Erev Shabbat Message from Rabbi Adam Feldman

Dear Congregants:
            Being a congregational Rabbi provides me with so many opportunities and unique experiences. One happened to me this week in a surprising way and I want to share the story with you. This past Tuesday evening, I was home because it was Halloween night. Every year on this night, I feel obligated to be home to distribute candy to the children that come by and since some people know where the Rabbi's house is, I feel a bit more of an obligation. When our children were younger they never went out on Halloween but they did enjoy standing with us at the door looking at the costumes and trying to see if they could recognize the children. (Don't worry - my children got plenty of candy on Halloween because they ate all of the leftovers). This year, as no one else was home to give out the candy, the responsibility fell all on me.
            The first knock on the door came around 6 PM and for the next two hours I was pretty busy. I saw many different children at my door and many parents who accompanied their children standing on the sidewalk watching the proceedings. A number of the children that came to the door were from the synagogue and a few said hello or gave me a smile and I knew that we made a connection. Once in a while, a parent would call out from the sidewalk, "Say Hello to Rabbi Feldman - and make sure to say Thank you." But in all my years of giving out candy on Halloween, this was the first time the following  happened.
            There was a group of children that came to the door together - maybe four or five children between the ages of 6 and 10. As I gave them the candy and said Happy Halloween, they responded "Thank you and Happy Halloween to you too." Then, as one child began to walk away, he turned back toward me and said, "Shabbat Shalom." Clearly this boy recognized me from The Jewish Center and made a quick association. It made me smile that he connects me to Shabbat and that when he saw me in this context at home on Halloween, it made him think about his Shabbat experiences at TJC.  My response to him was, "Shabbat Shalom to you too. I don't know if I ever was wished a Shabbat Shalom on a Tuesday before."
            As I closed the door and went back inside, I smiled. I was happy to know that I was home that night to give out the candy and to see the children. I was happy to know that they were able to have the fun of Halloween in a safe, supervised manner and that I was able to give them a little sweetness that evening. I was also happy that this little boy connected me not only to The Jewish Center but to Shabbat.
            I hope we all have a Shabbat Shalom this week and that we all think about ways we can connect to our synagogue and our community outside of the walls of TJC. I hope all of our children will have more moments of pure fun and enjoying themselves in a safe, supervised manner. And don't worry, there is enough left over candy still in my house for everyone to enjoy for quite some time.
Shabbat Shalom,
Rabbi Adam Feldman
P.S. - For those of us who are following the Jewish calendar, yesterday was an important anniversary in Jewish history. It was the 100th Anniversary of the Balfour Declaration. 
To learn more about that important milestone and to read the thoughts of Chancellor Arnie Eisen of the 
Jewish Theological Seminary of America, please click below.
Posted: 11/3/2017 9:25:31 AM by | with 0 comments


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