G-d Loves Education

Thursday, 17 November, 2016 - 12:34 pm

IMG-20161114-WA0002.jpgThis week we celebrated an important ritual ceremony with our three year old son, Eliyahu. He, along with three classmates, Yitzchak Nemes, Meir Naghi and Tommy Warshawski, had a “Hachnasa L’cheder” – a formal initiation into Jewish education. The ceremony consists of the children experiencing the sweetness of Torah learning by licking honey off of a page ofIMG-20161114-WA0004.jpg Torah from which they read the letters of the Alef Bet and recited Torah passages. There are several other customs for this ceremony which the children enjoyed together with their schoolmates.

The idea behind this ceremony is obvious. We want our children to know and feel that learning Torah is the sweetest thing. That learning and living Torah is a positive thing that will make their lives better and more meaningful. Though they are only 3 years old, the impression this leaves can last a lifetime. As Jews, we have always valued the importance of education. Were we to forget momentarily, our enemies would quickly remind us. The Greeks, Romans, Spaniards, Russians and others over the millennia moved swiftly to outlaw Jewish education. Their motive? “If there are no kids, there will be no goats.”

On the positive side, G-d declares His love for Avraham primarily because of his commitment “to educating his children and his household that they should keep the way of the L-rd to perform righteousness and justice.” (Genesis 18:19) Of all of the monumental achievements of Avraham, the one that Hashem singles out with His love, is the commitment to education in the ways of Hashem.

We are honored to be continuing a 4000 year long commitment to Jewish education. Here is New Orleans we are privileged that our children have a top rate institution at which they enjoy the highest quality education. The staff and teachers at Torah Academy are truly devoted to the continuity of this 4000 year tradition of educating our people’s future in the ways of Hashem. Along the way, the children receive a well-rounded general education, enabling them to grow up to be excellent citizens and committed Jews. If you would like to support Torah Academy’s efforts in honor of Eliyahu and his friends, or just because you care about the future of our people, please go to and make a contribution. Our children and our nation will forever be thankful.

In other news, check this article about the Le Marais visit to NOLA. As always see below for photos of the event.

Shabbat Shalom
Rabbi Mendel Rivkin

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