Rabbi's Message, Sermons


Failing Wisely

The following sermon was given by Rabbi Miriam Margles on Yom Kippur, 5779. The first sin, the original human sin, from a Jewish perspective, is not Adam and Eve eating from the tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil.


Judging Others Wisely

The following sermon was given by Rabbi Miriam Margles on Rosh Hashanah Day, 5779. “Ha’dan chavero le’kaf zechut/הדן חבירו לכף זכות – Anyone who judges others favourably, danin oto le’zechut/דנין אותו לזכות – that person is themselves, judged favourably.” These


Judging Ourselves Wisely

The following sermon was given by Rabbi Miriam Margles on Erev Rosh Hashanah, 5779. I want to think with you about judgement. Our theme this Rosh Hashana is Judging Wisely and on this Yom Ha’Din, this Day of Judgement, which


5778 Yom Kippur Sermon: A WOUNDED PERSON’S GUIDE TO FORGIVING

Most of the prayers of Yom Kippur and the practices of teshuvah, of repentance and return, are opportunities to ask for forgiveness.  We surface remorse for the ways we messed up.  We become attuned to harmful behaviours we weren’t conscious


5777 Kol Nidrei Sermon – REACHING THROUGH ANGER

Yehudah Amichai, Israel’s great modern poet, wrote this… From the place where we are right flowers will never grow in the spring. The place where we are right is hard and trampled like a yard. But doubts and loves dig


5777 Rosh Hashana Day Sermon – THE WHOLE TORAH ON ONE FOOT

Two of the greatest Jewish scholars of the mid-first century, Shammai and Hillel, are approached by a proselyte. (A proselyte, by the way, is not a low calorie prosle.  A proselyte is a potential convert to Judaism).  So, the proselyte


5777 Erev Rosh Hashana Sermon – SWIMMING IN THE WATER OF LIFE-LONG LEARNING

A group of yeshiva students are traveling through the countryside on a hot summer day.  They spot a cool, fresh pond just on the other side of a fence and all decide to go in.  They jump over the fence,


5777 Erev Rosh Hashanah – RADICAL WELCOME

It’s my tradition to read these words of welcome on Erev Rosh Hashanah, inspired by my mentor and colleague, Rabbi Jonathan Kligler. Tonight, all over the world, all kinds of people are gathering to celebrate the Jewish New Year.  Right


5776 Kol Nidrei Sermon – WHAT DO WE HUNGER FOR?

A book came out this year by Mark Schatzker called The Dorito Effect.  In it, he describes how the giants of the food industry and commercial agriculture have conspired to construct our hunger. They did not develop as a deliberate


5776 Rosh Hashana Day Sermon – CONNECTING TO COMMUNITY: WHAT WE BUILD TOGETHER

In the middle of the night, an Iowa corn farmer who’s down on his luck hears a voice:  “If you build it, they will come.” He dismisses it as a dream.  He thinks he’s losing his mind. But it keeps