14/02/2019

14/02/2019

By the Grace of G-d
Newtown Shul is the only synagogue in Sydney’s Inner West.  Newtown Shul’s activities are possible because of your kind generosity and we thank you for it.

Please consider becoming a member.

Should you wish to donate to Newtown Shul, you can always do so using the bank account details below. Please make sure to send an email to newtown@shul.org.au with a copy of the transaction confirmation.

Account Name: Newtown Synagogue INC, BSB: 032036, Account No: 960034

Parshah in a Nutshell

Parshas Tetzaveh

Courtesy of Chabad.org

G‑d tells Moses to receive from the children of Israel pure olive oil to feed the “everlasting flame” of the menorah, which Aaron is to kindle each day, “from evening till morning.”


The priestly garments, to be worn by the kohanim (priests) while serving in the Sanctuary, are described. All kohanim wore:

  • the ketonet – a full-length linen tunic;
  • michnasayim – linen breeches;
  • mitznefet or migba’at – a linen turban; 
  • avnet – a long sash wound above the waist.

In addition, the kohen gadol (high priest) wore:

  • the efod – an apron-like garment made of blue-, purple- and red-dyed wool, linen and gold thread;
  • the choshen  a breastplate containing twelve precious stones inscribed with the names of the twelve tribes of Israel;
  • the me’il  a cloak of blue wool, with gold bells and decorative pomegranates on its hem;
  • the tzitz – a golden plate worn on the forehead, bearing the inscription “Holy to G‑d.”

Tetzaveh also includes G‑d’s detailed instructions for the seven-day initiation of Aaron and his four sons—NadavAvihuElazar and Itamar—into the priesthood, and for the making of the golden altar, on which the ketoret (incense) was burned.


Special Announcement

Newtown Shul Weekly Friday Night Dinner

The Shabbat Dinner is the traditional focal point of every Jew’s week. We at Newtown Shul, extend a warm welcome to all people to join us for a traditional Friday Night Dinner.

The Shabbat Dinner is held in the hall beside the Synagogue immediately after the 6:30pm Shabbat service.

The Shabbat Dinner is a joint project of Newtown Synagogue and Young Adult Chabad and operates by virtue of the generosity of donors and volunteers.

All of the food served at the dinner is prepared ‘by the people for the people’ with love.

There is a suggested donation of $20 per person. To make a tax-deductible donation for the Shabbat dinners, please click here.

Thought for the Week

A Call for the Priest

By Yitzchak Meir Kagan (Courtesy of Chabad.org)

In the Parsha of Tetzaveh we read how the Priests (“Kohanim“) were consecrated to serve in the Sanctuary. The Priests were selected by G‑d to fill a sacred position, requiring them to be on a higher level of holiness than the rest of the people. But over and above them, there was to be the High Priest (“Kohen Gadol“) who occupied a position of even greater sanctity.

With regard to the High Priest’s needs, the Torah specifically commands his brother priests to support and elevate him. This is somewhat surprising; it would seem that the Torah should exhort all Israel, the plain person as well as the kohen, to lend their support to the High Priest. But here a strange phenomenon becomes evident: When it comes to helping the High Priest, the righteous, you would think that our religious functionaries, etc., would be the first to lend their assistance. If anyone would need persuasion — it would surely be the plain folk.

In fact, however, the reverse is true. The ordinary person needs no command. The fundraiser approaches him: “Listen, the High Priest is in need of support. Would you like to participate in this mitzvah? Would you see that all your friends and acquaintances also participate?” It will never occur to the ordinary person to run to the rabbi and inquire what is written about this in the Code of Torah-Law.

Quite the contrary; he will be afraid that he might lose the precious opportunity, the mitzvah of participating in aiding the great High Priest. The simple man knows that G‑d does not desert the righteous, so the High Priest will surely receive all his needs from the Almighty ultimately. But G‑d might “channel” His benevolence through another and he might lose out on the mitzvah. Consequently, he grasps the opportunity, gives as much as he is able, and influences others to participate — so that the support and elevation of the High Priest should come about through his efforts.

When a “priest” is approached, however, the response might be somewhat different: “Why are you approaching me? I am a kohen, not an ordinary person; I know what my duties are; give this mitzvah opportunity to others.” Or he might say: “Are you asking me to get involved with supporting the High Priest? Don’t you know that I bear the responsibility for performing the service in the Sanctuary? Ask the High Priest himself, he’ll tell you what’s more important. If I get involved with supporting the High Priest the entire Sanctuary service might collapse! What the code of Jewish precepts and the Torah-law authorities say about this must be thoroughly investigated.”

The Torah forewarns this attitude by expressly commanding the priests, the functionaries, to support and to raise up the High Priest (and sometimes, even the Torah’s urging doesn’t help!).


Shabbos Chuckle

A new ending, especially for Jewish children, to the Dr Seuss book Green Eggs and Ham:

Ham and Eggs, 
I’ll Never see, 
They are not KOSHER, 
So let me be!

I will not eat green eggs and ham. 
I will not eat them, Sam-I-am. 
But I’ll eat green eggs with a biscuit. 
Or I will try them with some brisket.

I’ll eat green eggs in a box. 
If you serve them with some lox. 
And those green eggs are worth a try 
Scrambled up in matzoh brie!

And in a boat upon the river, 
I’ll eat green eggs with chopped liver!
So if you’re a Jewish Dr Seuss fan, 
But troubled by green eggs and ham,

Let your friends in on the scoop: 
green eggs taste best with chicken soup!

Issued February 14th, 2019