After a heartfelt plea from Judah to spare the life of Benjamin, Tzafnat Paneach is finally ready to reveal himself to his brothers (as Joseph) after almost 30 years of estrangement. At this climactic moment Tzafnat Paneach asks all of his servants and courtiers to leave the room so that he may be alone with his brothers. That seems strange to me. Why would the “Ruler” of Egypt clear the room and allow himself to be alone with 11 people who may seek to do him harm? Afterall, Tzafnat Paneach has accused their little brother of being a spy. The Rabbis explain, that Joseph was keenly aware of other peoples feelings and did not want his brothers to be embarrassed for their past actions in public, even at the risk of his own life. Joseph has the room emptied to spare his brother any undue anguish.
What an amazing day we had in the Lower School. To celebrate Chanukah we had many events this week in the Lower School. On Thursday evening, our students in third grade put on an amazing show. They retold the story of Chanukah with incredible theatrics. Kol Hakavod to the entire third grade class. The evening continued with our annual Chanukah under the stars program. Our third graders recited the blessings for the Chanukiah and traditional songs for Chanukah. The fun and excitement continued on Friday when the entire Lower School participated in Chanukah centers. Each room had a different activity. We had latkes with the PTO, Art with Morah Liora and Morah Ella, Songs with Cantor Yakov, Games with Morah Rity and Morah Sarit, Chanukah technology with Morah Gladiola and Morah Rity and Parashat Hashavua with Rabbi Roth. 3rd-5th graders had an extra special science activity with Mrs. Fischer. They made their own ice cream. What an amazing week we had. (see pictures below)
Rabbi Kaplan has a question for you this week. This Saturday night, which do we light first: The Chanukah Candles or Havdallah?