Parsha Behar: Rules of ‘sevens’

Dear Scouts: Last week we learned about the seven weeks of the Counting of the Omer (Sefirat HaOmer). We discussed how the number “seven” represents completion, and how Sefirat HaOmer commemorates our completion of the journey from the spiritual slavery of ancient Egypt to the spiritual freedom represented by the Torah. The Torah teaches us […]

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Parsha Emor: The Omer period

This week, we study in memory of Cheryl Baraty, long-time member of the National Jewish Committee on Scouting and Central Region Chair for the Committee, who passed away on Wednesday, April 30. Dear Scouts: Parsha Emor teaches us about a number of topics: obligations of the priests, laws about the offerings, and our holy days […]

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Parsha Kedoshin: Being holy and following the laws

Dear Scouts: This week, we learn parsha Kedoshim (holy things). The parsha is an elaboration on mitzvot that God has already given the Jewish people in the Ten Commandments:  I am God. Do not worship idols. Respect your father and mother. Observe Shabbat. The parsha also teaches us to be honest, preserve justice, avoid gossip and not bear a grudge. The parsha contains some chukim – laws that […]

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Parsha Metzora: Thinking before speaking

Dear Scouts: Our parsha this week, Metzora, goes into great detail discussing the affliction of tzaraas. Tzaraas is generally called leprosy, which is a disease that makes the skin unattractive and damages the nerves. Tzaraas was actually something different, and today it is usually called “Biblical leprosy.” Tzaraas could affect a person, but it could […]

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Parsha Tazria (Shabbat HaChodesh): Controlling our own time

Dear Scouts: For the five weeks leading up to Passover (these weeks include Purim) we read a special, extra Torah portion, in addition to the regular parsha. This week’s special portion is called HaChodesh (“the Month”) because it is about how we got the Jewish calendar. The special reading is taken from Exodus (12:1-20).  It […]

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Parsha Shemini: We are what we eat

Dear Scouts: We have spent the last several weeks learning about the Mishkan (Tabernacle), how it is to be constructed, the utensils contained in it, and the services to be conducted there. These things have all been created so that God will have a place where His glory can dwell among the Jewish people. Moses […]

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