Rabbi’s Corner: Shiru L’Adonai Shir Chadash – Sing Unto God a New Song

Shiru L’Adonai, Shir Chadash – Sing Unto God a New Song! 

“Music makes pictures and often tells stories, all of it magic and all of it true.” (John Denver)

Music has played an important role in our Jewish worship experience since biblical times. From the portable mishkan – Tabernacle (or sanctuary) in the wilderness to the Temple in Jerusalem, music was used as a way to praise and glorify God.

King David made sure that the musicians and choirs were paid salaries, furnished with homes and well taken care of. He understood that a world without music was a world without color, a world without joy, a world without warmth and a world without spirit.

At Temple Beth Sholom, we are very blessed to have Cantorial Soloists Mark Thompson and Bill Shafton, accompanist Paul Zuill, volunteer musicians Michael Sumague (violin), Jack Holmes (bass), Nancy Rosen (piano), Robert (last name to be added)(d’jembe), and a wonderful growing choir of volunteer singers: Shani Boone, Irv Engel, Jackie Galant, Matthew Griffin, Joyce Keller, Sandra Rofsky, Sharan Sacks, Sarah Schweitz and Donna Wolffe, enhancing our worship experiences with their spirituality, music and helping us “sing a new song unto God.”

Shir Joy Shabbat – Intergenerational, Participatory, Musical Shabbat 

This evening, we are thrilled to debut the first of our monthly “Shir Joy Musical Shabbat” Services. “Shir” is Hebrew for song. “Shir Joy” is our joy-filled Shabbat of Song held mostly on the third Friday of every month, led by Bill Shafton.

This is a family-friendly, intergenerational service that will have you tapping your feet, clapping your hands and singing along as we pray together as a joyful community.

You can find the dates for each of our monthly Shir Joy Musical Shabbat Services on the flyer below. We hope you’ll join us tonight at 7 PM, bring your family and friends. If you play an instrument or sing (or if your child or any family member does), we hope you’ll consider joining the band or choir for future services. All rehearsal dates will we sent out with advanced notice (or you can email me to express interest: rabbisobel@tbsoc.com).

When each of us joins together to “play our own instrument” in concert with others, we create a beautiful symphony. When we join our voices together, no matter if we are playing actual music, working together on behalf of social justice or some other common goal, we become bathed in music and beauty. It doesn’t matter what instrument we play, what note we sing, or even if we just listen.

Each of us has a song to sing. Each of us has the ability to hear the song of others around us. Shiru l’Adonai shir chadash – sing unto the Eternal a new song. Shiru l’Adonai kol ha-aretz – sing unto the Eternal all the earth. (Psalm 96:1).

Shabbat Shalom!
Rabbi Sharon L. Sobel
Senior Rabbi, Temple Beth Sholom

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