Mitzvah613 Project

Mitzvah613 Project

Dear Friends,

It is with joy that we invite you to share in a new endeavor for North Suburban Synagogue Beth El –  the scribing of a new Torah scroll.   

The final commandment or “mitzvah” in the Torah, number 613, is for every Jew to write a Torah. This past Yom Kippur, Rabbi Schwab explained, “Torah is ‘etz hayim hee’it is the tree of life for those who hold fast to it.  Torah represents the foundation of our religious tradition.  And, you can personally fulfill the last mitzvah in the Torah – to write a sefer Torah for yourself.” 

Through this project, now called Mitzvah 613, the opportunity to carry out this mitzvah is open to all of our members.  Reflecting the words of Maimonides,
Even if he participates in one letter, it is as if he had written the entire Torah,” the Mitzvah 613 project will bring us to the highest level of involvement we can achieve to enact this final mitzvah of the Torah.

NSS Beth El’s newest Torah scroll is being created in Israel with a professional Sofer – scribe – who will spend the next year writing the Torah for our community. Once a Torah section is almost complete, the Sofer will come to our synagogue so that our members, along with their loved ones, can each share in the sacred moment when letters are set down on the parchment of Beth El’s newest Torah.

We are currently in the preliminary phase of introducing the congregation to Mitzvah 613.  We have many exciting events in store. Our grand opening ceremony will take place on Sunday, May 22, 2022, and our closing celebration will be one year later, on Sunday, May 21, 2023.  In conjunction with the completion of the Torah, we will celebrate Rabbi Schwab’s 18th year at Beth El, Rabbi Freedman’s fifth year, as well as Beth El and Israel’s 75th year anniversaries. Throughout the year to come, we will be learning and sharing meaningful experiences together that enhance our love for community and Torah.

Writing a Torah is a lasting legacy, the truest expression of L’dor V’dor – “from generation to generation”  as the Torah we create this year will physically be in the hands of future NSS Beth El generations.  As some of our strongest congregation and community-wide members and supporters, we invite you to participate in Mitzvah 613 by considering the variety of donor opportunities available.  Whether your children and grandchildren donate $6.13 at the L’Dor V’Dor level, and/or you give as a Guardian or Visionary of the Torah, we welcome any and all of your family’s participation in this most exciting project in the life of NSS Beth El.