New Year message 5770/2009

Erev Rosh Hashanah, 5770
The Future of Our Present and of Our Past
The renown Rabbi Israel Meir of Radin *** was talking to a very wealthy, successful
businessman, who was boasting of his achievements, the size of his business empire, the
number of staff he employed, all of whom reported to him and depended on him for their
In that case, said the Rabbi, you must have ample time at your disposal to study Torah, to
attend the services at the Synagogue and to carry out all your communal duties.
The businessman looked at the Rabbi in amazement, perplexed by his out of touch naivety.
Rabbi, he replied, my business affairs are so complex that they require my attention 24/7 – in
no way do I have the time even to see my family, let alone going to Synagogue!
“If you don’t have time”, the Rabbi retorted, “then you have nothing! – there is nothing
worse than not having time”. And, continued the Rabbi in sympathy with his misfortune,
“without having your own time at your disposal, you are but a slave, the poorest of the poor!”
On this holy day of Rosh Hashanah, please ponder: Do you feel rich enough in the sense that
you have your time at your disposal for you to use as you wish?
This congregation had a glorious past – from humble beginnings in private lounges and hired
halls to its own purpose-built Synagogue. Today, it proudly continues to be open and is
functioning. This is due in no small measure to the dedication of the few, who are prepared to
find time within their busy schedules and within their life style, to do what they believe to be
their religious and sacred duty to G-D, their community and the next generation.
But it should not be left to the few, as it is within the ability of EVERY ONE of us to
unselfishly play our parts and to mirror their efforts. It is in our hands to ensure that the sound
of prayer, of old and of little ones, continues to be heard within our Synagogue. It is up to
EVERY ONE of us to ensure that our past and our present have a future.
May the New Year with all its blessings begin – Tizkoo Leshanim Rabbot Vetovot.
Rev Yossi Houri
***One of the greatest Rabbis of Eastern Europe, 1838 – 1933. Popularly known as the ‘Hafes Hayim’ because
of the famous book of that name which he authored.
Did you know?
Did you know that our Torah comprises:
5 54 5,845 79,976 304,805 Books Parashot Verses Words Letters And did you know that the number of letters in each
of the Five Books is as follows:
Devarim 54,892 Bemidbar Vayikra 44,790 63,530 Shemot 63,529 Bereshit
78,064 But surely you did know that the number of times that each
letter of the Alphabet appears in the entire Torah is:
Tet 1,802 Het 7,187 Zayin 2,198 Vav 30,509 Heh 28,052 Tsadi 4,052 Peh Ayin Samech 4,805 11,244 1,833 Noon 14,107 Total 304,805 Dalet 7,032 Mem 25,078 Tav 17,949 Guimel Bet 2,109 16,344 Aleph 27,057 Lamed Kaf 21,570 11,960 Yud 31,522 Sheen Resh 15,592 18,109 Koof 4,694 "Have you allocated a fixed time to study the Torah ?"
is the FIRST question one will be asked when one
faces his Maker.
So, how many of the 304,805 letters of the Torah,
are you going to resolve to read or hear in our
Synagogue during the 31,536,000 seconds that you
have available during the forthcoming year?
Find time for reading,
or surrender yourself to
self-chosen ignorance'