This week’s Torah portion is the story of Noah and the flood. Certainly, with all of the rain today along with the aftermath of Hurricane Michael, we should be thoughtful of all those in need of help when water brings destruction. We suggest you make a donation to help those in need through this link or another organization helping the victims of the hurricane.
The flood in the Torah started because people were unlike Noah. Noah was pure and righteous, and Noah walked with God. (Gen. 6:9) Humanity needed an overhaul, so God destroyed all but “God remembered Noah and all the animals,” sent a wind across the earth, and the waters subsided.
While we wish that being “pure and righteous” could keep away natural disasters such as Hurricane Michael, we as Reform Jews, understand that this is a challenging philosophy. But we do believe that returning to the Earth and appreciating all the gifts God gave us, can certainly contribute to the healing of the world.
This week, thanks to the efforts of our KIGreenfaith committee, we have been recognized by the National Greenfaith Organization, as a synagogue, one of 9 congregations doing their part to bring healing to the environment.
Between October 7-14, Greenfaith has a “Living the Week of Change.” Religious and spiritual communities around the world have been hosting events where people can make personal commitments to live more sustainably, share the stories of change from their own lives, discuss best practices, and, most importantly, celebrate together! This kickoff week featured events in more than 20 countries across 6 continents, including our Electronics Recycling Event on this Sunday morning.
The organization with whom we are partnering for this event is called PAR Recycle Works. This is “a non-profit social enterprise” that provides short term employment for people returning to society from prison. In addition to providing jobs for individuals who often have difficulty finding meaningful work, the organization helps men re-integrate into society by offering counseling and assistance in finding more permanent employment.
There is no charge for most items, although a fee will apply to large TV’s, air conditioners and CRT monitors. You can bring all electronics to the KI parking lot where they will be removed from your car quickly, and you will be on your way.
Recycling preserves natural resources and the environment; Jewish teachings mandate it. As the Midrash states:
“When the Holy One created human beings, God said: See My works, how fine and excellent they are! All that I have created for you, I have created them. Think upon this and do not spoil and destroy My world. For if you do, there is no one to set it right after you.” (Ecclesiastes Rabbah 7:28)
By supporting this event, you will be honoring this Jewish value. Let’s join together and walk with God as well as bring healing to the Earth and healing to humanity.
Cantor Amy E. Levy