Parsha Talk Shabbat Zachor – Megillat Esther 2024 5784

Parsha Talk with Rabbis Eliot Malomet, Barry Chesler and Jeremy Kalmanofsky. Parashat Va-yiqra [Leviticus 1:1–5:26] coincides this year with Shabbat Zakhor [maftir, Deuteronomy 25:17-19; haftarah 1 Samuel 15:2–34] in anticipation of the holiday of Purim, which begins Saturday night, upon the conclusion of Shabbat. Parashat Va-yiqra, the opening parashat of Sefer Va-yiqra [Book of Leviticus], introduces the principal sacrifices of the Israelite Temple cult. We ourselves made a sacrifice this week, by devoting our conversation to the Book of Esther, read as part of the Purim observance on Saturday night and Sunday morning. Many have noted that the story of Esther reads very differently this year, given the particular course of Jewish and Israeli history since the war began on October 7th.
Our heartfelt wishes for a freiliche Purim [a joyous Purim], perhaps more important this year in a world where Israel is at war and hostages continue to be held captive. Sometimes we have to take what the calendar gives us, and make of it what we will. In that spirit, חג פורים שמח! [Hag Purim Same’ah, Happy Purim]!
Our thoughts and prayers continue to be with the hostages, may they be returned to their homes safely, and the soldiers defending Israel, may they be removed from harm’s way. Shabbat Shalom.