Synagogue Miracle Gladdens Worshipers
The “Rosh Yehudi” outreach movement is accustomed to lost Jews asking for a Divine sign – and one such signal appeared this past Sabbath.
by Hillel Fendel, Arutz Sheva
December 18, 2008
Rosh Yehudi's Rabbi Uri Sherki
The “Rosh Yehudi” (Jewish Head, or Jewish Mindset) outreach movement is accustomed to lost Jews asking for a Divine sign – and one such signal appears to have been received this past Sabbath.
It occurred just seconds after the Sabbath afternoon prayer service, when the last of the worshipers had just left the building. Part of the floor then suddenly collapsed and fell to the mikveh (ritual bath), one story below.
The near-calamity occurred in the Gvurat Yisrael synagogue on Bar Kochba St. In Tel Aviv, which serves as a Jewish Studies Center for the Rosh Yehudi movement all week long – weekdays and Sabbath.
As the worshipers exited the yard, in which children had been playing just minutes before, a large crash was heard. The people looked back and saw a giant cloud of dust, which soon cleared and revealed a large hole in the building 2-3 meters wide.
Rabbi Eitan HaCohen, who coordinates the Rosh Yehudi activity at the site, said, “It was truly a miracle that no one was there at that moment. If it had happened a few seconds earlier, there could have been a major calamity. The floor actually fell down a whole story.”
Rosh Yehudi was established on Chanukah 2000, exactly seven years ago, by a group of educators in response to what the organization calls the “acute thirst that had evidently arisen among that sector of the Israeli public that calls itself secular." Mr. Yisrael Ze’ira heads Rosh Yehudi.
The staff, which has seen many dozens of people adopt observant Judaism with their guidance over the years, attempts to respond to questions asked time after time, such as: What is our connection to the Land of Israel, to Jerusalem and to the Torah? What is the nature of our connection to each other as members of the Jewish people? What is the basis for this connection? Do Jews, as a nation and as a State, have a message for humanity? What is our commitment to the State? What is our commitment to the Israel Defense Forces? What type of relationship should there be between the individual and society in general?
Rosh Yehudi’s weekly publication, an 8-page pamphlet distributed free in synagogues around the country, features articles on contemporary topics by prominent and/or young rabbis, a “Judaism – Not What You Thought” section, questions and answers on Jewish-legal and philosophical matters, information about Rosh Yehudi centers around the country, preparing-for-marriage counseling, a personal story by a recent “returnee to Judaism,” and more.