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Hollis Hills Bayside Jewish Center

A Jewish Community Built on Caring, Prayer and Learning

210-10 Union Turnpike, Hollis Hills, NY 11364
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Weekly Shabbat Message

Shabbat Vayetzei 5774

  • Posted on November 8, 2013
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Reuven had the best of intentions. He saw that his mother, Leah, was in tough against her younger and prettier sister, Rahel, in the competition for dad’s attention. So he goes and picks dudaim, mandrakes, and gives them to his mom. He obviously knows the mythical power of mandrakes–a known aphrodisiac in the ancient world. This Continue Reading »

Shabbat Toldot

  • Posted on October 31, 2013
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Esav the hunter comes in from the field and desperately wants to eat what his brother Ya’akov is cooking. “Stuff me with that red red stuff,” he stutters. Ya’akov drives a hard bargain, though, and asks for Esav’s birthright in return. ” Esav replies, “Hinei anokhi holekh lamut–I am at the point of death, so Continue Reading »

Shabbat Hayei-Sarah 5774

  • Posted on October 24, 2013
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After burying his wife, Sarah, Avraham begins to confront his own mortality and realizes it’s time to solidify his legacy. After all, God has promised him a long-term covenantal relationship. It took long enough for Avraham to produce an heir to this covenant, and in order for the heir to have an heir, he needs Continue Reading »

Shabbat Vayera 5774

  • Posted on October 17, 2013
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As I headed for the ballroom where the big plenary session was about to begin, I saw a man in the hallway outside the doors. Because I had heard the upcoming speaker, Ron Wolfson, before, I knew who it was standing there. It was Ron Wolfson. Before speaking in front of a convention of 1200 Continue Reading »

Shabbat Lekh-Lekha 5774

  • Posted on October 10, 2013
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Poor Avram just wants to be able to count to one. One child, that is. God has promised him that he will be the father of a great nation, yet for years he and Sarai remain, in fact, the only ones. They are childless. It’s understandable that Avram would worry about numbers. We can say Continue Reading »

Shabbat Noah 5774

  • Posted on October 3, 2013
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Noah’s descendants bring human civilization forward by leaps and bounds. Their mastery of technology in their generation is as impressive as what we’ve accomplished in ours.  “And as they migrated from the east, they came upon a valley in the land of Shinar and settled there. They said to one another, ‘Come, let us make Continue Reading »

Shabbat Bereshit 5774

  • Posted on September 25, 2013
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The events at the Westgate Premier Shopping Mall in Nairobi last week reminded us of the extreme danger of extremist religious thought. The perpetrators were members of al-Shabaab, a Somali jihadist opposition group. At least one witness said that the attackers specifically targeted non-Muslims. They killed in the name of God. Rabbi Jonathan Sacks, emeritus Continue Reading »

Yom Kippur 5774

  • Posted on September 12, 2013
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This Yom Kippur is the 40th anniversary of one of the most anxious days in recent Jewish history–the day Egypt and Syria launched coordinated attacks on the State of Israel, beginning the Yom Kippur War. I will be reflecting on that event and its impact on Israel Friday evening after Kol Nidre. As part of Continue Reading »

Shabbat Nitzavim/Vayelekh 5773

  • Posted on August 30, 2013
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Read any section of the Torah carefully enough, and you will see literary genius at work. We’ll see a word appear again and again in a short passage, begging us to notice it as the central idea of that section. Then, we are beckoned to look closer, to see if there’s a pattern to the Continue Reading »

Shabbat Ki-Tetzei 5773

  • Posted on August 16, 2013
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If you had been alive in the decade before the Civil War  and living in this country, you would have been bound by a law that is in direct conflict with a mitzvah that appears in this week’s Torah portion, Ki-Tetzei. The mitzvah is: “You shall not turn over to his master a slave who seeks Continue Reading »