“After Destruction and Desolation, comes Hope and Consolation”
Rabbi Daniela Szuster
This Shabbat, which falls after the commemoration of Tisha B’Av, a day when we remember the destructions of the Temples in Jerusalem, among other tragedies in the history of the Jewish people, is called Shabbat Nachamu because the special Haftarah that is read on this Shabbat begins with the words: “Nachamu, Nachamu ami”…, “Comfort ye, comfort ye My people…” (Isaiah 40:1).
There is a period of seven weeks between this Shabbat and the Shabbat prior to Rosh Hashanah, during which a prophecy by the prophet Isaiah is read on each Shabbat. This cycle of Haftarot is called Shiva denechamata, “the seven haftarot of consolation,” those that speak about the comfort that God will gradually provide to the people of Israel.