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9 Teves, 5781 - December 24, 2020 | Mordecai Plaut, director | Bereishis- 5781 Published Weekly
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The Shechita Problem: Human Rights Appeal in Strasbourg

The European Union Court of Justice, in its home site in Luxembourg, authorized last week the laws of the parliament houses in Dutch-speaking Flanders and French-speaking Wallonia regions of Belgium, giving the official legal stamp to the first decree against shechita in Europe. This raised a hue and cry in the Jewish world in Europe and in the rest of the world lest organizations against cruelty to animals in various countries will try to legislate this as well, thereby delivering a serious blow to the viability of Jewish communities throughout Europe.

The court determined that the laws requiring animals to be stunned strike "a fair balance... between the importance attached to animal welfare and the freedom of Jewish and Muslim believers to manifest their religion."





The Buildings of Iraqi Jewry in Baghdad Still Stand

Rabbi Yitzhak Carmeli, researcher of Diaspora Jewry, presents to Yated Ne'eman recent photos of Iraqi Jewry, including the Torah Street.

Muhammad, a professional Iraqi photographer with whom Yitzhak maintains close contact, went forth especially to the alleys of Baghdad in order to document the remaining Jewish ruins, at considerable personal risk. The recent documentation which he sent negate the accepted stand that Jewish sites in Iraq were almost totally destroyed. Witness: there still exists the street named "Torah Street".

Within that same typical Baghdad street there rose up the mother of Iraqi yeshivos, "Midrash Beit Zilkah" which was headed by HaRav Abdallah Somech, author of "Zivhei Tzedek".





Gedolei Yisrael Endorse Covid Vaccinations

The leading gedolei Yisrael urged the chareidi community to get vaccinated.





Yissurim: A Torah Perspective

by Rav A. Somosi


(The following is based on a loose translation of the Steipler Gaon`s Bircas Peretz, Parshas Mikeitz, which serves as a springboard for a wider discussion of the subject.) It was first published 24 years ago, in 1996, but it is certainly appropriate for our time.

The Centrality of Yissurim in our lives

Part III

Kabolas Yissurim: A Means of Bringing About Annulment of Harsh Decrees

Chovos Halevovos (ibid.) extols the importance of kabolas yissurim and encourages us to constantly fix our minds on this theme so as to strengthen our ability for patient submission to Hashem's will. This conduct in itself serves to lighten the burden when the pain of misfortune and bitterness lays heavily on the heart. Lovingly accepting Heavenly decrees and finding solace in Hashem is a great source of strength and bitochon as it says (Tehillim 31:25), "Chizku veya'amtzu levavchem kol hameyachlim laHashem."

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Rain and Kinneret Watch

by Dei'ah Vedibur Staff

Our weekly report of the rain and the level of the Kineret - Winter, 5781.

* * *

From Our Archives

Preparing for the Future Dealing Directly With HaShem

by R' Zvi Zobin

Yossi reads the headlines: "Rabbi Ploni involved in major financial swindle!"

Yossi emits a groan, "Why should I be frum if a big rabbi like that can do such a terrible thing?"

* * *

Shlomo was davening with intense devotion. Suddenly Mr. Almoni pushed past him, nearly sending him flying.

Shlomo muttered, "With people like him around, it is not surprising that people drop out of frumkeit!" as he watched with disgust as Mr. Almoni disappeared into the distance.

* * *

In both situations, we can try to find mitigating circumstances for Rabbi Ploni and Mr. Almoni's apparent wrongdoings.

The Grant

A story by A. Bat-Melech


Part II

Synopsis: Yeshivas Avnei Chochma is in dire financial straits. R' Menachem, the yeshiva director, gets word that the English millionaire, Mr. Clyde, will be paying a visit to the yeshiva. He considers sending the disabled bochur, Refoel Chaim, somewhere out of sight until Mr. Clyde has left, but thinks better of it.


Av, 5765 - Kislev 5766 (August-December 2005)