Shabbat Va'era / Martin Luther King, Jr. Shabbat

At CBST’s annual MLK Shabbat, Rabbi Sharon Kleinbaum shared gay civil rights hero Bayard Rustin’s remarkable voice and story. Rustin positioned non-violence as a central tenet of the civil rights movement and remains a model for us today.

“Our job in life,” said Rabbi Kleinbaum, “is to transform and persuade our opponents to become our friends or our allies—not to destroy our enemies.”

The drashah concludes with congregants joining the CBST chorus in singing “Lift Every Voice and Sing,” a traditional hymn by James Weldon Johnson, often referred to as the Black national anthem, which offers a powerful prayer for liberation from struggle.

We highly recommend watching the critically acclaimed Netflix film “Rustin,” looking at the life of Bayard Rustin, who was also the architect of 1963’s momentous March on Washington. Watch the trailer here.

Rabbi Sharon Kleinbaum delivered this drashah at Kabbalat Shabbat services on Friday, January 12, 2023 / 3 Sh’vat 5784.

Be in community with CBST at Kabbalat Shabbat services, Fridays at 6:30 p.m. ET, either in person or streaming live on CBST’s website.

CBST is an LGBTQ+ synagogue for people of all sexual identities and genders and a joyful, spiritual, proud community.

All are welcome.