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Parashat Achrei Mot-Kedoshim

April 28, 2023
8 Iyyar 5783
23rd day of the Omer
Leviticus 16:1 - 20:27


“Speak to the whole Israelite community and say to them: You shall be holy, for I, your God יהוה, am holy.” (Leviticus 19:2)


You want me to be holy
You tell me that I am capable of holiness
Like you


What are you saying?
Is it the same for me as for them?
Or so you tell me
After all, I am but a woman
So often left out


Yet, You invite me in
Asking me to explore
To dig more deeply


Holiness, what is it really?
Holiness is so much more than that which is not ordinary,
Indeed, you take me in
Remind me
To know who and what I am
Created in your image
A mere reflection and yet empowered


For us, as women, what is holiness
We know the immediacy of it all
For so long the care of the future generation has been ours


Holiness is to open our eyes wide with wonder
Holiness is abiding friendship
Holiness is a daily struggle
Holiness is a challenge
Holiness is not abstract, it is concrete
Yet you implore us to be holy


And we will try  
To do the work that brings us closer
To the essence of holiness
That which brings us together and does not tear us apart

Shabbat Shalom

Rabbi Linda Shriner-Cahn

Wed, February 21 2024 12 Adar I 5784