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October 9, 2015 / 26 Tishri, 5776
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Posts Tagged ‘shabbat’

Quick, Somebody Tell the Messiah — No Soccer in Israel this Shabbat

Tuesday, September 8th, 2015

(JNi.media) The Jerusalem Talmud (Ta’anit 1a) promises the arrival of the Messiah as soon as the Jews keep one proper Shabbat—the Babylonian (Shabbat 118b) requires two consecutive Shabbat days. As things look now, this coming Shabbat will offer an opportunity to Jews in Israel to usher in the redeemer since a state court has decided that Shabbat games are a criminal violation of Israel’s labor laws.

For as long as the good people of Israel can remember—some say at least 100 year, major league soccer was played mostly on Shabbat, because that’s the country’s day off. Even a number of religious Jews would walk to their local stadium as soon as services in shul were over.

But then, in August, the union of Israeli soccer players asked a labor court in Tel Aviv to suspend soccer games on Shabbat, because they’ve been conducted illegally. Working on Shabbat is against the law in Israel, and a business that wishes to stay open on God’s day of rest must acquire a special permit. It so happens that in 100 years no one has thought to get the permit.

Labor Court Judge Ariela Glitzr Katz told both parties in the dispute, the players and the league: “Holding football matches on Shabbat is a criminal offense and will not permit for employment which is contrary to the law.”

The judge mentioned one remedy: the league should request a proper permit from the Minister of the Economy, who is in charge of labor issues in Israel. It so happens that said Minister of the Economy is Aryeh Deri (Shas), a Sephardi ultra-Orthodox Jew who would issue such a permit only if he desires political suicide.

This may be the most critical turn in the already fragile status quo between state and religion as well as between secular and religious Israelis. Soccer is almost a state religion for many Israelis, and the idea of a Shabbat without games is intolerable to millions.

MK Avigdor Lieberman (Israel Beiteinu) advocated toppling the Netanyahu government over its failure to deliver soccer on Shabbat.

The league management sent a heartfelt, lengthy appeal to Minister Deri, citing the risk of teams collapsing, despondent adults and children wandering the streets aimlessly, social programs collapsing — the minister is yet to respond, which also means that Deri is choosing to ignore a deadline imposed by the league, demanding that he answer their call by Monday or there would be no soccer on Shabbat.

Meanwhile, many players have been sharing online and with the media how delighted they are to be able to spend Shabbat with their families.

Israel Radio announced on Monday afternoon that the league has announced the cancellation of all the league games this coming Shabbat. Culture and Sports Minister Miri Regev, who previously declared her support for the players, is now suggesting that the Attorney General could issue a temporary permit for the next two months, a time that would be used by a task force to come up with an alternative.

The fact is that most Israelis are off on Fridays, too, and could probably hit the stands by 1:00 PM and still make it home in time for candle lighting, even on a winter Friday.

Otherwise — prepare for the arrival of Messiah, and dress lightly, temperatures in Israel have been in the 90s since mid-July.

Israeli Pavilion to Close at IBC 2015 for Sabbath, Rosh Hashana

Tuesday, September 8th, 2015

The Israel Pavilion at the IBC 2015 exhibition at RAI Amsterdam is making a “kiddush Hashem” – a sanctification of God’s Name – before the Nations this year, and showing what a Jewish nation is really all about.

Economy Minister Arye Deri ordered the closure of the pavilion in accordance with the holy Sabbath, and for the Holy Days of Rosh Hashana, the Jewish New Year.

This means the pavilion will be open for two of the five days of the exhibition, which runs from Friday, Sept. 11 through Tuesday, Sept. 15.

Last Thursday, the Israeli companies presenting products at the pavilion of the Israel Export and International Cooperation Institute were notified they will be allowed to exhibit on Friday and Sunday. Israeli business people will be able to hold meetings with potential clients at the exhibition on these two days as well.

Secular Israeli media is presenting this issue as a major disaster for Israeli business, of course, and complaining that the minister is seriously damaging the 18 Israeli companies who are to present at the exhibition.

“Israel’s image as the ‘Startup Nation’ will also suffer a blow when clients find its pavilion in one of the main halls of the exhibition closed,” worried Ynet in an article on Tuesday.

But Deri has already agreed to compensate those companies presenting in the exhibition who suffer damages from the closure.

Yet Minister of Social Services Chaim Katz, also complained bitterly, calling Deri’s decision a “serious violation of the freedom of occupation… it sends Israel light years back.”

Others claimed it would cause “irreversible damage.”

Vibe Israel CEO Joanna Landau sent Deri a letter saying the decision shows “without a shadow of a doubt that the State of Israel’s image is not a top priority for the Israeli government.”

Deri pointed out that coordination for the pavilion was completed before he took office.

However, he said, “since [the exhibition] is taking place on holy days and on Shabbat, which are sacred to the people of Israel and during which there is no official Israeli state activity, Israel’s pavilion will not be operating on these days.”

Princeton U. to Get ‘Plastic’ Eruv [video]

Friday, August 28th, 2015

Princeton University will install an eruv next week, allowing several dozen observant Jewish students to carry on Shabbat.

Jewish law prohibits carrying anything, even a baby carriage, unless there is  technical boundary that transforms a public area into a private one.

Central Jersey.com reported:

The school said it was approached by Jewish students and others about having something that is in place in communities that are home to peer institutions of the university as well as in hundreds of towns nationwide where observant Jews live.

A former Orthodox rabbi at the Center for Jewish Life, David Wolkenfeld investigated putting up an eruv five years ago but was told there was no feasible way to construct it.

Princeton director of community and regional affairs Kristin S. Appelget explained that plastic tubing known as lechies would be installed this week on 60 utility poles, according to the website that either PSE&G or Verizon own., according to the website,

Both companies gave permission to use their poles, something that other companies do not always allow.

Below, an Allentown, Pennsylvania rabbis explains the eruv that uses utility poles.

Henri’s in Tel Aviv Fined $890 a Month for Closing on Shabbat

Wednesday, August 26th, 2015

(JNi.media) Israeli Facebook user Maayan Cohen Adiv on Tuesday posted that a food shop in Tel Aviv is being fined for keeping closed on Shabbat. “Yesterday I took my family for the first time to the Sarona Complex. Since we’d been there before, we first ate dinner in a different place, because finding something kosher in Sarona is like finding a needle in a haystack,” she wrote.

“During our tour through Sarona Market,” Maayan continued, “we suddenly ran into Henri’s store, one of the few in the entire complex that’s adorned by a kosher certificate. I was very surprised, and raised my voice while passing by the store owner who was serving customers, telling him he is ‘a righteous man in Sodom.’

“The owner smiled, said thank you, but then he mumbled something about a fine which I didn’t really comprehend… I came closer, and a conversation started whereby I was led to understand that since he is kosher, and isn’t open on Friday nights and Shabbat, he is fined close to $900 a month (!!!) because he refuses to stay open on ‘Shishi-Shabbat.’ I waited for him to start laughing, but it didn’t happen… Instead, he said, with a choked throat, that he’s considering closing down next month.

“I was left with my mouth hanging open.

“Should a man be punished for choosing to rest on his nation’s and his religion’s day of rest? Should they hurt his income and wage a real war of attrition against him? Only because he chose to honor the Shabbat? Seriously?” she asked.

The Sarona Market complex, at 3 Kalman Magen St., not far from the Azrieli Towers in downtown Tel Aviv, was established as the “heartbeat of Israeli culinary art.” The complex has 91 shops, stalls and restaurants of every genre, and it claims to be Israel’s largest indoor culinary market, and is very proud to be operating seven days a week. Constructed by Gindi Holdings on the grounds of a former German Templer colony, Sarona Market boasts being “an innovative, contemporary urban market that combines the old world with the new.”

Without the old world’s part concerning keeping Shabbat, apparently. Unfortunately, there is no way for a business to both receive an Orthodox kosher certificate and also operate on Shabbat. And so it appears that by not permitting a food shop to close on Shabbat, the Sarona Market is, in effect, prohibiting kosher certification to its businesses.

TV reporter Sivan Rahav-Meir, who was forwarded the above post, contacted Rami Bar Lev, CEO and owner of Henry’s, who told her: “When we came to sign a contract we were told we would work on Shabbat. I signed, but I expressed my verbal reservations. I believed we would get by down the road. I later found out that my concessionaire, like me, is traditional, and does not want to open on Shabbat. Now the management is angry with us, saying ‘this is not our vision, our vision is a place that’s open seven days a week.’ There are only a few, isolated, pre-approved businesses that close on Shabbat.”

“They started to charge us a fine of $890, which they take out of our bank account, every month we’re closed on Shabbat. I beg them to give us, too, an exception, but they refuse, saying again and again: it is not the vision of the place,” Bar Lev said.

He stressed that “I don’t want to be a hero, not for the religious nor the secular, that’s not my purpose, but this situation seems crazy. What was I asking for?”

A Sharona complex spokesperson said in response: “The place works seven days a week and the tenant has committed to that and did not receive approval for an exception. He is in breach of contract.”

Jerusalem Mayor to Close Central Supermarkets on Sabbath

Wednesday, August 19th, 2015

Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat is planning to force at least eight supermarkets that currently operate on the Sabbath in the holy city to close on Saturdays, according to a report Wednesday on Galei Tzahal Army Radio.

All eight are centrally located.

The move reportedly comes as a peace-making gesture to the hareidi factions in Barkat’s coalition who represent a large population in the city.

Last week hareidi religious men protested violently against the opening of the new “YES Planet” cinema complex in the capital, even though the complex is located far from the hareidi-religious section of the city.

“I’m happy the mayor kept his word to take steps to bolster the status of Shabbat in the holy city,” Jerusalem city council member Aryeh King told Galei Tzahal in a separate interview.

“I really hope that this will be the start of a new era of keeping Jerusalem united in the truest sense of the term. That includes preserving the holiness of the city – and the holiness of the Sabbath.”

King added that Barkat had promised the move in exchange for his return to the coalition.

Union to Enforce 4th Commandment and Strike the Airport on Shabbat

Thursday, August 6th, 2015

Religious coercion has come from the labor union, of all places, but not for the right reason.

The Histadrut announced on Thursday plans to strike the Ben Gurion Airport throughout this Shabbat – from sundown Friday until Saturday night – but don’t think we are on the eve of the Days of the Messiah.

The union’s problem is not Shabbat. Its complaint is that the Ben Gurion Airport Authority is employing too many contract workers, who are outside of the union.

The Histadrut planned to give those workers the chance to obey the Fourth Commandment, as written in Exodus (Shmot) 20, verses 8-11:

Remember the Sabbath day to sanctify it.                       :

Six days may you work and perform all your labor;

But the seventh day is a Sabbath to the Lord, your God; you shall perform no labor, neither you, your son, your daughter, your manservant, your maidservant, your beast, nor your stranger who is in your cities.

For [in] six days the Lord made the heaven and the earth, the sea and all that is in them, and He rested on the seventh day. Therefore, the Lord blessed the Sabbath day and sanctified it.

The Airport Authority and the Histadrut have been talking for a month on the union’s demand to limit the number of contract workers, who now number approximately 500 along with 3,400 unionized employees.

The Histadrut planned to observe Jewish law to the hilt. It not only was going to enforce the Fifth Commandment by not working on Shabbat, but it also was not going to interfere with emergency services, which will operate as usual in line with the dictate that one must work on the Shabbat if it means saving a life.

Later on Thursday, the Histadrut reached an agreement with Airport Authority and called off the strike.

The planned strike came at the peak of the summer tourist season. Air traffic is relatively slow on the Sabbath, but nevertheless there are approximately 200 planes scheduled to take off and land this Shabbat.

Fast of 17th of Tammuz Is on the 18th of Tammuz

Sunday, July 5th, 2015

In three weeks, the Fast of the 9th of Av will be on the 10th of Av.

Today’s fast day actually was supposed to take place on Saturday, which was the 17th day of the month of Tammuz, whose laws are reported here.

The Shabbat postpones the fast, leaving us with the seeming contradiction of marking the Fast of the 17th Day of Tammuz on the 18th day.

In three weeks, there will be a replay in three weeks, when the Fast of the Ninth Av will be noted on the 19th of Av for the same reason that one does not fast on Shabbat.

The exception to the rule is the fast of Yom Kippur, which takes precedence even if it falls on Shabbat.

Judaism is full of many apparent contradictions but which are logical after studying Jewish law

For example, it is forbidden to erect a tent, including umbrellas, on Shabbat. Jews also may not drive a car on Shabbat, unless it is a matter of life and death.

That is why you might see a Jew walking half a mile to synagogue in the winter in a wicked rainstorm and totally drenched when he arrives for prayers in which he asks God for rain.

Go figure.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/fast-of-17th-of-tammuz-is-on-the-18th-of-tammuz/2015/07/05/

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