JEWISH HOLIDAYS

Purim items pictured including a grager and hamantashan

Please make plans to join us at Bnai Shalom as we are blessed to have Cantors Jill Pakman and Dr. Bob Weiner leading our worship services this year.

SAFETY AND HEALTH PROTOCOLS

1) If you have Covid or any other virus, do not attend services in person. The services will be streamed on the Bnai Shalom Easton PA YouTube channel.

2) Some rows in the sanctuary will be designated as mask-mandatory rows. Masks must be worn in these rows.

Toda Raba to those who attended the Tu B'Shevat oneg and all our wonderful volunteers!


Festival of Purim - Wed. March 23rd (Erev Purim)

Holiday observances begins sunset of Saturday, March 23, 2024 (with the Purim Night Megillah reading taking place that evening) and ends nightfall of Sunday, March 24, 2024.

Ta'anit Esther - March 21, 2024

Shushan Purim - March 25, 2024

With celebrations including costumes, skits and songs, noisemakers, and gifts of food, Purim is definitely full of fun! Purim is a joyous holiday that affirms and celebrates Jewish survival and continuity throughout history. The main communal celebration involves a public reading—usually in the synagogue—of the Book of Esther (M'gillat Esther), which tells the story of the holiday: Under the rule of King Ahashverosh, Haman, the king's adviser, plots to exterminate all of the Jews of Persia. His plan is foiled by Queen Esther and her cousin Mordechai, who ultimately save the Jews of Persia from destruction. The reading of the m'gillah typically is a rowdy affair, punctuated by booing and noise-making when Haman's name is read aloud.

Purim is an unusual holiday in many respects. First, Esther is the only biblical book in which God is not mentioned. Second, Purim, like Hanukkah, is viewed as a minor festival according to Jewish custom, but has been elevated to a major holiday as a result of the Jewish historical experience. Over the centuries, Haman has come to symbolize every anti-Semite in every land where Jews were oppressed. The significance of Purim lies not so much in how it began, but in what it has become: a thankful and joyous affirmation of Jewish survival.

Now is the time to write out your Mishlaot Manot shopping list! Below are some videos with ideas.


At the end of last month, we celebrated the new year for the trees, Tu B'Shvat. The heart of winter is upon us again and the daylight hours still seem so short, but I am feeling energized and content. We just finished celebrating Tu B'Shvat last month and Purim is just weeks away. You may then ask why am I this way when there are no holidays this month? I respond with: "Each week provides a festive holiday, Shabbat". Anyone who attended a Shabbat service and the oneg or kiddush that followed knows how special they are. What bet-ter way to end a hectic week of work and responsibilities than with a communal gathering at Bnai Shalom. I look forward to our being together.

Am Yisrael v'Bnai Shalom Chai,

Howard Nathanson, Bnai Shalom Ritual Chair