Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Scribe at Work in Masada Synagogue

Visitors to the Masada synagogue will be able to watch a scribe making a copy of a Torah scroll.  From Arutz-7:

A ritual scribe has begun spending his days behind a glass wall in the famous Masada synagogue – writing a Torah scroll to be installed there.

The young scribe, Shai Abramovitch, moved from the northern city of Tzfat, together with his wife and three young children, to the Negev city of Arad, in order to be able to carry out and complete the project. He will make the 45-minute Arad-Massada trek each morning after immersing in a mikveh (ritual bath) – a customary prelude to ritual scribes' work – and will return after seven and a half hours of painstaking writing.

His glass-enclosed“office” is in the very spot used as a synagogue by hundreds of Jews who found refuge from the Romans on Masada some 2,000 years ago. Hard at work throughout the day, the scribe can be seen through the glass by the many tourists who visit the famous site.

Rabbi Abramovitch’s job “is not easy,” commented Rabbi Shimon Elharar, director of the closest Chabad chapter, Chabad-Lubavitch of the Dead Sea. “There are at least 800,000 people a year who come through that synagogue, and he will be working in a place designed somewhat like an incubator. It's a little like working in an aquarium.”

In addition, scribe Abramovitch takes a break a few times a day to come out and explain the holy work of writing Torah scrolls, tefillin, mezuzot and more.

The story continues here.

HT: Paleojudaica

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