By the grace of G‑d


Dear Fourth Years,


This has been an incredible four years with so many great moments and Tamar and I wish you the best match where you will love what you do, grow exponentially in your capabilities and earn the respect of all those around you.


In this week’s Torah portion there is a dramatic, but very poignant guide to approaching this milestone. The narrative describes the world celebrating a watershed achievement - humans observing the creator settling comfortably in the home we had built for it. Sadly however, in the midst of the celebrations, a tragedy occurs: Two sons of Aaron the High Priest offer unsolicited incense - and pass away in the process.


As tragic and emotional the story is, it begs analysis: What did they do wrong? And if there was such a significant misconduct committed how did such accomplished sages error so ominously?


For more than half a decade you have had your mind, your time, your passion set on this moment-to be accepted into, to excel in, and to complete the training to become a doctor. But what is a doctor? After a lifetime of spiritual pursuit, the sons of Aaron made a grave error in judgment. Having been raised to strive ever closer to good, to purpose, to the desire and will of the Creator, they chose to ride the wave of holiness on a one way journey to spirituality - a noble idea, a mistaken objective. Our objective is not to BE spiritual; it is to DO spiritual - to perhaps strive for personal growth but to be humble to communal responsibility.


If there is ever a group that exemplifies this, it is you. A group ambitious in pursuit of growth, but passionate about your mandate to serve.


Today is a big day. In a few hours you will know so much more about where –and who- you will be in the future, but for this moment, let’s hold on to the pre-envelope feeling: a highly trained, prominently accomplished individual yet humble, open, accepting.  A doctor is not who they are nor where or in what they trained, a doctor is who they help and that is a feeling that can be saved today for a lifetime.


With heartfelt wishes for a fantastic match and all that you wish for,



Rabbi Zalman



PS Please celebrate with us tonight!

 For Match Day thoughts from previous years go to