JFGSB Blog

Explore news and featured stories about Jewish Federation programs, volunteers, donors, special events and updates from our partners in Israel. Learn how you can become more in engaged with the Jewish Federation of Greater Santa Barbara.

A Sabbath Message: The Ancient and Resilient Virus of Anti-Semitism

In this week’s Torah portion, Yitro, the Israelites continue their journey across the Sinai Desert. Jethro, a Midianite priest and Moses’s father-in-law, advises Moses to delegate leadership roles in order not to tire himself out. Moses follows Jethro's advice and appoints judges to he…

A Sabbath Message: B’Shalach – Navigating Difficult Times and Emotions

Emotions run high in times of crisis. Especially prolonged crisis. Even more so in times when we think we are nearing the light at the end of the tunnel only to find that somehow, despite faithfully trudging forward, we remain in the darkness. Yes, I am talking about this week’s Parsha, B…

A Sabbath Message: Purpose and Paradox

How do you measure the merit of a life? This week’s Parsha, Chayei Sarah--meaning “the Life of Sarah”-- focuses entirely on events happening after Sarah’s death. Sarah’s presence in this Parsha is experienced only through her absence from it. One of many illuminating paradoxe…

A Sabbath Message: What’s in a Mitzvah?

Human Connection and the Importance of Common Decency

 
Lech Lecha, God instructs Abraham in this week’s parsha. Go, seek out a new land. A new way of being in the world. This follows on the heels of the story of Noah. We humans were not on our best behavior. God had more or less given …

A Sabbath Message: Light a Fire That Warms Everyone

When I was a kid growing up, I pretty much knew all the kids on my block, my parents knew their parents. There were block parties. We’d spend the fourth of July having picnics and lighting sparklers. Kids from the neighborhood spent their time running from house to house and playing with w…