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Thursday, November 10, 2005


I know that I’ve been writing a lot this month about yahrzeits, but this one’s a real biggie! For those not familiar, a yahrzeit is the anniversary of a person’s departure from this world. The word is a compound one: “yahr” meaning “year,” and “tzeit” [or “zeit”] meaning “time.” So a yahrzeit is an anniversary, a year’s time. It is also referred to, in Aramaic, the language of the Talmud, as a “Hilula”, which is really a joyous event like a wedding. For when each year, on the yahrzeit, a person’s soul ascends higher in Heaven. And we here on earth remember them – for their good deeds, their Torah insights, and, for most of the people I write about here – for their music. So, in a week’s time, we have the yahrzeit of none other than Reb Shlomo Carlebach, zt”l. This day, the 16th of Cheshvan, is commemorated around the world, with singing, Shabbatons, concerts, learning sessions and of course, story-telling. I will try to point out the various activities taking place, in this post, and perhaps again later during the coming week.

The Kever at Har HaMenuchos

IN ISRAEL, perhaps the most notable event is the Aliya L’Kever, the visit to Reb Shlomo’s gravesite where he is buried. This is on Har HaMenuchos in Yerushalayim, and people from all over Israel, and often from abroad as well, come to pay their respects. Tehillim [psalms] are recited, both publicly and individually, commemorative speeches are made, and the singing and dancing are almost non-stop. In a normal year, the Mincha [afternoon] service goes for a very long time, with practically each part sung to a different tune of Reb Shlomo’s! In fact, the singing goes on, usually, until a bit after dark, when we daven Ma’ariv [the evening prayers] and either go home, or on to a festive yahrzeit seuda [meal]. This year will be somewhat different, because it’s on a Friday. So here are the details:

The Aliya L’Kever for Reb Shlomo’s yahrzeit will be on Friday morning the 16th of Ram-Cheshvan (November 18th). We will gather at the kever on Har HaMenuchot at 11:00 A.M. For more information call Michael Brand at 054-440-8872. (From the Rabbi Shlomo Carlebach Foundation.)

The there’s the big concert in Binyanei HaUma, Yerushalayim, usually [as it is this year] on a Motzaei Shabbos around the yahrzeit:
Shir L'Shlomo, The Rabbi Shlomo Carlebach Foundation presents:
The 11th Annual Reb Shlomo Carlebach Memorial Concert
Motzaei Shabbat, the 19th of November (17th Ram-Cheshvan, Parshat Vayera)
Binyanei HaUma Jerusalem – Doors open at 19:30 (7:30 pm)
Special Guest of Honor - Neila Carlebach; MC: Menachem Toker
Musicians: Chaim David Sarachik; Reva L'Sheva; Aharon Razel; Yonatan Razel; Shlomo Katz; Naftali Abramson; Yishai Lapidot; Mendy Jerufi; Chizkiya Sofer; Amiran Dvir; Josh Lauffer and the Neve Michael Choir – and more...

In Efrat, Israel, a very special Shabbaton is planned:
I am writing to invite you to The Efrat Reb Shlomo Carlebach Festival and Memorial Shabbaton. The Festival and Shabbaton will held on be on Nov.18-19 at the Shirat Shlomo Synagogue in the Retreat center.
Starting on Friday at 9:30 we will begin a Reb Shlomo Marathon singing his songs interspliced with his teachings, taking only a short break for lunch and then again to get ready for Shabbat. There will also be a display of Reb Shlomo's books and CDs. At Candle lighting we will experience Reb Shlomo's Candle lighting Meditation. Followed by a spirited Reb Shlomo Kabbalat Shabbat. First meal with Reb Shlomo's melodies for the Zemirot and Benching. At the Friday night Oneg we will have the Reb Shlomo Story Marathon. Telling the stories he told and stories about him until …
Shabbat day: Reb Shlomo's nusach for Shacharit and Musaf; Lunch at hosting families.
4:00 Mincha +Select readings from Reb Shlomo's published works +Third meal
We will end Shabbat with Reb Shlomo's Havdala and a Mini-concert
Shabbaton leader Rabbi Yehoshua Rubin
When: Shabbat Parshat Vayera November 18-19.
Where: Efrat with home hospitality assignments. For those interested there is a possibility to sleep at the retreat center.
Fee: 170 shekels singles, 280 couples, 60 shekels for children under Bar/Bat Mitzva, 85 shekels for teenagers, soldiers and the work/study positions. There are ten work/study positions.
For an information packet and or to register you can e-mail Yehoshua Rubin at yehoshuaannette@yahoo.com or call 050-710-6448; 02-993-3153.

Okay, I know there are lots of events in the US too. New York, Boca Raton and Massachusetts are just some of the places I’ve heard from…more to come!

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