The Parshah begins with the completion of the census (counting of the population) that Moses started in last week's Parshah (Bamidbar). Here, G‑d tells Moses to count the the Levites from ages 30 to 50, because they're the ones who will do the service of carrying the parts of the Mishkan, and he gets a total of 8,580 men. (Like we said last week, the family of Gershon carries the curtains, the Mishkan's coverings and the screens for the courtyard; the family of Merari carries the planks and pillars of the walls; and the family of Kehat carries the vessels.)

We also read about a nazir--a person who wants to be extra holy and so agrees to keep away from certain things, even though they are allowed. The nazir is not allowed to cut his hair, drink wine or grape juice, or become impure through contact with a dead person.

Next G‑d tells Moses about a special mitzvah that Aaron and his sons have: to bless the People of Israel. We still do this in the synagogue, at the end of holiday services—it's called Birkhat Kohanim.

The last thing the Parshah tells us is about how each nassi brings an offering for the inauguration of the altar. The offering brought by each of them is exactly the same, but the Torah repeats every one to show that G‑d values each offering as special.