Shabbat Shirah Parashat B’Shalah MLK Day weekend 5782
It was a year like this one — Tu B’Shevat and Reverend Martin Luther King day weekend coincided. The administration of the Schechter school decided that it made sense to have one special assembly on Friday for both events. The next week we learned that the kindergarteners had gone home and told their parents that “today we celebrated the holiday when Black people plant trees.” That was the last time we combined assemblies.
Shabbat Shirah and MLK Day and that is not all:
This shabbat is also Shabbat Shirah, the shabbat that we read the Song of the Sea, sung by the Israelites as they crossed the Sea from slavery to freedom. What does the passage to freedom mean for all of us?
One way to celebrate Tu B’Shevat is to plant trees in Israel, but not this year. 5782 is a sh’mitah year, a sabbatical year, a year when we refrain from planting in Israel. What can we do to reinforce the idea of sh’mitah?
May it be a meaningful weekend, complete with virtual Shabbat Shirah singing services, Sunday morning Tu B’Shevat Seder with the religious school, and Monday evening communal MLK day observance.
Please print this MLK reading before Shabbat, and we will read it together in the place of the prayer for the government. (If you forget to print before Shabbat, please just listen to the reading on Shabbat.) https://www.rabbinicalassembly.org/sites/default/files/mlk_prayer.pdf
I am glad to be back with the congregation, even virtually. Stay healthy, stay warm, stay connected.
B’vrakhah, Rabbi Spitzer