Simchat Torah 5776 – Chag Same’ach!

I didn’t think it could be possible, but here we are, once again on erev Chag, and again the nation is in mourning after another barbaric double murder by a Palestinian terrorist thug. And again I feel guilty at blogging about celebration when we are mourning two more beautiful Jewish lives suddenly snuffed out in their prime.

And again, I note that we do not mourn on festivals and Shabbat, and that life goes on. But it is hard…

I will simply repost here what I have written in previous years:

Simchat Torah

The last and most joyous festival of the Jewish holiday season is almost upon us – Sukkot finishes tonight and Simchat Torah begins.

I shall refer you to a previous post on Simchat Torah if you would like to know more details about the festival – which involves lots of dancing with the Torah scrolls in 7 circuits of the synagogue, giving out sweets to the children, and generally celebrating reading the entire Torah and starting all over again from Bereishit (Genesis).

Dancing with the Torah scrolls on Simchat Torah

Following the dancing,  we say Tefilat Geshem (the prayer for rain) as Sukkot marks the official end of summer in Israel and the beginning of autumn and the rainy season.

In between the dancing and the prayer for rain we pause the celebrations for the Yizkor, the memorial prayer for the dead. This year Yizkor will taken on an added poignancy in the wake of the Palestinian atrocities which took four lives over the Sukkot.

May this Simchat Torah herald in a year of celebrations and only good news.

Chag Same’ach everyone.

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2 Responses to Simchat Torah 5776 – Chag Same’ach!

  1. Reality says:

    Amen.I can’t recall going into Simchat Torah with such a sick feeling,with such a heavy heart.I just spoke to my friend who lives very near there. The neighbourhood kids are meeting today at various different times with psychologists and tommorrow the whole neighbourhood are going to daven there where the terror attack occured.The police have been informed ,so I hope they will all be safe.
    Today is the day the Jewish nations individual and communal lives are sealed for the coming year in the Book of Life
    May we all be blessed with health ,peace and good news
    Chag Sameach

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