Inspiration

Open Your Sefarim This Yom Yerushalayim

May 8, 2017

Let’s learn Torah together in honor of this momentous Yom Yerushalayim. Join over 300 synagogues, schools and organizations nationwide participating in the OU’s Yom Yerushalayim Video Learning Event — check out the full program at ou.org/yy

For those of us old enough, it is difficult to fathom that fifty years have passed since the crackling sound of the shofar was heard over the radio, accompanied by the jubilant cries of soldiers announcing their arrival at the Kotel. Though I was then quite young, the memories of that period are etched in my mind.

To remind ourselves of how precious a gift has been entrusted to us, and as an expression of appreciation to our Creator for this immeasurable privilege, Yom Yerushalayim is celebrated annually.

Our Sages have taught us that every aspect of our lives is enhanced, and every aspect of understanding is illuminated, through the study of Torah. And so, we study Torah daily. These studies inform how we behave, how we think, how we relate, and how we feel. Studying Torah changes our understanding of mitzvot, including Shabbos and holidays, directs us as parents and children, and informs how we conduct ourselves in the marketplaces of commerce and ideas.

In preparing to celebrate Yom Yerushalayim fully, we must also seek guidance and understanding from the Torah. In that spirit, the Orthodox Union has asked five of the community’s leading teachers of Torah to lead us in this study. We know that for millennia we have been praying daily for Yerushalayim. We know that Yerushalayim is the ground upon which the Batei HaMikdash stood and will be rebuilt, soon in our day. But, what does Yerushalayim mean to us today? Is it merely Jerusalem’s history that we treasure, or its beauty? Is it Jerusalem’s glory as our people’s capital since the days of King David? Or is there more?

Surely through our study, and through our prayers, Hashem will hear the words of our hearts and minds, and bestow upon us the complete redemption, and the ultimate Kiddush Shem Shomayim, for which we so deeply yearn.

Moishe Bane, President of the Orthodox Union