January 16, 2019

Rosner’s Torah-Talk: Parashat Terumah with Rabbi Carl Perkins

Our guest this week is Rabbi Carl Perkins, spiritual leader of Temple Aliyah in Needham, MA since 1991. Rabbi Perkins earned his A.B., summa cum laude, at Haverford College. Before pursuing the rabbinate, he earned his J.D., cum laude, at Harvard Law School, and practiced law for several years in Boston. Rabbi Perkins was awarded a Wexner Fellowship to pursue rabbinical studies at the Jewish Theological Seminary of America in New York, where he was ordained and awarded a Master’s degree in Talmud and Rabbinics. In 2003, Rabbi Perkins received the CJP Rabbinic Award at the General Assembly of the United Jewish Communities in Jerusalem. Subsequently, he participated in a three-year program of study at the Shalom Hartman Institute, at the conclusion of which he was named a Senior Rabbinic Fellow at the Institute. Rabbi Perkins  has served on the Keruv and Publications committees of the Rabbinical Assembly, and on the Boards of Trustees of the Leventhal-Sidman Jewish Community Center, the Solomon Schechter Day School of Greater Boston,  and Mayyim Hayyim Living Waters Community Mikveh and Education Center. He is a past president of the Needham Clergy Association and a past vice president of the New England Rabbinical Assembly, and is currently a member of the board of the JCRC.

This week's Torah portion – Parashat Terumah (Exodus 25:1-27:19) – is largely dedicated to the detailed instructions for the building of the holy Tabernacle and the Ark of the Covenant. Our discussion focuses on the somewhat confusing idea of the divine command to be voluntary generous.

Our past discussion of Terumah:

Rabbi Jason Miller on the character of Bezalel, the chief artisan of the Tabernacle

Rabbi Michael Boyden on the need to build the Tent of Meeting