Shabbat Shalom – May 13, 2016

This week’s Torah portion, Kedoshim, begins with:

And the Lord spoke to Moses saying, Speak to the entire congregation of the children of Israel, and say to them, You shall be HOLY (Kedoshim), for I the Lord, your God am holy.


It then goes on with a listing of things we should do (and not do) in order to strive for this sense of holiness. As I read through the parsha, I began to see how the work you make possible through Federation ties in so beautifully.

“When you reap the harvest of your land, you shall not fully reap the corner of your field, nor shall you gather the gleanings of your harvest.And you shall not glean your vineyard, nor shall you collect the [fallen] individual grapes of your vineyard; you shall leave them for the poor and the stranger.”  Our Federation supports the needs of those who lack food and money and require scholarship and support.  We welcome newcomers to our community especially through our Newcomers Initiative through Shalom Pittsburgh.  

“You shall rise before a venerable person and you shall respect the elderly.”  Our Federation supports the needs of our seniors through our network of agencies and programs in Pittsburgh, in Israel and around the world.  

“You shall not curse a deaf person. You shall not place a stumbling block before a blind person.”  Our Federation supports services for those with special needs and strives to treat everyone with respect and dignity.

“You Shall observe my Sabbaths.”  This is all about Jewish traditions.  Our Federation makes major investments in formal, informal and experiential Jewish education.  

“You shall possess their land, and I shall give it to you to possess it a land flowing with milk and honey.”  Our Federation connects our Pittsburgh Jewish community to the land and people of Israel.


Thank you for what you make possible. Shabbat Shalom.

Jeff Finkelstein

President & CEO

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