Combined Parshiyot: Tazria / Metzora

We read two Torah portions this week so we can get through the entire Torah by the end of the year

Tazria (She Conceives), Leviticus 12:1-13:59
This parshah speaks of ritual purity and offerings made in various medical situations: a woman after childbirth and a skin condition called tzara'at (often translated as leprosy, but it is clearly something else as it also affects clothes and buildings). It discusses the temporary period of ritual impurity, the offerings made and the treatment of tzara'at. The commandment of circumcision also appears in this portion.

Metzora (Diseased), Leviticus 14:1-15:33
The name of this parshah is related to the word tzara'at, a condition often mistranslated as leprosy. The parshah continues the discussion of tzara'at, verifying that the condition has been resolved and specifying the offerings to be made at that time and the procedures to follow. It discusses the contamination of a building with tzara'at. It also discusses a man's ritual impurity caused by semen leakage and a woman's ritual impurity caused by menstruation.

There is a special maftir portion (the final piece of the Torah reading) for Rosh Chodesh Shabbat: Numbers 28:9-15. This portion lays out the offerings made on Rosh Chodesh (the beginning of the new month) when it occurs on a Shabbat.

The haftarah is for Rosh Chodesh, Isaiah 66:1-24. This portion speaks of the many sins committed by the People in Isaiah's time and the consequences, but promises that some will prosper and endure.