Covenant & Conversation is kindly sponsored by the Wohl Legacy. The Family Edition is kindly sponsored anonymously.
As part of the weekly Covenant & Conversation: Family Edition, we encourage readers under 18 years old to submit questions on the topics discussed. Each month or so, we will be selecting some of the best questions received, each of which will be sent an inscribed copy of the wonderful Koren Aviv Weekday Siddur! To read the selected questions received so far, and answers provided from Rabbi Sacks, please click here.
Click on the links below to download the latest Covenant & Conversation: Family Edition, an educational accompaniment to Rabbi Sacks’ weekly Covenant & Conversation essay on the parsha.
Ha’azinu 5779: Let My Teaching Drop As Rain
Vayelech 5779: The Torah as God’s Song
Nitzavim 5779: Not Beyond the Sea
Ki Tavo 5779: A Nation of Storytellers
Ki Teitse 5779: Animal Welfare
Shoftim 5779: The Ecological Imperative
Re’eh 5779: Collective Joy
Eikev 5779: The Politics of Memory
Va’etchanan 5779: Why is the Jewish People So Small?
Devarim 5779: The Teacher as Hero
Masei 5779: The Religious Significance of Israel
Matot-Masei 5779: Priorities
Pinchas 5779: The Crown All Can Wear
Balak 5779: Not Reckoned Among the Nations
Chukat 5779: Losing Miriam
Korach 5779: Argument for the Sake of Heaven
Shelach Lecha 5779: Fear of Freedom
Beha’alotecha 5779: Camp and Congregation
Naso 5779: Leading a Nation of Individuals
Bamidbar 5779: Leading a Nation of Individuals
Bechukotai 5779: The Birth of Hope
Behar 5779: Evolution or Revolution?
Emor 5779: Three Versions of Shabbat
Kedoshim 5779: From Priest to People
Acharei Mot 5779: Thinking Fast and Slow
Metzora 5779: The Power of Speech
Tazria 5779: The Sacrifices of Childbirth
Shemini 5779: Between Hope and Humanity
Tzav 5779: Destructive and Self-Destructive
Vayikra 5779: The Pursuit of Meaning
Pekudei 5779: On Jewish Character
Vayakhel 5779: The Beauty of Holiness or the Holiness of Beauty
Ki Tissa 5779: A Stiff-Necked People
Tetzaveh 5779: Brothers: A Drama in Five Acts
Terumah 5779: A Portable Home
Mishpatim 5779: Loving the Stranger
Yitro 5779: Mount Sinai and the Birth of Freedom
Beshalach 5779: The Divided Sea: Natural or Supernatural
Bo 5779: Against Their Gods
Va’era 5779: The God Who Acts in History
Shemot 5779: The Light at the Heart of Darkness
Vayechi 5779: The Future of the Past
Vayigash 5779: Does My Father Love Me?
Mikketz 5779: The Universal and the Particular
Vayeshev 5779: Refusing Comfort, Keeping Hope
Vayishlach 5779: Physical Fear, Moral Distress
Vayetse 5779: When the “I” is Silent
Toldot 5779: The Courage of Persistence
Chayei Sarah 5779: On Judaism and Islam
Vayera 5779: God and Strangers
Lech Lecha 5779: Four Dimensions of the Journey
Noach 5779: A Drama in Four Acts
Bereishit 5779: The Three Stages of Creation
About Covenant & Conversation: Family Edition
As many of you know, each week I send out a commentary essay on the week’s parsha (Torah reading). I have called these essays Covenant & Conversation because this for me is the essence of what Torah learning is – throughout the ages and for us now.
The text of Torah is our covenant with God; the interpretation of this text has been the subject of an ongoing conversation that began at Sinai and has never ceased.
We need to learn more Torah with our children because that is how we can truly secure the Jewish future. That is why I am so excited by the new Family Edition of Covenant & Conversation for this year’s Torah cycle.
The Family Edition, expertly compiled by Dr. Daniel Rose Ph.D (who I worked with on the “Ten Paths to God” curriculum project), is a wonderful accompaniment to the main Covenant & Conversation essay each week.
It has two main aims. First, to present the ideas in Covenant & Conversation in a simplified way, making my ideas more accessible to children and teenagers. Second, to act as an educational resource for parents, teachers and anyone else to engage their children and students in meaningful and stimulating conversations about the parsha.
I hope you find this a useful addition to your learning during 5779. You can watch this short video explaining the project, and download the Family Editions for each parsha below. The Family Edition will also be available as a download from the main Covenant & Conversation email which is sent out each week. If you are not already subscribed to my free mailing list and would like to be, please fill in your details here.
How it works
Covenant & Conversation: Family Edition is a new and exciting initiative from The Office of Rabbi Sacks for 5779. Written as an accompaniment to Rabbi Sacks’ weekly Covenant & Conversation essay, the Family Edition is aimed at connecting older children and teenagers with his ideas and thoughts on the parsha.
Each element of the Family Edition is progressively more advanced; In A Nutshell gives a brief overview of the parsha, and one straightforward question for all ages. The Core Idea is appropriate for all ages, It Once Happened gives us an additional related story and encourages readers to connect it to the themes of the week, and the final element, From The Thought of Rabbi Sacks, is the most advanced section. Each section includes Questions to Ponder, aimed at encouraging discussion between family members, guests and/or students in a way most appropriate to them.
We have also included a section called Around the Shabbat Table with a few further questions on the parsha to think about, and an Educational Companion which includes suggested talking points in response to the questions found throughout the Family Edition.