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Shofar blowing will take place at 10:30am, or 9:45am if the rabbi's Drasha is shorter. Or 12pm if he goes on again like last year.
People are allowed to time the Tekiah Gedolah. We just ask that nobody get too excited if the rabbi's blast lasts longer than sixteen seconds. High fiving and screaming 'what's up. Did you see that???!!!!' is not proper in shul; especially when others are praying for their lives, knowing that there's a good chance they're written in the book of death, as the rabbi mentioned. Please note: stopwatches are forbidden on Rosh Hashana.
The Shabbat Shuva Drasha will be sponsored by the Minkowitz family who likes it to be advertised whenever they give money. Next Shabbat, the rabbi will talk about stuff most of the shul won't understand, to ensure we all have a meaningful High Holiday season. That should help all return in penitence.
From now on, everything in our shul will be a program. We will not do Shabbat dinners anymore at shul. We will run Festive Friday night programs, with festive food, with confetti popping out of potato kugel. As Jews don't practice tradition anymore, we understand that we have to practice programs.
Rabbi Mendelchem’s Sermon Excerpts
Shabbat Shalom My Pupils...
Please sit down... Nitzavim. Stand here today before H' in judgment. In prayer. Not during my sermon... Just sit Bernie. It's rude...
(Devarim 29:9) 'You are all standing before H' this day.' Standing means they're there. Not sleeping through the sermon... They showed up to shul. This isn't a game of Simon Says... You would all be out. I didn't say 'Simon Says.' Sit. Standing means sitting before H'... Because it's rude to stand.
Standing means they were there. They showed up to shul. Not just when they were scared they were going to be written in the book of death... They came when it wasn't the High Holidays. And the sanctuary looked like it had members.
(Rashi) Moshe brought everybody to enter them into the Brit... That's a covenant, Fran... Moshe brought the whole of the Jewish people. I would say that he would've left out our congregation. It's almost impossible to get you guys to show up to Minyin. If you never show up, you're not in the covenant... Because you weren't there. This isn't the whole 'and the ones who aren't here today.' It was talking about the future generations... Showing up for the shul picnic doesn't count, Mike...
Everybody. was there. (29:10) '...The your young children, your women, and your convert who is within your camp both your woodcutters and your water drawers...' Where are the shul water drawers. We can't even get anybody to help with Kiddish... The sisterhood does nothing. And we definitely don't have any woodcutters.
Everybody was there. They showed up. They were there. The Gabai didn't call up Rafi to the Torah and then have to figure out where he was... Rafi was there.
All were included. They weren't snobs. They were accepting, unlike the members of this shul that are anywhere from 25 to 70... They looked at you and say Hi. People wanted to be around them... People don't come, because they don't want to be around you...
We want to keep our kids out of shul... Their young kids were not loud and annoying back then. Their parents watched over them. Made them behave and shake hands... Your kids walk around and don't even return Good Shabbis calls.
Rosh Hashana, we will be blowing the Shofar with everybody here... Except babysitting. Exactly. Last year the kid cried a sixteen second wail. Nobody talked about the Tekiah Gedolah… They were focused on finding the pacifier for Tanner. How that kid is Jewish with that name....
Think about what you want to do as people. As a nation. As yourselves.... With the water drawers too... I understand they don't pay full dues, and you make it a point to not look at them to say Hi...
Chances are you're in the book of death. I know you. You deserve... Repent. That's all I'm going to say. You're shallow and snobby, and only show to shul when you're worried... That was for Kaddish. You had to come...
Rosh Hashana is not a program. Which is why the board was against having services this Rosh Hashana. Being a good Jew is not a program. Standing is not an exercise program. We're not playing Simon Says... Sit. And work on your squats at the gym. You stand for Kaddish, Kidusha, when the ark is open, then you sit back down. It's for services. For tradition. Not for reps.
Everything is now a program. What happened to tradition? To services?... It's pathetic, and annoying. I don't want to dance a Hora at a Shabbat meal. I want to eat, like our tradition says to. Eat and get heavy...
You cancelled Tehillim and made it Tehillim education… You do stuff. you do Tehillim. Doing stuff is more educational. Especially than going to classes with Fran...
Now we've got this new youth director. Everything is education. No services. No practice. Just education... The kids hate it. No kid wants education... For youth, you do programs. Programs like 'Keep Shabbat for Once.' Or programs like 'It's a Holiday. You're in Services. Keep Your Mouth Shut'...
We have a Chazin. That's painful enough... The whole shul is turning into a beginners service. An explanatory service. So now we have festive Friday night explanatory dinner programs... Conversation is a Jewish program. Why not just have conversation?!
What is this Friday Night programs the board is running?! Festive?! Is there going to be graffiti jumping out of the potato kugel?
This year, you should live as Jews. Let the year be a program of keeping Mitzvahs... Yes. That is a Bracha. Keeping Mitzvot and doing good deeds is a blessing. Even if it's not a program...
Standing before H' as a people, and entering the covenant is not a program. It's a way of life...
You are sinners. If you showed up once in a while... Just show up. And you can be part of the covenant.
Here's a Siman (an vegetation omen for the Rosh Hashana meal). Our enemies should have to deal with our board... That's a curse. That and they should have to show up to programs.
It's about being together. Standing as one... Not being the sinner, like Frank and Jessica, who bring everybody here down... but they stand with us too...
Oy. God. We have suffered enough with programs this year. May we be forgiven as one, and never have to deal with the board again...
The Minkowitz family is sponsoring the Shabbat Shuva Drasha next week.
The rabbi ended with such a beautiful Bracha there. A Bracha for all of our people to stand together. As he said, 'It's only as one that we can receive the Torah and the covenant of our people. Which is why we're revoking half of our congregation's membership.'
Some guys were working out in shul. They felt bloated from all the meals they had this past year, and wanted to get in exercise before Rosh Hashana. They were doing reps. Literally. The ark wasn't open and they were doing box squats on the chair. One guy yelled, 'You got a few more in you.' No 'Amen.' Just 'You got a few more in you.' And then there was a grunt instead of the yawning High Holiday between paragraph moan.
I've got to be honest. I can't stand these congregants that sometimes say 'Hi' and most of the time turn the other way. A bunch of snobs. It's like they need something when they say 'Hi.' If they don't say 'Hi' all the time, I don't like them. Social climbers.
Is it a classy thing to not say 'Hi' to people? I don't get it. If you smack them, do they then turn their heads and acknowledge you?
The rabbi and the board worked it out. He is not threatening them anymore. He just gets to not show up to the classes and programs. Some classes have had no presenter. I think the rabbi has been skipping his classes.
He is rightfully mad that they have substituted tradition for programs.
The rabbi hates the new Tehillim education. Just do it. That's his motto. His and Nike's. But he says it's his.
The festive thing is annoying. Can't have a decent dinner. Colored paper flakes flying out of the brisket and we have to dance the Hora around the table. I just like decent conversation. I am with the rabbi. Conversation is a good program.
The rabbi started a Hilchot Teshuva class. We learned the Rambam’s laws of repentance. He said that was tradition and not a program. The board was against it. And the rabbi said the board is required to come, because they are all sinners, and he can’t stand praying with them.
He also said they have not concept of tradition, and a Jewish youth director should be Jewish.
An amazing Shabbat Shuva Drasha. And it wasn’t even Shabbat Shuva yet. Not many sources, but everybody listened once the rabbi told the congregation as a whole that they're all probably in the book of death. It definitely will help bring more Kavanah to Rosh Hashana davening.
Every Drasha by our rabbi is a Shabbat Shuva Drasha. He goes off on how messed up the congregants are and how they have to not be like themselves. It always feels like Yom Kippur in the shul. Which is what makes it so spiritual. And nobody understands some of the ideas the rabbi speaks of, which always makes it more spiritual.
The rabbi's sermons can throw off shul timing sometimes, even though he blames the Chazin. I believe he spent a good half hour telling everybody that they need to hear the shofar to not die.
Such a message. The water drawers are people too. It really spoke to me.
The rabbi likes the people who don’t pay dues. They come to shul.
By the rabbi mentioning the Minkowitzs at the end of the sermon, he raised a lot of money for the shul. As the office told the Minkowitz family, 'That was product placement for you.'
Nobody remembered the Shabbat Shuva Drasha. They remembered the Minkowitz family name.
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They wanted to clean the silver on the Torah. Instead, they Polished it.
You get it? People from Poland are Polish. They should‘ve polished the silver. Nobody knows what it means. Maybe put a Polish person on it. If you're Polish, we do not mean to offend you. At the Kibbitzer, we are sure that many Polish know how to polish very well.
The Jerusalem Shofar carrying bag and water bottle. Perfect for when you need to blow the Shofar on a Tiyul. (saying something about a Shofar on a hike was where our creativity on this joke came to a halt)