Times: Shabbat starts on Friday at 7:55pm and ends on Saturday night at 8.53pm. The weekly Torah portion is Terumah and Parshat Zachor. Purim is next Friday … there will be a megillah reading at East Melbourne Shul at 12pm. If you will be in the city and want a reading (aside from that one), please be in touch via the WhatsApp group here and we can organise it.
Mincha in the CBD: Mincha is in recess for the summer. We look forward to opening up when people return to their offices and we have sufficient numbers. Details at the WhatsApp group.
Thought of the Week with thanks to James Kennard. This week’s Torah reading describes the construction of the mishkan (sanctuary) and its furniture, including the ark.
One of the easier commandments to fulfil is not to remove the poles out of the ark, the receptacle of the two tablets that lay at the heart of the mishkan. Although all of the principle items had poles attached to their sides to enable carrying, those of the menorah (candelabrum) and the table on which the bread was set could be detached. But the Torah (25:15) commands that the poles of the ark must never be removed.
Rabbi Hirsch explains that the menorah and the table represent the flowering of Jewish spiritual and physical life respectively, which can only be achieved in Israel. Hence these are not always ready to be carried. Not so with Torah learning, symbolised by the ark. Its poles are never taken away because Torah can always be “on the move”; the heights of learning can be reached anywhere in the world.