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From the Desk - Reaching Out

Shalom Friends!


I hope this letter finds you and yours as well as can be. There has been much happening in the world, in Montreal, and in our personal lives. For the last few weeks, Beth Ora has been running a special Zoom program to guide and support us in keeping physically, mentally, and spiritually healthy during this time. Our last session is next Monday when we welcome the Chief Executive of the Jewish Grandparents Network who will be talking about how grandparents and grandchildren can sustain their meaningful connection during the pandemic.


I also want to remind everyone that I am always here for any member (or anyone reading this message) who would appreciate guidance or just someone to talk to. This is a challenging time for all of us but when we’re there for each other, we can pull through this!


Similarly, if you or someone you know is feeling anxious, uninspired, emotionally drained, or otherwise struggling with mental health, there is a community helpline through which social service professionals can be reached. The number is

514-734-1411. These professionals will help direct the caller to the appropriate resources.


Rabbi Reuven Bulka

A few days ago, we received the news that my beloved mentor,

Rabbi Reuven Bulka, is suffering from advanced Cancer. Rabbi Bulka is a very special leader of the Canadian Jewish community and beyond. Many of you know of Rabbi Bulka but you can learn more about him by looking at this worldwide prayer service with moving words from many friends and admirers including former Prime Minister Stephen Harper. Please say a prayer and do a kind deed in the merit of Rabbi Bulka (Reuven Pinchas ben Yehudis).


Reaching Out

For many years, and with particular focus during the pandemic, members of Congregation Beth Ora have been reaching out to one another with friendship and support. It warms my heart to hear, as I do so often, of how relationships have formed through these connections and how members have helped one another in difficult times.


The broader Montreal Jewish community is also blessed that Federation CJA has relaunched their phone call initiative to check in with the most vulnerable members of the community and make sure they are being taken care of. With colder temperatures, curfews, and the inability to leave homes, many members of the community need your support. Please consider participating in Federation’s phone call initiative. Click here to fill out a form.


Prayer

In addition to continued conscientious mask-wearing and social distancing, we as Jews must always engage in prayer, especially as the pandemic continues to rage throughout the world.


The Ashkenazi Chief Rabbi of Israel, Rabbi David Lau, has called for a national day of prayer this Thursday, January 21st. I strongly encourage you to make efforts to say prayers on this day, specifically Psalms 13, 20, 121,130 and 142.


As the Orthodox Union has said, “we hope and pray that our prayers will be answered and our efforts crowned with success, bringing an end to this pandemic and healing and restoration to all those who have experienced loss, illness and struggle.”


Response to Vandalism at Shaar Hashomayim


We are appalled at the recent hateful act of graffiti at the Shaar Hashomayim. It is a reminder of the necessity to continually fight anti-Semitism wherever it rears its ugly head. We pray that our community, North America, and the whole world will be blessed with a culture of civility during this last chapter of the pandemic and as humanity works to build a better world.


Stay safe and stay connected!


Rabbi Anthony Knopf

(514) 748-6559

FAX: (514) 748-6635

2600 Rue Badeaux, Saint-Laurent, QC H4M 1M5, Canada

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©2018 by Congregation Beth Ora