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Chayei Sarah - 5772

on Tue, 07/17/2012 - 17:44
Dear Friends, This coming week we celebrate the American Festival of Thanksgiving dating back to Pilgrimage times.  The first Jewish ownership of dedicated land in what would become the United States dates back to colonial times.  A Jewish cemetery was established in 1654 in what was then known as New Amsterdam, later renamed New York. This week in Torah, we read in Chayei Sarah, the first permanent land ownership by Abraham.  Upon the death of Sarah, Abraham purchased a burial site which would eventually be the resting place of most of the Jewish matriarchs and patriarchs.  The cave of Machpelah is located in Hebron, also known as Kiriath Arbah.  That location has been the site of political tensions between Arabs and Jews for centuries as both trace their heritage to Abraham who is also buried there. I will be discussing in my sermon on Friday, November 18, the importance of sacred burial places in our Jewish traditions

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