Torah: Pekudei (Exodus 38:21-40:38)
Haftarah: Rosh CHodesh Adar II
During Shabbat service the prayer for the new month of Adar II will be recited.
Adar Shenni, the Jewish month for a Leap year, is used as a second Jewish month that has the Festival of Purim.
Pekudei has the description of the records kept of all work and materials used in the construction of the tabernacle, as well as the donations by the Israelites. Moses and the Israelites celebrate the completion of the tabernacle by anointing it. G-d’s Presence fills the tabernacle and leads the people throughout their journey.
The Torah portion has the concept and values of accountability of public officials with attention to the accounts of contributions and donations to the Temple clearly points to the moral responsibility of leaders. Today too many public leaders have been found to violate the trust of the public. Jewish tradition maintains that public officials must be above suspicion. Handling the people’s funds demands careful scrutiny to high ethical standards.
Another Torah portion value is Kevod Adonai: The Glory of G-d that filled the tabernacle (Exodus 40:34). At the same time, Judaism has always taught that G-d’s presence fills the entire universe and that G-d may be worshiped wherever good people dwell.
This was the finishing Torah parchot in the Book Of Shemot (Exodus),which contains 1209 verses,40 chapters and 11 Sidrot.
At this time Ukraine is under war from the Russian Invasion. I have written my concerns and thoughts to my Senator Mike Lee to help the People of Ukraine. We will be reciting prayers to welcome the joyous month of Purim Adar II, while the chief rabbi asks for Jewish people to help him and the 40,000 Jewish people who live in the capitol, Kyiv. There are many Christians and other people of diverse faiths that are suffering also under war. Many nations are sending medical and military aid, one is Israel!
We can pray for peace, but each of us can add our voices in trying to have our Congress representatives stop buying Russian oil and energy, while Russia continues its attacks on a sovereign country, Ukraine.
As Jews we all know too well; if the world remains Silent and does not act what can happen. Please know there will be funds and actions to help the refugees, but please be careful that it is a real agency before donating.
May this violence come to a speedy end and peace enter the region once more.
Rabbi Helene Ainbinder