Parsha Shemini: A question of kashrut too

This Sunday night and Monday, we will observe Yom Hashoah, Holocaust Remembrance Day. This week’s Derech Tsofeh is in memory of all those who perished in the Holocaust. Dear Scouts: We have spent the last several weeks learning about the Mishkan (Tabernacle), how it was to be constructed, the altars, Menorah and other ritual objects […]

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Passover 5777 (Ki Sisa)

Chag sameach and a joyous Passover from Jerusalem, where today I had a wonderful visit with a young Israeli cousin who is a Scout. Dear Scouts, This week at services during Passover, we are reading Torah portions that have to do with our redemption from slavery in Egypt and the first Passover. On Shabbat, we […]

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Parsha Tsav: Opportunities for lovingkindness

Dear Scouts: This week’s parsha, Tzav, has an important connection to next week’s important event – Passover, our festival of freedom. Tzav has very detailed instructions about some of the korbanim (sacrifices) that were given in the Mishkan (Tabernacle) in the desert, and later in the Beis HaMikdash (Temple) in Jerusalem. Some of the korbanim […]

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Parsha VAYIKRA: Where is your table?

Dear Scouts: For weeks we’ve been learning about the Mishkan (Tabernacle) - how it was to be built, what vessels were to go in it, how the kohanim (priests) were to dress and how Moses was to anoint the kohanim and inaugurate the services. The services to be held in the Mishkan and later in the Beit […]

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Parshat Vayakhel-Pekudei: Lessons from the Mishkan

Dear Scouts: This week, we close the book of Shemos (Exodus) with the double portion of Vayakhel and Pekudei. The two portions are read on separate Shabbats during a leap year in the Jewish calendar. We end as we began, with an accounting. Shemos starts with a description of the “70 souls” who entered Egypt with […]

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Parsha TETZAVEH: Dressing the part

Dear Scouts: This week, we read Parshat Tetzaveh. Now that the Mishkan (Tabernacle) has been constructed, God commands that Aaron and his sons be consecrated to his service as priests (Kohanim), and gives instructions for their installation. The Kohanim wear special garments when they perform their holy duties. They are to wear a long linen […]

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Parsha MISHPATIM: Learning responsibility

Dear Scouts: This week’s Torah portion is Mishpatim – Judgments. It discusses cases that come before a court. Last week, in Parsha Yitro, we learned how God gave us the Ten Commandments. We also saw that Moses, acting on the advice of his father-in-law, Yitro, established courts headed by distinguished members of the community. Since […]

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Parsha Yitro: Seeing the thunder

This week we have a guest d’var Torah by Rabbi Peter Hyman, former National Chaplain of the National Jewish Committee on Scouting. Let me begin by saying Mazal Tov and Yasher Koach to those who bring us Derech Tsofeh. Last week, we celebrated the fifth anniversary of Derech Tzofeh. This week, we start a sixth […]

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