Barbados Jewish Community

President’s Message – January 7

Word of the week:

Dear all,
This week I am including excerpts based on the teachings of Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks about the upcoming holiday of Tu B’Shvat beginning the evening of January 16th:

The 15th of Shvat (according to Bet Hillel) begins the new year for trees. Tu BiShvat became the date for calculating the beginning of the agricultural cycle for the purpose of biblical tithes, and also marks the beginning of the season in which the earliest-blooming trees in Israel (namely the almond trees) begin to bloom, signifying a new fruit-bearing cycle.  JUDAISM’S ECOLOGICAL imperative is a delicate balance between “mastering and subduing” nature (Bereishit 1), and “serving and protecting” it (Bereishit 2). So we have Jewish laws that prohibit needless waste, the destruction of species, and the despoliation and overexploitation of the environment. The general principle is that we must see ourselves as the guardians of the world, for the sake of future generations.

SHABBAT REMINDS us that the Universe is a creation – meaning that ultimately it belongs to Gd and we are merely its guardians. Adam was placed in the Garden to ‘serve and protect it’, and so are we. One day in seven we must renounce our mastery over nature and the animals, and see the Earth not as something to be manipulated and exploited, but as a thing of independent dignity and beauty. Our world is entitled to its rest and protection. More powerfully than any tutorial or documentary, Shabbat makes us aware of the limits of human striving. To put it another way, Shabbat is a day of ecological consciousness. 
The full article can be read here;


Services will be held both on-line and in person this week at Nidhe Israel Synagogue starting at 6:30 PM.  If you would like to attend the service, please contact Neal Rechtman at As you know all COVID protocols  remain in effect and there will be a limit to the number of people being able to attend each week.

Our in-person service at NIdhe Israel will be streamed for our regular virtual minyan.  To join us on line at 6:30pm local time (5:30pm EDT)  click this link.  If you need a passcode please email  Friday night’s services on ZOOM at 6:30pm,

Please click this link for a copy of our siddur.

Eliyahu Cohen- January 04
Esther Rechtman- January 8

(If I have missed anyone’s Yahrzeit, please email me at

This past Wednesday an unveiling was held for Mrs. Ellen Steinbok at Nidhe Israel cemetery. Thank you to those members who attended to form a minyan. 

Shabbat Shalom!

Sharon Oran
Barbados Jewish Community