Shabbat is a great day for so many reasons. It’s the only day mentioned in the Ten Commandments “Honor the Sabbath day and keep it holy” It’s a day when you can forget your troubles and be at peace....sort of a taste of the “world to come”. It’s a major “time out” for all of G-d’s creatures.
Growing up back in Philadelphia, I can remember my grandmother – we called her “Bubba” baking challah and making chicken soup on Fridays. My mother always got her hair done before Shabbat. I use to walk to synagogue on Saturday mornings, so I could sing in the Youth Corale – our synagogue youth choir. I loved going to Kinnusim – Shabbat week-ends as a USYer, where all of us teens got to experience Shabbat together…singing and dancing non-stop for an entire weekend. Shabbat at the Kotel, the Western Wall in Jerusalem at age 16 changed my life. I journeyed there which USY Israel Pilgrimage. Shabbat in Safed with Laura at the Synagogue of Abuhav twenty-two years ago was also a memorable Shabbat experience.
These memories of the tastes, the smells, the sounds and the feelings of Shabbat cannot be forgotten. They have a special place in my soul and I constantly draw on these memories, even today and it instantly brings a smile to my face and to my heart.
I hope all of you can find a way to celebrate Shabbat at home and with us at Temple Beth Ami. So…take a break. You can use it!
Cantor Kenny Ellis