Honoring Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.; Shabbat Tzedek – Jan. 14 & 15, 2022

Friday January 14, 2022 Shabbat Tzedek Evening Service

6:00 pm (early login — 5:45 pm) Zoom link in the weekly announcements (no passcode, waiting room enabled)

Reform Jews honor the legacy of the late Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. by dedicating the Sabbath nearest to MLK Day as Shabbat Tzedek*. On this Shabbat, we combine the traditional Jewish Shabbat prayers with the words and teachings of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and the songs and memory of the hard-fought victories of the Civil Rights movement.

Saturday January 15, 2022 Shabbat Tzedek Morning Service

10:30 am (early login — 10:15 am) Zoom link in the weekly announcements (no passcode, waiting room enabled)

On this Shabbat morning service, we remember the life and work of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and celebrate the hard-fought victories of the Civil Rights movement. It is also a time of reflection and recommitment, as American Jews renew their efforts in the struggle for racial justice in North America.

The centerpiece of the Shabbat morning service is reading from the Torah, the Five Books of Moses of the Bible.  In the Torah reading this Shabbat Tzedek, God tells Moses to have the Israelites set up camp at the Sea of Reeds in anticipation of their impending freedom from slavery in Egypt.  Pharaoh, however, changes his mind about freeing the Israelites and chases his former slaves. With the Egyptians in pursuit, God splits the sea, and Moses and the Israelites wade in the water, the first steps in their journey to the Promised Land. To celebrate, Miriam leads the Israelite women in song and dance.

As we celebrate the great achievements of the civil rights era, we have no illusions about the progress yet to be achieved. More than 56 years after Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. dreamed of an America that treated all citizens equally, Black people today still face substantial barriers to achieving full equality and justice.

*tzedek – Hebrew meaning justice

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