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After the patheticness at the last Bat Mitzvah, and the lack of foresight preparing for Simchat Torah, the shul will be hosting mandatory Simcha Dancing classes throughout the month of Cheshvan.
Simchat Torah, we’re going to have men and women circles. This way, people will be able to choose where they want to look. Nobody will be forced to focus on the horrific sight of men dancing in a circle.
The shul would like to apologize for the Lulavs and Etrogs we picked up this year. To quote Mordechai, ‘The Etrogs were a lemon.’
We do ask that people not hurt each other next year. Lulavs should remain close to the body. They are sharp and they do hurt when you wave them like it’s a Tallis. We also ask you to stop hurting people with your tassels. Next time anybody hits anybody with a Jewish artifact they will get escorted out of the shul by security. With that in mind, we also ask congregants stop swaying back and forth during Davening. Your lack of body control, as exhibited by your dancing, is dangerous.
The rabbi will be in Israel for Simchat Torah. As the rabbi expressed in his holiday message, 'There can only be Simcha when there are no congregants.'
Rabbi Mendelchem's Guest Rabbi's Drasha Excerpts
Shabbat Shalom You...
(Devarim 33:8-10) Levi is going to carry the Urim and Tumim... Because the Levites didn’t mess up. They’re also going to be the teachers... Because they didn’t mess up everything. This isn’t the Simchat Torah committee... Yes. You messed up. You don’t even know how to dance... It’s the holiday where we dance for the Torah. You have a committee for Simchat Torah and not one of your knows the 'Mayim Mayim BSason'...
And the Bat Mitzvah dancing. You don't hold onto the limbo stick to support yourself.
The Mei Meriva??? Ahron did Teshuva (Ramban). So, you can’t hold it against him... You were sitting in the back talking all of Musaf on Yom Kippur. Did you do
Teshuva for that?! I know it’s hard to repent when Yom Kippur already passed. You were talking the whole of Yom Kippur, in shul... I know it's hard to repent for Yom Kippur, when you need Yom Kippur... And why are we talking about bitter waters. Now you're bitter because you can't dance. The Levites would have taught you how to dance...
‘They kept the covenant.’ They kept the Brit Milah going, even in the desert. They didn't dessert H'... In the desert, they didn't desert. Exactly. They kept the Mitzvot. There's a reason, Shmuel who doesn't know how to dance the Mayim BSason doesn't teach it...
‘They shall teach Your ordinance to Yakov and Your Torah to Israel.’ Not Moishie. Who is Moishie??? You hired the worst Hebrew school teacher...
We need teachers who know what holidays are coming up... You don't celebrate Simchat Torah with Matzah balls.
We need a better board. We need people who know how to hold a Lulav without whacking people. We need relaxed congregants who don’t get all worked up about Lulavs and Etrogs... It’s the only Mitzvah you care about. And you attacked Max. Max was looking at a Lulav, you bumped him and took it, then poked him... It was a sharp Lulav. He’s 96 years old. There’s a Mitzvah to respect your elders. At least not whack them with branches...
It’s because they didn’t mess up. Levi didn’t mess up like Kathryn, who is on the board... From what I have seen here, if you're on the board, you're not a Levite...
Cheshvan is called a bitter month, because we have to deal with the congregants, and there are no holidays where the leave...
The sermon was given by a guest rabbi. Our rabbi was in Israel. The guest rabbi, only with us for three days, already can't stand the congregation.
He didn't see us as his pupils yet, so he called us 'you.' Much of the membership felt that was intimate enough.
The Lulav waiving did get violent. Our membership has no waiving control. Being near them during Lulav waiving is almost as dangerous as being near Baruch when he’s putting on his Tallis. Many members have been held up in the hospital with tassel whips.
Lulav injuries include: The Hakafot back of the head bump. The pace around the shul wasn't fast enough, so the bottom of Mark's Lulav caught Feivel in the back of his neck. A hand with a Hadas through it. A pair of glasses that went when Ruchel tried waving her Lulav in all directions during Hallel. She hit six people on that. She even hit a little girl who was trying to get to her mom with the down direction Lulav wave. Then there was the black eye from Shalom, who saw a friend and tried to say 'hi' with his Lulav.
And then hitting Max. That was wrong. It was over a box. They couldn't even see the Etrogs. So, they were check the boxes for nicks. Max had a pristine Etrog box, so they tackled him. Then he got whacked with a Lulav.
The membership seemed to only hear that there was room for men and women to dance. They didn't hear the part about sides. So, it felt like a non-religious wedding.
Bernie and Max Schulman tried bringing the traditional separate men's and women's sides. Being that the dancing was so off, and they couldn't control the train, the men ended up dancing on the women's side.
The Simcha Dancing classes themselves were painful to watch. Just seeing our members walk in a circle is a painful sight.
It seems that the only Jewish dance the congregants know is the shoulder hold, where you hold the shoulders of the guy in front of you. My take: The arm on somebody else’s shoulder does not constitute a dance. They’re doing it because they will fall otherwise. It's for balance.
If it was Zumba they could do it. They can't dance normally as Jews. But they can do aerobics. Aerobics is the most Jewish thing our congregants do.
I think the rabbi blames the shul board for everything. He blamed them for the teachers at the day school as well. The visiting rabbi even blamed them, and he just met them.
The day school teachers know nothing about Judaism. But they do know how to teach Zumba.
After the Chag, we heard about the attacks in Israel. We called our rabbi and he said he was safe. I believe he thought we were asking how it was being away from the congregants. He answered, 'I am safe. I haven't had any questions about services here.'
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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.