On Sunday, November 4th, we celebrated our Czech Torah Scroll’s return home to TBS! Starting with a special ceremony as the Scribe completes the final letter, we then escorted the Torah from the Social Hall to the Ark in the Sanctuary, with music and dancing.
Watch the ceremony in full in this two-part video:
This year, 2018, Temple Beth Sholom is celebrating our 75th anniversary. As a very important part of that celebration, we are embarking on a journey of Healing our Czech Torah – a Mitzvah for Generations.
In 1942, a group of members of Prague’s Jewish community devised a way to bring the religious treasures from the deserted communities and destroyed synagogues into safe keeping in Czechoslovakia.
Fifty years ago the West London Synagogue rescued these scrolls from Czechoslovakia and established the Westminster Memorial Trust.
Through the work of the trust, hundreds of these scrolls were distributed to congregations and Jewish communities around the world.
Temple Beth Sholom is fortunate to have scroll number 675. This scroll is between 275 and 300 years old. It has unique features including script in Ashkenazic and Sephardic tradition as well as the Kabbalistic spiral Pey. This scroll is one of 1564 Torah scrolls.
As a host congregation, we are entrusted with the sacred privilege of not only caring for this scroll but holding on to the memory of the individuals and whole communities who perished in the Holocaust.
Through November 2018, our congregation and community will have the opportunity to restore our scroll so that we can continue to read and study from it, honoring the memories of those who carried this scroll before us.
We don’t know its past, but we are going to create its future, l’dor vador, from generation to generation.