Haazinu 40th Wedding Anniversary – Deckelbaum and Pinskey October 15, 2005/12 Tishrei 5766
Good Shabbos. Welcome guests. Good to see you all. I hope all our prayers, that we so fervently said from our hearts during Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur will be answered.
This morning, my friends, we use the expression bashert, which means it’s destined.Why am I saying bashert?Because we are fortunate to celebrate the 40th wedding anniversary of two very special couples, Ruth and Phillip Deckelbaum and Thea and Howard Pinskey, who were married 40 years ago in different parts of the United States and both now live in Annapolis. We are proud to say they are members of Congregation Kneseth Israel. In addition, we’re adding a mazel tov to Howard Pinskey, for his happy birthday. So, in effect, we have a triple simcha.
In this week’s Torah portion, Ha’azinu, which means "listen," the Torah shows us the value of effective communication. Leading the Jewish people toward the promised land of Israel in his final days, Moshe eloquently delivers one of the most stirring orations in the Torah. He encourages the Jewish nation to overcome difficulties and guides them wisely to choose a great future. We learned from the loving words of Moses that our own words have the power to be an instrument of peace and can bring effective communication. What we say and how we say things, matters. Good communication—the right choice of words and inflection—brings people together and allows us to live and work in harmony. And we can say this about our couples today, that each one listens to the other and that’s the result of a very happy, harmonious, loving marriage.
Communication, of course, goes beyond words. We communicate non-verbally using our hands, eyes, body language, and tone of voice.
We find many incidents in the Bible illustrating the power of communication. For instance, in the Song of Songs, King Solomon describes a woman’s virtue: "She opens her mouth with wisdom, and the law of kindness is on her tongue." I think that statement illustrates Ruth Deckelbaum and Thea Pinskey. Ruth is very involved in acts of kindness by communicating with people in need, giving comfort to the sick, and leading as the chair of the chessed committee. Ruth and Phillip are wonderful people. They have been active in our synagogue for many years. Ruth and Phillip always try to spread kindness through their words and deeds. Phillip was our Ga’abai for many years. They both are appreciated and loved by our community. The Pinskeys are also a very special couple. As a board member, Howard is one of the voices representing the congregation. Lately, he made national news as the chairman for the dedication of the Uriah Lavy Chapel at the Naval Academy in Annapolis. Thea is a woman of valor with her words of encouragement and sensitivity, and her generous heart. Thank you Ruth and Phillip Deckelbaum, and Thea and Howard Pinskey, for sharing this happy occasion with our Kneseth Israel extended family.
Ruth and Phillip, Thea and Howard, please rise from your respective seats. It is befitting now to say the blessing ofshehachyanu. I would like to ask you both to recite together with me these blessings of thanking G-d for giving you 40 years of love and prayer for your good health. Number 40 in our religion is very important and there is a connection between your 40th anniversary and the number 40 in this week’s Torah portion because the life journey of Moses and the family of Israel was filled with the number 40. Additionally, Moses went up on the mountain to receive G-d’s teachings - the Torah - for 40 days and 40 nights. All this deals with communication and the transmitting of values, love, and commitments throughout the generations. May our prayers be fulfilled with true peace in our homes and around the world.
In this New Year 5766 may we merit to come together in our synagogue to celebrate and congratulate one another for many simchas. Amen.