Times: Shabbat starts tonight with candlelighting at 8:05pm, ends Saturday night at 9:04pm. Early Shabbat – light candles between 7:00pm-7:05pm. The weekly Torah portion for Shabbat is Terumah.

Upcoming Event: BOOKED OUT! Wednesday, 17 February: Lunchtime lecture with Rabbi Davey Blackman on “The Portrait of Moses”1:00pm at Wingate, Level 48, 101 Collins Street. For more information click here.

Coming Soon: Wednesday, 2 March: Lunchtime lecture with Captain Ophir Anidjar and Nati Hakashur “For Nati and Ofir the war didn’t end when the fighting stopped.” Hear their miraculous stories of survival and success.  1:00pm at Arnold Bloch Leibler, Level 21, 333 Collins Street. Space is limited so please RSVP early to events@jbd.org.au by Thursday, 25 February.  For more information click here.

Mincha in the CBD: Friday summer mincha is on today at 2.10pm using the SMS system to confirm numbers, with kugel and whisky from 2.00pm. Please respond so we can sustain a minyan. Mincha for the other days of the week is in recess until the end of DST.

Study: Wed Shiur @ Billing Bureau: 1:15pm

Kosher Food in the CBD: Nifla Kosher Catering (KA Hechsher)
Offers Corporate Catering, specializing in individual and board room lunches. For further details visit www.nifla.com.au
10% Discount on your first website purchase. Enter promo code “FIRST TIME”. Kosher sandwiches, muffins and salads are available at the following locations:
CUPP- Manchester Unity Building- Ground Floor-220 Collins Street
CBW EXPRESS-181 William Street.(Entrance Little Bourke St)
IN A RUSH CAFE616 St Kilda Road-(Ground Floor-Lowe Lippmann Building)

Thought of the Week with thanks to Rabbi Dovid Gutnick. “They should make an Ark of acacia wood for the tabernacle…” Acacia wood in the Sinai desert? How? The midrash explains that Yaakov Avinu had a vision of a people redeemed who would one day need to build a sanctuary so he enjoined the planting and tending of acacia trees that were to be taken when they left Egypt. It was these acacia trees that were used for wood in the construction of the mishkan in the desert.
The Hebrew word for the acacia wood is ‘atzei shitim.’ The term shitim can also be linked to the word shoteh – fool or folly. Just imagine the scene: The Jews are languishing in slavery dispirited and debilitated and a few old yidden are carefully tending to a row of trees. Why? Because legend had it that their ancestor promised of a time that they will be free and need to build a sanctuary! ‘Fools! Crazies!’ they are derided. ‘What freedom? What desert? What sanctuary? We are but hapless and helpless slaves.

This accusation of folly would likely be repeated when they lopped the trees before the exodus, when they lugged the wood across the sea of reeds, when they carefully stored the beams at every encampment in the desert. Fools that are wasting their time and effort on a pipe dream!
And then one day, after they are indeed free and a nation born anew, a command comes forth to build a sanctuary of wood. Suddenly wood is needed! where are the fools? Where is their wood?

As observant Jews we live our lives based on a bygone ‘vision’ and we often appear the right royal fool. It is so easy to write off our lifestyle and commitment to Torah and Mitzvos as nothing more than ‘foolish rituals’. But our father Jacob had a vision. We know there is a reality to this dream. And so we stay true to our vision and nurture it with tender care and unwavering hope.
And one day they will all come frantically beckoning: ‘Where are the fools who believed in the vision?’ ‘Where are the dreamers who truly believed?’ ‘Where are the bearers of the ‘wood of folly’?

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