Odyssey of a Torah
By Ken Turkewitz,
Ritual Committee Chair
As detailed in the May
HaKol, Temple Shaare Tefilah had decided to donate its tall
the Jewish Community of Alicante Centre in Alicante, Spain
Judía de Alicante Centro, also known as Beth
Shalom). The Torah has now been sent,
has arrived, and has been
in Alicante. This article details its journey.
challenge was to deliver the Torah safely and securely, while
and getting it to Alicante in time for a Masorti
Europe conference in June.
trip started with Bob Braitman and Bonnie Gordon. Bob and Bonnie
Torah for shipment, and Bob travelled with it on April 15
to deliver it to Rabbi
Charles Simon at FJMC HQ.
Simon had planned to immediately hand it over to a rabbinical student
with him to the Masorti Europe HQ in Amsterdam, where it
would then be carried
by a conference attendee to Alicante.
Unfortunately, Volcano Eyjafjallajokull in
Iceland was planning
differently. It erupted on the same day that the Torah was
to fly overseas, and the flight was cancelled.
waited for the volcano to calm down and stop spewing volcanic ash,
alternative plans needed to be made. In the meantime, the Torah
was stored at
FJMC HQ in NY. On May 26, Rabbi Rivon Krygier of Adat
Shalom Paris flew to Paris
with the Torah. From there, on June 3,
Mr. Claude Machline from Adat Shalom Paris
(and Honarary Life
President of Masorti Europe) made the final leg of the trip from
Paris to Alicante.
Torah was re-dedicated on Saturday, June 3, as part of a Masorti
conference being held in Alicante. Armando Azubel, Presdient
of Comunidad Judía
de Alicante Centro, writes:
Shacharit shel Shabbath Rabbi Weiner read from the Sefer Torah and
had as much Aliot as possible.
have made the Inauguration and Welcoming to the
Torah with seven hacafot where everybody danced with
Shiur about some details of the
Sefer Torah considering the
weight, the wood, the types
and measures explaining that
due to those details The Sefer must
be very old.
made a Mi Shaberach for Kehilat Shaare Tefilah
and a nice speach
thanking for this generous donation.
Synagogue Beth Shalom of Alicante, Board, friends
members, are very proud to hold and being the new home
such Anciane- Zaken- Sefer Torah.
that our Kehila and your Kehila B"H continue to
and stay active and creative for the next 120 years and more,
can continue helping others and giving to others the chance
kind of richness that Kehilat Shaare Tefilá will
must also say
a special THANKS to Rabbi Simon. He listened to our
need when I spoke
to him in Berlin and I know he made a big effort to
find out how to
wishes to you and your Kehila.
wonderful to hear how well the Torah was received, and how it is
you to all of the above who provided transportation, and a special
to Rabbi Simon who provided the shidduch for our Torah and
Comunidad Judía de
Alicante Centro, and who coordinated (along
Joanna Kubar, VP of Masorti
Europe) the transportation arrangements
for the Torah.
of the Torah We Donated Being Held by Community Leaders in Alicante,
Av Beit Din Rabbi Chaim Weiner, Comunidad Judía de Alicante
President Armando Azubel, and Comunidad Judía de Alicante
Rabbi Carlos Tapiero with
the donated Sefer Torah.
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Last Updated: July 23, 2010.