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  • CA Campus Chabad House Celebrates Its First Torah

    The Jewish community of Chapman University had cause for celebration Sunday when the last of the 304,805 Hebrew letters were painstakingly inked onto a parchment scroll, marking the completion of the Chabad’s first Torah scroll. Containing the first five books of the Hebrew bible, the Torah is “the greatest treasure of Jewish knowledge in the world,” said Rabbi David Eliezrie, president of Rabbinical Council of Orange County • Full Story, Photos

    (Photos: Leonard Ortiz, Orange County Register)

    The Orange County Register

    The Jewish community of Chapman University had cause for celebration Sunday when the last of the 304,805 Hebrew letters were painstakingly inked onto a parchment scroll, marking the completion of the Chabad’s first Torah scroll.

    Containing the first five books of the Hebrew bible, the Torah is “the greatest treasure of Jewish knowledge in the world,” said Rabbi David Eliezrie, president of Rabbinical Council of Orange County, who was with the Chapman students, rabbis and university and city officials at the Chabad at Chapman University for the sacred ceremony to complete the scroll. “It is the seminal book for ethics and values.”

    In the past, the Chapman Chabad would have to borrow a Torah to use for prayers and religious services, so for it to now have its own is significant, Eliezrie said.

    “I consider this a historic event,” he said. “It’s the new generation connecting with thousands of years of traditions. And in the university, where people are forming their identity and they are developing as young people, to have a Torah scroll uniquely dedicated for college students tells them that these are timeless values that they can relate to in their lives today.”

    The ceremony took place at the home of Rabbi Eliezer Gurary, who leads the university Chabad.

    Gurary’s home also serves as the Chabad center, where Jewish students can go for fellowship, worship and learning.

    “This is really the most special event we’ve had,” said Chapman senior Josh Simkovitz, a member of the Chabad’s board.

    “It’s a blessing. For this to happen,” he said, “you can’t compare it to anything else.”

    Writing a Torah scroll is a labor-intensive process taking months to complete and requiring the skill of a certified Torah scribe. The slightest error voids the entire parchment.

    The first Torah is said to have been written 3,300 years by Moses.

    As the scribe etched the final letters onto the parchment, each guest had the chance to participate in the process by sitting alongside and placing their hand on his non-writing arm or shoulder.

    “It’s a very big honor for people to write the last few letters of the Torah,” Gurary said.

    After the last letter was completed, the celebrants broke out in cheers and song. Gurary then held up the Torah and paraded it under a canopy in a celebratory procession.

    “Every Jewish community has to have a Torah,” Gurary said. “It’s really the lynch pin of our Jewish survival. It is what we have to keep us as Jews together.”



















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  • Event Calendar

  • Tuesday, Oct 27th, Wedding – Shlome Wolvovsky – CH & Rochel Leah Matusof – Madison, WI @ Oholei Torah
  • Thursday Oct 29th Wedding: Devorah Bennish – Detroit & Mordechai Rubin – London @ Royalty House, MI
  • Sunday, Oct 25th, Sholli Miller – Chicago, IL & Batya Korf – Miami Beach, FL @ Bais Rivka 310 Crown Street
  • Thursday, Oct 22 Wedding: Chaim Boruch Bar-Chaim – CH & Shoshana Pimentelli – CH/TX @ Oholei Torah
  • Thursday, Oct 22 L’Chaim: Sruli Finck – CH & Chaya Mangel – Dayton, OH @ Chovevei Torah 885 Eastern Parkway
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  • Monday Oct 19 L’Chaim: Ari (Aaron) Levertov – Crown Heights & Debby Rabinowicz – Sao Paulo, Brazil @ Choivevey Torah
  • Monday, Oct 19 2015 Wedding: Mendy Zippel – Salt Lake City, UT & Fraidy Shagalov – Crown Heights @ Oholei Torah
  • Sunday 18th Oct. L’Chaim: Chananya Niassoff – CH & Tzirl Brennan – CH @ Bais Rivkah Crown St
  • Sunday Oct 18th – Wedding: Mendy Edelman – Crown Heights & Sara Lozenik – Miami, FL @ Oholei Torah
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