From the Desk - Amnon 18
Shalom Friends! Israel This has been another difficult week for our people as more than 600 rockets were fired into the south of Israel from Gaza. Four Israelis were killed in this rocket fire. We are mindful of the teaching of our Sages that the loss of each life is like the loss of an entire world. We lost Moshe Agadi, a father of four whose brother described him as a modest man who knew how to respect everyone, loved everyone and was loved by people; Pinchas Menachem Prezuazman, a 21 year old Chassidic Jew who left behind a wife and small child; Moshe Feder whose wife, Iris, lost her first husband in an infamous military helicopter crash 22 years ago; and Ziad al-Hamamda, a Bedouin Israeli resident of the Negev who is survived by his wife and seven children. May we and their immediate families find comfort and may their memories be a blessing. The disruption and suffering caused to those living in Sderot, Ashdod, Ashkelon and Be’er Sheva/Bnei Shimon are immense. We pray for the recovery of all those who have been wounded. One of the wonderful organizations that helps the residents of Sderot is Meir Panim. The residents of Sderot count on Meir Panim’s humanitarian work for assistance. Their staff and volunteers work around the clock at three After-School Youth Clubs – all of which are housed in converted bomb shelters! Children are the most vulnerable segment of any society. With this week’s barrage of Hamas and Islamic Jihad’s deadly rocket attacks, Sderot’s youth need us now more than ever. Meir Panim’s Youth Clubs are a crucial system for Sderot’s traumatized teens. I invite you to join me now in making a donation to Meir Panim. We insist that Israel has the same right given to any other nation – the right to protect herself from deadly attacks. We are grateful for the success of the Israeli retaliation and pray that it will weaken the forces of those who seek to destroy us. At the same time, we mourn the deaths of innocent Palestinian civilians including a 12 year old boy and a 14 month year old girl (whom, according to the IDF, was killed by a Palestinian rocket). We pray for an end to the suffering of all innocent people and that we should all be blessed with peace in the region. These events have moved Israel to the forefront of our minds during a week in which we always reflect deeply on the land, the State and those who sacrifice in order that we can keep the right to return to and live safely in our homeland. As I write, our people are observing Yom Hazikaron – the Day of Remembrance for those who gave their lives protecting our people and land. I want to refer you to a wonderful website which allows each of us to recite a chapter of Tehillim in memory of a specific fallen hero, either a soldier or a victim of terror. The website is available in English (look for the “translate” tab) and offers biographies of each of the fallen as well as additional opportunities to engage in good deeds in that person’s memory. I invite you to check out the website here. Today is Yom Ha’atzmaut – I hope that you are able to join the community at the rally to show our love and support for Israel. Cross-Communal Projects This weekend there is a very important initiative running across the Montreal Jewish community to raise awareness of mental health issues. As you know, I am a big believer in cross-communal initiatives, and the cause of spreading awareness of the challenges faced by those with mental health issues is so very important. I will be speaking on this topic on Shabbat. The Rise Together Project is progressing in full force. We are very excited for the Friday night dinner, Shabbat day program and Sunday program being run here at Congregation Beth Ora. The community is excited! To hear more about this weekend program at Beth Ora, please watch these videos from Sarah, Emma and Jonah Dym, Polly Storozum and Rebecca Alter:
Wishing you all Yom Ha’atzmaut Sameach and Shabbat Shalom, Rabbi Anthony and Carly Knopf Dovid, Rachelli, Yehuda and Avrami
What’s the Deal with… Amnon 18 Walking around Ville St Laurent or Cote St Luc, you may have noticed some signs outside people’s homes indicating that, at this home, Amnon 18 has been installed and that this enables the hot water faucet to be used on Shabbat. Some of the attendees of Lunch N’ Learn asked what the problem would be with using a hot water faucet on Shabbat and how Amnon 18 works. So, what’s the deal? The use of hot water during Shabbat from any faucet is strictly prohibited by Jewish law. Opening the hot water faucet automatically lets cold water enter the hot water tank which results in cooking – one of the prohibited activities on Shabbat. Additionally, the use of hot water from the faucet causes the water temperature in the tank to drop which causes the elements of the burner to ignite which is considered “kindling a fire.” The Amnon 18 system makes sure that, when Shabbat enters, the water is already very warm though not yet hot. In order to keep the water hot through Shabbat, the system heats the water randomly multiple times per hour. Through this system, one is allowed to use a hot water faucet on Shabbat. To find out more about Amnon 18 click here. By carefully following our mitzvot, we bring the presence of G-d into all of our activities and we sanctify the Shabbat – an oasis of holiness in a tumultuous and troubled world.