special Shabbat for the senior members of our congregation.
 
I hope you all have a wonderful weekend
 
Shabbat Shalom
 
Rabbi Adam Feldman
Posted: 1/4/2013 1:39:39 PM by | with 0 comments

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