Counting and Counting: Several thousand years ago, all Jews then living, all Jews ever born, and all Jews ever to be born gathered beneath Mount Sinai to hear God speak to us.We celebrate this wondrous event every year on the Holiday of Shavuot, the Feast of Weeks, exactly forty-nine full days (which are, as we know now, seven full weeks) after the Holiday of Pesach.
This year, Shavuot Day 2 falls on Saturday, May 27. But in ארץ ישראל (The Land of Israel) - Shavuot ends when Shabbat begins, on Friday night. So in Israel, they'll be reading Nasso on Shabbat, while we in חו״ל (Outside The Land) will be reading Shavuot Day 2.
Which also means that thereafter, the Parsha of the Week will not be the same in Israel as it is elsewhere; Israel will be one week ahead. And it will stay ahead until Saturday July 8, when we join up again for Pinchas.
This, in turn, puts us in sync for שׁבּת חזון, The Sabbath of Vision, so we can observe תשׁע בּאב (Tisha b'Av) together as one.
This year, Shavuot is on the Friday before Memorial Day (in the US), leading to a 4-day weekend. This has previously happened twice since Memorial Day was established as a federal holiday on the last Monday in May (in 1971): in 1982 and 1996. After this year, it will happen again in 2026, 2050, 2053, 2077, and 2080.
The configuration we've seen more in recent years is Shavuot starting on the Saturday night of Memorial Day weekend (and continuing through the Monday for 2-day people), which happened in 1985, 2012, and 2015, and will happen again in 2039, 2042, 2066, and 2069.
The extra-rare one is when Shavuot starts on Sunday night, so (the first day of) Shavuot is on Memorial Day itself. This happened in 1974 and 2001, and we won't get it again until 2099 and then 2123. This is rare because Monday is the rarest day of the week for Shavuot (out of the days of the week that are possible).
And one person commented: In 2025, Yom Yerushalayim (Jerusalem Day) will fall on Memorial Day.
This year, Memorial Day closes our four-day weekend.
Not just sales, barbeques, and pool parties.
Real sacrifice for real freedom.
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