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Baltimore, MD - June 22, 2021 - In what can only be described as a true Simchas ha’Torah, this past Sunday the community danced a brand new Sefer Torah from the Life Bridge parking lot on Greene Tree Road to Kesser Torah’s campus at 8400 Park Heights Avenue. As everyone gathered together for this special occasion, there was a general sense that the event not only marked the completion of a Sefer Torah, which was completed over the last six months in Eretz Yisroel, but also welcomed the greater Baltimore community to Kesser Torah’s new campus. The bochurim of the yeshiv...
Baltimore, MD – June 22, 2021 - BJL wishes a hearty Mazel Tov to Ora Lowenthal and Yoni Novack on their engagement. Mazel Tov Grandparents: Mr. and Mrs. Avraham Hilsenrad and Mrs. Miriam Lowenthal יה"ר שיזכו לבנות בית נאמן בישראל. אמן
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Baltimore, MD - June 21, 2021 - While you’re out for lunch, running errands, or just to take a break, our convenient vaccination location is ready to serve you. As our community gets ready to send teens off to camp, embark on family summer vacations, or head back to in-office work, let’s make sure everyone is safe and protected against COVID-19 and especially the highly transmittable Delta variant. And even better, get a $10 Kosher Dunkin Donuts Gift Card when you get vaccinated on Wednesday! There will be a Walk-in COVID-19 Vaccination Clinic at the Colonial Village Shopping Center on Wednesday, June 23rd from 11:00am-3:00pm. Walk-ins are welcome, no prior appointment or registration needed. Pfizer (ages 12+) and Moderna (ages 18+) vaccines will be offered in addition to J&a...
Baltimore, MD – June 22,  2021 - It is with deep sadness that BaltimoreJewishLife.com informs the community of the petira of  Paul Kalish, Z’L, husband of Joyce Kalish and father of Ben Kalish, Sarah Leipnik, Chaim Kalish and Jonathan Kalish. The Levayah will take place on Wednesday, June 23, 2021 at 1:00 PM at Beth David Cemetery in Elmont, NY.Levayah Zoom: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/85372467696?pwd=QVRSeDJiWmh2Ymc0cXJYQWd0OUxOUT09 Meeting ID: 853 7246 7696 Passcode: 808263 Shiva will be observed through Tuesday morning, June 29, at 3017 Temple Gate, Baltimore, MD, 21209The family requests that people who are not vaccinated please wear masks at the shiva house.Shacharis: 7:30 am Mincha/Maariv: 8:25 pm Shiva Hours: 8am to 9pm Lunch Break 12-1pm Dinner Break 6-7p...
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Baltimore, MD - June 22, 2021 - If you would have asked the growing Baltimore Jewish community 40 years ago what they thought about Summit Park, they would have responded by saying, “what/where is Summit Park”? Today, Summit Park is a neighborhood quickly growing with Orthodox households forming an amazingly tight knit community.B”H, this tremendous growth has created the need for more infrastructure and that is what led to the birth of Bais Medrash of Summit Park/Bais Dovid (BMSP). BMSP started  out with a simple Friday night minyan, and is now bursting at the seams with close to 30 people every Shabbos. This hartzig makom tefillah is the place to be for all new families moving into the Summit Park area, and beyond. One major development that has fast-tra...
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Baltimore, MD - June 5, 2021 - Starting Sunday June 6th, the following changes will be in effect for Covid testing.   1.  ALL testing will take place at STAR-K location, 122 Slade Ave. Baltimore, MD, 21208.   2.  Anyone testing for travel, school, work, camp or any other non-symptomatic reason, will be tested INSIDE Suite 101 (first door on left). If you are not feeling well or have any covid symptoms, do NOT come inside; pull into a parking space and call 443-228-6004 ext. 2. Someone will come out to your car.   3.  New testing times are as follows: Mornings: Sun: 10am-12pm M-F: 930-11:30am Evenings: S-TH: 7:00pm-8:15pm Motzoei Shabbos: 10-10:30pm All tests including rapid PCR and serology (antibodies) are available during all testing times....
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Baltimore, MD - June 22, 2021 -  TI food distribution for today has ended. Thanks to all those who took part today. 
Most Maryland taxpayers with children will start receiving $300 monthly payments beginning July 15 as part of the federal American Rescue Plan approved earlier this year to spur an economy battered by the coronavirus pandemic. Taxpayers will receive payments of $300 per month for children between ages 0 and 5 and $250 children age 6 to 17. The payments will continue through the end of the year, with the remainder of the tax credit being applied to your 2021 tax bill. The total payment allowed under the Child Tax Credit is $3,600 for children 0 to 5 and $3,000 for children 6 to 17. Families qualify for the credit if their income is below $75,000 for single filers, $112,000 for people filing as head of household and $150,000 for people who are married and filing jointly. In mos...
Some things are unforgettable. Like what we saw in Israel last week.  We were standing in a neighborhood, looking at the wreckage caused by the latest round of terrorist rockets. We were outside the home of a 90-year-old Holocaust survivor – at least, what was left of it. She wasn’t there, because she was in the hospital. She lost her legs and nearly her life. Her caretaker died when the house was destroyed.   While we stood there, the next-door neighbor came rushing out to meet us. Screaming and crying, she invited us into her home. It was badly damaged, too. When the rocket hit, she was holding her grandchild. The blast threw them into the wall. We could see the outline of her body, and even her hair, which had stuck there. Still cryi...
Baltimore, MD - June 22, 2021 - Please be mindful of the change to the Walden Farms Caesar Dressing that had been Parve for many years but which has now become Milchig.
Parsha Hashavua
Writing or Buying a Sefer Torah Pt 2

Click here for Writing or Buying a Sefer Torah Part I


We can answer all questions from last week by explaining two foundational concepts in writing a Torah. The first yesod is from the Divrei Yatziv that says there are two reasons for writing a Torah. The first is that it is a proof of the ShiraHa’azinu. The second is that one will be able to learn it. The posuk therefore says it twice; first in the command where Hashem says, “Now write this Shira” and then it says, “Teach it to the Yidden.” At the completion, the posuk again says, “Moshe wrote the Shira” and thereafter it says, “And he taught it to the Yidden.”  The other yesod is that one is able to serve Hashem in two ways. A person may do things because he is used to it since that is what he saw by his parents. The other way is to serve Hashem out of love or fear.  


With this we can differentiate whether one needs the whole Torah to be written, or whether it is sufficient if he has the Shira still intact while the rest of the Sefer Torah may have rotted. If the mitzvah is just for Shirah, then it would not suffice since we need to have the whole Torah written, but if the reason is for learning purposes, then of course one may write parts of the Torah, like a chumash, so that children can learn. 


The reason the Gemara in Sanhedrin says that one would not be yotzei the mitzvah if he inherited a Sefer Torah is because that shows the person is doing it just mitzvas anashim melumada, which the posuk in Yeshaya says can cause one to forget the Torah that he learned. It is important for a person to write his own Sefer, thereby showing that he wants to learn, whether it is mi’ahava or mi’yirah


The same difference would be regarding women writing a Sefer. If it is being written for learning purposes, then women would be able to write it since they have sections in the Torah that apply to them. However, if it is being written as an eidus for the Shirah, then a woman would not be able to write one since they have no chiyuv of U’lemaditem


The Sha’agas Aryeh in siman 36 asks, in today’s day and age, where we don’t have the knowledge of which words are malei and which words are chaseir, why would we write a Sefer Torah, if it is not kosher to begin with? The reason is, if one buys the Torah, the Gemara calls that as if he is a chotef min hashuk. The Rambam says that if one writes a Torah with the intention of completing it later, the Sefer Torah is Kosher. In the event when he buys it, he knows that there are chaseiros and yeseiros we don’t know about, but he is ready to have it fixed when Mashiach comes, then he is yotzei the mitzvah and that is like a chotef min hashuk since he invests in something but does not know if he will make money. When Moshiach comes he will have completed the Mitzvah


In the event someone has a Sefer Torah written, it is like he accepted it from Har Sinai. We know that a person who can’t do a mitzva is considered an oness and is patur. As long as a person writes the Sefer Torah properly, according to our mesorah, he is yotzei the mitzvah right now. This contrasts with the case of a person buying a Torah with which he will not be yotzei until Moshiach comes. 


The Chasam Sofer’s question can be answered by explaining that since the ikkar mitzvah is to learn from the Torah, then whatever yeseiros and chaseiros would make a difference lehalacha we have a kabala to know which are the correct yeseiros and chaseiros. That is why we may write tefillin and mezuzos and the parsha of Sotah. That is why, halacha le’maaseh, if there is a chaseir or a yeser that won’t make a nafka mina in teich or halacha. It doesn’t passel such a Sefer Torah. 


We also see why the malach switched from the posuk of Torah tziva lanu , which is a posuk proving that we just inherited the Torah. We are not doing the Torah mi’yirah or me’ahava. Once we have the posuk of Ve’ata kisvu, which shows it is as if we were mekabel the Torah, that is what the malach was showing was needed in order not to be chayev misa.  


May we all be zocheh to write and learn the Torah properly! 


Do you have a topic or discussion you want to read about? Please send comments or questions to hymanbsdhevens@gmail.com or berachsteinfeldscorner@gmail.com 

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Baltimore, MD - June 22, 2021 - Please be advised that BSSP has become aware of suspects canvassing our communities for delivered packages to steal. Camera footage identifies this dark vehicle as being used in at least one theft. We encourage residents to be on the look out for this vehicle or other suspicious behavior such as a vehicle driving repeatedly around a block or stopping in front of homes to see if there are unattended packages. We would like to remind the community to take safety precautions to avoid and deter such crimes. Package Safety Tips-Don't leave delivered mail and packages unattended.-If you're going out of town, put your mail on "hold" at your local Post Office.-Ship using "Hold for Pickup"-Customize the delivery-Secure the shipment using USPS Special Servic...
Now that COVID-19 safety measures are being lifted, start packing! But, before you do, tune into                “KOSHER TRAVEL - POST LOCKDOWNS” on Wednesday, June 23, 2021, 12 Noon ET CLICK HERE TO REGISTER Join host Rabbi Zvi Goldberg and his guest, STAR-K Director of Development Steve Sichel for a discussion about Kosher Travel. They will answer your travel questions in addition to discussing: •             What you need to know before planning your trip •             How travel has changed: practical advice about food, flights, hotels, and rental cars •  &n...
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The Biden administration is contemplating ending a Trump-era policy by which U.S. border officials could turn back migrant families to Mexico based on health concerns, Axios reported. Title 42, a public health order implemented in March 2020 to protect America from an influx of COVID-19, resulted in tens of thousands of migrants being turned away. Axios said the White House is considering ending the order in regard to families by as early as July 31. Administration officials have found it harder to defend Title 42 as U.S. vaccination rates climb, and death and infection numbers fall, Axios said. “[It’s] a public health decision that will be made ultimately on those grounds,” a White House official told Axios. The official added the administration would not ge...
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The Biden administration announced Monday that it is extending for another year a more than decade old executive order declaring a national emergency over the nuclear threat from North Korea. Why it matters: In a letter addressed to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), Biden noted North Korea’s “pursuit of nuclear and missile programs” and its other “provocative, destabilizing” actions continue to pose a threat to U.S. national security. National emergencies regarding North Korea were previously declared by the Trump, Obama and Bush administrations. The state of play: Biden’s special envoy for North Korea, Sung Kim, said Monday that the administration hopes for a positive response from North Korea to its offer of ta...
Click here for Writing or Buying a Sefer Torah Part I We can answer all questions from last week by explaining two foundational concepts in writing a Torah. The first yesod is from the Divrei Yatziv that says there are two reasons for writing a Torah. The first is that it is a proof of the Shira, Ha’azinu. The second is that one will be able to learn it. The posuk therefore says it twice; first in the command where Hashem says, “Now write this Shira” and then it says, “Teach it to the Yidden.” At the completion, the posuk again says, “Moshe wrote the Shira” and thereafter it says, “And he taught it to the Yidden.”  The other yesod&n...
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Prosecutors urged a judge Wednesday to impose a “very substantial” prison sentence on Michael Avenatti for trying to extort millions of dollars from Nike. Prosecutors noted in a Manhattan federal court submission that Probation Office officials recommend an eight-year prison term for the California attorney who gained fame three years ago through his representation of a woman making allegations against then-President Donald Trump. “The defendant, a prominent attorney and media personality with a large public following, betrayed his client and sought to enrich himself by weaponizing his public profile in an attempt to extort a publicly-traded company out of tens of millions of dollars. This was an egregious abuse of trust, and it warrants real and serious punishment,&rdq...
246 years after the U.S. Army was established, today’s Department of Defense appears to be distracted from its national defense mission. Media commentators and service members alike have lamented the military’s drift toward becoming a testing ground for social policy experimentation. As perhaps the only conservative participant on the Pentagon’s newly formed Countering Extremism Working Group, I can confirm the Pentagon’s full embrace of “wokeism.” For starters, President Joe Biden recently declared that white supremacy poses the greatest threat to America’s national security. The Pentagon is taking the commander in chief at his word. Instead of monitoring external threats, the Pentagon is on a mission to identify and remove w...
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It was another violent day in Baltimore on Monday with two more murders, giving the city 18 homicides in the last 10 days. The latest included a man found stabbed to death on Belair Road in east Baltimore Monday morning. On Monday, at approximately 3:06 p.m., Southeast District patrol officers responded to the 2500 block of Orleans Street for a shooting investigation. Officers found an adult male with multiple gunshot wounds. Medics transported the victim to an area hospital where he was pronounced deceased shortly after. Baltimore is back on pace to have more than 340 murders again this year. Homicide detectives are asking anyone with information to contact them at 410-396-2100 or Metro Crime Stoppers at 1-866-7Lockup.
A group of House Republicans wants to know how many billions of dollars in American taxpayer money President Joe Biden is diverting from United States citizens to provide border crossers with hotel rooms and transportation into the U.S. In a letter to Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Xavier Becerra, ten House Republicans — including Reps. Byron Donalds (R-FL) and Andy Biggs (R-AZ) — are asking the administration to disclose how many billions in taxpayer money it is using to provide border crossers with public services like hotel rooms and transportation. The House Republicans write: … we are deeply concerned about reports that the Department of Health and Human Services has diverted more than $2 billion that Congress appropriated for COVID-19 [Chine...
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