Rabbi Cahana on the Shooting at the AME Church in Charleston, SC

Consider my enemies; for they are many;
and they hate me with a cruel hatred.

O keep my soul, and save me; let me not be ashamed;
for I put my trust in you.

Let integrity and uprightness preserve me;
for I wait on you.
(Psalm 25: 19-21)

We are shocked and sadden by the news of the terrible shooting in Charleston, SC. Members of the church at the historic Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church, along with their pastor, were gunned down during a prayer meeting and bible study.

We stand with a community made to feel vulnerable by this hate crime. We stand with those who know they can be victimized for their race. We stand with them and remind us all that we stand together against bigotry, hatred and violence. We stand with love and compassion, integrity and uprightness. May we stand together in solidarity and peace.

Rabbi Cahana on The Supreme Court's Ruling on Same Sex Marriage

“. . .and proclaim liberty throughout the land. . .” (Lev. 25:10)

June 26, 2015 will be a day long remembered as one of the most powerful examples of freedom in the 21st Century. How far we have come from having homosexuality treated as a mental disorder to the Supreme Court of the United States recognizing Same-Sex marriages throughout the nation. “No longer may this liberty be denied” Justice Kennedy wrote. The Freedom to Marry is now a Constitutional right. No longer do we have a legally divided nation on this issue. No longer can a couple wonder if their legal marriage will be one day taken away from them, or have their status rejected by a different state. No longer are we a patchwork of states with the power to disempower. Love wins.

I have long said that this issue will only be settled by the Supreme Court, and I am grateful that we have a system which entrenches a clear movement, especially a movement of freedom, as the law of the land.

And I am grateful for all our partners – lay leaders, clergy, politicians – who have worked tirelessly on this issue. I am proud of our congregation which has taken a leadership role for decades. Thank you all.

But while we justifiability celebrate, let us also remember those who have suffered through this fight. Those who have been and still continue to be told that their love is lesser. Those who have been rejected by their families. Those who have had innumerable barriers put up before them: to finding love, to marriage, to adoption, to care of their loved ones. The Supreme Court is not able to heal the hurt of generations. Only we can do that.

Let us all stand together in one beautiful rainbow of diversity. Let us heal old wounds and let us continue to bend the arc of the moral universe. . . towards justice.

- Rabbi Michael Z. Cahana

Dad’s Night Out Family Picnic

Dad’s Night Out Family Shabbat Picnic

Friday, July 17, 6:00 PM 
Willamette Waterfront Park (SW Nebraska and SW Macadam)

All families are invited to meet-up at the Willamette Park on July 17 for blessings, songs and a Shabbat evening play-date. Bring your own picnic dinner and blanket or lawn chairs and meet us near the playground. For families at all stages and ages. This is a community-wide event and open to all.

Dad's Night is co-sponsored by Mothers Circle, a community-wide welcoming program run by Congregation Neveh Shalom, and the Mittleman Jewish Community Center with support from Congregation Beth Israel and Congregation Shaarie Torah. Dad's Night is made possible by generous funding from the Jewish Federation of Greater Portland.