Torah! Torah! Torah! Williamsburg shuls go crazy for new scrolls

Torah! Torah! Torah! Williamsburg shuls go crazy for new scrolls
Photo by Stefano Giovannini

The holiest book gave way to the holiest street parades in Williamsburg.

Thousands of Hasidic Jews celebrated the gift of letters on Sunday when two Satmar synagogues received new hand-made Torahs in advance of Shavuos — a holiday commemorating the delirious moment when the Jewish people received the 10 Commandments about 3,323 years ago.

And what a party it was!

The ceremony — one of the happiest occasions among Orthodox communities — is an all-day affair when men, women and children dance in the street as if gyrating were the 11th Commandment.

Two parades of revelers led by scores of little boys carrying paper torches wound through Bedford Avenue and Clymer Streets before dropping them off at their respective shuls.

One scroll was donated by Jacob Freund in the memory of his father, Samuel, while the other was given by the Zeians family in the memory of their ancestors — two of more than 10 that have been given to Williamsburg synagogues over the past month.

Each handwritten scroll costs about $60,000 and takes about two to three years to complete.

Hasidim in Williamsburg celebrated the arrival of a new hand-written Torah scroll with a parade and festivities.
Photo by Stefano Giovannini

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