asher63 (asher63) wrote,

Davening at Chabad.

Saturday is the Jewish Sabbath, of course, but in the orthodox world you don't drive on the Sabbath, and it's obligatory for men to pray daily (morning, afternoon, and evening) - in a congregation if possible. So Sunday, even though it's a "weekday" for us, is the default day to put in an appearance at shul to daven (recite the daily prayers) if you live out of the area.

The congregation I usually attend these days is the local Chabad. (That's pronounced with a guttural "ch", like in "Chanukkah".) It's close to where I used to live, at Shadowdale in southwestern Portland, and now that I'm no longer snowed in I'm trying to make it a regular thing.

Sometimes the rabbis ask me to lead the prayers. (I've been reading Hebrew for - eep! - 40 years now, so my command of the language is fairly decent.) Last Sunday I was tapped to lead, and this week I got a break; it's fine either way, I enjoy leading but I also enjoy just sitting in the back and letting somebody else take it.

Last Sunday was right after the clock change, and there were just a few of us there waiting for the rabbis.

"The Rabbis are late," I observed.

"Maybe they forgot to set their clocks ahead," said Shmuel.

"The Rabbis are living in the past," I said. "'Three thousand years of beautiful tradition, from Moses to Sandy Koufax ...'" JT, who's also a convert, of course got the reference and laughed and gave me a high-five.

We were shy of a minyan for the service, but we must have gotten a 10th man at the very last minute because Rabbi M. had me read the Kaddish d'Rabbanan. After services he said a few words regarding "Ana beKoach". "It's the secret to life, the universe, and everything," I chimed in, but I don't think anybody got that reference.

Anyway, that was last Sunday. This Sunday I just took it easy and hung out in back while the Rabbi led the service.
Tags: hebraica, journal

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