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Jewish Holidays

Haftarah Helper – Simchat Torah

Download PDF Joshua 1:1-18 The Haftarah picks up immediately after Moses’s death in today’s Torah reading. Joshua takes the reins of leadership with multiple tasks before him, including crossing the Jordan River and conquering the land of Canaan.  He must also ensure that the two and a half tribes whom Moshe permitted to settle the […]

Chag at Home

September 9, 2020, by

Pursuant to our acclaimed “Sinai at Home” program, OU Torah Initiatives is proud to present Chag at Home, a way for all of us to get our holiday inspiration in this pandemic era. Chag at Home features dozens of packets of educational material – articles, source sheets, family discussions, and more – to enable individuals […]

Tehillim 19 and the Essence of Simchas Torah

October 7, 2019, by

Simchas Torah! Surely near the top of everyone’s list for Most Joyous Holiday, vying only with Purim as serious competition. And that starts when we are very young, too small to understand, but caught up in the excitement of the singing and dancing, each child in turn being given his or her moments in the […]

Simchat Torah: The Knock Upon the Door

October 4, 2018, by

How did it get so late so soon? – Dr. Seuss Siyum, the Hebrew word for “termination” means so much more than that.  It is a celebration observed when we reach a worthy moment of completion as when we complete the study of a tractate of Talmud or the finishing of the Torah cycle.  There are, […]

Hilchos Yom Tov

May 29, 2017, by

The following is meant as a convenient review of Halachos pertaining to Yom Tov. The Piskei Din for the most part are based purely on the Sugyos, Shulchan Aruch and Ramah, and the Mishna Berura, unless stated otherwise. They are based on my understanding of the aforementioned texts through the teachings of my Rebeim. As […]

Simchas Torah: Convergence to Infinity

October 13, 2016, by

On Hoshana Rabbah we are vindicated from the accusations of the nations of the world. Why is the holiday that follows called Simchat Torah? What is the connection? Why does staying an extra day to celebrate with Hashem help, doesn’t it just push off the inevitable and make the separation even more difficult?

You Can’t Help Me; You Can’t Harm Me

September 21, 2016, by

“He became King over Yeshurun when the numbers of the nation gathered, the tribes of Israel in unity.” — Devarim 33:5 In his final address to the Jewish people, Moshe Rabbeinu gives each shevet a bracha and charges them with their national responsibilities. Immediately prior, he spoke to the entire people saying, “When the Jews […]