Dear Congregants,

Parashat Terumah discusses the construction of the Mishkan. The Parashah begins with the first ever fundraising drive. The Pasuk says “Dabber el Bene Yisrael Veyikhu Li Terumah.” Hashem tells Moshe Rabbenu to speak to the Bene Yisrael and “Take for me a donation”.  The question is asked why didn’t Hashem tell Moshe to tell the Bene Yisrael to “Give me a donation”? That seems to be a more appropriate verb than “Take”. The rabbis explain that the Torah is teaching us an important lesson. That is, when we donate money for a holy cause we are receiving more than we are giving. Giving is really taking. There is an expression: “More  than what the charity giver does for the poor person, the poor person does for the charity giver.” When somebody gives a hot meal to a poor person it costs him a few dollars, but the reward and merit that the person gets is far greater. For giving minimal charity a person acquires eternal ecstasy in the next world and beautiful blessings in this world including protection from mortal danger. It is for this reason that the Torah used the word “Take” in reference to donating charity. When a person gives charity he really takes much much more than he gives. So the next time someone asks us for charity, instead of looking at it as a burden, let us see it for what it really is: an opportunity to earn merit and blessings in this world and the next.

Have a Shabbat Shalom.