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                                  Ḥametz

Rebbetzin Roni

We are commanded to rid our homes of ḥametz for Pesaḥ. Somewhere during the physical activity of searching, gathering, and burning the ḥametz in our homes, we are drawn to inspect our own lives to find the ḥametz within. But what exactly would be our “ḥametz?”

Many of us have heard teachings which equate ḥametz with sin. If ḥametz symbolizes sin, though, how can we justify being ḥametz-free for only...Read more...

                                    ester

Rebbetzin Roni


The book of Ester is a small book, a mere ten chapters. Most of us can relate the main events by heart. We imagine ourselves as Queen Ester, convinced we share her courage and faith.

Do we? In our fast food immediate gratification mindset, we can quickly lose our resolve. We get anxious when we wait a year, a month, or even a week for Hashem’s response. The timeline for the book of Ester spans eleven...Read more...

  Birkat HaShaḥar - Morning Blessings

Rebbetzin Roni

The Birkat HaShaḥar (morning blessings) is our springboard into each day. It is recited upon waking, but over time it has also become part of the daily Shaḥrit service. The blessings connect us to Israel, to HaShem, and to the nations, spanning the immediate to the infinite and revealing how insignificant – and irreplaceable – we are in G-d’s amazing creation plan. Each blessing begins with the same phrase,...Read more...

                                  yigdal

Rebbetzin Roni

 

“Yigdal” (“Great”) is a piyyut based on the Thirteen Principles of Faith by Rabbenu Moshe ben Maimon (“Maimondies,” also known as “The Rambam”). It is found near the beginning of the weekday Shaḥrit service and the end of Kabbalat Shabbat (Friday night) services.

Born in Cordova, Spain in 1135 CE, the Rambam eventually left Spain due to Moslem persecution. He lived in Morocco and Israel before...Read more...

                               Adon olam

Roni Bernstein

L-rd of the Universe,

who reigned before the birth of any thing –

When by His will all things were made

then was His name proclaimed King.

And when all things shall cease to be Read more...

                              Eishet Ḥayil

Roni Bernstein

Start At the Beginning

Mishlei (Proverbs) 31 is a fixture of our Erev Shabbat services. Placed in the midst of the songs and prayers of the evening, Eishet Ḥayil is a beautiful interlude during which men sing to their wives, declaring her before all present as precious, industrious, respected, virtuous, righteous, and praiseworthy.

 

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                      Beyond Recognition

Roni Bernstein

 

We’ve all seen movies about Machiaḥ. We’ve all seen paintings depicting Machiaḥ. The actors and images seldom look Jewish and are always classically handsome. It’s all so subtle and pervasive that we don’t realize how these images affect the way we picture Yeshua – and how we relate to Him.

 

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Mah Tovu

Roni Bernstein

“How goodly are your tents, O Ya’akov, your dwelling places O Yisra’el. As for me, through Your abundant kindness I will enter Your House; I will prostrate myself toward Your Holy Sanctuary in awe of You. O Hashem, I love the House where You dwell, and the place where Your glory resides. I shall prostrate myself and bow, I shall kneel before Hashem my Maker. As for me, may my prayer to You,...Read more...

L’David 

Roni Bernstein

Elul, the month before Tishrei, is known as the month of preparation. Our season of introspection/preparation begins after Shavuot, continues through the Three Weeks, and concludes on Yom Kippur. During Elul our preparations intensify; reading Tehillim (Psalm) 27 (l’David) is part of our daily life from Rosh Ḥodesh Elul to Shmini Atzeret. There is much to learn from this beautiful tehillah. David’s words remind us, challenge us, and...Read more...

Sat, August 24 2019 23 Av 5779