Volume 36 Number 04
                 Produced: Sun Mar 10 23:34:08 US/Eastern 2002

Subjects Discussed In This Issue: 

Administrivia - Yom Kippur Katan 3/13
         [Aliza N. Fischman]
Electronic Communication Devices
         [Yisrael Medad]
Gomel (3)
         [Ben Katz, Hillel (Sabba) Markowitz, Batya Medad]
Mordechai is just "acceptable?
Seder El Tawhid  or  Seder HaYihoud
         [Joseph Mosseri]
Shabbat Bar Mitzvah
         [Judith Weil]
Shaloch Manos
         [Carl Singer]
That's **it??** (2)
         [S Meth, Hillel (Sabba) Markowitz]
Tsaleysim, and other matters
         [Perets Mett]
Wheat Free Matzos, Cakes


From: Aliza N. Fischman <fisch.chips@...>
Date: Sun, 10 Mar 2002 00:09:17 -0500
Subject: Administrivia - Yom Kippur Katan 3/13

1. Statement issued by OU and RCA regarding establishment of Wednesday,
March 13 erev Rosh Chodesh Nissan) as a Yom Kippur Katan:

v"Zaaku el Hashem beTzar Lahem

The Matzav in Medinat Yisrael is truly bewildering, discouraging and
even depressing not only for our brothers and sisters who reside there,
but also for Kol Beit Yisrael.  More than ever, a fact in which we of
the Orthodox community always believed, is also being recognized by
others, "ayn lanu al mi l'hishaen ela al avinu shebashamayim."

We of the Rabbinical Council of America and the Orthodox Union declare
in solidarity with the Chief Rabbinate of Israel that Wednesday, March
13th , erev Rosh Chodesh Nisan, Yom Kippur Kattan, be observed as a Yom
Tfilla.  Just as there will be a mass tfilla gathering at the Kotel and
tfilot throughout Israel, we urge our congregants and constituents to
participate as well. The Seder Yom Kippur Katan can be found in most
siddurim (e.g.  Hebrew Artscroll).  Should a minyan of those fasting be
present, Vayichal should be read.  Should such a mincha service be
impractical due to one's being at work, the seder Yom Kippur Katan can
be included in Shacharis.

B'Nissan nigalu ub'nissan atidin l'higael"-- May we hear only besorot
tovot and experience yeshuot v'nechamot speedily in our days.


2. Below is the statement from Moetzes Gedolei HaTorah, calling for a
Yom Tfilla on Erev Rosh Chodesh Nissan (Wednesday, March 13).

An Urgent Call to All Jews

Nation of Hashem!  Awaken, Arouse Yourselves and Call Out to Hashem!

We are seized with trembling over the difficult situation that has
developed in our Holy Land as danger threatens our fellow Jews and no
one knows what each day will bring.  Evil people plot and attack our
nation, and Jewsih blood is spilled like water.

The cry of the Jewish people is loud in the face of the heavy and
terrifying tragedies, including the death of young people, may it no
longer come to pass. Every heart is pained and broken over the terrible,
bitter illnesses that have stricken the Jewish sick, may Hashem
strengthen and heal them.

Our power lies only in seizing the means of our forefathers, and it is
incumbent on us to call out with a great and bitter outcry as the Rambam
describes in Hilchos Taaniyos:

"It is a positive Torah commandment to cry out and sound trumpets on
every calamity that threatens the community, as it says, "in the face of
the enemy that attacks you, you should sound the trumpets' -- meaning in
the face of whatever causes you harm....cry out and sound the alarm.
This is one of the paths of repentance, that when a threat appears and
the poeple cry out and sound the alarm, and all recognize that it is
their sins that cuase them harm, as it says, your sins have tipped the
balance," this is what will cause the threat to be removed from them."

"In gatherings praise Hashem."  Let large numbers of those who fear
Hashem and cherish His name gather together to pour out their prayers
before the Creator of all in all the shuls and botei medrash wherever
they live, throughout the world, on Wednesday, Adar 29, erev Rosh
Chodesh Nisan. Let the special prayers of Yom Kippur Katan be recited,
and chapters of Tehillim, especially perakim 83, 130, and 142 before He
Who Dwells on High, so that He will show us favor and redeem us from all
our travails.

Let us return to Hashem with full force, let us better our ways both
with regard to things between man and G-d and those between man and his
fellow.  Let us distance ourselves from loshon horah and rechilus, and
increase our love for others.  Let each of us perceive the positive in
others and not their shortcomings.  Let us strengthen ourselves in Torah
and fear of Heaven and in the fulfillment of mitzvos.  Let us become
strong in our prayers and supplications, and let Hashem hear our
entreaties, show favor to his people and mercy to the remnant of His
portion.  Let reports of tragedy or loss among us no longer be heard,
and let Him strengthen and bind the brokenhearted in their mourning.
Yisroel's salvation is in Hashem, a salvation for all eternity.


From: Yisrael Medad <ybmedad@...>
Date: Sat, 09 Mar 2002 19:42:23 +0200
Subject: Electronic Communication Devices

Further on the subject of Cellular phone policies in Shuls, etc., one
should also note that there are security persons especially in the Yesha
Yishuvim and in other outlying areas, that carry sophisticated
walkie-talkie sets that need to be turned down during Shmoneh Asreh.
But to see someone like that get an urgent message and the resulting
commotion is to understand pikuah nefesh in action.

Yisrael Medad

To: <mail-jewish@...>

From: Ben Katz <bkatz@...>
Subject: Re: Gomel

>>From: <NJannol@...> (Neal B. Jannol)
>>At our Shabbos Mincha "Beis Bluebell" minyon, we had a little stir
>>because a woman came to hear a pre-Mincha Zachor and watned to Bench
>>Gomel.  There was no Rabbi in the house, so in absence thereof, the Baal
>>HaBayis of Beis Bluebell thought it would be ok for her to stand
>>upstairs in the office/ezras nashim and say the gomel b/w aliyos - we
>>inquired if her husband was available and he was not.

     Many gedolim have been bothered by the fact that women don't make
birchat hagomel when they are obligated to.  In our shul, the mother of the
baby will routinely do it at a bris, from her side of the mechitza.  And
yes, the rabbi will ask for quiet so that people can hear and answer amen.

Ben Z. Katz, M.D.
Children's Memorial Hospital, Division of Infectious Diseases
2300 Children's Plaza, Box # 20, Chicago, IL 60614
Ph. 773-880-4187 ; Fax 773-880-8226

From: Hillel (Sabba) Markowitz <sabbahem@...>
Date: Thu, 07 Mar 2002 21:35:26 -0500
Subject: Re: Gomel

In our shul, sometimes a minyon (exactly) will gather near the ezras
nashim and answer the bracha.  It does not have to be during the aliyos
but could be after minyan.  That way the woman is not embarassed and it
is easier on the rest of the congregation.

Hillel (Sabba) Markowitz
<sabbahem@...>, Sabba.Hillel@verizon.net

From: Batya Medad <ybmedad@...>
Date: Fri, 08 Mar 2002 07:18:24 +0200
Subject: Gomel

My neighbor follows a psak that the "yoledet" can bench hagomel with a
minyan of women.



From: <ajp74@...>
Date: Thu, 07 Mar 2002 13:28:56 +0800
Subject: Re: Mordechai is just "acceptable?

>     Mordechai is just "acceptable?"  "Accepted?"  Here's a man who
> saves all his fellow Jews from being murdered, and that's **it??** The
> best he can do is be "accepted (or acceptable) by the majority?"  And
> there's actually a minority of his fellow Jews who don't accept him?
>       I've always taken this to be a wonderful insight into human
> psychology; that you just can't do enough to satisfy some people. Is
> there more -- or even less -- to it than that?

nice but the gemora in megilla takes a different approach. see also a
sicha by rav lichtenstein on the vbm (yeshivas gush)


From: Joseph Mosseri <JMosseri@...>
Date: Sun, 10 Mar 2002 23:13:09 -0500
Subject: Seder El Tawhid  or  Seder HaYihoud

There was a ancient custom among Egypt's Jewish community to celebrate
the night of Rosh Hodesh Nisan with much pomp and joy.  This celebration
was named in Judeo-Arabic Seder El Tawhid which roughly translates as
the order of the unity, uniqueness and individuality of God.

This custom is still celebrated in Brooklyn, New York at:
Congregation Ahaba Ve Ahva of Ocean Parkway
1801 Ocean Parkway
Brooklyn, New York 11223.
This years celebration will take place, God willing, on Wednesday night,
March 13, 2002 at 8:00 PM.
Please spread the word.
For more information on this beautiful custom and celebration check out
these web sites:


Besides all this Dr. Zvi Zohar has forwarded to me a very important
article on this custom by Professor Ezra Fleischer who has discovered
through his Geniza research that this custom predates Maimonides and has
its roots in the old Israeli custom of celebrating Rosh Hodesh HaGadol.
For those of you who are interested this article appeared in Pe'amim
volume 78.

Happy Rosh Hodesh Nisan,
Joseph Mosseri


From: Judith Weil <weildj@...>
Date: Fri, 08 Mar 2002 07:46:26 +0200
Subject: Re: Shabbat Bar Mitzvah

>Is there a minhag to make the shabbat Bar Mitzvah in shul on shabbat
>_before_ the boys 13th birthday rather than the shabbat after?

Where I live in Jerusalem a large proportion - maybe even the majority -
of barmitzvas are on the Shabbat before the birthday. For this reason
the youngsters are called up only for Maftir and Haftora, and not for
one of the seven basic readings.

We personally adhere to the custom we were used to in the shul where we
grew up in London (my husband and I are both from the same shul), and
our sons were all called up after they became 13.



From: <CARLSINGER@...> (Carl Singer)
Date: Tue, 5 Mar 2002 23:20:03 EST
Subject: Re: Shaloch Manos

      Is there a mekor (source) for having to give two food items with
      different brochos to fulfill your obligation of shalach manos? If
      so, where?

I believe it has to do with "manos" (or "manot") being plural -- hence
more than one item, and by implication items that, in total, require
more than one brocha.

Kol Tov

Carl Singer


From: S Meth <smeth@...>
Subject: That's **it??**

Yeshaya Halevi wonders at Mordechai's being ratzui, "Just 'acceptable'"
in his words.

Raztzui is a perfectly laudable description; Megillas Ester doesn't say
"RAK ratzui" - JUST acceptable.

Actually, the focus of the Gemara in Megilla is on the words "LEROV
echov" - to MOST of his brothers - as opposed to ALL of his brothers.
The Gemara explains that this refers to the Anshei Knesses Hagedolah,
some of whom were critical of Mordechai for involving himself in the
affairs of state as opposed to more spiritual matters.

From: Hillel (Sabba) Markowitz <sabbahem@...>
Date: Thu, 7 Mar 2002 11:44:42 -0500
Subject: RE: That's **it??**

I remember learning that because Mordechai had to take up the post of
Prime Minister, work in the political world to save his fellow Jews,
deal with the politics of the day, he was lowered in his level of
learning and had a lowered status within the Sanhedrin.  A similar
example was given about Moshe Rabbeinu and the complaint of Miriam about
him (for which she was punished).

Moshe Rabbeinu belonged to Klal Yisrael, all of his time was devoted to
hashem and the people, as a result his family suffered the lack of his
presence.  Aharon was succeeded by his sons who where worthy of him,
Moshe's children did not amount to anything special and the medrash says
that his grandson was the Levi who was the priest of pesel Micha.

A person cannot do it all.

An additional point is that in the real world some people will have to
have their requests denied.  Whenever a case comes to bais din one
person wins and on person loses.  There is a story of the Brisker Rov in
his dealings with a butcher in his town.  At one time he had to declare
a certain cow treif and the butcher accepted the ruling calmly even
though he took a major financial loss.  Somewhat later the butcher had a
court case in which the Brisker rov ruled against him.  Even though it
was a very minor (in financial terms) matter, he took it very badly and
carried on quite loudly.  he was asked why he took the look of the cow
(which was much more expensive) so calmly and was so upset about the
court case which ws hardly even pocket change.  He answered, "It's not
because i lost but because the other person won".

Now that Mordechai was in the government, he had to arrange to collect
taxes from Jews, sometimes rule against Jews, and make the necesary
compromises that are a part of life in the real world.  Similarly, when
a political party is in opposition they can promise the world.  If they
get into power they find it isn't that simple.

Hillel (Sabba) Markowitz - <sabbahem@...>


From: Perets Mett <p.mett@...>
Date: Thu, 7 Mar 2002 16:21:34 +0000
Subject: Tsaleysim, and other matters

A piece quoted from Seth Mandel included the passage:

>What about taneysim, the plural of taynis? That
>can be a simple analogy from the more common talis: tales (remember,
>shva after the lamed): taleysim = tanis (similarly shva): taneysim.

The singular of taneysim is not taynis (a word which exists in neither
Hebrew nor yidish) but tones/toones, depending on dialect.  And, for
good measure , the fast before Purim is Ester toones (yes, that way

Perets Mett



From: <crew-esq@...>
Date: Thu, 7 Mar 2002 10:20:14 -0500
Subject: Wheat Free Matzos, Cakes

Kashrus magazine's Pesach 2002 issue includes a list of places oat
matzos will be available. They also mention that Schick's makes gluten
free (chometz equipment) cakes year round.

For information about the oat matzos, contact Kollel Food Store at
732-363-8102, fax 732-363-1475, e-mail <kfs@...> or Rabbi &
Mrs. Yankel Miller at 732-364-7113, fax 732-364-9872.

Schick's Bakery can be reached at 718-436-8020, fax 718-438-8244.


End of Volume 36 Issue 4