Tonight, is a historical moment for our community. Cantor Ines Kapustiansky will lead her first Shabbat service in our stunning sanctuary. This is a chance for you to get to know our Cantor, and for her to get to know you. You will find her deeply spiritual, kind and tremendously learned about Jewish texts and life.
Like Miriam, the hero of this week’s Torah portion, who led our people in song “with a timbral in her hand,” our Cantor will lead us in a song and a celebration of hope. As one of the very first female cantors in Latin America, Cantor Kapustiansky has been a trailblazer of women’s rights. As a feminist, I am proud that we have enriched our Temple with our first full-time woman clergy leader.
Our Cantor and her husband Bryan are new immigrants to America. They arrived here with only a few suitcases, the knowledge in their heads and the hope in their hearts. Please come tonight to welcome them with love, friendship and acceptance. They have no family here. May I ask you to become their spiritual family and to welcome them to our mishpucha of Shaaray Tefila.
There will be many more opportunities to meet the Cantor in congregants’ homes during the summer. That said, there is only one first, and it is tonight. Let’s make a great impression on our Cantor by greeting her tonight with joy and openness.
It says in Psalms, “Ze hayom asa Adonai nagila v’nismacha vo” – “This day is a gift from the Divine, let us rejoice in happiness.” (Psalms 118:24)
Tonight, is truly a shehechiyanu moment. Please join us in blessing.
Rabbi David Wilfond