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Dear Mogen David Family,

The Gemara informs us that many of the Korbanot carry any underlying logic which correlate to their purpose and function. They express a theme, a measure for measure (midda k'negged midda). For example, the Korban Todah, Thanksgiving offering, required one to bring a lot of bread, too much for one to eat alone in the one day allotted. This would require the offerer to invite family and friends to partake in the eating of the lechem. This requirement perfectly reflects the purpose of the Korban itself.

The Todah was an expression of thanks to HaKadosh Baruch Hu for escaping or surviving a potentially dangerous situation. Is it fitting and proper to share once sense of thanks and gratitude with as many people as possible.

Conversely, after one is a Metzora (afflicted with a Divine form of leprosy), they must bring an offering of birds. The Gemara says, 'You chirped like a bird, now you must offer a bird.' According to our mesorah outlined by the Midrash, one of the reasons a person became a Metzora [ as in the story of Miryam at the end of Parashat Bahalotcha] is for speaking Lashon Hara and gossip-mongering (Rechilut). This is a form of midda k'negged midda, measure for measure.

Additionally, the Metzora was required to leave the camp, to go Mi-chutz L'Machaneh. They were not allowed to stay amongst their family and friends. The purpose for this banishment was not simply to embarrass or disgrace the gossiper, but also to allow he/she to reflect and introspect, to realize speech filled with slander is deleterious to a healthy society.

Let us all take advantage of this week's Keriat HaTorah, and accept upon ourselves the life-long mission of the great Chafetz Chayim to speak of and address one another with dignity and respect. I believe, if we do, we will witness great miracles and success within our homes and within our Kehilla!

Shabbat Shalom,

Rabbi Yehuda Moses Rav HaKehillah/Senior Rabbi

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Tue, April 16 2024 8 Nisan 5784