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April 17, 2014 / 17 Nisan, 5774
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Posts Tagged ‘Sheva Berachot’

Only At Orchidea

Wednesday, July 18th, 2012

I had the tremendous zechut to attend the wedding of my granddaughter Rachayli Fuchs to Shaul Klein in June, and then, much to my delight I was able to make one of the Sheva Berachot. My guest list was composed and invitations extended. The divrei Torah would be delivered by my grandson Rabbi Raphael Fuchs and my nephew Meir Greenwald.

Where to hold the Sheva Berachot? For me it was an easy decision. Orchidea, of course.

This was not the first time I would be making Sheva Berachot at Orchidea, located in Boro Park, Brooklyn. Based on past performance I had every reason to expect it would be wonderful – and it was.

Orchidea is a dairy restaurant, which I felt was a nice break from all the meat meals at the weeklong festivities.

I couldn’t bring flowers from the wedding because too many days had passed, so hosts Ofer Kohen and Mazal Werczberger had beautiful candle displays on each table. There was a menu created especially for us at each seat, giving guests an enticing selection of courses and making for a nice keepsake.

I am not a fan of sushi but most of my guests were, and the large sushi platter soon disappeared, though at the same time waiters were serving hors devoir. My favorite was the avocado salad on tortilla chips; my sister liked the coconut crusted fish on the skewer.

The grilled salmon at Orchidea is outstanding – an opinion shared by everyone who ordered it – but those who ordered the pasta dish or the eggplant felt the same way about their choices. The dessert, composed of cheesecake, chocolate cake, ice cream and napoleon, all arranged on the same plate, was a work of art in addition to being a culinary delight.

Getting together with good friends gives one a very special feeling. Being together for a mitzvah such as Sheva Berachot makes the occasion even more special. Add the divrei Torah, the beautiful words of the chattan, seeing the happiness on the face of a beloved granddaughter and hearing the magnificent voice of my chazzan, Pinchas Cohen, as he sang the last berachah – put all of that into Orchidea and it is no wonder the evening was one that will long be remembered.

(For more information on Orchidea, see The Jewish Press Dining Guide in this issue.)

Sheva Berachot After Shalosh Seudot

Wednesday, December 21st, 2011

Question: Normally one may not eat or drink after Birchat Hamazon of Shalosh Seudot until after Havdalah. What is the halacha, however, if one schedules Sheva Berachot for a Shalosh Seudot meal? Should the groom and bride drink from the wine of Sheva Berachot or not?

Answer: The general custom is that the bride and groom do in fact drink from the wine. I believe this custom is based on the ruling of Rav Avraham Butchacha.

His rationale is as follows: The last berachah of Sheva Berachot blesses God for making wine. One cannot eliminate this berachah because the very name “Sheva Berachot” requires one to make seven blessings. On the other hand, one cannot refrain from drinking the wine because to do so would mean that the last blessing was recited in vain – a berachah l’vatalah (see Eishel Avraham, Mahdura Tenina, Orach Chayyim 22:7).

Rav Butchacha therefore permits the groom and bride to drink from the wine. He also argues that drinking wine after Sheva Berachot is qualitatively different than drinking wine after a regular Shalosh Seudot meal. After a regular Shalosh Seudot meal, one does not normally drink wine. One, however, always drinks wine after a Sheva Berachot meal.

The Minchat Shabbat, my paternal grandfather, writes (in his additive notes, Shirurei HaMinchah 94:4) that Rav Butchacha expounded in his commentary on Even HaEzer (62) a theory supporting drinking wine after Sheva Berachot. He notes that many scholars contend that a person who has the custom of always drinking wine after Birchat Hamazon is permitted to drink the kos shel berachah after Shalosh Seudot as well since the wine is then deemed part of the seudah (see Magen Avraham, O.C. 299:7). Since a bride and groom conclude each meal during the first week of marriage with Sheva Berachot that include a blessing for wine, they are classified as people who normally drink wine after Birchat Hamazon and hence are permitted to drink the wine.

It is reputed that HaGoan HaRav Moshe Feinstein, zt”l, only permitted the bride and groom to drink from the wine. My assumption is that this ruling is based on the logic of the Rav Butchacha. Only the bride and groom have the custom of drinking wine after the meal, not necessarily the person who led Birchat Hamazon.

It should be noted that the custom of HaRav Yosef Tzvi Dushinsky, former chief rabbi of Jerusalem, was to drink some of the wine after Sheva Berachot and then give the wine to the bride and groom (Minhagei MaHaRitz 58).

Rabbi Cohen, a Jerusalem Prize recipient, is the author of seven books on Jewish law. His latest, “Shabbat the Right Way: Resolving Halachic Dilemmas” (Urim Publications), is available at Judaica stores and at Amazon.com.

Chronicles in Crises In Our Communities – 11/06/09

Wednesday, November 4th, 2009

Dear Rachel,

I have read your articles for a number of years now and appreciate the advice given. Here is my story.

I got married when I was very young. My husband managed to conceal his true nature before the wedding, but it already surfaced on the wedding night and throughout Sheva Berachot. I was too ashamed to tell anyone of the pain and humiliation that I was subjected to. It took many years before I could begin to talk about this with a therapist.

We started off as many young couples do, being supported by my parents while he was in yeshiva… except he wasn’t in yeshiva. He slept late (past 2 p.m.), went to movies, and viewed online porn throughout the night. He also kept demanding more financial support from my parents. He needed to know about every cent I spent, while he had free access to all the money my parents provided. He began to badmouth my parents, telling stories that made both my parents and myself suspicious of one another.

After a few years he decided to go to work. By that time he had successfully alienated me from my parents and many friends. He was diagnosed with an STD, but it was too late. I was already carrying a child. He was unable to maintain a job, and I began to juggle various jobs, even though my pregnancy was difficult.

When my daughter was just a toddler we separated. I began to fear for my daughter’s safety and could no longer make excuses for him. It was excruciating, but I am Baruch Hashem in a better place today.

After two years in Beis Din, I finally, miraculously, received a Get. I wish this were the end of this dreadful story.

Since the issues of concern were of such a delicate nature, I shared them only with my parents and professionals – while my husband spread horrible lies about me, managing to turn the entire neighborhood against me. My family lives abroad and I spent many a Shabbos alone. Even walking out of my house or going to the store became difficult because of the “looks” and comments.

If you think this is in my head, it is not! I was subjected to very real bullying.

I am once more in the midst of yet another custody battle (that he initiated), while my parents are tormented by continuous lawsuits against them (by my ex). My daughter is suffering as well.

The Yamim Noraim have come and gone, and I cannot help wondering: This is the third Yom Kippur since they have not only stopped being my friends, but have harassed and humiliated me! Where are the middot of a Jew? I, Baruch Hashem, have supportive friends and family, but they don’t live where I do.

I hope you print this article so that people learn to stop listening to Lashon Ha’ra and create situations of Sinat Chinam and Machloket.

Thank you!

My suffering seems endless

Dear Suffering,

The ignorance of the people in your neighborhood is appalling. For shame! While you conduct yourself with dignity, disclosing details of your personal life only to your parents and professionals your husband spreads vicious rumors about you, to whoever gives him the time of day. And, sad to say, some people are only too happy to have something to gossip about.

Our holy Torah begins with, of all things, a lesson on Lashon Ha’ra. The snake badmouthed Hashem, and Chava believed all the nonsense the snake fed her – thus turning the future of mankind on its head.

And have we learned ? Hardly. Unfortunately, too many people are still eager to ingest a piece of juicy gossip. “Mi ha’ish he’chafetz chaim ” writes Dovid HaMelech in Tehillim. “Who is the man who wants life? Guard your tongue from evil…”

In fact, there are numerous references in the Torah on the subject of gossip and slander. In Vayikra, for instance, we find, “Lo seilech rachil b’amecha” (you shall not go as a peddler of gossip among your people), which is immediately followed by, “You shall not stand aside while your brother’s blood is shed.”

Summed up in the verses of Mishlei 6:16-19: A person who causes bad feelings between friends is deemed evil and is despicable in the eyes of Hashem.

ArtScroll’s Chofetz Chaim: A Daily Companion cites the above and much more. Everyone would benefit from reading and rereading the volume.

Being unfamiliar with your personal story, I cannot really ask or comment on why you have not moved away from a place that has treated you so shabbily. By the same token, you certainly have nothing to be ashamed of and can hold your head high knowing that you have behaved properly. It is the gossip mongers who should be hanging their heads in shame and begging your forgiveness.

You could have unburdened your heart by confiding in any one or more of your friends, yet you chose not to in order to avoid speaking ill of your ex – while they have chosen to believe his lies about you.

You write to alert others to the pitfalls of the scourge of Lashon Ha’ra, and every one of us needs to take your message to heart. In the zechus of prodding us to consider the ramifications of failing to heed the laws of Shmiras HaLashon, may Hashem grant you much hatzlachah in surmounting the difficulties you face in your ongoing battle.

Take strength in knowing that the truth is always exposed to the One watching, the One Who is your Guardian 24/7 – so that you really are never alone.

* * * * *

We encourage women and men of all ages to send in their personal stories via email to rachel@jewishpress.com or by mail to Rachel/Chronicles, c/o The Jewish Press, 338 Third Ave., Brooklyn, N.Y. 11215

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/sections/family/chronicles-of-crises/chronicles-in-crises-in-our-communities-2/2009/11/04/

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