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This is my rabbi's sermon from last year. He is great and I love how he is the only rabbi who always gets mad at the congregation, because he loves them. They need the Musar (moral lessons). The lack of decent Kokosh cake that the rabbi was talking about might have had something to do with his decree that you can't bake within two weeks after Pesach. How cake was made without baking is a question we still have for our baker. The rabbi always gives a long sermon after Pesach. I think he's just very frustrated about all the cleaning he had to do. I had to cut some of it out. It was fire and brimstone this week. It felt like the rabbi was blaming the congregation for the death of Nadav and Avihu.
My Rabbi Mendelchem's Sermon (Drasha)
On the eighth day of the inauguration of the Mishkan (Tabernacle), Aaron is commanded to bring a calf for a sin offering (Vayikra 9:2). Who here should be bringing a sin offering? Who is at fault? Well, let’s see who showed up to shul late today. Michael is just comi- is he coming in now? Michael keeps growing that hair… Is he a Nazir?... I know he’s a teenager.
When you put out a really bad Kokosh cake and then you sell it at your local bakery, you are at fault... When Mrs. Rotstein's daughter dresses... Karen, please stand up so that everybody in the congregation can see what I am talking about... Shame. OK. Sit back down. I don't want to embarrass...
Rashi teaches this calf is to be brought, to show Aaron that this will be an atonement for the Golden Calf. We are speaking of atonement. Am I asking for much? Just a bit of atonement. Atonement for your sins. When I go to the Goldberg’s, should they not offer their guest a decent piece of brisket? Just a question…
Aaron was considered to have taken part in the Golden Calf, as he was the leader. Kind of like when your kids roam the halls and then run into shul in the middle of the rabbi's sermon. Can somebody please remove Chaim from the lectern?... You're his dad. Take him away. You are his leader...
H' gave Aaron the opportunity to atone for his sins. We all have these opportunities. I would like to take this opportunity to ask forgiveness for taking this job. Worst decision I ever made. I didn’t realize that Bernie would be talking in the middle of every one of my speeches… You can stop… First time he hasn’t interrupted and… I thought you were doing atonement, Bernie… Asking me for forgiveness in the middle of my sermon is not atonement. Taking this job was a bad decision.
Feinblum’s should be giving out whipped cream with their Kokosh for the next two weeks. Pareve…
Now is not the time Mrs. Rotstein. Why were you not working out?
He's hanging from the Chumash. Can somebody please remove Chaim… Chaim. This isn’t the hallway. You don’t jump on it.
However, none of you in this congregation take those opportunities. Do you? Do you?! Do you?!!.... Did the rabbi get the new home you were supposed to buy him? In order to atone for the sin of not giving him a raise?!
“A prosecutor does not become a defendant.” We learn this from our rabbis. This is the reason the Kohen doesn’t wear gold in the service… Because we messed up with the Golden Calf... No. Our Kohens don't wear gold because they're cheap... This isn't the Temple. You can pay dues... This is the reason that we don’t do Yoga in shul… Why is Karen wearing that?... This is why nobody on the board is allowed to read from the Torah.
We can turn that hateness around. We see that the women donated their jewelry to the Mishkan, so as to use the supposed bad for holy reasons (Exodus 35:22). There is good in this shul. Sorry. There is hope for good in this shul. We can bring that offering to atone.
Turn it around. Turn your child into a person who has goals, unlike... Turn the Kokosh cake into a babka. Turn the… Shul clothes. This isn’t LA Fitness… Can somebody donate a skirt to Karen… A mitzvah.
Rivka’s Notes on Rabbi Mendelchem’s Drasha
The Kokosh at Feinblum’s Bakery was dry this week. Without question, it is a huge problem. Karen should not have come to shul dressed in her gym clothes. Her family usually drives and we don’t say, but nobody knew that they show up late to shul every Shabbat because of a Pilates class. Parents have to take responsibility for their children. Not one of the kids in the shul has paid dues; yet, they still expect a Bar Mitzvah. That’s chutzpah.
The board decided on a dress code later that week, where they rewrote the bylaws to read, “All members must wear a suit to shul. This does not include sweatsuits.”
Rabbi Mendelchem is such a kind man. When he told Karen to sit back down, you could see his kindness. By the way, Mrs. Rotstein should be working out with her daughter.
When the rabbi repeated “Do you?!”, he was looking at Sadie. Sadie is a sweet lady of 87 years. I don’t know what sin she did in her past. The rabbi definitely had Sadie soul searching. Her memory is in good form, B"H.
Michael’s hair is very disturbing to the congregation. Now it’s colored neon green. It's just hard to concentrate with his hair. Though, he did take the rabbi's decree to keep safe when walking back from shul at night to heart.
The board members started a breakaway Minyin, service, that week. I had never seen a rabbi so happy to see a shul split.
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Wearing Israeli flags. Showing their support for Israel at the rally in DC. It would’ve been smarter if they brought coats. Based on experience, flags don’t work as good windbreakers.