For the week ending 28 January 2012 / 3 Shevat 5772

Shvat 5772 - February 2012

by Rabbi Mendel Weinbach zt'l
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Dear Talmid,

Every month of the year has its own "mazal", represented astronomically by a constellation of stars which is particularly visible in the sky. The form which those stars take endows the mazal with its name and its mystical effect.

The mazal of the Month of Shvat is the bucket used for drawing water from a well. Our sources note that even though the Jewish nation has the ability to overcome the determinist power of the stars, there is nevertheless a connection between Jewry and the mazal of Shvat- the bucket.

What is the purpose of the bucket? To draw water from the well and make it available for drinking. Torah is the wellspring of life and it is the mission of Klal Yisrael to draw from this source to sustain itself and the entire world.

This perhaps explains why it was on Rosh Chodesh Shvat that Moshe Rabbenu began to relate Mishneh Torah to our ancestors. The majority of his listeners was a generation that had not yet been born when the Torah was given at Sinai, and there was a need to review the Torah for them.

Ohr Somayach is proud of its role in introducing Torah to a generation which was not privileged to learn Torah in its early years. As we reach the conclusion of our fortieth year of service, we thank you and all our talmidim, past and present, for being a part of the mazal which has graced our efforts.

Rabbi Mendel Weinbach | Rabbi Nota Schiller

Roshei Hayeshiva

Alumni Update

  • The largest group ever, over a hundred university students from North America, participated in the Winter JLE program last month.
  • The MENTORS MISSION which accompanied it also set a record with some forty businessmen and professionals teaching and interacting with the JLE students.
  • A JLE Reunion is scheduled to take place this month in Lakewood, NJ, offering students and mentors an opportunity to further develop the relationships they formed.
  • Following the great success of the ALL YESHIVA SHABBATON, an ALL YESHIVA MISHMAR was organized for Thursday night of Parshat Bo bringing together all talmidim and rabbeim of the Yeshiva for a late learning session.
  • This year we will again be running our OHR SOMAYACH PESACH MISSION. Join us this Pesach at The Leonardo Hotel in the Dead Sea, for a Yom Tov filled with Torah and kedusha, with scholar in residence Rav Yitzchak Breitowitz. Learn Torah and be inspired by our world-class lecturers and teachers. The Ohr Somayach Pesach Mission is a complete package with every day full of inspiring shiurim, sumptuous meals and exciting events. Last year the Ohr Somayach Pesach Mission was fully booked by February with guests from around the world. For more details see
  • @OHR is a new feature in Ohr Somayach's weekly Ohrnet which presents a brief profile of a Yeshiva talmid or alumnus.

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