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What’s Nu @ Sydenham Shul?

At the Forefront of Jewish Life

Your Family Shul Where Everyone is Welcome

By Rabbi Yossy Goldman

Dear Friends,


On Tuesday evening at the annual Yom Hazikaron ceremony, Chief Rabbi Goldstein told a powerful story of the great scholar, Rav Shlomo Zalman Auerbach obm. A student in his Yeshiva in Jerusalem asked for permission to take some time off to go up north to the Galileewhere many of our great Tzaddikim, legendary sages of the Jewish people, are interred, so he could pray at their holy resting places. "If you are looking for Tzaddikim, you don't have to go to the Galilee," said the rabbi. "You can just go to Mt Herzl here in Jerusalem and pray at the graves of any of the young men buried there who gave their lives defending Israel and her people. They are holy Tzaddikim too."

Indeed, on the last day of Pesach, as we do every Yizkor here at SydShul, our Chazan and Choir sang a special Hazkarah prayer for those young heroes whose lives were snuffed out in the wars that Israel has had to face ever since 1948. We refer to them, as we refer to the Six Million martyrs of the Holocaust, as Kedoshim, holy souls. Whether they were religious in their personal lives or not, they all died Al Kiddush Hashem, sanctifying the Name of G-d. They gave their own lives to protect our land and their fellow Jews. it doesn't get any holier than that!

So, the Yeshiva Bachur needs to know that a secular Israeli who puts his own life on the line to protect him is doing G-d's holy work. At the same time, it is also true that the secular Israeli should respect the great spiritual value of young men and women studying Torah today which, in fact, brings the spiritual blessings and Divine protection of Hashem for all our people.

Please G-d, may we all respect each other in love and harmony now and forever.

And, as it is appropriate to pause and remember our fallen heroes, so it is important and incumbent upon all of us, and perhaps especially the Yeshiva Bachur, to acknowledge the incessant flow of incredible miracles over the past 70 years. Every single war Israel has fought was won not only by own modern-day heroes alone. We give them all honour and pay tribute to their strength, sacrifice, intelligence, courage, and heroism. But at the end of the day, every Israeli, even the most irreligious, knows that the hand of Hashem was with them through all their victories. 70 years of miracles! May Hashem continue to watch over Israel and all our valiant young men and women now and always until the time when there will be no more wars with the coming of Moshiach. May it be very soon, Amen.

Did you see that display of illuminated drones over the skies of Israel yesterday? Unbelievable! Beats fireworks any day!

Last Shabbos, we were privileged to be addressed by Dayan Rabbi Shlomo Glicksberg. He is the Rav of the Mizrachi Shul in Glenhazel and one of the more recently appointed Dayanim of the Johannesburg Beth Din. His CV is very impressive indeed, a Torah scholar with adoctorate and he has served in the IDF as well. His very warm, personal, and engaging talk was enjoyed by all. Todah rabah!

On Monday, CAJE & The Academy launched "The Prime Ministers." A penetrating look into the minds, diaries, writings, hearts, hopes, stories and lives of the 8 longest serving Prime Ministers of the State of Israel presented by Rabbi Ramon Widmonte, Dean of The Academy.

I was there, and it was great! If you didn't sign up you missed David Ben Gurion, but you can still join and be enlightened aboutLevi Eshkol, Golda Meir, and Yitzchak Rabin in Part 1. Part 2 will follow with Menachem Begin, Yitzchak Shamir, Ariel Sharon and Benjamin Netanyahu.

Booking via The Academy, Tel. 010-140-2099, or This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it , or at www.theacademy.org.za.

Thank G-d, our new Youth Bayit is being very enjoyed by the teens. Now it's time for the Young Adults to come in. Rabbi Stern has just announced a Launch Event for 2018 with Rabbi Shmuel Moffson on Tuesday, 24 April at 7:45 pm. YOUNG ADULTS 'SPIRITSHUL 'N SOCIAL' Enjoy a group discussion followed by cocktails, refreshments and time-out with your friends at the new Youth Bayit.

And our new ShulCloud database imported from the USA is now up and running! This is very exciting news because it may well revolutionise the way we have been able to communicate with you, our members, and you with us. Watch your email for all the details and get on board ASAP!

Specifically, I would like to suggest that every member of the family give us all their correct and current information and ALLyour different email addresses too, so that you can ALL receive your very own copy of this What's Nu newsletter weekly. Imagine not having to be dependent on your husband, wife, kids, etc to see what's happening at Shul! Do it, and, PG, may ourconnections strengthen.

Mazel Tov to Jacob Winik on his Bar Mitzvah this Shabbos, and to his parents Jason and Nicky Winik, grandparents Stan and Jocelyn Friedman, Allan and Rene Winik. Jacob goes back many generations at SydShul. Enjoy!

Mazel Tov to Ted and Gertie Tobias on their granddaughter Gabriella's engagement to Jonathan Sidley. May they build a beautiful Jewish home together.

Mazel Tov to Robin and Helene Jacobson on the birth of a granddaughter. Much nachas.

We wish a Refuah Shleimah to Hymie Sacks, Ted Tobias, Rolene Nerwich, Harry Mirels, Dorothy Pollard, and Joe Rosen.

Ladies there's another Shabbos Morning Shmooze with Rebbetzin Estee Stern 10 – 10.30 a.m. in the Community Centre. Coffee, tea & refreshments will be served.

The Brocha is across the road and will be followed by our Smorgasbord of Shiurim. Rabbi Goldman's Halacha of the Week is on "The Power of Speech." – in the Main Shul. Rabbi Stern's – Tanya for Beginners in the Elk Hall. Rebbetzin Estee Stern's Kings & Prophets: Tales from the Book of Samuel is in the Shtibl. Remember: Go to the Shiur of your choice, but go to a Shiur!

Planning a Barmy, Battie, Engagement, or a wedding? If it's up to 300 guests, why not have the Chupah in our beautifulnew garden at the Bayit and the reception in the redecorated Seeff Hall? You are welcome to use the Beth Din approvedcaterer of your choice.

Planning a small function? Do you know what it costs to hire tables and chairs, not to mention a marquee?! HIRING OUR ELK HALL, WHICH COMES FULLY EQUIPPED, IS CHEAPER AND NICER!


Need to find a Yahrtzeit date, or your Hebrew Birthday? Go to our Shul website, www.sydshul.co.za. Click on the icon on the top right. While you're there, click on the YouTube icon for all our Shul videos including Miracle at Entebbe which now has well over 800,000 views!

As we remember our brave defenders, I share with you two short clips of the Rebbe on the subject. First, a clip of himencouraging IDF General Yosi Ben-Chanan to publicise Israel's military strength as a deterrent to its enemies to even think about war.


And here the Rebbe warmly welcomes a group of wounded IDF soldiers at 770 in Brooklyn and proclaims that they should not be called wounded but Metzuyanim, those who excel!


On a personal note, our son Rabbi Michoel and his family are Shluchim in Kauai, Hawaii. They just experienced some seriousflooding and mudslides which have displaced people and homes. They are busy with the relief efforts and rescue missions. May they all be safe and sound.


This week's Parsha is a double one, Tazria-Metzorah, which is often euphemistically called Parshas Tahara, the Parsha ofPurification. In fact, it deals with many sources of impurity but also how to achieve purification. Childbirth, circumcision, and much detail about Tzoraas- the leprous curse. This wasn't quiet the leprosy that we heard about in Africa in recent history, but a spiritual malady, one which came upon a person as a result of their misbehaviours. Several transgressions are mentioned as causes, the most well-known one being Lashon Hora, bad-mouthing people, gossip, even if it be true stories (commonly referred to in Jozi as 'Losh'). The afflicted person would have to go outside the camp until the Kohn would pronounce him pure.

By the way, my Shiur on Shabbos after the Brocha is about The Power of Speech, focusing on the positive side.


Shul Schedule

Friday Candles: 5:29 pm (GETTING MUCH EARLIER NOW!)

Friday Mincha: 5:40 pm

Shabbos Mincha: 5:10 p.m. followed by Pirkei Avos and Shalosh Seudos

Shabbos ends at 6:18 p.m.

Mincha next week at 5.40 p.m.

Remember to Count the Omer nightly!

G-d bless. Hope to see you in Shul.

Zei gezunt,

Rochel and I wish you all a Gut Shabbos.


Posted 4 Iyar 5778 / 19 April 2018


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