Dear friends,

Once again, this serves as a reminder that the application period for those seeking BOOST tuition scholarships for the 2019-2020 school year ends on Wednesday, April 17th at 11:59 pm.  

All those who have already completed their online applications, including the uploading of their tax/income documents and school enrollment letters, and submitted it through the BOOST online portal (make sure you clicked “submit”) --- THANK YOU FOR DOING SO. If you have any questions about the success of your application’s submission or have the need to re-access the application to make changes or to add another child, please send an email requesting that to boost.msde@maryland.gov.

FOR THOSE WHO HAVE YET TO APPLY:

Using the chart below, if your household income is within the financial eligibility guidelines, PLEASE APPLY ASAP – by going to the BOOST application webpage where you can create/access your account through and then apply for all of your children going in to grades K-12. (Please note: BOOST calls “kindergarten” as one grade before First Grade).

Household Size:

Parent(s) + children

Annual Household Income:

 

Household Size:

Parent(s) + children

Annual Household Income:

2

$30,451

8

$78,403

3

$38,443

9

$86,395

4

$46,435

10

$94,387

5

$54,427

11

$102,379

6

$62,419

12

$110,371

7

$70,411

Each additional child

Add $7,992

REMEMBER: Previous BOOST recipients must also apply for a 2019-20 scholarship, not just new applicants.

BOOST OPEN HOUSE in Baltimore – For those with limited computer access or those who need additional assistance with their BOOST application, Talmudical Academy has graciously offered to make their computer lab available for families of all day schools on Tuesday evening April 9th from 8:00 – 10:00 pm – at 4445 Old Court Road in their new preschool building.

Computer workstations and scanners will be available for anyone to come and complete their BOOST applications.

PLEASE MAKE SURE TO BRING ALONG THE FOLLOWING ITEMS OR INFO:

  • Child’s Date of Birth
  • Parent’s social security number
  • Your 2018 federal tax return (IRS Form 1040, 1040a, or 1040EZ) to show family size and income
  • Those who DO NOT FILE TAXES, must bring documents reflecting their (a budget letter from the Department of Social Services or W-2 wage form) to fill out an alternative income form (available on the BOOST webpage).
  • Those participating in food supplement programs, please bring your nine digit case number.  
  • The dollar amount of scholarships received for 2018-19 school tuition

Your school will provide you (if not already provided) with a letter verifying the student’s enrollment status which will be uploaded with the application together with the tax/income documents.  

Please remember that it is critically important that all families that are within the above income eligibility chart submit an application for each of their children. There were families last year who did not apply thinking it was not worthwhile or were mistakenly concerned about potentially losing some of their government benefits (that will NOT happen) and lost out on getting this vital benefit.

Any additional questions can also be sent to info@agudathisrael-md.org.

Thanks for your participation,

Rabbi Ariel Sadwin

Baltimore, MD - Apr. 19, 2019 - BJL wishes a hearty Mazel Tov to Rabbi Yisrael & Mrs. Batsheva Neuberger on the birth of a son Mazel Tov to grandparents Rabbi Moshe & Rebetzin Mindi Hauer and Rabbi Meir & Mrs. Rivka Neuberger (Atlanta) and great-grandparents Rabbi Yaakov & Rebetzin Freda Hopfer and Mrs. Edith (Rabbi Ari, ZTL) Neuberger יה"ר שיזכו לגדל בנם לתורה, לחופה, ולמעשים טובים. אמן!
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Parsha Hashavua
Pesach 5779 -The Seder "What's It All About?"

Nirtzah: Not Just the closing Ceremonies


There are two major concepts which form the driving force of the Hagaddah and the Seder in general.  First, is the Chiyuv Sipur Yitzias Mitraim,  and the second is that one must feel as if he himself is being taken out of  Mitzraim on the night of Pesach, as discussed more fully in the Hagaddah.


With these two concepts being the principal themes, how then does the final part of the Seder, Nirtzah, fit into this framework?  These intriguing, yet seemingly unrelated songs, raise a significant question as to exactly what role they play in the Seder and by extension, the Yom Tov of Pesach. 


On a simplistic level one could answer their function is similar to that of the Afikoman and Mah Nishtana - to heighten the interest and enjoyment of the Seder for the children.  However, upon more careful analysis, it becomes clear that not only are these songs in tune with the  Hagaddah’s two major ideas, but are actually an intrinsic and indispensable part of these very concepts.


Upon reflection, it is easy to understand why Sipur Yitzias Mitraim  is an appropriate topic for Pesach night.  However, it is not as easy to understand why we are obligated to feel as if we ourselves were redeemed on the night of Pesach.  An insight into this quandary will also clarify how Nirtzah fits into the Seder.


The reason for the  Chiyuv Sipur Yitzias Mitzrayim  is not to teach us history, nor even to train us in gratitude.  This requirement comes to emphasize the character of the Pesach season - a time of year especially designated as a time for Geulah.  The Gemarah in Rosh Hashana (11b) says that just as the Geulah from Mitzrayim occurred in Nissan so too will the eventual Geulah from present day galus take place in Nissan.  For this reason the Hagaddah stresses this point - the obligation to feel as if we ourselves are going out - to illustrate that the same potential for redemption which came to fruition with Yitzias Mitzraim, exists every Pesach.  Thus the potential for Geulah from present day Galus is at its highest during this time.  With this explanation we can also understand what function the songs of Nirtzah have in the Seder


In the first poem,  Vayehi Bachatzi Halayla, an extensive list is composed of many past great things that Hashem has done in the midst of the night.  Only one future event is added to this list - Hashem’s eventual bringing of Moshiach.  Similarly, in Ki Lo Naeh, a list of adjectives ranging from distinguished and glorious to mighty and merciful are used to describe Hashem.  Yet again, in this song the Haggadah slips in “that he is truly the redeemer.”  Obviously, if the Haggadah felt it necessary to squeeze these lines in, then they are of major significance.  This becomes clear in  Adir Hu, which is nothing short of an all out appeal for the Geulah.    Adir Hu                                             takes all the descriptions used in the previous songs and follows each one with “May he soon and speedily rebuild his house in our days.”   This is the central theme throughout Nirtzah. 


However, just as Yitzias Mitraim  was not possible before Bnei Yisroel performed the Mitzvos of  Karban Pesach and Bris Milah, so too today’s Geulah cannot come before our total acceptance of Hashem’s dominion over the world.  This is where Echad Mi Yodeah  and  Chad Gad Ya fit in.  In Echad Mi Yodeah, we list the building blocks that the Jewish world is built upon - the basic necessities for all of Judaism.  Finally in Chad Gad Ya we are taught the single most important lesson - that of humility.  The idea that everything and everyone has something above him/her and therefore we must reflect on all of our actions, as we alone are accountable for them.  In concluding Chad Gad Ya, the final connection is made to Geulah with the slaughtering of the Malach Hamaves.   The Gemmarah in Succah (52a) says that at the time of the Geulah, Hashem will take the Satan (The same entity as the Malach Hamaves - Baba Basra 16a) and slaughter it.


Thus we understand how the progression of Nirtzah mirrors the link between Yitzias Mitzraim and the Geula Ha’asida.  This interpretation adds a significant aspect to our Seder.  Not only are we celebrating the Geulah from Mitzraim but we are also injecting the necessary elements for the eventual Geulah from galus today.  May we be Zoche to capitalize on the potential for geula present this Pesach and share next year in Yerushalayim.



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