23/24 Feb: Shabbat Tetzaveh comes in 5:15 pm, goes out 6:19 pm
In Parashat Tetzaveh, Moses is told to slaughter a ram, and take some of its blood and put it on the ridge of Aaron’s right ear and on the ridges of his son’s right ears, and on the thumbs of their right hands, and on the big toes of their right feet… (Ex 29: 20)
These three parts of the Kohen’s body, the ear, the hand, and the foot, must be perfect for the priest and leader of Israel — but not just in the physical sense. The ear must hear the cry of the children of Israel, to know and to discern their problems and needs. The hands, must not just take the priestly gifts, but they must also reach out to others and to give blessings. And the feet must hasten to help and improve all those who request help.
All leaders must be in touch with the people to be able to understand their needs and concerns. Leaders must be responsive to the people. The priests (and rabbis) have the additional challenge to be both responsive to the people and to God.
Written by Rabbi Paul Arberman.