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SHEVI’I AND ACHARON SHEL PESACH 21-28 Nisan 5776

Thu Apr 28th – Erev Shevi’i Shel Pesach /ERUV TAVSHILIN/
Shacharis: 7 am
Mincha/Candles  8:00 pm 
Maariv 8:54 pm /COUNT OMER #6/
It is customary to remain awake on the eve of the Seventh of Passover (i.e., tonight) and spend the entire night in Torah study and joyous celebration of the great miracle of the splitting of the sea. (
www.chabad.org)

Fri Apr 29th – Shevi’i Shel Pesach
Shacharis: 9:30 a.m.
Mincha 6:30 PM /Special Time - FOLLOWED BY KINUS TORAH/
Candles & 
Yartzeit Candles before 8:01 pm from existing flame
Maariv 8:55 /COUNT OMER #7/

Sat Apr 30th  – Acharon Shel Pesach
Shacharis: 9:30 a.m /YIZKOR/
Mincha  6:30 pm followed by MOSHIACH SEUDA
Maariv/Havdalah 9:07 pm /COUNT OMER #8/
Chametz repurchased 9:15 pm (Rabbi Levitin will announce if this is delayed)

Weekday Services
Sun Shacharis 9 am
Mon-Fri Shacharis 7 am
Sun-Thu Mincha 8:15 pm
Sun-Thu Maariv and Sefira 9 to 9:05pm /COUNT 9-13/

ERUV TAVSHILIN REMINDER
This week, the seventh day of Pesach leads directly into Shabbat. This presents a halachic challenge, as generally, we may not prepare from one holy day to the next; at the same time, we want to make sure that all of our food is pre-cooked before Shabbat. To address this issue, our sages set up the Eruv Tavshilin. The Eruv Tavshilin consists of minimally 1-2 pieces of matzo and a hard boiled egg set aside on Thursday afternoon, prior to Yom Tov. Recite the blessing below before Yom Tov and consume the Eruv Tavshilin on Shabbat.

https://shiurcentral.files.wordpress.com/2015/04/eruv-tavshlin.jpg

MOSHIACH SEUDA Sat Apr 30th  6:30 pm
Featuring words of Torah, 4 cups of wine, and shmura matzo (BYOB & Matza!) Shul will provide only some sweet wine, matzo, and Meal Mart Seder Leftovers.  Please keep all food in the social hall and supervise children. http://www.moshiachcampaign.com/media/pdf/529/xWCv5297556.pdf

WOMEN’S SUNDAY TEHILLIM AT CSTL – 10 AM
In the library.  Come say a prayer for those in need. 

KIDDUSH SPONSORSHIPS AVAILABLE
If you would like to sponsor Kiddush at CSTL, please contact Ivan Rothman, GabbaiKiddush, hardcastle101@hotmail.com . Please inform Ivan by the preceding Sunday evening so that we have time to prepare properly.  Prices: Sponsor $300, co-Sponsor $150, Contributor: $50-$149.

THE NORTH SEATTLE ERUV STATUS: -PENDING
For current status of the North Seattle Eruv, please check the flag on the NE 65thStreet side of CSTL, (green flag means the Eruv is up, red flag the Eruv is down), CSTLeNews, or the Vaad eNews. Visit our web site www.twitter.com/cstleruv for current status.

CSTL Fund Raising through Amazon
Amazon has a program of giving 0.5% of your purchase to the charity of your choice.Congregation Shaarei Tefilah Lubavitch is one of the charities. This is a great way to raise funds for the shul without incurring extra charges or financial burdens.  Go to Amazon Smile: https://smile.amazon.com  to register

CAMP GAN IZZY REGISTRATION NOW OPEN - REGISTER TODAY
Conveniently located right here in the heart of Seattle’s North End. The season now runs from Monday, July 4th through Friday August 5th. Camp Gan Israel Seattle has been providing the Jewish children of Greater Seattle a special summer day camp experience that integrates healthy active fun, field trips and friendships with the richness, excitement and warmth of Jewish values, tradition and culture. Fun that lasts a summer…memories that last a lifetime.  Questions? Call or text Rabbi Abe Kavka at (206.730.2775) or info@campganisraelseattle.org . Register your kids, ages 2½ to 12 at www.campganisraelseattle.org  for 1, 2, 3, 4, or 5 weeks. NOW OFFERING TRANSPORTATION TO AND FROM MERCER ISLAND AND SEWARD PARK!!! (For transportation to/from other areas please speak with Rabbi Kavka.)

JLI “COURSE OF WHY” WITH RABBI BOGOMILSKY at CSTL  
Are you ready to give your Judaism the intellection you know it deserves? Are you prepared to tackle the quizzical, queer, and seemingly-unanswerable questions about Jewish belief and practice? Then signup today for The Jewish Course of Why. Controversial and intriguing unanswered questions. This course comes with an educational book.  Thereafter for 5 Wednesdays.  www.myJLI.com or call 206-290-6301

THANK YOU TO JEWISH FEDERATION OF GREATER SEATTLE
Funding for CSTL Outreach Program was made possible, in part, by a grant from the Jewish Federation of Greater Seattle.  Please donate to JFGS athttps://www.jewishinseattle.org/donate


COMMUNITY NEWS

Yom ha’Shoah Mishmar Chavura with Rabbi Rosenfeld  THU May 5th 9-11 PM
Parsha Learning and Discussion.  Everyone welcome to join the conversation.  5240 38th Ave. NE, Snacks served

Mercaz Lag B'Omer Fire, Music and Torah Thu May 26th 8pm - 11pm
www.mercazseattle.org

Yom Ha'zikaron Commemoration/Yom Ha'atzmaut Celebration May 11 7:45 pm, 
Memorial for fallen soldiers and terror victims. Tefillah Chagigit, a Festive Ma'ariv at Minyan OhrChadash, 51st Avenue S and South Brighton Street, Seattle. Sponsored by Minyan Ohr Chadash, Sephardic Bikur Holim, Congregation Ezra Bessaroth

Holocaust Remembrance Day Dedication of the Anne Frank Tree May 1, 2 pm - 4 pm, 
at McCaw Hall, Seattle Center, 321 Mercer St., Seattle. Program will include a presentation from survivorLaureen Nussbaum, a friend of Anne Frank and her family, a musical performance by local artist SeraCahoone sponsored by Sub Pop, and the dedication of the Anne Frank Tree, a sapling of the historic tree Anne Frank saw from her attic window, and now planted in the Seattle Center's Peace Garden.

YOM HASHOAH LECTURE Sun May 1 at 2.00pm-4.00pm. McCaw Hall Seattle Center. Lecture: Local Survivor Laureen Nussbaum shares her childhood memories of Anne Frank and the Frank family. Followed by the dedication of the Anne Frank Tree. The tree was planted from a sapling of the chestnut tree that Anne viewed from her attic window while she was in hiding. Seattle Mayor Ed Murray will be in attendance.

YOM HASHOAH Memorial Service, Wednesday May 4 at 6.30pm-8.00pm
At Stroum Jewish Community Center Candle lighting and presentation by local Survivor Henry Friedman who as a child survived against all odds for 18 months in a tiny attic in Poland For further information please visit www.holocaustcenterseattle.org

Two Minutes of Silence for Holocaust Remembrance Day – May 5th NOON

PJ Library Israel Adventure at Seattle Hebrew Academy May 10th 10 am
Celebrate Israel with PJ Library storytime, music, delicious snacks and a craft activity. At Seattle Hebrew Academy, 1617 Interlaken Drive E, Seattle. Sponsored by Seattle Hebrew Academy, PJ Library Seattle, and the Jewish Federation of Greater Seattle

Northwest Yeshiva High School Sunday, May 15, 12:00 - 2:00 pm, 
FREE event for all middle schoolers. Come to the UW HUB (4001 E Stevens Way NE, Sea.) Bowling, arcade, games & pizza. Sponsored by Jamie & Jeff Merriman-Cohen. RSVP: mrivkin@nyhs.org

NYHS Torah Dedication Sunday, June 19, 9:30 - 11:30 am, 
Torah Dedication in honor of Rabbi Bernie & Shirley Fox. Ceremony starts at Cong. Shevet Achim & ends at NYHS. Click here for more info or contact Jack Deleon:  deleon6123@gmail.com  or Melissa Rivkin: mrivkin@nyhs.org

StandWithUs Northwest Reception May 15
More info: http://www.standwithus.com 

Seattle Kollel Annual Lag B'Omer BBQ Thursday, May 26
At Genesee Street, Shelter 1. Cost: $10/Adults or $5/kids (ages 4-12). More info or to volunteer: theseattlekollel@gmail.com

Seatlle Kollel SEED Learning Day Camps
Boys Tentative: June 27-August 25. More info: www.seattlekollel.org
Girls Tentative: June 27-August 25. More info: www.seattlekollel.org 

Derech Emunah Garden Party Tuesday, May 31, 7:00 pm
"Sweet Success", a garden party to celebrate Derech Emunah. Cost: $65/person, ADULTS ONLY, Men & Women are invited. At the home of Lynda & Ken Wegodsky, 5772 S Oaklawn PL, Sea. RSVP:events@derechemunah.com

NCSY 10th Annual Basarfest, Sunday, June 5, 5:00 pm 
at Sephardic Bikur Holim. Buy tickets at www.seattlencsy.com 

Music of Remembrance Presents "Out of Darkness" May 22nd 4 pm - 6 pm, 
at Illsley Ball Nordstrom Recital Hall, 200 University St., Seattle. Sponsored by Hillel, Jconnect $45, $30 30 and under

Torah High 2015-2016. 
More info: www.torahhighseattle.com

36th International Conference on Jewish Genealogy, Aug. 7-12
Sheraton Hotel, downtown Seattle. More info: www.iajgs2016.org

NEED A DRIVER – CALL GERSHON!
For all your transportation needs, call Gershon Grashin (206) 856-2754


SICHO FOR ACHARON SHEL PESACH 
http://www.sie.org/templates/sie/article_cdo/aid/2605165/jewish/Acharon-Shel-Pesach-5739-1979.htm © SichosInEnglish.org 

1. [The Baal Shem Tov initiated the custom of eating a meal immediately before sunset on Acharon Shel Pesach. He called this meal Moshiach’s Seudah (The Feast of Moshiach) and explained that through participating in this meal we are able to appreciate a glimmer of the Messianic age.]

The full significance of Acharon Shel Pesach (the last day of Pesach) was only revealed recently, in our generation. Until then, the custom of celebrating Moshiach’s Seudah was unknown to the general public. It is appropriate to connect the two together since AcharonShel Pesach marks the conclusion and, according to the principle “always proceed higher in holy matters,” the peak of the Pesach festival.

The prominence of Acharon Shel Pesach can be understood through analysis of the Torah’s reference to the seventh day of Pesach. (Trans. note: According to the Rabbinic injunction that Jews in the Diaspora celebrate each festival for two days. Acharon Shel Pesach is a continuation of the seventh day of Pesach.) We are told that it is “a day of assembly unto G‑d” and therefore “do not do any work.” Other holidays are described as “a day of assembly for you.” The Talmud explains that since we have two conflicting verses (one, “unto G‑d” and the other “for you”) it is proper to divide the holiday evenly, half to G‑d, and half for ourselves. Also, in general though work is prohibited on Yom Tov, certain categories of work, e.g. the preparation of food is permitted. These laws apply on the seventh day of Pesach as well. However, since the Torah specifically refers to the seventh day of Pesach as “a day of assembly unto G‑d” and states “Do not do any work,” it is obvious that the spiritual aspects of the holiday are stressed more emphatically then, than on other festivals.1

Acharon Shel Pesach possesses the same qualities. In Likkutei Torah, the AlterRebbe explains that the second day of a holiday is an extension of the first, instituted because the G‑dly light that shines is too powerful to be contained in only one day.2 In fact, the second day is on a higher level than the first as can be seen from the principle “always proceed in holy matters.”

2. Acharon Shel Pesach concludes the Pesach holiday, the festival of freedom. An intrinsic connection exists between freedom and happiness. A slave can never experience real joy.3

However, there exist two levels of happiness: The first is achieved by attaining freedom from slavery. The second has no connection with slavery. It is the true happiness that comes from total freedom.4 Each level has an advantage. In the first, the recollection of slavery’s bitterness makes you appreciate freedom more. To illustrate this concept, Chassidus often brings the example of the joy felt by the king’s son who has been released from prison and can once again see his father.5 Nevertheless, in the second stage your simcha is complete. In the first, the taste of slavery remains. As long as its memory persists you can never experience true freedom and true joy.

These two categories define the difference between the seventh and the final day of Pesach.6 The seventh day is the continuation and culmination of the six preceding days. It concludes an entire week of Pesach. On the contrary, the fact that it is called “AcharonShel Pesach” (the last day of Pesach) instead of the eighth day shows that it is placed in a different category. The seventh day continues and completes the process of Exodus from Egypt. The final day celebrates a level of freedom not at all connected with Egypt and slavery.

Therefore, Moshiach’s Seudah is celebrated on the final day. In Moshiach’s Seudah, we taste the revelations of Messianic times.7

We sense a glimmer of how it will feel when the entire concept of Golus will be totally wiped away. Acharon Shel Pesach possesses this same quality, representing the state of total freedom with no connection to slavery.

3. The celebration of every holiday is not intended to be a one time event, but rather to teach lessons which will effect the totality of our service to G‑d. Likewise, we should not regard the concept mentioned above as exclusive to Acharon Shel Pesach but practically applicable in our daily observance of Torah and Mitzvos.

Torah and Mitzvos bring about true freedom, as the Mishnah says “The only free man is he who is involved in the study of Torah.”

What is the rationale behind that statement? How does Torah make us free? The answer to that question relates to the essential nature of Torah. Torah is G‑d’s wisdom and will. It existed before the world and even now, after the world’s creation, it transcends worldly limitations. Likewise, a student of Torah achieves a state of oneness with his subject matter and rises above the world’s finite boundaries.

The same applies to Mitzvos. The fundamental principle behind Mitzvos is “You are my servants and not servants to servants.” By following G‑d’s commands, a Jew expresses his obedience to G‑d’s will and not to the dictates of the world. Furthermore, the Talmud states: “The servant of a King is like the King.” He becomes the controller of his environment. All the restrictions placed upon him including those of “the laws of his country” which Torah says must be accepted as “your law” do not apply if they run contrary to Torah.8

The two levels of freedom described above apply in this case. On the first level, he feels the pressure of the slavery of the world, and fights against it. On the second level, he does not at all feel the presence of the world.9 The ultimate goal of Torah is to bring about full freedom. In the first stages of service, we have to work on breaking our nature and our ties to the worldly desires. However, the necessity for such service itself shows that we have not attained a full level of Torah experience. Only when there is no trace of connection to material desires left can our Torah service be complete.10

On a practical basis, each one of us can attain (at least to some degree) the second level described above. It has been mentioned on a number of occasions while a Jew is studying Torah, he must stand above and disregard all worldly matters. Just as on Shabbos, he forgets his material concerns and would not pick up a telephone, etc., similarly when learning, his studies dominate his total attention;11 if the telephone rings he does not answer it, his mind is focused on Torah alone.

4. In previous generations, Acharon Shel Pesach was also connected with the coming ofMoshiach. This is obvious from the Haftorah which elaborates on various details of the Messianic age. However, by instituting Moshiach’s Seudah, the Baal Shem Tov12 added a new dimension. Moshiach is appreciated not only in speech and in Torah, but also connected with physical activity, assimilated into our system, becoming part of our flesh and blood.

The question may arise: What is the difference between eating Matzoh now in Moshiach’sSeudah and eating it during the previous days of Pesach. We are told that when we eatMatzoh (not necessarily during Moshiach’s Seudah) we must realize that “we are eating G‑dliness.”

The difference between the two can be compared to the two different stages of the Messianic era (see footnote F). In the first stage, traces of Golus will remain. Only in the second stage will all remnants of any influences contrary to Torah disappear. Moshiach’sSeudah gives us a taste of such a perspective, and furthermore, endows us with the potential to perpetuate that state throughout the entire year. This meal gives us the potential to rise above Golus even now, to overcome all the disturbing influences that mayeffect our Torah observance.

Practically speaking; Acharon Shel Pesach reminds us that during Torah study it is required — and within the capacity — of every Jew to completely disassociate himself from the world around him. Even though before learning we may have had other involvements, while learning, only the Torah we are studying should fill our minds. Why is this so? As mentioned above, Torah existed before the world. The Rambam states “This is the Torah, it will not be changed.” Just as before creation Torah was not effected by worldly influences, the same still applies even after creation. Esoterically; in the spiritual order, the source of Torah precedes that of the world, hence Torah is above worldly limitations. “Study leads to deed,” it is therefore understood that if our Torah study is unaffected by worldly influences, our deeds will be on a similar level. Acharon Shel Pesach teaches us to have a Shabbos13 mentality throughout the year. Likewise, it prepares us for the day which will be “Shabbos and rest forever” with the coming ofMoshiach.

May the influence of Moshiach’s Seudah be reflected in our daily service of Torah andMitzvos. May that service be filled with joy and pleasure until it reaches an unbounded simcha.14

* * *

5. Moshiach’s Seudah is the third meal eaten on Acharon Shel Pesach. It parallels SeudahShlishis, the third meal eaten on Shabbos. Shabbos contains three different levels: 1) rest directly after work as it says in Koheles, “a worker enjoys a sweet sleep.” His rest washes away all traces of fatigue and effort. This is the level of the Friday night meal. 2) The rest that stems from the knowledge that there is no need to work as the Talmud says “Sleep on Shabbos is a pleasure.” This is the level of the Shabbos day meal. 3) The “day which is all Shabbos and rest.” This is the level of Seudah Shlishis, the highest level of Shabbos.

Kabbalah explains that Seudah Shlishis reflects the state of the world in Messianic times. This statement helps explain a Chassidic custom. The previous Rebbeim were careful to eat Seudah Shlishis, but they did not eat a full meal as in the case of the previous two. Rather, they would eat something light,15 fruit or cake (Some Chassidim were careful not to eat at all16 ).

This behavior relates closely to Acharon Shel Pesach. As explained above, there also, the emphasis is placed on the holiday’s spiritual aspects, it is “an assembly unto G‑d.” However, three meals, including Moshiach’s Seudah are eaten!

What’s the motivating principle operating in both cases? An argument exists between the two Jewish sages, the Rambam and the Ramban about the nature of the life in Messianic times. The Rambam holds that souls will live without bodies. The Ramban maintains that souls will be enclothed, as they are now, in bodies. As a proof he cites the Talmudic statement: “In Messianic times, there will be no eating and drinking.” If souls will exist without bodies, what is the necessity for the Talmud to tell us they won’t eat or drink? That fact would be understood without any explanation. Therefore, his opinion, and also that of Kabbalah and Chassidus is that also bodies will exist then.

However, the Ramban’s opinion arouses two basic questions: 1) The soul’s powers are more revealed when they are not contained within a body. Why then, in Messianic times, when the world will reach its ultimate state of completion, will they be subject to those restraints? 2) Why will the body possess a digestive system? Since man in his state of ultimate perfection will not eat, why will he need one?

Chassidus answers these questions explaining that the body possesses a spark of G‑dlinesshigher than that of the soul. This level is not revealed now, but will be, in Messianic times. However, even then the body will not be able to reveal it by itself, rather it will need the soul as an intermediary. In that way, the body will nourish the soul even then.

From the above, we see that even the highest revelations of Messianic times will be connected with physicality. This parallels the concept that G‑d wants “a dwelling place (i.e. a place to reveal His essence) in the lower worlds.” Similarly, through eating at the time of Seudah Shlishis and Moshiach’s Seudah we connect them with the physical world. In this manner, we create “a dwelling place” for G‑d on the material plane.

This insight contributes to the lessons mentioned above. Before, we stressed the necessity for total dedication to Torah with complete disregard for the material world. It is possible to think that Torah asks us to sever all ties with physicality. Moshiach’s Seudah teaches us that even on the physical plane we must create an awareness of G‑d. The Alter Rebbe explained a similar concept speaking in reference to prayer. “Your heart must be focused above and your eyes below.” Even during the sublime spiritual experience of Tefillah it is necessary to maintain a connection and a point of relation to the physical world.

The Talmud states: “there is no happiness without wine.” Therefore, Moshiach’s Seudahinvolves drinking wine which produces physical joy. This happiness enables the body to experience full spiritual freedom and an awareness of Moshiach, even in a material world and while still in Golus.

In the future redemption not one Jew will be left in Golus. Therefore, as a preparation, it is necessary to encourage all Jews to participate in Moshiach’s Seudah and in that way hasten his coming. May we merit it speedily in our days.

* * *

6. When a Jew fulfills the injunction “place G‑d constantly before you” he has the ability to sense G‑d’s presence at all times and in all places. Furthermore, since the Jews are “believers, descendents of believers” this service cannot be considered difficult. This inner potential is reinforced by history, which shows that those Jews who departed from a Torah life-style were, sooner or later, swallowed up by their environment. No trace of their Yiddishkeit remained.17Furthermore, when they turned their backs on Torah, they forfeited not only their place in the Jewish community but also (though not always immediately) their respect and position in secular society. The Gentiles never forgot that they were Jews and therefore could not respect him. How could they? They knew that each Jew’s ancestors sacrificed their lives for Yiddishkeit.18 Based on knowledge, how would they have to regard someone who has sacrificed all that, in an attempt to gain more honor and position in the secular world and given vent to his animal desires. Even a Gentile will not respect one who makes such a choice. On the other hand, he will feel true respect for a Jew who dedicates his life to Torah.

Nevertheless, in order to make our choice easier, G‑d sometimes shows us the example of a large community of Jews who have returned to Yiddishkeit and have accepted it fully, without any traces of a pick and choose attitude.

In view of this, it is fitting to congratulate the group which has come here from France. That country was far removed from Torah observance. Yet in recent years, hundreds of men, women, and children in France have returned to a Torah life-style. The previousRebbeim always considered France as the epitome of counter-Torah forces. Yet now it has produced youth who study Torah (revealed and esoteric), perform Mitzvos and even dedicate themselves to self-development through prayer.

Their activities will help other Jews in their Torah service, since every Mitzvahperformedby a Jew affects the entire Jewish people.19 The Messianic redemption will not leave one Jew in Golus. After each Jew experiences his individual redemption, together as a people we will experience the full redemption with the coming of Moshiach.

* * *

7. G‑d operates in two ways. Sometimes, He works through grace and mercy to bring Jews closer to Torah and Mitzvos. Other times He works through the opposite attributes and leads Jews to Torah and Mitzvos through harsh and severe experiences.

Torah study is most successful away from home, as our sages commented “Seek exile in a place of Torah.” At home, a person can never fully divorce himself from his habitual way of life. However, when he “goes into exile” and moves away from home, into a Torah environment, his Torah study and practice can flourish and grow. There his habitual pattern is broken and he is open for a full commitment to Torah.

This is the proper approach to study Torah. Everyone should follow this pattern. However, there are times when G‑d sees that people have not willingly responded to the opportunity He provided, and forces them into such a decision in order to bring them to full observance of Torah and Mitzvos.

These remarks are directed to the students from Persia. There, Jewish observance is not on a high level. A number of attempts were made to develop Yiddishkeit there. However, they did not meet with full success. Since G‑d wanted these children to fulfill Torah andMitzvos fully, He sent them “into exile” in a Torah environment. Whether they realize it or not, “G‑d controlled their footsteps” and directed them here.

Many questions have been asked about the dramatic turnabout in Persia. How could such a radical change happen so fast? People forgot that thousands of years ago similar events happened on Purim. At that time also, the entire political situation was reversed in a brief time.

The Megillah devotes many verses to the description of Achashverosh’s wealth, the feasts he made, his wife, etc. Since the purpose of the Megillah was to describe the Purim miracle alone, why was it necessary to spend so much time on background information? The Megillah’s intent, however, is to teach us that everything in Achashverosh’s 127 provinces, all of his riches, etc., existed for only one purpose, to help bring about the Purim miracle and the strengthening of Yiddishkeit that accompanied it.20

Similarly today, if we see a revolution in the world, it is a sign that we must bring about a revolution in ourselves and strengthen our commitment to Torah and Mitzvos.

Trans. note: At this point the Rebbe Shlita congratulated all those who had worked with the Persians in the past and gave them encouragement for their work in the future.

* * *

8. It is proper at this time to mention Mivtza Chinuch and stress the importance of working to enroll children in Torah camps. Camp is a 24 hour experience. It is able to educate a child and motivate him to greater Torah commitment and observance. Many times, a summer in a camp has influenced a non-religious child to bring his entire family closer to Yiddishkeit.

Likewise, it is proper to mention the other Mivtzoim: Mivtza Ahavas Yisroel, MivtzaTorah, Mivtza Tefillin, Mivtza Mezuzah, Mivtza Bayis Maley Seforim, Mivtza Tzedakah, and also the three Mivtzoim especially related to women (intrinsically connected to Pesach as our sages say: “Through the merit of righteous women we were redeemed from Egypt.”) Mivtza Neiros Shabbos Kodesh, Mivtza Kashrus, and Mivtza TaharasHaMishpocha.

PESACH SCHEDULE 13-22 Nisan 5776

Thu Apr 21st Erev Erev Pesach
Shacharis – 7 am
Mincha 7:50 pm following by Maariv  
Maariv – Last time to sell Chometz through Rabbi Levitin
after 8:43 pm - Bedikas Chometz and Kriat Shema

Fri Apr 22nd Erev Pesach
Fast of First Born begins 4:14 am 
Shacharis 7 am /Siyum in Shul/
Stop Eating Chometz: before 10:45 am
Burn Chometz: before 11:56 pm
Candles/Mincha 7:51 pm
Start Seder after: 8:44 pm
Finish Eating: before hatzot 1:08 am

Sat Apr 23rd   Pesach Day 1
Shacharis 9:30 am /Latest Shema 9:36 pm/
Mincha 7:35 pm
Maariv/ Sefira  8:45 pm /COUNT 1/
Candles (from existing flame after)/Seder Prep should not start before 8:56 pm

Sun Apr 24th   Pesach Day 2
Shacharis 9:30 am
Mincha: 7:50 pm
Maariv/Havdala/Sefira 8:58 pm /COUNT 2/

Mon Apr 25th   - Wed Apr 27th   Chol haMoed Pesach
Shacharis 7 am
Mincha 8:00 pm
Maariv and Sefira 8:52 pm /COUNT 3-5/

Thu Apr 28th – Erev Shevi’i Shel Pesach
Shacharis: 7 am
Mincha/Candles  8:00 pm 
Maariv 8:54 pm /COUNT OMER #6/
It is customary to remain awake on the eve of the Seventh of Passover (i.e., tonight) and spend the entire night in Torah study and joyous celebration of the great miracle of the splitting of the sea. (
www.chabad.org)

Fri Apr 29th – Shevi’i Shel Pesach
Shacharis: 9:30 a.m.
Mincha 6:45 PM /Special Time - FOLLOWED BY KINUS TORAH/
Candles & 
Yartzeit Candles before 8:01 pm from existing flame
Maariv 8:55 /COUNT OMER #7/

Sat Apr 30th  – Acharon Shel Pesach
Shacharis: 9:30 a.m /YIZKOR/
Mincha  6:30 pm followed by MOSHIACH SEUDA
Maariv/Havdalah 9:07 pm /COUNT OMER #8/
Chametz repurchased 9:15 pm

PUBLIC SEDER AT CHABAD HOUSE MINYAN– FRI AND SAT NIGHTS at 8 pm
4541 19th Ave NE.  Featuring an inspiring Hagadah, Matzah, Wine/Grape Juice, Chrain, Charoses, and a delicious seder meal!  
https://www.facebook.com/chabadhouseminyan/

SAFETY OF CHILDREN AT CSTL – IMPORTANT MESSAGE FROM CSTL BOARD
As a reminder children are not allowed to play outside the Shul. Parents please keep your children in the Kids Program or with their parents in Shul. The Board of CSTL and CSTL will not be responsible for children that are left unattended. Thank you for your cooperation.

CSTL CHESED FUND IS COLLECTING DONATIONS FOR MA'OT HITTIM CHARITY FOR PESACH 
Donate online www.CSTLSeattle.org, with Notation “Maot Hittim”, or mail you checks to CSTL, 6250 43rd Ave NE, Seattle WA 98115.  Contract Jonathan Greene for more info, jgreene@drizzle.com

SELL YOUR HAMETZ BEFORE 7 AM FRIDAY MORNING 
www.chabad.org/sellchametz

MOSHIACH SEUDA Sat Apr 30th  6:30 pm
Featuring words of Torah, 4 cups of wine, and shmura matzo (BYOB & Matza!) Shul will provide only some sweet wine, matzo, and Meal Mart Seder Leftovers.  Please keep all food in the social hall and supervise children. 
http://www.moshiachcampaign.com/media/pdf/529/xWCv5297556.pdf

WOMEN’S SUNDAY TEHILLIM AT CSTL – 10 AM
In the library.  Come say a prayer for those in need. 

KIDDUSH SPONSORSHIPS AVAILABLE
If you would like to sponsor Kiddush at CSTL, please contact Ivan Rothman, GabbaiKiddush, hardcastle101@hotmail.com . Please inform Ivan by the preceding Sunday evening so that we have time to prepare properly.  Prices: Sponsor $300, co-Sponsor $150, Contributor: $50-$149.

THE NORTH SEATTLE ERUV STATUS: -PENDING
For current status of the North Seattle Eruv, please check the flag on the NE 65thStreet side of CSTL, (green flag means the Eruv is up, red flag the Eruv is down), CSTLeNews, or the Vaad eNews. Visit our web site www.twitter.com/cstleruv for current status.

THANK YOU TO JEWISH FEDERATION OF GREATER SEATTLE
Funding for CSTL was made possible, in part, by a grant for outreach programs from the Jewish Federation of Greater Seattle.   Please donate to JFGS athttps://www.jewishinseattle.org/donate


COMMUNITY NEWS

AUDIO OF HAGGADAH CLASSES NOW ONLINE!
The Midrasha's four-part Haggadah series is now online. Each class contains the audio class and source sheets used for the class. You can access the classes from youriphone, android or computer by clicking on the updated audio page here:http://midrashaofseattle.org/2015/03/11/updated-list-of-audio-shiurim/

PESACH SEDERS, TAKE OUT AND LUNCHES (Apr 27th  & Apr 28th )AT HILLEL 
Hillel UW continues their long tradition of providing Kosher for Pesach lunches to the community. Seder $12 to $54/person – please pre-order. Take out and lunch menuhttp://www.hilleluw.org/passover/   More information at 206-527-1997

NEED A DRIVER – CALL GERSHON!
For all your transportation needs, call Gershon Grashin (206) 856-2754


CHABAD CUSTOMS FOR FOR PESACH 
http://www.sie.org/templates/sie/article_cdo/aid/2605121/jewish/In-the-Synagogue-After-Maariv-13th-Eve-of-the-14th-of-Nissan-5740-1980.htm
© SichosInEnglish.org

 

1. Torah teaches, “Begin with a blessing.” The appropriate blessing at present is the wish that each and every Jew, including those present here and those throughout the world, have a kosher and happy Pesach and that their preparations for Pesach be carried out in the best, most kosher, and happiest way possible. This, in turn, will bring about added kashrus and happiness throughout the entire year. The AriZal declares that one who is careful in regard to even a tiny amount of Chometz on Pesach is assured of not sinning throughout the entire year. Just as such a person will not encounter any undesirable influences in regard to spiritual matters as a result of this behavior, he will also not encounter any undesirable influences in material affairs.

At present, we find ourselves in a propitious time. Today is the Yahrzeit oftheTzemach Tzedek and also of Rav Yosef Karo, the Rabbinic Master of Israel. Also, the 14th of Nissan (and in Torah the night is related to the following day) is the birthday of the Rambam, a Halachic master whose opinion is accepted both in Israel and in the Diaspora and who also acted as a “guide to the perplexed.” Hence, the present occasion is a fitting time to raise the following issues.

In the days of the exodus from Egypt, on the thirteenth of Nissan and evenonErev Pesach, the Jews were still in Golus. However, even in Golus, “Behold, the Guardian of Israel neither slumbers or sleeps.” Similarly at present, we are watched by the Guardian of Israel. Furthermore, the efforts of the children to “turn the hearts of their fathers” have increased that protection. Likewise, the efforts of G‑d’s children, our deeds and service in the physical world, turn the heart of our Father in Heaven to us and thus add strength and power to the manner in which He watches over us.

The above is particularly true in view of the present situation, which is constantly ‘Shuklin’ — fluctuating. This is especially so in Israel, where in regard to national security — the preservation of safe borders — and in regard to the economy, a very shaky situation prevails.

Because of this situation, we are in greater need of the protection of the Guardian of Israel. Our very need further awakens the promise, “The Guardian of Israel neither slumbers or sleeps.” This is particularly true in Israel, which is described as “the land which...the eyes of G‑d are always upon from the beginning of the year to the end of the year.”

What is the reason for this unstable situation? Because we are constantly fluctuating back and forth in regard to Yiddishkeit, Torah and Mitzvos. Rather than holding steadily and firmly to the straight path, the way of our holy Torah, the Torah of truth and the Torah of life, there are those who fluctuate back and forth — sometimes following the guidance of Torah and sometimes ignoring it. There is a clear Torah judgment in the laws of Shabbos, chapter 329, that clarifies the proper position to be taken regarding national security. [TheShulchan Aruch declares that if gentiles approach a Jewish settlement and demand even hay and straw, arms must be taken up against them even on Shabbos, lest the entire land be opened up before them.] Yet despite the fact that this is a clear decision of Torah law, there are those who fluctuate back and forth. When we follow the directive of the Torah, we can feel secure because of the strength of Torah, as our sages declared: “There is no strength other than Torah.” Surely, the land will not be opened before them.1

According to the principle, “One Mitzvah draws another Mitzvah (after it),” it follows that the fulfillment of the above law will bring about an increase in the performance of all the Mitzvos, particularly those Mitzvos that are relevant at present: those connected with the preparation for Pesach. The preparation for Pesach is related to the preceding Shabbos,2 Shabbos HaGadol — the great Shabbos — which is called by that name because of the great miracle that occurred then — “the smiting of Egypt through its first-born.”

Since the word “Mitzrayim” — Egypt — is related to the word “Maytzorim” meaning boundaries and limitations, the totality of this physical world can be referred to asMitzrayim — Egypt. Physical plenty and prosperity can be regarded as the first-born (the major power) of Egypt. Shabbos HaGadol teaches us that we can “smite Egypt with its first-born,” i.e. use physical prosperity for spiritual purposes, thus transforming darkness into light, which in turn makes us vessels to receive G‑d’s infinite grace.

* * *

2. To counteract the shaky situation — a situation where Jews are fluctuating and where their fluctuation has caused the entire world community to begin to waver — there is confusion everywhere. And it is very necessary that Moshe’s request “that we be singled out from all the peoples of the earth” be fulfilled in a revealed manner: it is necessary to take actions that are within the natural order. However, even “the natural order” of the Jew is related to Torah and Mitzvos. Therefore, to counteract the above-mentioned fluctuation it is necessary to make a firm decision to increase our efforts in the study of Torah, both Niglah and Chassidus,3 the fulfillment of MitzvosB’Hiddur, and the spreading of Torah both Niglah and Chassidus, until “the earth will be filled with the knowledge of G‑d, as the waters cover the sea.” These efforts should begin with the preparations for Pesach which essentially consist of getting rid ofChometz — leaven. The spiritual parallel of that service involves negating the influence of the Yetzer Hora, which is called ‘Chometz.’ Thus, turning away from evil increases the amount of good which we do.

These efforts force those who have been fluctuating in regard to the security of Israel to change their approach and to adopt a strong and resolute position. Even though free choice is never taken away from a Jew, just as there are those who at times are “forced” by the overpowering influence of the Yetzer Hora, there are times when the Yetzer Tov can become an overpowering influence and “force” someone to carry out its desires. This resolute position will in turn negate the confusion and difficulties brought about by the other nations. Those difficulties came about only because of the shakiness of Israel’s position. Once a stronger stand is made, they will cease to exist.

Furthermore, our efforts to spread Torah, both Niglah and Chassidus, throughout the world — creating a situation parallel to the Messianic age when “the earth will be filled with the knowledge of G‑d, as the waters cover the sea” — will bring about the actualization of another of the prophecies of the Messianic age: “and kings shall be your foster fathers and their queens your nursing mothers.” Not only won’t the gentiles disturb the Jews; they will help and assist them in all matters of Yiddishkeit. Their first-born — their best — will be given to the Jews and they will do all they can to make sure that Jews be provided with all their needs. Furthermore, we will receive the blessing of G‑d’s full, open, holy,4 and broad hand.

All the above — the effect on the Jews (forcing them to adapt a firm position), and the effect on the gentiles (causing them to help the Jews in all ways that they need it) — will come about as a result of our firm adherence to Torah and Mitzvos, and particularly our efforts in Mivtza Pesach. This is particularly true in view of the meritorious nature of the present day — the Yahrzeit of the Tzemach Tzedek andRav Yosef Karo and the birthday of the Rambam.

Before the redemption from Egypt, even when the Jews were still in exile, “all the children of Israel had light in their dwellings” and with that light they were able to spoil Egypt taking out “vessels of silver and vessels of gold.” So too in the presentGolus, the gentiles will give all their best to the Jews, and we will leave exile “with great substance,” elevating all the G‑dly sparks within the world — and greet Moshiach.

* * *

3. The Jews were redeemed from Egypt because they are G‑d’s children, as the Torah declares: “My son, My first-born Israel... send forth My son that he may serve Me.” The relationship between G‑d and the Jewish people is even deeper. The prophet Hoshea(11:1) declares, “When Israel was a child, then I loved him,” comparing the Jews to a young son for whom the father has a great love and who can cause his father to do anything he wants. In order to arouse such love from above, we must act in a similar way, as our sages declared: “According to a way one measures, so it is measured for him,” making special efforts to reach out to young boys and girls.5

Therefore, it is proper to give warm thanks and special blessing to all the children who have taken an active role in the campaign to “return the hearts of the fathers through the children” in general and particularly in regard to the preparations for Pesach. Surely, they will continue their efforts in the future and use the time remaining until Pesach, and the days of Pesach itself, to enhance the joy and kashrus of the holiday. By “returning the hearts of the fathers through the children,” we will cause our Father in Heaven to turn His heart to His children, the Jewish people. We must see ourselves as small, as the verse declares, “Israel is a child,” and not boast how “my strength and the power of my hands has brought success.” We must view our success as coming from G‑d,6 who possesses everything and gives to the Jewish people and each individual Jew with His “full, open, and holy hand.”

The efforts of the children will further negate the shaky situation described above. On the contrary, the Jews will “not bow and not bend.” In this context, we can appreciate another significant event that occurred on the 14th of Nissan. After Haman’s decree, Mordechai’s efforts to “go, collect together all the Jews” began on the 14th of Nissan. The activity in the succeeding three days, which stressed Ahavas Yisroel, caused the downfall of Haman, his sons, and all his followers.

We will enjoy similar success and celebrate the season of our rejoicing, and even while in Golus, we will have “light in our dwellings” and receive “the great substance,” with which we will, with happiness and good feeling, leave Golus.

From the above, it is understood why there is the great necessity for efforts to involve more Jews, and particularly more Jewish children, in the observance of Pesach, and after Pesach to involve them in all aspects of Torah and Mitzvos. And thus, “with our youth and with our elders” we will proceed to the ultimate redemption when “He puts an end to darkness,” the darkness of Golus.

* * *

4. To summarize the above: All Jews — men and women, and especially boys and girls — should know that through stopping their fluctuation in regard to Torah andMitzvos, and by proceeding on “the path of G‑d to do charity and justice,” they will cause those who are responsible for Israel’s security to stop their fluctuation. Then “kings” and “queens” will realize that their function is to be your “foster fathers” and “nursing mothers.” We will approach the time when a “a king will arise from the House of David who will force all of Israel to follow in its path (the path of Torah)...and fight the wars of G‑d and be victorious, build the Temple on its place, and collect the dispersed of Israel.”

The strong stance taken by the children will also negate the fluctuation of their counselors and leaders. When they see that children stand firm, and without shame declare that it is an open prohibition to do anything that will cause even the slightest breach of the Torah it will effect them. Since “G‑d looked into the Torah and created the world,” it follows that there is a directive in Torah for everything in the world. There is a clear directive in regard to Shleimus ho’Oretz — the complete state of the land of Israel — that it is an open prohibition to allow the possibility of “opening the land before them.” Likewise, there is a clear Torah directive in regard to Shleimusho’Om — the complete state of the Jewish nation — that conversion must follow Halachah. The Rabbis have the responsibility to become “guides to the perplexed,” showing all those who are confused, and who hence fluctuate back and forth, how to act. (This is the connection to the Rambam, “the guide to the perplexed” of all generations.) Every Rav who has ‘Smeicha’(rabbinical ordination) and makes decisions according to Shulchan Aruch does so on the strength of the ‘Smeicha’ which can be traced back, from one sage to another, to Moshe Rabbeinu. This, in turn, gives the potential for each of his followers to live according to Torah and do so with firm resolve — in the words of the Shulchan Aruch, “showing the strength of a lion” and in the words of the Ramah, “placing G‑d before him always.”7 This, in turn, allows him to proceed in worldly affairs with success.

Just as during the exodus from Egypt the children recognized G‑d first, so too the present redemption will begin with the efforts of Jewish children and their attempt to influence their parents to increase their Jewish involvement, beginning with the preparations for Pesach. And then the children will ask the four questions, which will arouse the fathers to answer, “We were slaves to Pharaoh in Egypt and G‑d took us out from there” and to continue theHaggadah till the conclusion of the Brachah, “Asher Go’alanu” which declares, “So He will bring us to other festivals and holidays...rejoicing in the building of Your city, glad in Your service.” Thus, “we, your nation, the sheep of Your pasture ...will relate your praise from generation to generation.”

The above is enhanced by the meritorious nature of the present date. It is one of the days of Nissan, a month in which “it is customary to make the entire month holy” (Shulchan Aruch Admur Hazaken 429:9); it is the Yahrzeit of the Tzemach Tzedek,8 who made Torah decisions in both Niglah and Pnimius haTorah; the Yahrzeit of Rav Yosef Karo who authored the Shulchan Aruch in the realm of Niglah and the Maggid Meishorim in the mystic realm of Torah; and the birthday of the Rambam. The latter begins the epic work called by his name with the phrase: “The foundation of all foundations and the pillar of all wisdom is to know that there exists a Primary Being...and all beings...were created from the truth of His being.” He concludes it with the prophecy, “And the earth will be filled with the knowledge of G‑d, as the waters cover the sea.” May that prophecy be fulfilled with the true and complete redemption led by Moshiach.

SHABBOS haGADOL - METZORAH - 6 – 13 Nissan 5776

EREV SHABBOS - FRI Apr 14th 
Shacharis 7 am / 
Mincha/Candles/Maariv 7:41 pm

SHABBOS - SAT Apr 15th 
Shacharis 9:30 am  Latest Shema 9:43 am/
Mincha 
7:15 pm  /SHABBOS haGADOL DRASHA /
Maariv/Havdalah 8:47 pm 

Weekday Services
Sun Shacharis: 9 am 
Mon  - Fri Shacharis 7 am
Sun - Thu  Mincha/Maariv
 7:50 pm /Repeat Shema after 8:39 pm

KITCHEN CLOSED – NO KIDDUSH/NO SEUDA SLISHIT IN SHUL

PLEASE DO NOT BRING CHAMETZ TO SHUL
Shul is being cleaned for Pesach.  Please ensure that all children’s snacks are Kosher for Passover.

MAZEL TOV MAZEL TOV
Mazel Tov to Rabbi Saifo and Frumi Marasow and to the Marasow, Levitin, and Gansbourg  families on the marriage of Perel to Rabbi Levi Gansbourg.  May they merit to build a bayis ne’eman b’Yisroel!

The Month of Nissan - Blessing on Blooming Fruit Trees
A special mitzvah, which can be fulfilled only once a year, is to recite the berachah ("blessing" or prayer) made upon seeing a fruit tree in bloom: Blessed are you G-d our G-d, king of the universe, who left nothing lacking in His world, and created within it good creatures and good trees with which He gives pleasure to people. Nissan 1 is the first opportunity to make this blessing, but it can be done anytime during the month of Nissan (referred to by the Torah as "the month of spring" ). Seattle’s streets are lined with plum and cherry trees – be sure to bless on one that actually has fruit.  The preferred way to say the blessing is on the first tree you see TODAY. 
http://www.chabad.org/calendar/view/day.asp?tdate=3/21/2015

Rabbi Levitin’s Annual Shabbat ha’Gadol Drasha – 7:15 PM at CSTL THIS SHABBOS
From as long ago as the days of the Tanna’im and Amora’im (the Rabbinical leadership of the Talmudic era), it has been customary in Jewish communities throughout the world for the Rabbi of the congregation to address the community on this Shabbat (before Passover). The purpose of this address is to teach the people the ways of G-d and instruct them in the laws of Passover. (Adapted from Eliyahu Kitov –www.Chabad.org) 

Recite from Haggadah; Study Passover Laws
The Shabbat before Passover is termed Shabbat HaGadol ("The Great Shabbat") in commemoration of the "great miracle" that happened in Egypt on this day, heralding the Exodus from Egypt five days later (see "Today in Jewish Hstory"). Shabbat HaGadol customs include reading a portion of the Haggadah (from "Avadim hayinu..." to "...al kol avonotainu"), which tells the story of the Exodus; it is also customary that the rabbi of the community delivers a lecture in which he elaborates on the laws of Passover and their significance, in preparation for the festival.

FARBRENGEN ALERT – YUD ALEPH NISSAN – TUE APR 19th 
The Lubavitcher Rebbe, Rabbi Menachem Mendel Schneerson, of righteous memory, was born on this date in 1902. www.chabad.org/calendar.  Venue to be announced.  Also the yahrtzeit ofNachmanides ("Ramban", Rabbi Moshe ben Nachman, 1194-1270) and of the Sheloh ha’Kodesh (Rabbi Isaiah Halevi Horowitz , author of, Shnei Luchot haBrit, 1630)

'Nasi' of the Day – Every Day until Pesach
Beginning today, and continuing through Nissan 13, we recite the verses (from Numbers ch. 7) describing the offerings made by the "princes" (nesi'im) of the 12 tribes of Israel (see "Mishkan inaugurated"). Today we read of the gift bought by Nachshon ben Aminadav, the nasi of the tribe of Judah, on this date. Tomorrow we read of Issachar's gift, and so on for the 12 tribes. On the 13th of Nissan we read G-d's instructions to Aaron regarding the kindling of the menorah, which represents the participation of the priestly tribe of Levi.  Following the verses of the day's "Nasi," we recite a short prayer in which we say, "...if I, Your servant, am from the tribe of ___ whose section of the Nasi I have read today in Your Torah, may all the holy sparks and holy illuminations that are included within the holiness of this tribe shine upon me, to grant me understanding and intelligence in Your Torah and my awe of You, to do Your will all the days of my life...."
http://www.chabad.org/library/article_cdo/aid/495698/jewish/The-Nasi-in-Hebrew.htm#day1

SELL YOUR CHAMETZ
Online www.chabad.org/sellchametz
Forms sent to CSTL via e-mail (to subscribe, send email to cstl-subscribe@yahoogroups.com )
Forms and additional information also available at www.SeattleVaad.org/passover

GIVE TO THE CSTL PESACH CHARITY FUND Ma'ot Hittim, aka "Kimcha d'Pischa"
The Shulchan Aruch defines a halachic obligation upon everyone to donate funds prior to Pesach in order to help the poor to cover their holiday expenses. Not only is Pesach the festival of freedom but it is also intended to impart within every person a feeling of royalty. As such, efforts must be made to ensure that even the poor can feel this way. It is for this reason that Pesach is the only holiday which merited having a charity collection dedicated entirely to it. While on most other holidays one is encouraged to invite the less fortunate to eat their holiday meals in one's home, on Pesach one should rather ensure that every person has the means and ability to experience their own seder in their own home. (R. Ari Enkin).  Donate online at www.CSTLSeattle.org, with the notation “Chesed Fund – Pesach”

Children's Program News 
Boys junior minyan shabbos morning from 10-10:30 led by Rabbi Herbstman.  Ages 6 and above Thank you -  Tova

THE NORTH SEATTLE ERUV STATUS: -PENDING
For current status of the North Seattle Eruv, please check the flag on the NE 65th Street side of CSTL, (green flag means the Eruv is up, red flag the Eruv is down), CSTL eNews, or the Vaad eNews. Visit our web site www.twitter.com/cstleruv for current status.

CSTL Fund Raising through Amazon
Amazon has a program of giving 0.5% of your purchase to the charity of your choice. Congregation Shaarei Tefilah Lubavitch is one of the charities. This is a great way to raise funds for the shul without incurring extra charges or financial burdens.  Go to Amazon Smile: https://smile.amazon.com  to register

CAMP GAN IZZY REGISTRATION NOW OPEN - REGISTER TODAY
Conveniently located right here in the heart of Seattle’s North End. The season now runs from Monday, July 4th through Friday August 5th. Camp Gan Israel Seattle has been providing the Jewish children of Greater Seattle a special summer day camp experience that integrates healthy active fun, field trips and friendships with the richness, excitement and warmth of Jewish values, tradition and culture. Fun that lasts a summer…memories that last a lifetime.  Questions? Call or text Rabbi Abe Kavka at (206.730.2775) or info@campganisraelseattle.org . Register your kids, ages 2½ to 12 at www.campganisraelseattle.org  for 1, 2, 3, 4, or 5 weeks. NOW OFFERING TRANSPORTATION TO AND FROM MERCER ISLAND AND SEWARD PARK!!! (For transportation to/from other areas please speak with Rabbi Kavka.)

CSTL SECURITY FEE $75
Due to the concern for the safety of our Shul we have hired a Security guard. The Board has unanimously voted to access all members, families and people who Daven at CSTL a $75 year security fee.  Thank you for supporting CSTL. Mike Weichbrodt

LADIES TEHILIM – SUN 10 am
From 10 AM at the Shaarei Tefillah Library.

JLI “COURSE OF WHY” WITH RABBI BOGOMILSKY at CSTL  
Are you ready to give your Judaism the intellection you know it deserves? Are you prepared to tackle the quizzical, queer, and seemingly-unanswerable questions about Jewish belief and practice? Then signup today for The Jewish Course of Why. Controversial and intriguing unanswered questions. This course comes with an educational book.  Thereafter for 5 Wednesdays.  www.myJLI.com or call 206-290-6301

KIDDUSH SPONSORSHIPS AVAILABLE
If you would like to sponsor Kiddush at CSTL, please contact Ivan Rothman, Gabbai Kiddush,hardcastle101@hotmail.com . Please inform Ivan by the preceding Sunday evening so that we have time to prepare properly.  Prices: Sponsor $300, co-Sponsor $150, Contributor: $50-$149.

THANK YOU TO JEWISH FEDERATION OF GREATER SEATTLE
Funding for CSTL Outreach Program was made possible, in part, by a grant from the Jewish Federation of Greater Seattle.  Please donate to JFGS at https://www.jewishinseattle.org/donate


COMMUNITY NEWS

NCSY Pre-Pesach Car Wash, Sunday, April 17th  11 am-4:00 pm 
In the Sephardic Bikur Holim Parking Lot, 6500 42nd AVE S, Sea. We will clean the inside & outside of your car. Cost: $20/Car or $30/Van or SUV. You can buy a gift certificate to Pink Elephant for $10 more. More info: thehoffather@gmail.com

Women's Textual Study Class with Rabbi Shaul Engelsberg Sun Apr 17th  7:30 pm, 
At the Derech Emunah (Yavneh) Bldg.in the BCMH Parking Lot. We are studying "Contemporary Life Lessons from the Seven Prophetesses".

WOMEN'S MIDRASHA PROGRAM DELVES INTO THE HAGADAH
Rabbi Meyers presents the fourth and final shiur on the Passover HagGadah this Sunday morning at 9:15 pm. Breakfast is at 9:00 am, as usual!

PCC KOSHER BULK FOODS – SUN APR 17th 8 am to 1 pm
Columbia City PCC only.  Under Vaad supervision.

36th International Conference on Jewish Genealogy, Aug 7-12
Sheraton Hotel, downtown Seattle. More info: www.iajgs2016.org

StandWithUs Northwest Community Reception May 15th 
www.standwithus.com

Seattle Kollel SEED Learning Day Camp for Boys/Camp for Girls June 27-August 25. 
More info: www.seattlekollel.org 

Affordable Kosher Passover Depot at BCMH – Open SUNDAY and WEEKDAYS 
A one-stop shop for your Passover needs in Seattle! Located in the BCMH Social Hall in Seward Park. Passover Depot will be filled with Kosher for Passover wines, fresh items, dry goods and much more. www.affordablekosher.com/passoverdepot  

SEATTLE JEWISH THEATER AT Ezra Bessaroth APR 10th 
Please join us for a presentation of Morning Star.  Tickets are $3 in advance, or $5 at the door.  Contact Susan, office@ezrabessaroth.net, or 206 722-5500. 

COMMUNITY YOM HASHOAH PROGRAM Thu evening May 5th
Ezra Bessaroth is honored to present a special program on this year's Yom HaShoah - Holocaust Remembrance Day, Thursday evening May 5th. The program - the Northwest Premier of "Karski and the Lords of Humanity" - will feature a special pre-screening hors d'oeuvres reception - for sponsors - with the film's Director Slawomir Grunberg and screenwriter E. Thomas Wood. Stay tuned in upcoming newsletters for information on how you can purchase tickets and participate as a sponsor.

Registration is now open for CAMP YAVNEH 2016! 
All divisions of BCMH camps will now be under one name Camp Yavneh with all new programs and activities to supplement the programs you already love! This will include children from pre- school all the way through our new CIT program for 6th and 7th grade and our staff in high school, college and beyond! Register your child at www.campyavnehseattle.com If you are in 8th-12 grade, college or older and would like to work at Camp this summer please contact Ari Hoffman atthehoffather@gmail.com

Mishmar Chavura with Rabbi Rosenfeld  THU 9-11 PM
Parsha Learning and Discussion.  Everyone welcome to join the conversation.  5240 38th Ave. NE, Snacks served

NEED A DRIVER – CALL GERSHON!
For all your transportation needs, call Gershon Grashin (206) 856-2754


LETTER FROM THE REBBE for YUD ALEPH NISSAN, 5744
http://www.sichos-in-english.org/books/sichos-in-english/20/09.htm
© Chabad.org

By the Grace of G-d
Sixth Day of the Week,
Erev Shabbos-Kodesh-Shabbos HaGodol,
11th day of Nissan, 5744
Brooklyn, N.Y.

To the Sons and Daughters of
Our People Israel, Everywhere,
G-d bless you all!

Greeting and Blessing: 

On this day of Erev Shabbos HaGodol, with only a few days remaining to Pesach which, this year, begins and ends on the Third Day of the week, a day “twice blessed with good” (as also today, the Sixth Day of the week, was “twice blessed with good”),

 It is timely to reflect on a further point that is connected with Chag HaMatzos, Zman Cheiruseinu (Festival of Our Liberation), pursuant to our previous letter, dated Rosh Chodesh Nissan. 

* * *

One of the details which differentiate the Festival of Pesach from our other festivals is the fact that, in addition to having its exact date specified in the Torah as to the day and month of the year when Chag HaMatzos is to be observed (which is the case also in regard to our other festivals),10 the Torah emphasizes the exact point of the day, the very moment, when the Geulah (deliverance)10* from Egyptian bondage came, namely, bachatzi halaila, “in the very middle of the night”; and similarly pinpoints the exact moment of Yetzias-Mitzraim10* (the Exodus from Egypt), namely, btetzem1l HaYom hazeh, bachatzi hayom, “in the very middle of the day.”

It was exactly at midnight that the moment of the Geulah struck: Pharoah freed the Jews immediately, bringing theGalus to an end; moreover, he ordered them and urged them to leave Egypt, while the Egyptians did all they could to speed and aid this departure.

A turning point in this direction occurred (five days earlier, on Shabbos) at the beginning of the preparations for the Korban-Pesach, when every Jew told his Egyptian neighbors, with absolute certainty, that the day of the Deliverance was approaching. It evoked a response akin to the spirit of liberation, whereupon the Egyptian firstborn (their eldest and strongest, representing the “bachatzi halaila” of Egyptian society) took up arms against their king, demanding that he let the Jewish people go. This resulted in a “slaughter of Egyptians by their own firstborn,” and served as a prelude to Yetzias-Mitzraim, as emphasized also by the designation and observance of the Shabbos before Pesach as “ShabbosHaGadol.”

And it was exactly at midday that the Jewish people went out of Egypt “with uplifted arm,” free men and women and proud to be Jews.

“Night” and “Day” are opposite phenomena, symbolizing opposing concepts of “darkness” and “light” in the spiritual sense;

Especially “midnight” and “midday,” connoting, respectively, the bleakest darkness of the night and the brightest light of the day.

All this is also connected with the symbolic concepts of the “moon” and of the “sun,” discussed in the letter of RoshChodesh Nissan.

In addition to the conspicuous difference between the sun and the moon mentioned in the previous letter, namely, that the sun symbolizes constancy and sameness, while the moon represents change and renewal, yet both these contrary elements combined together are indispensable to achieve completeness in Avodas HaShem, there is a further fundamental distinction between the sun and the moon, as stated in the Torah: the sun being the “Great Luminary” to rule by day, while the moon is the “Small Luminary” to rule by night. This indicates two different and contrary ways in their “illuminating the earth”: The lunar light, however brightly the moon shines, even at its maximum fullness, does not transform night into day; the night remains night, which is synonymous with “darkness”, and “darkness He called ‘night’.” On the other hand, however weak is the light of the sun on the earth, such as at the beginning of the day or at day’s end, when the sun’s rays are at their weakest, it still makes “day,” which is synonymous with light, and “HaShemcalled light — ‘day’.”

This difference — metaphorically speaking — is reflected also in Avodas-HaShem. As explained in our Torah, Toras-Chaim (“instruction in living”), Avodas-HaShem (serving G-d) encompasses the totality of a Jew’s everyday life in all, literally all, detailed aspects, as defined by the principle “Know HaShem in all your ways,” meaning, to acknowledge and serve HaShem in every way and in all activities. These comprise two categories: Mitzvah — the domain of religious duties, and R’Shus — the so-called “secular” domain.

The “Mitzvah” domain embraces all those ways and actions which a Jew is obligated to carry out, because HaShem has commanded to do them; these are all matters of Torah and Mitzvos. When a Jew learns Torah and does Mitzvos, he irradiates himself as well as his surroundings and the world at large with the Divine light of Ner Mitzvah vTorah Or (“a Mitzvah is a lamp and the Torah is light”). Whether he does it with a full measure of inspiration or, sometimes, with less enthusiasm, it is always Ner Mitzvah vTorah Or — the “Great Luminary” in Avodas-HaShem.

The second category, that of R’shus, is the domain of ordinary matters, such as eating, drinking and the like, which in themselves and for themselves are no Mitzvah (except on Shabbos and Yom Tov, or in the case of Pikuach-Nefesh, etc.).

And although the so-called secular aspects of the everyday life should, and must, be ruled by the Torah, Torah Or, they bear no comparison with Torah and Mitzvos.

They receive their minor light of a “Small Luminary” from the Torah, the “Great Luminary,” in the way the moon is illuminated, and illuminates, by reflecting the light of the sun.

In one realm of R’shus in particular, because of its close association with powerful natural tendencies, special vigilance is called for in order to insure that it be l’Shem-Shomayim, “for the sake of Heaven.” If even in the realm of Mitzvosthere is the possibility of “performance by rote,” where routine practice could not only pose a hindrance to the principle of ma’alin b’Kodesh (keeping holy matters on the ascendancy), but even to the proper observance to the Mitzvosthemselves — how much more so in the “secular” matters, where habit can cause, G-d forbid, a downright debasement, even to the extent of the opposite of l’Shem Shamayim, e.g. gluttony, drunkenness, and the like. Hence, a special vigilance and a special effort is required to infuse in this area of the everyday life an ever greater measure of l’Shem-Shamayim, a growing measure of light, reaching out for the “moon at its fullest”; though even then it still is only “I’Shem Shomayim,” for the sake of Heaven to be utilized later in the performance of Matters-matters (Torah andMitzvos). In the meantime it is still “night,” the realm of R’shus.

This is one of the lessons implied in the emphasis on the deliverance taking place bachatzi halaila, alluding, as mentioned, to R’shus-matters, which, in relation to Torah and Mitzvos, are like “night” to “day,” namely, that even in the most materialistic aspects of secular matters one can, and must, completely free one’s self from “Galus Mitzrayim” (subservience to materialism and its limitations).

Similarly also in matters which are alluded to in bachatzi HaYom, namely, matters of Ner Mitzvah vTorah Or, when one has reached the height of one’s strength and brightness — there is a need of “Yetzias Mitzrayim,” of breaking through and elevating oneself above all limitations and standards, including those of the realm of holiness — to break out of one’s complacency with one’s self and with one’s standards, and of the feeling of having completely satisfied one’s Rotzon (desire). On the contrary, regardless of how high are one’s achievements, one must strive for still higher standards  SO we declare in our daily prayers, both in the day and at night: To love HaShem with all one’s might, meaning with Mesirus Nefesh, totally surrendering one’s Rotzon to HaShem.

Thus one proceeds “from strength to strength” — (not from weakness to strength) since there is no weakness in him. Indeed, recognizing that it is HaShem who gives him the capacity to gairi strength, which is in itself a source of strength, he strives to serve HaShem as one should, totally, which means not to remain on the same level, however high it be, but to advance from one level of strength to a higher level.

The above will provide a deeper insight into the obligation to remember Yetzias Mitzrayim every day, and both by day and by night. At first glance, having already remembered and experienced Yetzias Mitzrayim yesterday, both in matters symbolized by “day” (Torah and Mitzvos) as well as those symbolized by “night,” so what is the point of rememberingYetzias Mitzrayim again today?

The answer is that inasmuch as a new day has come, yesterday’s level, however satisfactory it was yesterday, must now be considered “Mitzrayim” in relation to the new level which one can attain on this new day; and also from this category of “Mitzrayim” one should, and must, free oneself, and in a manner of an “uplifted arm.”

 * * *

May HaShem grant that since we still find ourselves in the “night” of the Golus, and, moreover, with darkness covering the earth,  prior to the imminent coming of Moshiach,

We should all very soon merit to see the true Geulah, to be celebrated as the Geulah from Mitzrayim was celebrated while still in Mitzrayim, in the middle of the night, and with such a measure of enthusiasm and joy as to “break through the roof”, being the preparation and prelude to Yetzias Mitzraim in the ordinary sense, and with uplifted arm, in the very middle of the day;

And merit it we will, through strengthened bitachon (trust) in HaShem, the deliverer of our people Israel, and through heightened desire and “hope for Your liberation every day,”56 hoping and praying* every day and the whole day, and every minute of the day, for the Divine liberation through Mashiach Tzidkeinu.

And this will hasten still more the fulfillment of the prophetic words referring to our true and complete Geulah:

Your light shall shine forth in the darkness, and your profound darkness shall be as the noonday,

In accordance with the prophecy that the wonders of the coming Geulah will be wonderful even in comparison with the miracles and wonders of the Exodus from Mitzraim: At that time it took hours from “midnight” to “noonday,” whereas the forthcoming Geulah will come immediately, from profound bleakness to the brightness of high noon. In words of our prophets:

Arise, shine forth, for your light is eome, and the glory of HaShem shines upon you ... Nations shall walk by your light ... Your sun shall no more go down, nor shall your moon withdraw, for HaShem will be your everlasting light ... And all (nations) shall know that you, whose Name is HaShem, is the only Supreme Ruler over all the earth.68

With esteem and with blessing for a
Kosher and Joyous Pesach
/Signed: Menachem Schneerson/

SHABBOS TAZRIAH – ROSH CHODESH NISSAN - haCHODESH 30 Adar ב – 6 Nissan 5776

EREV SHABBOS - FRI Apr 7th 
Shacharis 7 am / 
Mincha/Candles/Maariv 7:31 pm

SHABBOS - SAT Apr 8th 
Shacharis 9:30 am /NOTE NEW TIME/ Latest Shema 9:50 am/
Mincha 7:15 pm  /Seuda Slishit Lite 
Maariv/Havdalah 8:37 pm 

Weekday Services
Sun Shacharis: 9 am 
Mon  - Fri Shacharis 7 am
Sun - Thu  Mincha/Maariv
 7:40 pm /Repeat Shema after 8:32 pm

KIDDUSH SPONSORS
Kiddush Lite – No Sponsor 
Seuda Slishit Lite sponsored by Rabbi Kavka

MAZEL TOV MAZEL TOV
Mazel Tov to Rabbi Abe and Shprintze Kavka on the engagement of Naomi to Rabbi Levi Deitsch of New Haven, CT.  May they merit to build a bayis ne’eman b’Yisroel!

ROSH CHODESH NISSAN
Anniversary of the Creation of man (in thought) (3761 BCE). The Talmud (Rosh Hashanah 10b-11a) cites two opinions as to the date of G-d's creation of the universe: according to Rabbi Eliezer: "The world was created in Tishrei" (i.e., the sixth day of creation--the day on which Adam and Eve were created--was the 1st of Tishrei, celebrated each year as Rosh Hashanah); according to Rabbi Joshua, "The world was created in Nissan." As interpreted by the Kabbalists and the Chassidic masters, the deeper meaning of these two views is that the physical world was created in Tishrei, while the "thought" or idea of creation was created in the month of Nissan. www.chabad.org/calendar

SELL YOUR CHAMETZ
Online www.chabad.org/sellchametz
Forms sent to CSTL via e-mail (to subscribe, send email to cstl-subscribe@yahoogroups.com )
Forms and additional information also available at www.SeattleVaad.org/passover

Parshat Hachodesh 
On the Shabbat that falls on or before the 1st of Nissan, a special reading called "Hachodesh" (Exodus 12:1-20) is added to the regular Shabbat Torah reading. Hachodesh recounts G-d's historic communication to Moses in Egypt on the 1st of Nissan (2 weeks before the Exodus) regarding the Jewish calendar, the month of Nissan and the Passover offering.www.chabad.org/calendar

GIVE TO THE CSTL PESACH CHARITY FUND Ma'ot Hittim, aka "Kimcha d'Pischa"
The Shulchan Aruch defines a halachic obligation upon everyone to donate funds prior to Pesach in order to help the poor to cover their holiday expenses. Not only is Pesach the festival of freedom but it is also intended to impart within every person a feeling of royalty. As such, efforts must be made to ensure that even the poor can feel this way. It is for this reason that Pesach is the only holiday which merited having a charity collection dedicated entirely to it. While on most other holidays one is encouraged to invite the less fortunate to eat their holiday meals in one's home, on Pesach one should rather ensure that every person has the means and ability to experience their own seder in their own home. (R. Ari Enkin).  Donate online atwww.CSTLSeattle.org, with the notation “Chesed Fund – Pesach”

Children's Program News 
Boys junior minyan shabbos morning from 10-10:30 led by Rabbi Herbstman.  Ages 6 and above Thank you -  Tova

THE NORTH SEATTLE ERUV STATUS: -PENDING
For current status of the North Seattle Eruv, please check the flag on the NE 65th Street side of CSTL, (green flag means the Eruv is up, red flag the Eruv is down), CSTL eNews, or the Vaad eNews. Visit our web site www.twitter.com/cstleruv for current status.

CSTL Fund Raising through Amazon
Amazon has a program of giving 0.5% of your purchase to the charity of your choice. Congregation Shaarei Tefilah Lubavitch is one of the charities. This is a great way to raise funds for the shul without incurring extra charges or financial burdens.  Go to Amazon Smile: https://smile.amazon.com  to register

CAMP GAN IZZY REGISTRATION NOW OPEN - REGISTER TODAY
Conveniently located right here in the heart of Seattle’s North End. The season now runs from Monday, July 4th through Friday August 5th. Camp Gan Israel Seattle has been providing the Jewish children of Greater Seattle a special summer day camp experience that integrates healthy active fun, field trips and friendships with the richness, excitement and warmth of Jewish values, tradition and culture. Fun that lasts a summer…memories that last a lifetime.  Questions? Call or text Rabbi Abe Kavka at (206.730.2775) or info@campganisraelseattle.org . Register your kids, ages 2½ to 12 atwww.campganisraelseattle.org  for 1, 2, 3, 4, or 5 weeks. NOW OFFERING TRANSPORTATION TO AND FROM MERCER ISLAND AND SEWARD PARK!!! (For transportation to/from other areas please speak with Rabbi Kavka.)

CSTL SECURITY FEE $75
Due to the concern for the safety of our Shul we have hired a Security guard. The Board has unanimously voted to access all members, families and people who Daven at CSTL a $75 year security fee.  Thank you for supporting CSTL. Mike Weichbrodt

LADIES TEHILIM – SUN 10 am
From 10 AM at the Shaarei Tefillah Library.

JLI “COURSE OF WHY” WITH RABBI BOGOMILSKY at CSTL  
Are you ready to give your Judaism the intellection you know it deserves? Are you prepared to tackle the quizzical, queer, and seemingly-unanswerable questions about Jewish belief and practice? Then signup today for The Jewish Course of Why. Controversial and intriguing unanswered questions. This course comes with an educational book.  Thereafter for 5 Wednesdays.  www.myJLI.com or call 206-290-6301

KIDDUSH SPONSORSHIPS AVAILABLE
If you would like to sponsor Kiddush at CSTL, please contact Ivan Rothman, Gabbai Kiddush, hardcastle101@hotmail.com . Please inform Ivan by the preceding Sunday evening so that we have time to prepare properly.  Prices: Sponsor $300, co-Sponsor $150, Contributor: $50-$149.

THANK YOU TO JEWISH FEDERATION OF GREATER SEATTLE
Funding for CSTL Outreach Program was made possible, in part, by a grant from the Jewish Federation of Greater Seattle. Please donate to JFGS at https://www.jewishinseattle.org/donate


COMMUNITY NEWS

NCSY Pre-Pesach Car Wash, Sunday, April 17th  11 am-4:00 pm 
In the Sephardic Bikur Holim Parking Lot, 6500 42nd AVE S, Sea. We will clean the inside & outside of your car. Cost: $20/Car or $30/Van or SUV. You can buy a gift certificate to Pink Elephant for $10 more. More info: thehoffather@gmail.com

WOMEN'S MIDRASHA PROGRAM DELVES INTO THE HAGADAH
Rabbi Meyers presents his second of four shiurim on the Passover Hagadah this Sunday morning at 9:15 pm. This will be followed by Rabbi Shmuel Brody's Perashat Hashavua class at 10:15. Breakfast (still hametz!) is at 9:00 am, with Chef RubisaMiriam Meyers whipping up a scrumptious start to your Sunday!

PCC KOSHER BULK FOODS – SUN APR 17th 8 am to 1 pm
Columbia City PCC only.  Under Vaad supervision.

36th International Conference on Jewish Genealogy, Aug 7-12
Sheraton Hotel, downtown Seattle. More info: www.iajgs2016.org

StandWithUs Northwest Community Reception May 15th 
www.standwithus.com

SEATTLE JEWISH FILM FESTIVAL April 2nd -10th 
Help us "drink up the culture" at the 21st Seattle Jewish Film Festival! Over nine days - April 2-10 - Catch 25 films from 11 countries exploring Jewish life and culture around the world. Featuring award-winning directors, absorbing documentaries, witty comedies, and eye-opening stories, this year's festival will touch your heart and feed your soul.www.SeattleJewishFilmFestival.org

Seattle Kollel SEED Learning Day Camp for Boys/Camp for Girls June 27-August 25. 
More info: www.seattlekollel.org 

Affordable Kosher Passover Depot at BCMH – Open SUNDAY and WEEKDAYS 
A one-stop shop for your Passover needs in Seattle! Located in the BCMH Social Hall in Seward Park. Passover Depot will be filled with Kosher for Passover wines, fresh items, dry goods and much more. www.affordablekosher.com/passoverdepot  

SEATTLE JEWISH THEATER AT Ezra Bessaroth APR 10th 
Please join us for a presentation of Morning Star.  Tickets are $3 in advance, or $5 at the door.  Contact Susan, office@ezrabessaroth.net, or 206 722-5500. 

COMMUNITY YOM HASHOAH PROGRAM Thu evening May 5th
Ezra Bessaroth is honored to present a special program on this year's Yom HaShoah - Holocaust Remembrance Day, Thursday evening May 5th. The program - the Northwest Premier of "Karski and the Lords of Humanity" - will feature a special pre-screening hors d'oeuvres reception - for sponsors - with the film's Director Slawomir Grunberg and screenwriter E. Thomas Wood. Stay tuned in upcoming newsletters for information on how you can purchase tickets and participate as a sponsor.

Mishmar Chavura with Rabbi Rosenfeld  THU 9-11 PM
Parsha Learning and Discussion.  Everyone welcome to join the conversation.  5240 38th Ave. NE, Snacks served

NEED A DRIVER – CALL GERSHON!
For all your transportation needs, call Gershon Grashin (206) 856-2754


LETTER FROM THE REBBE for haCHODESH/ROSH CHODESH NISSAN, 5744
http://www.sichos-in-english.org/books/sichos-in-english/20/08.htm
© Chabad.org

 

By the Grace of G-d

Third Day of the Week,

Twice blessed with “good,”l

Rosh2 Chodesh3 Nissan,4 5744

Brooklyn, N.Y.

To the Sons and Daughters of our

People Israel, Everywhere,

G-d bless you all!

Greeting and Blessing:

 

Coming from Shabbos Parshas HaChodesh, and into this day of Rosh Chodesh Nissan, the first thought that immediately comes to mind is the first Rosh Chodesh Nissan in the Torah, in the said Parshah, when this day was designated as the first day of the first month, the month of Yetzias-Mitzraim, Zman Cheiruseinu (the Season of Our Liberation).

The Torah relates that on that day, Rosh Chodesh Nissan — two weeks before the deliverance from Egyptian enslavement — our Jewish people received the first Mitzvah: Kiddush-HaChodesh, Sanctification of the New Moon, whereby the first day of each month is sanctified as “Rosh Chodesh,” in conjunction with the Molad (“rebirth”) of the moon as it reappears as a narrow crescent. Together with this came other details of our Jewish Luach (annual calendar), including Ibbur Shonim (proclaiming a Leap Year by inserting an additional month of Adar). Thus our Luach was instituted on the basis of the Lunar year (twelve lunar months), coupled with an adjustment to the Solar year by the intercalation of an additional month after every two or three years, making that year a Jewish Leap Year (consisting of 13 months). In this way, the “accumulated” deficiency of the Lunar year relative to the Solar year is filled in, as required by the Torah that the month of Nissan — Chodesh haAviv (“Spring Month”) — be kept in the spring, as at the time of the Exodus; thereafter all our other festivals also occur in their proper season.

At the same time, on the same day of Rosh Chodesh Nissan, our Jewish people were instructed by HaShem concerning the Korban-Pesach(Pesach sacrifice) and Chag HaPesach, as to how Jews are to celebrate the Festival of Our Liberation, ZmanCheiruseinu, not only as the anniversary of our deliverance from physical slavery, but also — and especially — as our Festival of Freedom in the spiritual16 sense, namely liberation not only from enslavement to Mitzrayim of yore, but to all “Mitzrayims” at all times and in all places. This surely is a basic instruction in Torah (“Torah,” from the word hora’ah, meaning “instruction”), which, like all instructions of the eternal Torah, is eternal and valid at all times and wherever Jews live; certainly instructions that are connected with Pesach, the Season of Our Freedom, which is a preparation for Matan Torah and Kabbalas HaTorah (being given and accepting the Torah at Sinai and ever since).

This year being a Leap Year in our Jewish Luach, it focuses attention, in tangible relevant manner, on the significance of theXstMifflan rKiddush HaChodesh and Ibbur Shonim, mentioned above. Hence it provides a particularly timely occasion to reflect an the significance of our Jewish Leap Year, which, like all Jewish matters, is, first of all, relevant to the state of Yiddishkeit, Torah and Mitzvos in our everyday life.

Especially as till the first day of Nissan, the matter of a year being a leap year — is not settled, for the Beis-Din (Highest Rabbinical Court) had the prerogative to intercalate a month and make it a Leap Year.

Rosh Chodesh of the Month of Geulah thus also brings deliverance from the aforementioned uncertainty, and provides assurance and strength of now being ready to hear about and “take up” * the Mitzvah of Pesach and Korban Pesach, and in two weeks’ time to come out of “Mitzrayim” (in all implied meanings); hence also to begin counting the days of the Omer in anticipation of receiving the Torah, etc. — Avodas HaShem (serving HaShem) in all days ahead.

SHABBOS SHEMINI – MEVARCHIM NISIN - PARAH 22-29 Adar ב 5776

EREV SHABBOS - FRI Apr 1st  
Shacharis 7 am / 
Mincha/Candles/Maariv 7:21 pm

SHABBOS - SAT Apr 2nd  
Tehillim for Mevarchim Nisan 8 AM
Shacharis 9:30 am /NOTE NEW TIME/ Latest Shema 9:58 am/
Mincha 7:10 pm  /Seuda Slishit Lite 
Maariv/Havdalah 8:27 pm 

Weekday Services
Sun Shacharis: 9 am 
Mon  - Fri Shacharis 7 am
Sun - Thu  Mincha/Maariv
 7:30 pm /Repeat Shema after 8:21 pm

KIDDUSH SPONSORS
We will have a special Gala Kiddush (with bread) this week, sponsored t by Shimon and Tova Cox and family, in honor of Shabbos Mevorchim, and also in honor of all the many wonderful people who help with the Children's Program at CSTL! Seuda Slishit Lite sponsored by Mike Weichbrodt

SHABBOS PARAH THIS WEEK
"This is the decree of the Torah, which Hashem has commanded, saying: Speak to the Children of Israel, and they shall take to you a completely red cow, which is without blemish, and upon which a yoke has not come." (Bamidbar 19:2) The reading of this chapter was instituted for this time of the year because Jews were required to purify themselves before coming to Jerusalem for the pilgrimage festival of Passover. There are many who hold that there is a biblical mitzvah to hear this reading (ou.org)

GIVE TO THE CSTL PESACH CHARITY FUND Ma'ot Hittim, aka "Kimcha d'Pischa"
The Shulchan Aruch defines a halachic obligation upon everyone to donate funds prior to Pesach in order to help the poor to cover their holiday expenses. Not only is Pesach the festival of freedom but it is also intended to impart within every person a feeling of royalty. As such, efforts must be made to ensure that even the poor can feel this way. It is for this reason that Pesach is the only holiday which merited having a charity collection dedicated entirely to it. While on most other holidays one is encouraged to invite the less fortunate to eat their holiday meals in one's home, on Pesach one should rather ensure that every person has the means and ability to experience their own seder in their own home. (R. AriEnkin).  Donate online at www.CSTLSeattle.org, with the notation “Chesed Fund – Pesach”

Children's Program News 
Boys junior minyan shabbos morning from 10-10:30 led by Rabbi Herbstman.  Ages 6 and above Thank you -  Tova

THE NORTH SEATTLE ERUV STATUS: -PENDING
For current status of the North Seattle Eruv, please check the flag on the NE 65th Street side of CSTL, (green flag means the Eruv is up, red flag the Eruv is down), CSTL eNews, or the Vaad eNews. Visit our web sitewww.twitter.com/cstleruv for current status.

Simcha’s Shmura Matzah Co-op – DEADLINE APR 3rd 
Simcha Brandeis is taking orders for mid April delivery of high quality unbroken Shmura Matzah.Please contact Simcha at: sbrandeis@gmail.com or 206 633 3896 to place your order.

CSTL Fund Raising through Amazon
Amazon has a program of giving 0.5% of your purchase to the charity of your choice. Congregation Shaarei Tefilah Lubavitch is one of the charities. This is a great way to raise funds for the shul without incurring extra charges or financial burdens.  Go to Amazon Smile: https://smile.amazon.com  to register

CAMP GAN IZZY REGISTRATION NOW OPEN - REGISTER TODAY
Conveniently located right here in the heart of Seattle’s North End. The season now runs from Monday, July 4th through Friday August 5th. Camp Gan Israel Seattle has been providing the Jewish children of Greater Seattle a special summer day camp experience that integrates healthy active fun, field trips and friendships with the richness, excitement and warmth of Jewish values, tradition and culture. Fun that lasts a summer…memories that last a lifetime.  Questions? Call or text Rabbi Abe Kavka at (206.730.2775) or info@campganisraelseattle.org . Register your kids, ages 2½ to 12 atwww.campganisraelseattle.org  for 1, 2, 3, 4, or 5 weeks. NOW OFFERING TRANSPORTATION TO AND FROM MERCER ISLAND AND SEWARD PARK!!! (For transportation to/from other areas please speak with Rabbi Kavka.)

CSTL SECURITY FEE $75
Due to the concern for the safety of our Shul we have hired a Security guard. The Board has unanimously voted to access all members, families and people who Daven at CSTL a $75 year security fee.  Thank you for supporting CSTL. Mike Weichbrodt

LADIES TEHILIM – SUN 10 am
From 10 AM at the Shaarei Tefillah Library.

JLI “COURSE OF WHY” WITH RABBI BOGOMILSKY at CSTL  
Are you ready to give your Judaism the intellection you know it deserves? Are you prepared to tackle the quizzical, queer, and seemingly-unanswerable questions about Jewish belief and practice? Then signup today for The Jewish Course of Why. Controversial and intriguing unanswered questions. This course comes with an educational book. Thereafter for 5 Wednesdays.  www.myJLI.com or call 206-290-6301

KIDDUSH SPONSORSHIPS AVAILABLE
If you would like to sponsor Kiddush at CSTL, please contact Ivan Rothman, Gabbai Kiddush,hardcastle101@hotmail.com . Please inform Ivan by the preceding Sunday evening so that we have time to prepare properly.  Prices: Sponsor $300, co-Sponsor $150, Contributor: $50-$149.

THANK YOU TO JEWISH FEDERATION OF GREATER SEATTLE
Funding for CSTL Outreach Program was made possible, in part, by a grant from the Jewish Federation of Greater Seattle.  Please donate to JFGS at https://www.jewishinseattle.org/donate


COMMUNITY NEWS

Women's Textual Study Class with Rabbi Shaul Engelsberg, Sun Apr 3rd :30 pm
Derech Emunah (Yavneh) Bldg in BCMH Parking Lot. We are studying "Contemporary Life Lessons from the Seven Prophetesses".

NCSY Pre-Pesach Car Wash, Sunday, April 17th  11 am-4:00 pm 
In the Sephardic Bikur Holim Parking Lot, 6500 42nd AVE S, Sea. We will clean the inside & outside of your car. Cost: $20/Car or $30/Van or SUV. You can buy a gift certificate to Pink Elephant for $10 more. More info:thehoffather@gmail.com

WOMEN'S MIDRASHA PROGRAM DELVES INTO THE HAGADAH
Rabbi Meyers presents his second of four shiurim on the Passover Hagadah this Sunday morning at 9:15 pm. This will be followed by Rabbi Shmuel Brody's Perashat Hashavua class at 10:15. Breakfast (still hametz!) is at 9:00 am, with Chef Rubisa Miriam Meyers whipping up a scrumptious start to your Sunday!

PCC KOSHER BULK FOODS – SUN APR 17th 8 am to 1 pm
Columbia City PCC only.  Under Vaad supervision.

36th International Conference on Jewish Genealogy, Aug 7-12
Sheraton Hotel, downtown Seattle. More info: www.iajgs2016.org

StandWithUs Northwest Community Reception May 15th 
www.standwithus.com

Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory Wed, Apr 6th 7:00 pm, 
Torah Day School presents at Congregation Ezra Bessaroth. For WOMEN ONLY ages First Grade & up. RSVP: elaoconnor@tdsseattle.org

SEATTLE JEWISH FILM FESTIVAL April 2nd -10th 
Help us "drink up the culture" at the 21st Seattle Jewish Film Festival! Over nine days - April 2-10 - Catch 25 films from 11 countries exploring Jewish life and culture around the world. Featuring award-winning directors, absorbing documentaries, witty comedies, and eye-opening stories, this year's festival will touch your heart and feed your soul.www.SeattleJewishFilmFestival.org

Jewish Genealogical Society of WA & Seattle Sephardic Network  Mar 28th 6:30 - 8:00 pm
At Stroum Jewish Community Center, Mercer Island, JGSWS & Seattle Sephardic Network will host a "Sneak Preview" on the International Conference on Jewish Genealogy to be held in Seattle August 7-12, 2016. More info:www.iajgs2016.org

Derech Emunah Seattle Girls High School Production Tue Mar 29th 7:30 pm
Derech Emunah Productions presents "Sparks Make Fire", a journey about Women in Jewish History for women only ages 10 & up. Rainier Valley Cultural Center, 3515 S Alaska Street, Seattle. Doors open at 7:00 pm. Cost: Adults/$15 Students/$12. To purchase tickets or for more info: (888) 944-1043 or Productions@derechemunah.com 

Seattle Kollel SEED Learning Day Camp for Boys/Camp for Girls June 27-August 25. 
More info: www.seattlekollel.org 

Affordable Kosher Passover Depot at BCMH – Open SUNDAY and WEEKDAYS 
A one-stop shop for your Passover needs in Seattle! Located in the BCMH Social Hall in Seward Park. Passover Depot will be filled with Kosher for Passover wines, fresh items, dry goods and much more.www.affordablekosher.com/passoverdepot  

SEATTLE JEWISH THEATER AT Ezra Bessaroth APR 10th 
Please join us for a presentation of Morning Star.  Tickets are $3 in advance, or $5 at the door.  Contact Susan, office@ezrabessaroth.net, or 206 722-5500. 

COMMUNITY YOM HASHOAH PROGRAM Thu evening May 5th
Ezra Bessaroth is honored to present a special program on this year's Yom HaShoah - Holocaust Remembrance Day, Thursday evening May 5th. The program - the Northwest Premier of "Karski and the Lords of Humanity" - will feature a special pre-screening hors d'oeuvres reception - for sponsors - with the film's Director Slawomir Grunberg and screenwriter E. Thomas Wood. Stay tuned in upcoming newsletters for information on how you can purchase tickets and participate as a sponsor.

Mishmar Chavura with Rabbi Rosenfeld  THU 9-11 PM
Parsha Learning and Discussion.  Everyone welcome to join the conversation.  5240 38th Ave. NE, Snacks served

NEED A DRIVER – CALL GERSHON!
For all your transportation needs, call Gershon Grashin (206) 856-2754


SICHO FOR SHEMINI
http://www.sie.org/templates/sie/article_cdo/aid/2605240/jewish/Motzaei-Shabbos-Parshas-Shemini-and-Parah-Shabbos-Mevarchim-Nissan-5738-1978.htm © Chabad.org 

1. On this Shabbos, in addition to the regular Torah reading, we read the portion dealing with the Mitzvah of “ParahAdumah.” This was a completely red cow whose ashes were used to purify one who had come in contact with a dead person.

The Rambam in his Sefer HaMitzvos states (1) that the Mitzvah was to burn the Parah Adumah “so that the ashes would be ready for whomever might need it for purifying himself.”

One would obviously make use of the Parah Adumah only if 1) he has been in contact with a dead person, or 2) he desires to purify himself. Yet the Mitzvah here is not to wait until such a situation arises. Rather is the Beis Din — Jewish Court of Law — commanded to burn the Parah Adumah so that its ashes would always be ready for one who needs them.

Herein lies an interesting distinction between the Parah Adumah and other forms of correction administered by the Beis Din. In other cases, a person would first come to the Beis Din and then be told what to do for penance. In this case, though, we do not wait with burning the red cow until after he comes to Beis Din. The ashes must be prepared beforehand so that they are ready at all times for when they will be needed.

From this we can learn an important lesson in our service of Hashem.

Human nature is to always rationalize one’s actions, and regard oneself as blameless. One could therefore consider Teshuvah (usually translated “repentance”) as not applying to oneself. Knowledge of the Laws of Teshuvah, perhaps, might be useful at some future date in the eventuality that one might somehow sin. Nevertheless, we are told thatTeshuvah must be done daily — as part of serving G‑d in prayer.

“There is no man in the world so righteous that he does no sin.” (2) The Hebrew word used here for sin is ‘Chet’ — meaning a deficiency. While one may not be doing anything actually wrong, it is surely possible for him to be doing more that is right. There is, therefore, no man who is not deficient to some extent in his degree of attachment to Hashem. For this reason the Hebrew word “Teshuvah” does not really mean “repentance” — implying that some wrong has been done, but “returning,” for each person can surely come closer to his Creator.

Furthermore, we are told that each generation that does not rebuild the Beis HaMikdash is as guilty as the one which caused its destruction (3) for would they be worthy, the Beis HaMikdash would surely be rebuilt in their time.

Should one think that his actions make no difference, we are told that one must regard himself at any given moment as having his merits equal to his misdeeds (4) — or even more so, as the merits of the entire world being equal to its misdeeds— and the Mitzvah one is now about to perform can bring salvation to the entire world.

For these reasons, it is imperative for every person to do Teshuvah, and it must be done without delay. Just as the ParahAdumah was prepared in advance so that it could be used immediately when someone would come to correct his state of impurity, so must Teshuvah be ever-present in a person’s heart, ready to be done at once, as soon as one realizes that the present situation is one that requires it.

2. We all know that all Mitzvos must be done with Simcha — happiness. We do them happily because we know that through this we can achieve a bond with Hashem. It follows, then, that the Mitzvah of Teshuvah, too, must be done with Simcha. When a person does Teshuvah, he corrects the wrongs he had committed, thereby ensuring that his service to Hashem become more perfect. How much greater then must be his happiness when he does Teshuvah, since through this he achieves perfection in the fulfillment of all Torah and Mitzvos.

Motzaei Shabbos is the time when we bid farewell to the Shabbos Queen. In view of the above, we can understand thatTeshuvah is not inappropriate at this time, since it is not a melancholy act but one of boundless joy. At this time, we can draw also from the joy of Purim to supplement and strengthen the Simcha we feel in doing Teshuvah, for the joy of Purim is also unlimited.

3. There is also an intrinsic similarity between Purim and Parah Adumah. Purim was a time when the Jewish People intensified their adherence of the Torah and Mitzvos to such a degree that it was regarded as the first time the Jewish people were considered completely devoted to practicing the Laws of the Torah since the giving of the Torah at Mount Sinai. (5) Similarly, Parah Adumah is called “The Chukah of the Torah” (6) (Chukah meaning a Mitzvah for which no logical reason is given). It was not merely the “Chukah of Parah Adumah” but rather the “Chukah” of the entire Torah. The lesson we derive from this is that through fulfilling the Mitzvah of “Parah Adumah,” approaching it as a “Chukah” (without seeking out the logic behind it) will lead one to fulfill the entire Torah in a manner of “Chukah,” in other words, performance of theMitzvos will not be because of their rational reasons, but because they are commands of G‑d, and means of establishing a bond with Him.

Thus we may consider the Torah on two levels:

1) Torah is on its own.

2) As Parah Adumah introduces added significance by encouraging fulfillment of Torah in a manner of “Chukah,” henceParah Adumah is similar to Purim in that it introduced a greater degree of intensity in the practice and fulfillment of Torah.

4. In regard to the Parah Adumah we find an interesting point. The Sifri (a Midrashic note) states (7) that the first ParahAdumah could be prepared only by the Deputy Kohen Gadol — (high priest) Elozor, and not by the Kohen Gadol himself — Aharon. Why was it forbidden for Aharon as Kohen Gadol to prepare the Parah Adumah?

The question becomes stronger after referring to the Talmud (8) that discusses the people who were permitted to prepare theParah Adumah in later generations. One opinion in the Talmud is that every other Parah Adumah must also be prepared exclusively by the Kohen Gadol. The other opinion is that any Kohen, even the Kohen Hedyot (ordinary priest), as well as the “Kohen Gadol,” may prepare it. Thus the question remains why the first Parah Adumah had to be prepared specifically by the Deputy Kohen Gadol, and could not be done by the Kohen Gadol at all?!

The Rogatchover Gaon explains this (9) in a profound manner. The Rambam states that the person preparing a future ParahAdumah, whether Kohen Gadol or Kohen Hedyot, must wear the four garments of the Kohen Hedyot and not the eight garments which were worn exclusively by the Kohen Gadol at other aspects of worship in the Beis HaMikdash. There were times when the Kohen Gadol also wore four garments, though these were not identical to the four garments of the KohenHedyot. Hence if the Kohen Gadol would prepare the Parah Adumah he would have to wear the four garments of a KohenHedyot and not his own four garments.

From this we see that although the Torah permits the Parah Adumah to be prepared even by a Kohen Gadol, nevertheless, he performs this with that aspect of Kohen Hedyot that remains with him even after he ascends to the level of Kohen Gadol. In other words, the Kohen Gadol possesses within himself two levels of Priesthood: one (newly acquired) as a KohenGadol, and the other (originally present) as a Kohen Hedyot. And his ability to prepare the Parah Adumah derives from that quality he retains as Kohen Hedyot.

All this could apply to all Kohanim Gedolim who were to serve in the future. It would not, however, apply to Aharon. All other Kohanim Gedolim would have to previously be an ordinary Kohen Hedyot before they could ascend to the level of Kohen Gadol.

Aharon, however, was appointed Kohen Gadol on his very first day in the priesthood. As related in this week’s Torah portion, only the performance of Divine service by Aharon as Kohen Gadol, was able to cause revelation of the “Shechinah” (Divine Presence).

Furthermore, that day, the first day that the Mishkan (sanctuary) stood, is compared in the Talmud (10) to the first day of creation. Just as on the day of creation all things were created at their fullest degree of development (Adamand Eve; for example, were fully developed as though they would have been twenty years old), so it was with Aharon when he began his service as Kohen Gadol. He did not have to first serve as a Kohen Hedyot and then become a Kohen Gadol, but immediately came to his fullest degree of development as a Kohen Gadol.

For this reason the first Parah adumah was not permitted to be done by Aharon himself. When a Kohen Gadol prepares aParah Adumah he must, as mentioned above, wear the four garments of a Kohen Hedyot. But this is only when he had once been a Kohen Hedyot, because he then still retains within himself the quality of Kohen Hedyot, even after becoming KohenGadol.

Aharon, however, had never been a Kohen Hedyot and therefore did not possess the quality of Kohen Hedyot and could not wear a Kohen Hedyot’s garments. He was therefore unable to prepare the Parah Adumah.

5. The lesson to us from the above:

The Rambam writes (11) “The Jews will eventually repent, and they willimmediately be redeemed.”

At first glance, since we are experiencing an extremely intense darkness of exile, how can the Rambam — a Halachic Law-code that contains clear-cut laws — tell us that the redemption will be immediate?

The redemption will have to be a complete transformation, as stated in theHaftorah of this Shabbos: “I will remove from you a heart of stone, and I give you a heart of flesh” — the heart is an organ on which life depends and it will be completely transformed, meaning that the redemption will be a complete one, with no exile following. How then, can the Rambam tell us that a complete transformation will come about immediately — a thing that has never yet happened?

But the above point teaches us that it has, in fact, already happened in the past. At one moment Aharon was a Levi, and Moshe was acting as the High Priest, and a moment later Moshe told Aharon: “Come close to the altar” (12) and perform the Divine Service — he immediately became a High Priest!

So, too, the redemption will be an immediate transformation. In Iggeres Hakodesh (13) it is explained that the general redemption (of all Jews) is connected with the personal redemption of each Jew, which is brought about through prayer and the prior giving of Tzedakah.

From the above it is understood that each and every Jew has the potential and is empowered to bring about the “immediate redemption,” from the present extreme to the opposite, from the lowest level to the highest, until a level is reached which will be higher even than extremes!

6. If this is true about oneself, despite the awareness one has of one’s own failings, how much more so regarding another Jew. Since one must view his fellow on the scale of merit, he must therefore consider it as being certainly within his fellow’s power and potential to bring about the redemption. And seeing that “Toras Emes” — the Torah of truth — demands that we regard others favorably, “with a good eye” (14), it is most certainly true. One has to “love the creatures and bring them close to Torah.” (15) “Creatures” explains the Alter Rebbe in Tanya, means people so low that their only redeeming factor is that they are created by Hashem. Yet one has to love them with a true love as demanded by “Toras Emes” — the “Torah of Truth.” And this love should be so strong that one “brings them close to Torah” not only to Mitzvos, but also to Torah (study) which G‑d calls His “Hidden Treasure.” (16)

(As can also be seen that when the angels did not want the Torah, the “Hidden Treasure” to be given to “flesh and blood,” they did not complain about the Mitzvos being given, but rather about the Torah — meaning the study of G‑d’s Wisdom.)

If a person starts looking for an intellectual explanation of this approach (teaching even Torah to lowly “creatures”), he should be told that it has already happened in the past; Hashem so acted towards him at “Matan Torah” (the giving of the Torah).

Prior to Matan Torah there was a Divine decree (“gezerah” in its literal meaning of cutting off — as explained by the Previous Rebbe), that “the upper beings cannot come down, (to the world) and the lower beings cannot ascend (17) (to the higher worlds). In other words, the “upper” (spiritual) and “lower” (material) were two completely separate entities. At Matan Torah “Hashem came down on Mount Sinai,” and became “I am your G‑d” (18) meaning your strength and vitality (of even the lowest part of the body).

And since Hashem so acted towards him, it is understood that he, too, should act this way towards every other Jew, that he should busy himself even with the “creatures” and bring them close to “Torah.”

7. This provides added depth to the duty of bringing close to the Torah all Jews, even those concerning whom the “Torah of Truth” says that they are merely “creatures.” It must be in a manner of “love the creatures,” i.e., founded on the concept of “Ahavas Yisrael,” which is one with Ahavas Hashem — love of G‑d, and Ahavas HaTorah — love of the Torah.

From Ahavas Yisrael (which elevates one to a point above all differentiation of various levels), one comes to Chinuch Torah education, Torah — study (for all),Tefillin, Mezuzah, Tzedakah, Bayis Molei Seforim (filling the home with Jewish books) — the idea of “Yavneh and its Sages” and also into the three pillars on which the entire House of Israel rests, which are especially connected with “The House of Jacob — these are the women” — Kosher food and drink, preceded already on Erev Shabbos, by Neros Shabbos Kodesh, and also Taharas Hamishpachah (Family Purity).

And we will go to meet Mashiach Tzidkeinu together with those one has brought close.

So should it come about — that through increasing and intensifying all these Mitzvos, starting with encouraging young boys and girls to add in quality as well as in quantity in their Torah learning, and also through their instituting their own free-loan funds — that we shall go really soon to meet our Saintly Mashiach, in a manner of “a great gathering will return here,” and in a manner of “kings will be your foster fathers and queens your nursing mothers.” (19)

8. It is now an appropriate time to encourage the fulfillment of a lesson derived from Purim. Although theMegillas Esther clearly defines the limits of the holiday of Purim and says that it cannot be extended past the 15th of the month ofAdar, (20) this, however, applies only to the reading of the Megillah, but is not relevant to the other concepts of Purim. Hence, although we find ourselves in the second half of the month, we may still derive lessons from other aspects of Purim. This can also be seen from the following: 1) The Talmud says (21) that if a Jew has a litigation with a gentile, he should try to postpone it until the month of Adar, for then the “Mazal” of the Jewish people is on the ascendant. It specifies the (entire) “Month of Adar” without any distinction between its first half (before the 15th) or its second half. 2) There is a custom that weddings are not held in the latter half of a month (since the moon — to which the Jews are compared — starts diminishing after the 15th day. Some months however, are excluded — each for its specific reason). However, w Adar is (also) excluded. The joy of Purim permeates the entire month and weddings may therefore take place. As we find in theMegillah that Adar “is the month which was transformed from sadness to gladness” (22) implying the entire month.

There is a wonderful lesson to be derived from the story of Purim.

All the Jews at that time were greatly influenced by Mordechai. Even Haman(whom he mentioned that the Jews are a people scattered among the other nations) realized his influence and called the Jews “Mordechai’s people.” (23) Just like Mordechai who “did not bow down” (24) they, too, did not even think of surrendering to Haman’s decree or bowing down to the idols, although they thereby endangered their lives.

Another instance: On Esther’s request, Mordechai gathered together all the Jews to fast on Esther’s behalf. Later all the Jews throughout the world accepted upon themselves to observe the holiday of Purim.

Thus we see the influence that Mordechai exerted on his own people. But it was not limited to his own people. He was also very influential in the higher echelons of society — in the government circles, too. He became the “Viceroy” — second to the king himself.

He realized that it had been through his “sitting at the gate of the king,” (25) that he had been able to save the entire Jewish nation. His obvious course of action, after saving his people, should have been to pursue his career as Chief Minister to the king who ruled the entire world, enabling him to ease the burden of Jews around the world. Yet we find instead the very opposite. Resigning his exalted position, thereby relinquishing the possibility of helping his fellow Jews, he emigrated to Eretz Yisrael in order to be able to study Torah uninterruptedly!

9. Herein lies a wonderful lesson:

Every Jew is a soldier in the army of Hashem. A soldier must disregard his personal feelings and pleasures and completely subjugate himself to his commander. Although in other fields the soldier may far surpass his commander, nevertheless, a feeling of superiority on the part of the soldier resulting in his disobeying a military command could be disastrous. Even if the command sounds to him unreasonable, even preposterous, his feelings must be one of “Naaseh v’Nishma” (26) (we will first do the Mitzvos then we will understand” — as the Jews told Moshe at Mount Sinai). After obeying, he later approaches his commander and requests clarification of the command. The command itself, though, must be fulfilled in its entirety.

The above applies even to a commander in this world. How much more so, then, is it relevant to a command of the “King of Kings” who tells us: “Do not deviate from the command right or left.” (27) The Jew’s obedience and subservience to the King is to such an extent that (as our Sages explain (28) the command “Do not deviate”) even if a Sage will tell you that your right side is in truth your left and vice versa, you are still to obey!

When a Jew finds himself (through Divine Providence) in an influential position as a businessman or communal leader, he should realize that as long as there is an order from the (Previous) Rebbe to continue his activities he must act accordingly. If it requires devoting less time to Torah study, he has no choice but to obey. Obviously, though, he should not derive pleasure from his “vacation” from Torah study, but rather pursue his activities as a soldier who is fulfilling his commander’s decree. While still occupied in his work, he should be thirsting impatiently for the moment he will be able to continue his Torah study. When, then, he receives an explicit instruction that his task is now completed, he should jump at the opportunity to resume his Torah study with increased diligence. Although he may be a successful businessman or communal leader (and therefore must continue his services with ever-increasing vigor), he must also possess a constant burning desire to learn Torah. He will then take advantage of every free moment (however few) to study, and he will do so with even greater enthusiasm and diligence than one who studies the Torah continuously.

10. In simple practical terms: Each of us should intensify his Torah study with ever-increasing vigor and strength, utilizing every free moment to learn Torah.

This applies to youngsters, too. Young girls are also included as they also have an obligation to learn Torah. Although women are not obliged to study the entireTorah, nevertheless, they must know the laws relating to all the negative commandments, and those positive Mitzvos which are not limited to a fixed time. This includes a vast portion of the Torah, and (as has been mentioned on many occasions) if only men would be sufficiently well-versed in all the laws that women are obliged to know! Both Purim and Pesach are also pertinent to women as “they too were in the miracle.” (29) Furthermore, regarding theExodus from Egypt, our Sages say, (30) “In merit of the virtuous women were our fathers redeemed from Egypt.” So, too, Purim, where we see that although Mordechai played a major role in the miracle, theMegillah is nevertheless called not Megillas Mordechai, or Mordechai veEsther, but rather Megillas Esther.

Children should be encouraged to increase their Torah study. They should also be encouraged to get. involved in the fulfillment of Mitzvos and, as mentioned previously, to start free-loan associations among themselves. This training will then become their “second nature” and their lives will become imbued and permeated with the fulfillment of Torah andMitzvos.

These (Torah and Mitzvos) will be the “vessels” through which we will “receive” the (revelation of) Mashiach as it says, (31), “Zion will be redeemed through judgment (Torah) and those that return through Tzedakah” (which includes GemilusChassadim — giving free loans to those that need them).

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