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A heretic once said to Rabbi Haninah, “Now that you are impure, as the verse in Lamentations states ‘Her (the Jewish People’s) impurity is in her skirts (meaning, in the extremities, in exile) (Lam. 1)’ what is your relationship with God?”

Rabbi Haninah answered, “Come and see what is written, ‘He dwells with them in the midst of their impurity.’ (Lev. 16) Meaning, even when the Jewish people are impure, the Divine Presence is with them.

Yoma Chapter 5


1 July in History

In 1878, at the insistence of Prussian Prime Minister Otto von Bismarck the Congress of Berlin incorporated into the Treaty of Berlin an article intended to provide the Jews of Romania with the opportunity for full citizenship. Unfortunately, the Romanians evaded the article and only a hand full of Jews would gain citizenship.

19 Tammuz in History

Today is the Yahrzeit of Rabbi Yitzchak HaLevi Herzog (1889-1959) was born in Łomża, Poland, and moved to the United Kingdom with his family in 1898. He served as rabbi of Belfast from 1916 to 1919 and was appointed rabbi of Dublin in 1919. He went on to serve as Chief Rabbi of Ireland between 1922 and 1936, after which he immigrated to Israel to succeed the late Rabbi Abraham Isaac Kook as Chief Rabbi of Israel. He served as Chief Rabbi until his death in 1959. He authored numerous works including Divrei Yitzchak, an anthology of Talmudic discourses, and the halachic work Hechal Yitzchak.

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May 2020