Sign In Forgot Password

Rabbi Pont's Weekly Torah Thoughts

Torah Thoughts


Last week, fifty worshippers were murdered at two mosques in New Zealand, and fifty more were wounded. The perpetrator, described as a twenty-eight-year-old white supremacist, is in custody.

This tragedy could have been much worse. Abdul Aziz, who was at the second mosque, confronted the gunman in the parking lot. Instead of shooting worshippers inside, the terrorist fled and was caught by the police. "I got to be honest it wasn't me, it was God who saved everybody," Aziz said.

Our tradition teaches that one who saves a single life, it is as if he saved the entire world (Mishnah Sanhedrin 4:5). Mr. Aziz’s quick reaction and courage saved dozens of lives. This, along with his humility, is laudable. May we be as brave as this individual and stand up to hatred of all kinds.


  1. The various arms of the Conservative/Masorti movement issued a statement, condemning the attack. Read it at:
  2. As a show of solidarity, the Jewish Federation of Monmouth and Middlesex Counties’ Rabbinic Association is promoting “Rings of Peace” gatherings at local mosques. For more information go to
  3. While addressing parliament on Tuesday, New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern vowed never to say the gunman’s name out loud, in order to deny him and his views any notoriety. The Torah commands us to blot out the name of Amalek, a cruel tribe that abused our ancestors in the desert (We ‘boo’ Haman, the Purim villain, in part because he is descended from Amalek.). Do you see a connection between the prime minister’s objective and the mitzvah to blot out the name of Amalek?

Shabbat shalom,
Rabbi Pont

High Holiday Sermons

Kol Nidre 5779 - Rabbi Michael Pont -  The Search for Truth 

Yom Kippur 5779 - Rabbi Michael Pont - Resilience after Loss - Yizkor

Erev Rosh Hashanah 5779 - Rabbi Michael Pont - Introduction of Holiday Theme

Rosh Hashanah 5779 - Rabbi Michael Pont - Resilience
                                           Click here to Watch the Rabbi's Sermon Online

Rosh Hashanah - Rabbi Ron Koas - Sermon 5779

Rosh Hashanah 5778 - Rabbi Michael Pont - Mitzvah as An Opportunity

Rosh Hashanah - Rabbi Ron Koas - Sermon 5778

Kol Nidre - Rabbi Michael Pont - Bring People Close To Torah

Yom Kippur - Rabbi Michael Pont - You're Never Alone

Sat, March 23 2019 16 Adar II 5779