Friday, August 14, 2009

Weekly e*Torah by Rabbi Avrohom Altein

Confessions of a Jewish Marine

He wore his yarmulke while in uniform. Kept kosher while stationed in Arab deserts and Korean mountains. He even had a public Menorah displayed on a Marine Base in Hawaii!

Having served in both the first Gulf War and the current Iraq War, Dave Rosner describes what it’s like to be a Jewish Marine. As a political and military commentator, Dave will also share his unique take on the media’s role in politics and the current war on terror. Oh, did we mention he’s also a stand up comic?

Join us for an exquisite Chinese cuisine at the Fort Garry Hotel with guest entertainer Dave Rosner and you will be automatically entered to win a complimentary spa package at Ten Spa, Winnipeg’s finest luxury health spa, valued at $250. Make it a Kosher Night Out!

To RSVP or for more information, please visit or give us a call at 414-5624. RSVP by Sunday, August 16.

Monday, August 31 at 7:00pm
Fort Garry Hotel, 222 Broadway Street

Tickets: $54
Youth (under 30): $36

Silver Sponsor: $180
Gold Sponsor: $360

A project of the Chabad Jewish Learning Institute, a division of Lubavitch Centre.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Question of the Week by Rabbi Moss

Question of the Week:
Why is Judaism passed down through the mother? I understand in olden times it was easy to know who your mother was and there was no way of proving fatherhood. But these days we have DNA testing, so why can't someone be Jewish even if only their father is Jewish?

Jewishness is not in our DNA. It is in our soul. The reason it is passed through the maternal line is not just because it is easier to identify who your mother is. It is because the soul identity is more directly shaped by the mother than the father.

From a purely physical perspective, a child is more directly connected to their mother. The father's contribution to the production of a child is instantaneous, remote and short-lived. The mother on the other hand gives her very self. The child is conceived inside the mother, develops inside the mother, is sustained and nourished by the mother, and is born from the mother.

This is not to say that a father and child are not intimately attached. Of course they are. But as deep and essential as the bond between father and child may be, the child's actual body was never a part of her father's body. But she was a part of her mother. Every child begins as an extension of their mother's body.

This is a simple fact. It doesn't mean she will be closer to her mother, or more similar to her mother, or follow her mother's ways. We are not discussing the emotional bond between parent and child, but rather the natural physical bond. There is a more direct physical link between mother and child, because a child starts off as a part of her mother.

The body and its workings are a mirror image of the workings of the soul. The physical world is a parallel of the spiritual world. And so, the direct physical link between mother and child is a reflection of a soul link between them. While the father's soul contributes to the identity of the child's soul, it is the mother's soul that actually defines it. If the mother has a Jewish soul, the child does too.

If the mother is not Jewish but the father is, his Jewish soul will not be extended to the child. There may be a spark of Jewishness there, but if it was not gestated in a Jewish mother, the child will have to go through conversion for their Jewishness to be activated.

Other religions are passed down by the father. Jewishness is passed down by the mother, because being Jewish is a spiritual identity, it defines our very being. And our very being we get from our mother, both in body and in soul.

Monday, August 3, 2009

JLI Student BBQ

Come celebrate a year of learning and discovery at our JLI Barbecue for students, families and friends, with live entertainment!

The cost is $4 for a burger and $3 for a hot dog. Salad and drinks are included. RSVP by Tuesday, August 11. To RSVP, send an email to or give us a call at 414-5624.

On Sunday, August 16
From 5:30pm - 7:30pm
At 901 Shaftesbury Blvd