Holocaust Torah Restoration Project
Sept. 2013 - March 2014
Our TBS Holocaust Torah is on permanent loan from the London-based Memorial Scrolls Trust. You can learn more about this important organization at www.memorialscrollstrust.org. This same organization has loaned over 1,500 Holocaust Torahs to synagogues and temples throughout the world for their care and safekeeping. Imagine former TBS’ Rabbi, Marvin Schwab’s horror when, following a roof leak over the Bima, our TBS Holocaust Torah was drenched and waterlogged. To quickly “save” the Torah, Rabbi Schwab unrolled it to its full length. It took days to dry out. The parchment survived but needed to be “re-hydrated,” a process that cost approximately $25,000.
It quickly became apparent many of the letters had faded beyond recognition. For the Torah to regain its kosher status, a professional sofar, Rabbi Moshe Druin and his unique organization, Sofar on Site were asked to restore our TBS Holocaust Torah to its pre-deluge condition. See TBS Holocaust Torah Restoration Project, YouTube video.
The Holocaust Torah Restoration Project Committee was formed, consisting of TBS Members, Cantor Meredith Brown, Thomas Carroll, Richard Lapan, Cindy Lyon, Michael Makoid, Meryl Marchand, David M. Miller, Rabbi Schwab, Aaron Wolf, and Ellen Zeiselman. "On the day of the Torah letter 'signing' the HTRP committee was helped by Anna Rayne Levi, Rabbi Nahum Ward-Lev, Deborah Weinberg, and many more as guests were invited to different stations to enhance the experience." Each TBS family member was invited to participate in “signing” a Torah letter, with Rabbi Druin’s assistance. Contributions were solicited – although not required – and collectively, the HTRP raised $235,000. Participants had their “signing” experience photographed by a friend of our Temple, Linda McClellan which was later sent to each family for their safe keeping. Other event activity included (please fill-in rock painting and any other activities that HTRP organized)
The committee worked diligently to provide each TBS family member a truly meaningful experience. The comments most readily heard following each and every “signing”, was “This truly was a Generation to Generation, v’dor v’dor experience.
Our TBS restored Holocaust Torah is actively used during High Holiday services, and at every Bar and Bat Mitzvah.