Thursday, February 9, 2012

Update from Tu B'Shvat 5772

Rosh Hashannah for the trees was celebrated in many beautiful ways in the Mechina.

We learned and studied about the importance of Tu B'Shvat from a halachik
standpoint and its many practical and spiritual ramifications on our daily lives in and
out of Israel. We also strengthened our connection to the land through a good trip
in the Golan, of waterfalls, valleys, and mountains. It was truly beautiful to see the
results of the recent heavy rains, as the mountains were truly alive, green and lush,
and the waterfalls were gushing with water. Also, as the famous Tu B'Shvat song
goes, many almond trees could be seen blossoming along the trails.
A few of the more daring students jumped in to the freezing water for a swim, after
which they warmed up with a small bonfire we made.

On Tu B'Shvat eve we had a beautiful Seder. We spoke about the Shivat haMinim-the
seven special species of Eretz Yisrael, and of course partook of them, in addition to
many other fruits and nuts, had four cups of wine, and sang throughout the Seder.
Many of the students also prepared Divrei Torah on various fruits and nuts which they
shared throughout the evening.
For some of our Talmidim, it was their first Tu B'Shvat Seder ever, and was a special
and extraordinary experience for them.

On Tu B'Shvat day we joined the Moshav for the "traditional" Israeli custom of
planting new trees. G-D willing when the students come back for a visit in a few
years, they'll be able to appreciate their sapling as a growing tree in our Moshav.

In the past few weeks we have been focusing on a few more new things in the

In the Beit Midrash the students have been engrossed in studying and researching
for their Purim articles which will G-D willing be published and mailed to you
just in time for Purim. We hope you enjoy their articles with their informative and
inspirational ideas for the Chag.
On that note, if there is somebody specific, a relative or a close friend perhaps, whom
you think would like to receive the Purim Dvar Torah booklet, please send us their
address and be'ezrat Hashem we'll mail them a copy as well.

We have also begun our First Aid courses given by a local paramedic of Magen-
David -Adom of the Golan. These are important courses since the Mechina is very
active outdoors, and is especially vital in preparation for our Survival Week, to be
held in a few weeks.

Another interesting guest we had a few weeks ago was a lady who lives on the
Moshav who has an amazing and inspiring tale of how she grew up as a non Jewish
Christian teenager in Croatia during the war, and ended up converting, marrying an
Israeli, and lives on our Moshav.

The students have also been volunteering lately through different venues such as,
offering their general help to anybody on the Moshav through a letter they sent out,
helping a family move homes, and planting flowers throughout the Moshav a few
weeks ago.

That's about it for now, we look forward to our Survival Week, and the Chevron
Shabbaton to be held in a few weeks and hope to share our experiences with you in
the near future.

Shabbat Shalom!

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