Drash Program

Rabbi Safran delivering the drash for Sh'lach L'cha 5772Participating in our drash program provides an exciting and profound way to involve yourself in Jewish learning and teaching with our entire Temple! Read, study, and write about the Torah portion of the week, and explain what it means to you personally. The drash is delivered at Friday Evening Services at Temple Emanu-El. This is a rare opportunity to engage in the most sacred of Jewish acts, the learning and teaching of Torah.

Contact the Temple office at (520) 327-4501 for more information.

NOTE: Not all past drashot have been posted; check back soon!

Drash for Mishpatim-Shekalim 5775

by Mike & Arianne Ramirez - February 13, 2015

After hundreds of years of slavery, Hashem frees the Hebrew people from captivity. With the Eternal One’s help, the people are led to Mount Sinai and given the Ten Commandments.

This week’s Torah portion, Mishpatim, continues the cliffhanger events with Mishpatim, or the giving of The Rules. These rules will be needed to build and establish a new society.

Read more: Drash for Mishpatim-Shekalim 5775

Drash for Yitro 5775

by Rabbi Nir Barkin - February 6, 2015

Moses’ father-in-law Jethro (or Yitro in Hebrew) hears of the exodus from Egypt and goes out to the wilderness to meet Moses together with his daughter – Moses’ wife – Tzippora and her two sons. Hearing Moses’ recounting of the events, Jethro praises God’s greatness. Understanding that Moses will now have to manage all the problems, conflicts and dilemmas facing the people of Israel, Jethro advises Moses to delegate some of his duties to capable judges. In the short term, this solution will help Moses deal with the great burden placed upon him; in the long term, this decision lays the foundation for the people of Israel’s government and judicial system.

Read more: Drash for Yitro 5775

Drash for B'Shalach-Shirah 5775

by Mona Gibson - January 30, 2015

Have you ever been on vacation and took the family on a road trip? You’re in the front seat, planning the route, where to stop for food, when to stop for a rest, what attractions to see and what road hazards to avoid. And the kids in the back are saying “I’m hungry,” “I’m thirsty,” “Why are we on this trip?” and “Are we there yet?”

Read more: Drash for B'Shalach-Shirah 5775

Drash for Bo 5775

by Liz Shallenberger - January 23, 2015

Bo covers the tail end of the Exodus, which is fodder for all kinds of discussions. Tonight I have decided to settle on the plague of darkness, and the hardening of Pharaoh’s heart. As with every drash, I did my usual routine of picking over the commentary: and, as with every drash, I had more questions than answers. Is the darkness simply an effective scare tactic, or is it a metaphor for the absence of God’s light. Why does God harden Pharaoh’s heart, when it appears that Pharaoh is about to cave? I think the Hebrews were pretty well-convinced of the Egyptian leader’s despicable nature, by that point.

Read more: Drash for Bo 5775

Drash for Va'eira 5775

by Mridula Aggarwal & Jeff Rein - January 16, 2015

On this Martin Luther King, Jr. Day weekend, the 25th of Tevet 5775, we consider an ancient liberation story during the commemoration of a recent one. Va’eira tells us of God’s promise of liberation for His people, and the first, dramatic steps towards its consummation. The dramatic events in this parashah parallel and have inspired freedom seekers across continents and centuries.

Va’eira opens with a grand series of promises from God to Moses, and to the Jews - to free the people, and restore them to the promised land. Keep your eyes on the prize, sayeth the Lord. Neither Moses, nor the Israelites, and certainly not Pharaoh, are ready for this transformation.

Read more: Drash for Va'eira 5775


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