Jewish Community Center

Opening Doors to Spirituality, Social Consciousness, and Community A Friendly Egalitarian Conservative Congregation

Shabbat Vaera

Exodus 6:2-9:35
Candle Lighting time 4:44 PM

After seeing how the Egyptians had afflicted the Israelites, God tells Moses to say to them, “I am the Lord. I will free you from the labors of the Egyptians and deliver you from their bondage. (Exodus 6:6) In the Etz Hayyim commentary below the line provides us with an insight how we should live our lives in our modern world. Commenting on labors of the Egyptians “A Hasidic interpretation understands the Hebrew for ‘burdens’ (sivlot) as ‘tolerance. ’ What was the worst part of slavery? The Israelites became accustomed to it. They lost sight of the fact that one does not have to live in such conditions. A first step toward liberation will be freeing themselves from their passivity and their tolerance of the intolerable (Menahem Mendel of Kotzk).


I think too many people have become accustom to the problems facing us and have given up trying to solve them. Like our ancestors we have lost sight that one does not have to live in such conditions. We have become passive and tolerant of intolerable. I encourage you to follow your passion. Find a candidate that you like and support him or her through your donations and volunteer to promote him or her. If your passion is climate change, gun violence, Israel, or anti-Semitism there are many organizations that are working to solve these problems. Become active. Be part of the solution and not part of the problem in the world will be a better place for all.


Shabbat Shalom,

Rabbi Greene


Don't forget to check out my blog about my daily journey through the Talmud at


Service Schedule

Shabbat 9:30 a.m.


Save the Date!

Starting January 21 you will be able to cast your vote for MERCAZ in the World Zionist Congress Election. We are reminded that this election is the one opportunity we, as American Jews, have to directly use our voice in Israel and shine a light on issues of religious pluralism.

By casting your vote for MERCAZ, it will send a critical message that pluralism, democracy and equality are critical to creating a strong and vibrant Israel and that the right to observe Judaism, that very right that the Maccabees once fought for, is open to all in our own way.

By casting your vote for MERCAZ, it will also ensure that we will get our fair share of the $1 billion dollars in funding for programs both in Israel and around the world. These are critical dollars that grow our movement and make sure our voice is heard!

Let’s not sit idly by and let this opportunity pass. Vote for MERCAZ from January 21 thru March 11, 2020. Follow this link to register and vote for  MERCAZ


Shabbat, February 8 Join us for a special Tu Bishvat celebration with a Tu Bisvat Seder with our regular kiddush luncheon following services. Please RSVP to the office 718-428-1580 by February 4th so that we can prepare appropriately.



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