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Balak 5779: Good Tents, Good Neighbors

07/23/2019 04:06:54 PM


In our Torah portion this week, Balak, we read of the blessings conveyed by the prophet Balaam. Among the poetic verses with which he blesses Israel is the line mah tovu ohalecha ya'akov, mishkanotecha yisrael: How fair are your tents, O Jacob, Your dwellings, O Israel. This line eventually was incorporated into the prayer book, to be said upon entering a synagogue. But tonight I want to focus on this line in the context of Balaam's...Read more...

Sh'lah L'kha 5779: True Colors

07/16/2019 03:28:09 PM


If you've made it in to the city at all in recent weeks, surely you noticed that many places have been festooned with rainbow flags, as was the lawn of our synagogue. June, as you may know, is Pride month, which celebrates the resilience of the LGBTQ community. This pride month is particularly important, as it commemorates 50 years since the Stonewall Riot. This event is widely considered as the catalyst of the gay rights movement. People from...Read more...

Hukkat 5779: Resisting Temptation

07/16/2019 03:22:57 PM


This week, the news was dominated by the arrest of money manager Jeffrey Epstein on charges of sex trafficking. Epstein, who had previously faced and settled similar charges in Florida, has now been indicted by federal prosecutors in New York. They allege that he arranged for dozens of underage women to be brought to his homes, where he then alleged sexually assaulted them. Epstein was known for his connections to wealthy and powerful friends...Read more...

Finding the right rabbi: ‘Mission accomplished'

06/17/2019 04:45:46 PM


From the Westmore News, July 14, 2019 (Rye Brook edition) Finding the right rabbi: ‘Mission accomplished' Congregation KTI formally welcomes Rabbi Goldberg with installation ceremony By Sarah Wolpoff Thursday, June 13, 2019 3:47 AM Benjamin Goldberg describes his role as the Congregation KTI rabbi as a...Read more...

Shavuot II/ Yizkor 5779: Past and Present

06/12/2019 04:29:46 PM


While the holiday of Shavuot in Jewish tradition is associated with the giving of the Torah, the initial meaning of the holiday was connected to the agricultural cycle in the land of Israel. In particular, Shavuot was associated with the beginning of the wheat harvest and the practice of bringing the first fruits from any field of wheat as an offering to the Temple. The ritual was performed en masse by every single farmer in ancient Israel,...Read more...

Shavuot I 5779: Grandparents

06/12/2019 04:27:16 PM


What a great blessing it is to be here today in celebration of the grandparents in our community and of the new grandparents in particular. We did this today because we wanted to recognize becoming a grandparent as a distinct moment in life, and a distinct role in a family and in society. Just this week I heard someone say, “If I knew how good being a grandparent was, I would have skipped having kids and gone straight to that!” Of course, it...Read more...

B'midbar 5779: Everyone Counts

06/12/2019 04:25:46 PM


I had the great pleasure this week to visit the Thomas Edison Elementary School in Port Chester, along with a few other local clergy who are new to the area. I was very impressed by what I saw: a well-run school where children are learning and growing. As you may know, the schools in Port Chester face some significant challenges. The population of Edison Elementary is about 90% Latino, including many recent immigrants and English language...Read more...

Installation Remarks: May 19, 2019

05/22/2019 02:48:26 PM


I want to begin with gratitude. There are many people that I want to thank that have helped us together reach this momentous occasion in my life and the life of this community. Thank you first to Rabbi Nevins and Chancellor Eisen for your kind and inspiring words, and for your presence here today. To my colleagues here at KTI. I could not have asked for a better clergy partner, cantor, educator, neighbor and friend than Cantor Sklar, whose...Read more...

Remarks at Kehillah Hadassah Donor Brunch, May 5, 2019

05/08/2019 01:20:46 PM


It's my honor to be here today in support of Hadassah. I also extend my congratulations to Dodo Friedman, who is a devoted member of my synagogue, Congregation KTI. Dodo, I love seeing your quiet smile every Shabbat. It is my honor to be celebrated with you today and to be your rabbi. When Kathy Salom asked me if I would agree to be honored this year, I immediately said yes. She thought that this chapter was merely honoring one of the new...Read more...

Yom HaShoah 2019 Remarks

05/02/2019 02:13:33 PM


Introduction Good evening. My name is Rabbi Ben Goldberg and on behalf of KTI and the other participating synagogues"Community Synagogue of Rye, Congregation Emanu-El of Westchester and the Jewish Community Center of Harrison"thank you for joining us this evening for this important commemoration of Yom HaShoah, Holocaust Remembrance Day. Our gathering tonight feels all the more urgent in light of the attack on the synagogue in Poway, CA...Read more...
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