For the first time in perhaps a millennia, a scribe is sitting atop the ancient fortress of Masada, writing a Torah scroll.
For the first time ever, the public can be part of a unique piece of history as Jewish National Fund-USA (JNF-USA) offers “Be Inscribed” campaign, an opportunity to buy letters, sentences, portions or an entire Torah scroll handwritten by a scribe atop the ancient cliff fortress of Masada.
In doing so, it represents a way to honor or remember loved ones, family and friends, while contributing to the legacy, perseverance, bravery and commitment of the Jewish people.
Through this effort, anyone can be part of a new Torah that is being handwritten on the very site where 2,000 years ago Jews revolted against Roman forces attempting to seize and enslave the last of the Jews rebelling against Roman rule.
A scribe is currently writing new Torahs for Jewish National Fund-USA’s “Be Inscribed” campaign in the very same synagogue that once housed the Torahs of Masada. In 2004, the synagogue was rebuilt and a Torah was placed there, and in 2008, a room was reconditioned to comfortably house a scribe behind a glass wall, affording visitors the opportunity to watch him at work.
The act of creating a new Torah is strenuous, with 304,805 letters to be written in Hebrew with a quill on calfskin parchment by a trained scribe.
With each Torah’s completion, JNF-USA donates it to a community either in the southern Negev Desert or the northern Galilee.
“We’re building a safe and vibrant land of Israel by [writing] Torah scrolls on top of Masada that once symbolized our destruction, but now symbolizes our life,” said Ron Werner of Denver, JNF-USA’s national assistant secretary and president of the board of directors at Alexander Muss High School in Israel, whose campus just outside of Tel Aviv received the first such Torah last July.
“Torah is the soul of the Jewish people and our moral compass,” affirmed Werner. “By connecting people to Torah, we elevate the whole equation and will build better bonds between Jewry and Israel.”
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