We hope you had a wonderful Passover! In Sioux Falls, the community joined together for a beautiful Seder, and in the weeks before the holiday, we brought Matzah across the state.
This Sunday, we are bringing a Torah Scribe to Sioux Falls to work on our Sefer Torahs.
If you were to ask any child, with even the most limited Jewish education, what the holiest item in Judaism is, they will instinctively tell you it's the Sefer Torah; the parchment Torah scroll with the five books of Moses written by hand.
What the child may not know, but what is equally true, is that for the Torah to be used, each of the 304,805 letters must be complete, intact, and full. If even just one letter is missing or rubbed out, it could render this sacred treasure invalid for use. This is also why a Shul must have their Torahs checked by a qualified scribe, every few years.
Some may feel that this is a little "extra." After all, a Sefer Torah takes a year to write, and based on the skill and experience of the scribe, costs tens of thousands of dollars. Yet one missing letter and it is basically useless?!
That is precisely the point. For it to be a Sefer Torah, it must be complete.
In our personal lives too, we can look at a Sefer Torah as a microcosm of a Jewish community, where every Jew represents a letter in the Torah. So long as there is even one Jew missing, or broken, the community is incomplete. It is not a community. And just like the Torah, every one of us must also occasionally "get checked," take a moment of introspection, to ensure we are complete and whole, to fix what needs to be fixed, to fill in what is missing.
Rabbi Mendel Alperowitz Blog
Serving the spiritual needs of the South Dakota Jewish community. Based in Sioux Falls and travels the state.