Our Congregation

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Our Beth Ruach congregation is built on the values of the Torah and the Talmud, and we are united in our faith in Judaism and our support of Israel.

We support our congregation through Torah learning, Shabbat dinners, Jewish holidays, celebrations, and life-long learning of our Jewish education to all ages.

Our congregation is made up of primarily interfaith families due to the rise in Jewish people marrying outside of their faith. As such, while grounded in Judaism, our congregation welcomes their spouses of all faiths and those with no faith to join us in creating a diverse, vibrant spiritual community of individuals and families.

Through our teachings, work, and embrace, we aspire to keep the Jewish faith and traditions alive within these interfaith unions and be cherished by their extended families so that it may remain vibrant and alive into future generations.

We are affiliated with the Universal Oneness United Faith Canada. 

Universal Oneness United Faith Canada (“UOUFC”) is a spiritual center that welcomes people from‎ all faiths and those of no faith. The UOUFC works to break down the barriers of religious intolerance. Congregation Beth Ruach is the Jewish interfaith branch of the UOUFC and is the ‎community that Rabbi David Gellman serves.

SILENT AUCTION 2024

Thank you to all who donated to and participated in our silent auction.

TESTIMONIAL—

“I’ve known David practically my whole life, and he knew my mom and my family, so he was the obvious choice to provide the funeral service for my mother, Miriam Stein. He did a very, very nice job, was very personal, and made sure everyone was included—as I knew he would. Thank you, David.”

Helen B.

The Rabbi’s Weekly Commentary-June 30, 2024

Send in the clowns

Greetings friends

We have honored the fallen fighters for freedom, and many of you had fathers who made that sacrifice for the good of all.
We have honored dear old Dad, and it is never too late to call him and tell him you love him. Then, go light a candle for those in your life who are gone and for the relationships in your life. Both can use a little extra light.
 
That is part of our mission of tikkun olam – healing the world – and by “our,” I mean all humanity because it is part of everyone’s mission.  And friends, that is not just a phrase – “tikkun olam – healing the world” – it is a part of why we are here.  It comes from the Mishnah and is part of the famous precept of lo alecha hamlacha ligmor, or “it is not required that you complete the work” – “but neither may you refrain from it.”
 
We must help heal the world. We may not complete it, but we must do our part, and each person’s part compounds. It, too, serves as a reminder that we are all one, connected, andthe same.
 
We have been celebrating freedom throughout the year.  It is that important, which is why it was the most important holy day in the Bible.
This week, we celebrate the freedom the two great nations of Canada and the United States provided when they were founded as bastions of that elusive but most sought commodity.  Yes, we celebrate their birthdays, but never forget what they stood for – freedom.
 
Freedom is freedom from slavery – it is rarely physical.  Now, it is more emotional, intellectual, and societal than ever before.  Freedom from slavery should always be celebrated – be it the 15th of Nisan – Passover or, Juneteenth, or any other time – and whatever day you finally become free from the self-imposed fear and slavery that limits you – you should celebrate that, too.  That is the personal pharaoh we each need to overcome and is the one that is still the most dominant, controlling, and terrifying.
 
Every generation since the wilderness generation we are reading about has sought freedom.  It dominates the history of man.
 
Many still live in fear, and these days, fear can affect us from so many things beyond our control—like the state of the economy, inflation, the pandemics we have experienced—and new ones are probably being worked on—and the deadly effects we are having on the earth and its climate, which can be generational. We are to help heal the world, not destroy it.
 
This week, we read a story that is a wonderful metaphor for life, known by a misnomer.  We read shelach – send – referred to as the episode of the spiesBut the men whom Moses sends are tribal leaders, not ordinary scouts. The function of their mission is not espionage but observation, to bring back a description of the land to their people. They are leaders. That is why their negativity when they return is so devastating. It is not just a disappointing bit of intelligence. It is an utter failure to lead and encourage.  We expect better of our leaders.  We still do.
 
We think of two groups—James Bond, Simon Templar, Mata Hari, James West, and Churchill, Roosevelt, Lincoln, Gandhi, Kennedy, and de Gaulle.
 
The former were spies—they hold a special place in our hearts and minds—the latter were chieftains, heads of state, and leaders. They are different and create different feelings.
 
The leaders observed and reported back to the people; the leaders were there – the promised land – but their fear – the great inheritance from Jacob kept them from the realization of their dreams.
 
Friends – Don’t let it stop you.  A life of fear is a life of slavery, and we all know people who still live in fear.  Ask yourself — Do you want to be like the wilderness generation who let fear bring them death or go back to who you are,  the real wilderness generation— as each of you journeys through the wilderness of your soul, as Saul did, as David did, as Jesus did, as Mohammed did, as Buddha did, and as each of you have done in overcoming fear and adversity in your own life.  Sometimes, you just don’t recognize how far you have come.
 
You are always free to choose.

 

Enjoy this week’s readingand keep practicing forgiveness, kindness, and acceptance. Use this time to continue to forgive those you need to forgive and ask forgiveness from those you need to seek forgiveness from. Give thanks and celebrate your freedom and joy; do not succumb to fear – and please feel free to share this audio and video with anyone you think might enjoy it. And, of course, enjoy all of our past audio and video episodes, which are available on our YouTube channel.   This episode will be posted on our channel – click here to watch the Rabbi David Gellman Show in the 2024 cycle.
 
And if you are one of the people this was sent to by a friend and want to receive it yourself, let me know. I will add you to my mailing list.
 
Thank you all for allowing me into your homes, electronic devices, and hearts—as you are all with me in mine.
 
Be well, be happy, be healthy, be free, be kind, be forgiving, be compassionate, be independent of mind and deed, be mindful of your intentions, and be good to yourself.  Continue to celebrate freedom of choice in your life, and do not give in to the fear that is so prevalent. Enjoy the peace that comes from acceptance. And, as always – if you have any questions or suggestions or just want to say “hi,” please send me an email.  I love hearing from you.
 
Remember, anytime you do not want to receive these anymore, please send me an email so I can remove you.  And know that I truly appreciate your sharing your sacred time with me.
 
Enjoy and celebrate your life and the lives of others, and in doing so, be safe, my friends, and be happy. May you all sow the seeds of and reap the rewards of peace, love, and miracles. Make sure you also celebrate your unique individuality and your incredible awesomeness. 
 
Continue celebrating love; continue celebrating freedom; send renewal and goodwill out to everyone in the world – it is an energy that cannot be stopped. And remember, your world is what you make it.  Just wish upon a star, continue to be a miracle in someone’s life, and light the light of love.

Blessings

RD
www.rabbidavidgellman.com
Respecting our past.  Putting faith in your future

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