Times: Shabbat starts tonight with candle lighting at 8:19 pm, and ends Saturday night at 9:27 pm. The weekly Torah portion is Parashat Vayigash. Tuesday is the fast of Asara b’Tevet.

Mincha in the CBD: CHOLENT and Whisky Friday is on today at 1.35pm (mincha 1.51pm) using the SMS reminder. Mincha (Mon-Fri) next week continues at 1.55pm with the SMS system to confirm numbers. On Tuesday, we will have a Sefer Torah for mincha, as long as we have a reasonable number of people committing on Monday.

Study: The Wednesday shiur and lunch continues for one more week at Billing Bureau, beginning at 1.30pm with mincha to follow at 1:55pm.

Thought of the Week with thanks to  Rafi Goodman. This week’s Torah reading is Parashat Vayigash. We see how Joseph taught us to repay evil with goodness. He agreed to sustain his brothers for the rest of their lives, even after they attempted to kill him and sold him as a slave. Even after enduring such horrific treatment, he was able to forgive his brothers.

This was not only because he was a master of self control, but more because he understood the nature of human evil. The brother’s evil act of selling him into slavery served G-d’s plan. Joseph eventually became viceroy of Egypt. Joseph focused on the positive outcome of his brother’s act, rather than on their evil essence.

Similarly, we ask G-d to treat us like Joseph treated his brothers – to view our misdeeds as being ultimately for the good and therefore responding to them with kindness. In order to “inspire” G-d to see our misdeeds as ultimately being for the good, we must first do the same ourselves. We must utilise our misdeeds as motivation for self improvement. The misdeed that fuels this transformation becomes a merit, retroactively serving a good purpose.

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