image torah scroll

Jews Celebrate Canadian Town’s First Torah


The Jewish community of the Okanagan Valley in British Columbia, Canada, and specifically the members of Chabad of Okanagan, got to take part in a once in a lifetime experience to help complete a Torah, something all members of the Jewish faith hope to do at some point during their life. “The Torah is the […]

Chief Rabbi Lau Urges Prayers for Pollard’s Release


Israeli Chief Rabbi David Lau has urged worshippers to pray for the release of Jonathan Pollard in services to be held over the Jewish New Year.   Pollard has been imprisoned in the U.S. where he has served over 27 years of a life sentence.   Rabbi Lau, Israel’s newly elected Ashkenazic Chief Rabbi called on communities to pray to […]

Israel Inaugurates New Mixed-Prayer Plaza


About a dozen women sit underneath a large Israeli flag at Judaism’s holiest site, the Western Wall. They’ve been here close to 24 hours, and are getting tired. They are members of Women of the Wall (WOW), a 25-year-old group of women from all denominations that wants equality for women at the Western Wall. Currently […]

New Sefer Torah Completed in Honor of Kazi Benjamin

On Sunday, August 25, hundreds of members of the Crown Heights community gathered to mark two years since the untimely passing of Kazi (Kasriel) Benjamin, OBM. It was a bittersweet event, as friends and relatives remembered Kazi’s warm smile and good deeds, while celebrating the completion of new Sefer Torah, which was commissioned in Kazi’s […]

N. Orlando Celebrates Commencement of First Torah

Florida governor Rick Scott declared Sunday to be “Torah Day.” The proclamation honored the North Orlando Chabad community and the inauguration of the congregation’s first torah dedicated by Zvi and Dawn Shamu and Paul Sebag. Scott “extended greetings and best wishes upon” Rabbi Yanky Majesky and wife Chanshy on their commitment “to bringing the joy of […]

10 Sifrei Torah Burn in Netanya

A fire that started in the Shifat Revivim synagogue near the Chabad neighborhood in Netanya, Israel Monday night incinerated 10 Sifrei Torah, some of them critically. There were no human casualties. Naftali David, head of the Hatzolah organization in the Sharon valley told the website that “the firefighting teams that reached the holy ark rescued […]

Netanyahu Filmed Scribing Torah at Masada’s Ancient Synagogue

As part of a tourism initiative this week, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu visited the wind-swept Judean mountain top fortress of Masada, along the Dead Sea. During his visit, the prime minister participated in a special ceremony and then was filmed writing a letter in a Torah scroll that is currently being written atop the mountain fortress in the […]

Streisand, on Tour of Israel, Slams Ultra-Orthodox Treatment of Women

Entertainment star Barbra Streisand waded into one of Israel’s touchiest issues Monday on the first major stop of her tour of the country – Jewish religious practices that separate men and women. Speaking at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem on Monday, she took aim at cases of ultra-Orthodox Jews targeting women. “It’s distressing to read […]

‘World’s Oldest’ Torah Scroll Found in Italy

The world’s oldest complete Torah scroll has been found in a university archive in Bologna, according to an Italian professor who said Wednesday the text could be from the 12th century. The precious lambskin scroll had been classified by the university library as being from the 17th century and was named simply “Scroll Number Two.” […]

Oldest Complete Torah Scroll Reportedly Found in Italy

An Italian university has found what it claims to be the oldest complete Torah scroll known to exist, the BBC reported on Tuesday. The scroll, which was found at the library of the University of Bologna, was believed to be no more than a few hundred years old, the report said. But recent carbon dating […]

Police Recover Stolen Brooklyn Torah Valued at $30,000

A Torah that was reported to be stolen and estimated to be worth around $30,000 was found, according to officials. The Brooklyn Torah, belonging to Rabbi Binyamin Tamaiev of Congregation Agudath Sholom of Flatbush, was reportedly found inside the rabbi’s stolen car. His gray 2007 Toyota Corolla was stolen from the 3700 block of 18th […]

Hotel Security Guard Arrested for Vandalizing Yeshiva’s Torah

A hotel security guard was arrested in Tennessee for vandalizing a Torah scroll and other property belonging to the Margolin Hebrew Academy of Memphis. Justin Shawn Baker, 24, an armed guard working for the Maxxguard security firm, was charged with vandalism between $60 and $250,000, which is a Class B felony, after police found  that […]

Torah and Hanukkah Unite Reps. Cantor and Shultz

Torah and the Hanukkah holiday combined their strength to bring together rival Congressmen Eric Cantor and Debbie Wasserman-Schultz for completion of a “unity” Torah scroll sponsored by El Al Airlines. El Al initiated the “Torah Scroll for Israel Unity” last year. The Torah scroll will be flown on special flights of national and historic significance […]

Ford’s New Jewish Leader

It’s no secret that Henry Ford was a notorious anti-Semite, and his company’s dealings with the Nazi Party during the Holocaust are well documented. But the company’s story has changed drastically in recent years. The Ford family’s donation of a rare 500-year-old Torah scroll to a suburban Detroit synagogue and the appointment of a Jewish […] Newsletter Issue # 55 – November 7, 2012

Volunteers from the Rabbinical College of America Chabad Headquarters of New Jersey together with its new division Rutgers Jewish Outreach headed into the evacuated and powerless city of New Brunswick and handed out free self heating Kosher meals to all the students stuck without electricity or food. Previous commentaries have queried which of the two […]

22 Torah Damaged in Belle Harbor

In one seaside community, volunteers from New York’s Jewish Shomrim organization have discovered 22 damaged Torah scrolls. The Torah scrolls were found in four Jewish centers that were destroyed during Hurricane Sandy in the seaside community of Belle Harbor, located in the New York City borough of Queens. Also found were 30 pairs of damaged […]

Fire Consumes Historic Connecticut Synagogue, Torahs Survive

A fire seriously damaged a historic synagogue in Connecticut on Sunday morning. Flames consumed the Hebrew Congregation of Woodmont in Milford, Connecticut, at approximately 9:30 Sunday morning. No injuries were reported. “It’s massive destruction. The building will have to be totally redone” congregation president Joel Levitz told The Connecticut Post. While the synagogue’s two Torah scrolls […]

Rabbi Suspected of Stealing Torah Scrolls

Police on Tuesday arrested a rabbi on suspicion of being involved in stealing Torah scrolls from a synagogue in a southern Israeli community. Residents of Moshav Brosh in the Negev were surprised to discover during the holiday of Simchat Torah that parchments of seven Torah scrolls had been stolen from the local synagogue and replaced […]

Rabbis Step Up War on Smartphones

Ultra-Orthodox rabbis are stepping up their war on smartphones, using the Jewish holiday of Simchat Torah as an excellent opportunity to prove just how serious they are. On Monday evening, during the traditional singing and dancing with Torah scrolls at the Porat Yosef Yeshiva in Jerusalem, yeshiva head Rabbi Moshe Tzadka ordered one of the […]

The Journey of a Simchas Torah Flag

Colonel Jack Wolfson was a career Jewish soldier in the American army who had served for over 30 years. He was my commanding officer when I arrived to be the chaplain at Fort Sill, Oklahoma, in 1965. Even though there was not much time before the holidays when we arrived, I was determined to make […] Newsletter Issue # 50 – October 03, 2012

A unique Jewish burial was held for pages of Torah scrolls and the remains of other holy books that survived the Holocaust almost 70 years ago. The ancient scrolls were kept in the Holy Ark of a synagogue in east Romania, which was bombed and completely destroyed by the Nazis. Before the Nazis led them […]

Holy Books Buried after Surviving Shoah

A unique Jewish burial was held Sunday for pages of Torah scrolls and the remains of other holy books that survived the Holocaust almost 70 years ago. The ancient scrolls were kept in the Holy Ark of a synagogue in east Romania, which was bombed and completely destroyed by the Nazis. In their last hours, […]

The Triumph of Chabad

It was another year’s chagim spent abroad, away from Israel where Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kipur (and Simcha Torah and Shemini Atzeret and Succot…) are a matter of course; where in a spiritual analog of the Soviet agents who once visited America and pointing in any direction were astonished to be taken to a supermarket […]

Mayor Joins Jewish Community to Welcome New Torah

Thousands of years of Jewish history has come home to Oceanside, California with Sunday’s dedication of the new community Torah scroll for the city’s Chabad Jewish Center. More than 100 attended a dedication ceremony on Sunday at the Courtyard Marriott in Oceanside, marking a major turning point for the eight-year-old Jewish center. “It’s a huge […]

New Orleans Jews Prepare for Powerless Shabbat with Isaac

Of all the unknowns being discussed as Hurricane Isaac approached New Orleans, members of Congregation Shir Chadash knew one thing for certain. “Nobody wanted to be the person that said, ‘Oh let’s not move the Torahs this time,’” said Rabbi Ethan Linden. “We sort of went into our hurricane action mode and did the best […] Newsletter Issue # 45 – August 29, 2012 Newsletter Issue # 45 - August 29, 2012

Two Torah scrolls, one complete and one incomplete, were found in Poland’s Sokolow Podlaski district. The scrolls found are believed to have belonged to a synagogue in nearby Wegrow. Local policeman brought the scrolls to the municipal offices in Sokolow and gave them to Marcin Pasik, head of the Sokolow Commune. A Facebook page is […]

Torah Scrolls, Apparently Lost During Holocaust, Returned to Polish Village

Two Torah scrolls, one complete and one incomplete, were found in Poland’s Sokolow Podlaski district. The Torah scrolls, found August 20, are believed to have belonged to a synagogue in nearby Wegrow. A local policeman brought the scrolls to the municipal offices in Sokolow and gave them to Marcin Pasik, head of the Sokolow Commune. […]

‘Women of the Wall’ are Detained Praying at Kotel

In the latest of several similar incidents, police detained four women from the Women of the Wall activist organization at the Western Wall plaza Sunday morning for wearing prayer shawls. The women were questioned for more than two hours and then brought to the Jerusalem Magistrate’s Court, where they were served with a restraining order […] Newsletter Issue # 32 – May 30, 2012

Two bronze sculptures created by artist Sigalit Landau have been stolen from the yard of an art collector in Herzliya. The two statues, “Vomitus-Narcisus,” created in 2007, and “Stranded on a Watermelon in the Dead Sea,” from 2009, were both placed in the collector’s yard during the past year. Each of the sculptures, which were […]

North Carolinians Welcome New Torah

Some 300 community members and guests turned out for a special Torah dedication ceremony, parade and family fun fair at Chabad in Greensboro, NC. The ceremony marked the completion of a brand new Torah scroll that will now find its home in the shul at the Chabad center, which is run by Rabbi Yosef and […]