News

  • March 25, 2020 / 29 Adar 5780

    Parashat Vayikra

    Two Minutes of Torah with Rabbi Abbi Sharofsky

    This week’s Torah portion, Vayikra, details the sacrificial offerings people should make in response to different incidents.

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  • March 18, 2020 / 22 Adar 5780

    Parashat Vayakhel-Pekudei

    Two Minutes of Torah with Rabbi Abbi Sharofsky

    The Torah reading this week continues the instructions for building the mishkan (tabernacle) and listing the needed materials.

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  • March 11, 2020 / 15 Adar 5780

    Parashat Ki Tisa

    Two Minutes of Torah with Rabbi Abbi Sharofsky

    Thankfully, we get a reminder in this week’s Torah portion, Ki Tisa.

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  • February 26, 2020 / Rosh Chodesh Adar 5780

    Parashat Terumah

    Two Minutes of Torah with Rabbi Abbi Sharofsky

    Our Torah portion for this week, Terumah, focuses on building the tabernacle, a dwelling space for God. There are exact details on the length and height, the type of wood, metal, and fabric that needs to be used for each item.

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  • February 19, 2020 / 24 Sh'vat 5780

    Parashat Mishpatim

    Two Minutes of Torah with Rabbi Abbi Sharofsky

    I attended my first Advocacy Day yesterday, spending the day in Annapolis, Maryland, advocating for issues important to the Jewish community.

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  • February 12, 2020 / 17 Sh'vat 5780

    Parashat Yitro

    Two Minutes of Torah with Rabbi Abbi Sharofsky

    This week’s Torah portion, Yitro, introduces us to Moses’ father-in-law, an experienced leader in his own right.

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  • February 5, 2020 / 10 Sh'vat 5780

    Parashat Beshallach

    Two Minutes of Torah with Rabbi Abbi Sharofsky

    Our Torah portion for this week reminds us of the power of faith, using the Song of the Sea as an anthem.

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  • January 29, 2020 / 3 Sh'vat 5780

    Parashat Bo

    Two Minutes of Torah with Rabbi Abbi Sharofsky

    In this week’s Torah portion, Parashat Bo, we learn that we should establish one law for the citizen and the stranger.

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  • January 22, 2020 / 25 Tevet 5780

    Parashat Vaera

    Two Minutes of Torah with Rabbi Abbi Sharofsky

    Our voices are better heard when we join together in unison, with a shared vision and goal.

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  • January 21, 2020

    Beit Shemesh Mayor Aliza Bloch visits Washington

    Jewish Community Relations Council of Greater Washington (Just Logo)

    WASHINGTON - Beit Shemesh Mayor Aliza Bloch recently paid a three-day visit to Washington in a cooperation effort between the Jewish Federation of Greater Washington and the Israeli city. It followed years of disconnect.

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  • January 21, 2020

    Here's why some DC residents won't be attending the 2020 Women's March

    Jewish Community Relations Council of Greater Washington (Just Logo)

    Millions have attended the March, which is now in its fourth year, but some women said they now choose to participate in smaller, action-oriented demonstrations.

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  • January 21, 2020

    Mayor of Israel’s Fastest Growing City Brings Leadership Vision to Washington DC

    Jewish Community Relations Council of Greater Washington (Just Logo)

    Dr. Aliza Bloch, mayor of Beit Shemesh, has accepted an invitation from the Jewish Community Relations Council of Greater Washington to travel to America’s capital to meet with Jewish and municipal leaders from January 15-18, 2020.

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  • January 21, 2020

    First female mayor of Beit Shemesh on first visit to Washington

    Jewish Community Relations Council of Greater Washington (Just Logo)

    Dr. Aliza Bloch, mayor of Beit Shemesh, accepted an invitation from the Jewish Community Relations Council of Greater Washington to travel to America’s capital to meet with Jewish and municipal leaders from January 15-18, 2020.

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  • January 15, 2020 / 18 Tevet 5780

    Parashat Shemot

    Two Minutes of Torah with Rabbi Abbi Sharofsky

    It is not enough for our communities to hear of each other’s pain. We can and must be present for each other, but we also need to plan for the future. When Pharaoh decreed that all male Israelite babies be killed, the midwives saved the babies and ensured a future for the Israelites. They knew that without the next generation, there was no hope.

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  • January 8, 2020 / 11 Tevet 5780

    Parashat Veyechi

    Two Minutes of Torah with Rabbi Abbi Sharofsky

    In this week’s Torah portion, we reach the end of Jacob’s life journey. Our third forefather lies on his deathbed having his final reckonings, both positive and negative, with his sons. Interestingly, he includes in that group his two grandsons, Ephraim and Menashe, who were born to Joseph in Egypt, saying, “Ephraim and Manasseh shall be mine like Reuben and Simeon.” He then offers his blessing to Joseph and thereby the Jewish people, by placing his hands on these two grandsons.

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  • January 2, 2020 / 5 Tevet 5780

    Parashat Vayigash

    Two Minutes of Torah with Rabbi Abbi Sharofsky

    This week’s Torah portion, Vayigash, deals with Joseph revealing himself to his brothers and reuniting with his father, Jacob.

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  • December 18, 2019 / 18 Kislev 5780

    Parashat Vayeshev

    Two Minutes of Torah with Rabbi Abbi Sharofsky

    This week’s Torah portion, Vayeshev, is filled with encounters that have lasting effects, although the impact is not always immediate or clear.

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  • December 13, 2019

    Shabbat Reflections, Friday, Dec. 13, 2019

    JCRC of Greater Washington

    Shabbat Reflections, Friday, Dec. 13, 2019

    As we close out the week, we write to say Shabbat Shalom and reflect on this week filled with news important to the Jewish community: the tragic shooting in New Jersey, the President’s Executive Order about Anti-Semitism, and newly called elections in Israel. 

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  • December 13, 2019

    Shabbat Reflections

    JCRC of Greater Washington

    Shabbat Reflections

    Friday, December 13, 2019

    As we close out the week, we write to say Shabbat Shalom and reflect on this week filled with news important to the Jewish community: the tragic shooting in New Jersey, the President’s Executive Order about Anti-Semitism, and newly called elections in Israel. 

    Read more

  • December 13, 2019

    Shabbat Reflections

    JCRC of Greater Washington

    Shabbat Reflections

    Friday, December 13, 2019

    As we close out the week, we write to say Shabbat Shalom and reflect on this week filled with news important to the Jewish community: the tragic shooting in New Jersey, the President’s Executive Order about Anti-Semitism, and newly called elections in Israel. 

    Read more

  • December 11, 2019 / 11 Kislev 5780

    Parashat Vayishlach

    Two Minutes of Torah with Rabbi Abbi Sharofsky

    The struggle is real and exists on many fronts. Antisemitism, a history of persecution, and lack of understanding between Jewish groups are some of those struggles. Jews persevere through these hardships, but it would be great if they didn’t happen so often – or at all.

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  • December 4, 2019 / 6 Kislev 5780

    Parashat Vayetzei

    Two Minutes of Torah with Rabbi Abbi Sharofsky

    This week’s Torah portion, Vayetzei begins with Jacob’s interactions with the Divine. He dreams of a stairway leading to heaven, angels going up and down it, and God blessing him.

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  • November 27, 2019 / 29 Cheshvan 5780

    Parashat Toldot

    Two Minutes of Torah with Rabbi Abbi Sharofsky

    As you are reading this, I am at my parents’ house in New Jersey. It’s good to be home for the holidays. I love Thanksgiving and all that comes with it. Families gathering from all over, the travel plans, the food, total participation in this very American holiday.

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  • November 20, 2019 / 22 Cheshvan 5780

    Parashat Chayei Sarah

    Two Minutes of Torah with Rabbi Abbi Sharofsky

    This week’s Torah portion, Chayei Sarah, opens with Abraham finding a suitable piece of land for burying Sarah. Abraham will eventually be buried in the same location. This poignant vignette exemplifies the mitzvah of kavod ha-met, honoring of the deceased, Abraham burying Sarah in a space that was designated for her and her family members demonstrated his love and respect for her. Like Abraham, we too bury our loved ones with dignity, in respectful and well-maintained spaces.

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  • November 13, 2019 / 15 Cheshvan 5780

    Parashat Vayera

    Two Minutes of Torah with Rabbi Abbi Sharofsky

    One of my most formative experiences in rabbinical school was clinical pastoral education (CPE). In addition to my formal training, after my ordination I completed a year-long residency at the Veterans Administration Medical Center in Manhattan. Although I was initially intimidated by this most sensitive and critical of clerical duties, I quickly grew to enjoy being a spiritual care provider: I like the energy of acute care settings, and I love working with people of all religions, challenging myself to deeply explore my own faith in order to help others.

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