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Passing on Torah to Teachers of Torah

Friday night, erev Shabbat I had the great honor of installing as Senior Rabbi of Temple Beth Hillel,  Rabbi Sarah Hronsky.  She has been the associate rabbi for seven years prior since ordination from Hebrew Union College and following the retirement of her Senior Rabbi, Jim Kaufman was elected to the position of Senior Rabbi by the Board and Congregation.  This past Shabbat evening was the official celebration of that momentous decision!

And what a joyous Shabbat.  Great music, the congregation young and old turned out to celebrate first with Shabbat dinner then a most joyous musical Shabbat. Rabbi Hronsky’s family was there including parents and in-laws, siblings and their significant others!

Rabbis from the community and her childhood Rabbi,  Lyn Goldstein, my classmate made a surprise visit from St. Louis.

Rabbi Hronsky is a smart, vivacious, faith-filled, Torah teaching rabbi!  She is only the third Senior Rabbi of TBH in its history.  Temple Beth Hillel is the oldest Reform congregation in the San Fernando Valley.

I was honored to share the evening, share some Torah, and rejoice in the achievement of my friend and colleague.

This coming Shabbat I have the privilege of traveling to another congregation to install its assistant Rabbi, Ari Margolis at Temple Beth Or in Raleigh, N.C.

This congregation is headed by my childhood friend and amazing rabbi, Lucy Dinner.  Rabbi Margolis, my former intern from Congregation Kol Ami became their new assistant rabbi following his ordination this past spring.  Again I will have the great honor and privilege of sharing words of Torah and blessing for a colleague.

These two Sabbaths are wonderful bookends! Pirkei Avot (Ethics of the Fathers) opens with these words:

Moses received the Torah (4) from Sinai (5), and handed it down to Joshua, and Joshua to the elders (6),and the elders to the prophets, and the prophets delivered it to the men of the Great Synagogue (7). They said three things, “Be deliberate in judgment; raise up many disciples; and make a fence about the Torah” (8).

By passing on words of Torah, we are handing down the same covenant to yet another generation of teachers and rabbis.  And now we can truly say we deliver this teaching to the men and women of the Synagogue. Teachers of Torah to their communities.  I am so honored and privileged to be part of the this amazing tradition.


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