Newsletter Parashat Shemot – Shabbat Mevarechim



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This Shabbat 
Shabbat Mevarechim Chodesh Shevat
Dear Congregants. 

 This week the Prime Minister introduced a new range of restrictions earlier this week. Synagogues are permitted to remain open. 

The guidance from the government is as follows:- 

“You can attend places of worship for a service. However, you must not mingle with anyone outside of your household or support bubble. You should maintain strict social distancing at all times.”

Please keep this in mind when attending the synagogue.

If you or anyone in your household/bubble are experiencing Covid-19 symptoms remain at home for the required time period.

Masks should be worn at all times. Please cover both mouth and nose. 

Please maintain social distancing. Before, during and after tefillah. 

Please wash your hands or sanitise upon entry.

Please only sit in the designated spaces.

Do not congregate around the radiators. If you are cold, please wear a coat.

Thankfully we are still able to come together and pray but we must be respectful of these requirements and each other and ensure that Moor Lane remains a safe place for all those that come to pray. 

Thank you

The Mahamad

Rabbi Oppenheimer
Masechet Berachot
25 minutes before Korbanot
Times for this week
Korbanot 7:50 am Hodu 8.00 am
Mincha & Arbit 3:30 pm

Monday, Thursday & Friday
Hodu: 7.05    Barechu: 7.15

Tues, Wed, Fri 
Hodu: 7.10   Barechu: 7.20

Monday – Thursday
7:00 pm
Please support our minyanim whenever possible!
Updates will appear on the WhatsApp group image.png
If anyone needs any help getting to or from the minyanim 
please contact one of the members of the Mahamad
  Avot Ubanim
Winter Season
in the comfort of your own home,
for more information about 
the ZOOM link
please contact
07815 885 245

 Devar Torah by: 
  Davs Marshall

Winners of the Raffle:
Davs Marshall
Gavriel Sacks
Josh Sacks
Yisrael Benami
Dear Members, regular Mitpalelim & Friends of Moor Lane Synagogue,

In keeping with the Mahamad’s aim of continuously trying to improve the synagogue and the facilities for the betterment of the community, we have recently undertaken to explore the feasibility of expanding our facilities. We identified the need for a larger entrance lobby, better cloakroom and WC facilities, a larger Ezrat Nashim and a dedicated youth and Kollel room. To this end we commissioned plans and we have submitted a Planning Application for a scheme to deliver on these requirements. The council has not yet committed to supporting our application so we are advised that we need to make it clear to the council that the scheme is strongly supported by the Community. 

To this end, we would be very grateful indeed if everyone will please go online and register your strong support for the development project. The more people that leave comments the better. 

Please include in your comments how you feel this proposal will help the community in all its endeavors and how you agree that the design is suitable and sympathetic to its context. 

Many thanks indeed for your participation and we look forward to working with the community to deliver this exciting project in the near future. 

Lastly, if you have any queries then please be in touch with Yamin or any member of the Mahammad.
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The children and teens of Moor Lane 
made a great range of crafts to celebrate Chanukah this year. 
They have been proudly hanging up in the entrance area of the synagogue
 for all to see the great artwork of our young artists! 
We would like to thank everyone for their contributions and special 
Thank you to Mrs. Dina Shalom for arranging & organizing! 

Check out all the fab Chanukah Art here

74631.jpg      image.png
Sefardic World
The Dutch Pimentel family – History and Holocaust

This week we bring you three expert speakers.

The Pimentel are one of the oldest Sephardic families in The Netherlands. 
Henk Dijkman will discuss the family history, stretching back to Medieval Spain. 
Fokko Weerstra tells the story of Jacques Pimentel during the Shoah. Along with some other Sephardim, he tried to use his distant Catholic ancestry to escape deportation to Poland by the Nazis. 
Esther Shaya discusses Henriette Pimentel – one of the unsung heroes of the Holocaust – who saved the lives of six hundred children being held prisoner at the Hollandsche Schouwburg-theatre.

We are hoping to trace people saved by Henriette and their family members. If you know anyone, please forward this message.

Sunday Jan 10, 2021. 2pm NYC, 7pm London, 8pm Amsterdam/Paris, 9pm Jerusalem.

Join Zoom Meeting:

Thanks to everyone who supports our work. If you are not already a patron, please consider a small monthly donation. As little as $5/month makes a huge difference.

If you can't get into the Zoom meeting, there is an overflow on Facebook at:

Best wishes,

Ton Tielen and David Mendoza
Sephardic World  


לוח זמני תפלה לחורף תשפ״א

מוצאי שבת



מנחה שבת

סוף זמן קריאת שמע

הדלקת נרות

מנחה וקבלת שבת


שבת פרשת






Shema before

Candle Lighting

Minha & Kabbalat Shabbat



















8/9 Jan


Q & A on Parashat Shemot

All references are to the verses and Rashi’s commentary, unless otherwise stated.

  1. Why does the verse say “And Yosef was in Egypt”?
    1:5 – This verse adds that, despite being in Egypt as a ruler, Yosef maintained his righteousness.
  2. “…And they will go up out of the land.” Who said this and what did he mean?
    1:10 – Pharaoh said it, meaning that the Egyptians would be forced to leave Egypt.
  3. Why did Pharaoh specifically choose water as the means of killing the Jewish boys? (Two reasons.)
    1:10,22 – He hoped to escape divine retribution, as G-d promised never to flood the entire world. Also, his astrologers saw that the Jewish redeemer's downfall would be through water.
  4. “She saw that he was good.” What did she see “good” about Moshe that was unique?
    2:2 – When he was born, the house was filled with light.
  5. Which Hebrew men were fighting each other?
    2:13 – Datan and Aviram.
  6. Moshe was afraid that the Jewish People were not fit to be redeemed because some among them committed a certain sin. What sin?
    2:14 – Lashon hara (evil speech).
  7. Why did the Midianites drive Yitro's daughters away from the well?
    2:17 – Because a ban had been placed on Yitro for abandoning idol worship.
  8. How did Yitro know that Moshe was Yaakov's descendant?
    2:20 – The well water rose towards Moshe.
  9. What lesson was Moshe to learn from the fact that the burning bush was not consumed?
    3:12 – Just as the bush was not consumed, so too Moshe would be protected by G-d.
  10. What merit did the Jewish People have that warranted G-d’s promise to redeem them?
    3:12 – That they were destined to receive the Torah.
  11. Which expression of redemption would assure the people that Moshe was the true redeemer?
    3:16,18 – “I surely remembered (pakod pakadeti ).”
  12. What did the staff turning into a snake symbolize?
    4:3 – It symbolized that Moshe spoke ill of the Jews by saying that they wouldn't listen to him, just as the original snake sinned through speech.
  13. Why didn't Moshe want to be the leader?
    4:10 – He didn't want to take a position above that of his older brother Aharon.
  14. “And Hashem was angry with Moshe…” What did Moshe lose as a result of this anger?
    4:14 – Moshe lost the privilege of being a kohen .
  15. What was special about Moshe's donkey?
    4:20 – It was used by Avraham for akeidat Yitzchak and will be used in the future by mashiach .
  16. About which plague was Pharaoh warned first?
    4:23 – Death of the firstborn.
  17. Why didn't the elders accompany Moshe and Aharon to Pharaoh? How were they punished?
    5:1 – The elders were accompanying Moshe and Aharon, but they were afraid and one by one they slipped away. Hence, at the giving of the Torah, the elders weren't allowed to ascend with Moshe.
  18. Which tribe did not work as slaves?
    5:5 – The tribe of Levi.
  19. Who were the: a) nogsim b) shotrim ?
    5:6 – a) Egyptian taskmasters; b) Jewish officers.
  20. How were the shotrim rewarded for accepting the beatings on behalf of their fellow Jews?
    5:14 – They were chosen to be on the Sanhedrin.


Halachot from Maran Rabbi Ovadia Yosef Ztz'l

ברכת הגומל
לחולה – קורונה

שאלה: מי שהיה חולה בקורונה, ולא היה בכלל סכנה
ממש, רק נחלה עד שנאלץ לשכב במטה, האם צריך לברך הגומל? ומה הדין אם חלה בקורונה
אך לא הרגיש תסמינים

באופן כללי, כי ארבעה חייבים בברכת הגומל, ואלו הם: יורדי הים כשיעלו ממנו, והולכי
מדברות כשיגיעו לישוב, ומי שהיה חולה ונתרפא, ומי שהיה חבוש בבית האסורים ויצא.
וסימן לדבר (לזכרון אלו הארבעה), וכל החיי”ם יודוך סלה. ראשי תיבות, ח'בוש,
י'ם, י'סורין, מ'דבר. וחבוש הוא החבוש בבית באסורין ויצא משם, ים אלו יורדי הים
באניות ששבו, יסורין הם הייסורים שבאו על החולה שנתרפא, ומדבר אלו הולכי המדברות
שבאו אל עיר מושב

ובענין מה שכתבנו
שחולה שנתרפא צריך לברך הגומל, כתב הרמב”ן בספר תורת האדם, “לענין ברכת
הגומל לחולה שנתרפא, לאו דוקא בחולה שיש בו סכנה, אלא כל שעלה למיטה, צריך להודות
בברכת הגומל, שכל שעלה למיטה דומה למי שהעלוהו לגרדום לידון, שצריך פרקליטים
(סנגורים) גדולים להנצל, וברחמי הקדוש ברוך הוא הזמין לו פרקליטים טובים על ידי
מצות ומעשים טובים שעשה”. עד כאן

וכיוצא בזה כתב
הרשב”א בתשובה, ועוד מרבותינו הראשונים. ורבינו המאירי הביא את דעת האומרים
שאין צריך לברך הגומל אלא חולה שיש בו סכנה, וכתב, ואין אני מודה בכך, אלא כל שעלה
למיטה וירד מברך הגומל, שהרי הוא כמי שהעלוהו לגרדום לידון

ולענין מעשה פסק מרן
השלחן ערוך (סימן ריט סעיף ח): על כל חולי צריך לברך הגומל, אפילו אינו חולי של
סכנה, אלא כל שעלה למיטה וירד, מפני שדומה כמי שהעלוהו לגרדום. והרמ”א בהגה
כתב, ויש אומרים שאינו מברך אלא על חולי שיש בו סכנה כגון מכה של חלל, וכן נוהגים
באשכנז. עד כאן. ובאמת שאף למנהג האשכנזים, יש אומרים שעל כל חולי שנאלץ לשכב
במטה, צריך לברך הגומל

והמנהג פשוט אצל
הספרדים ובני עדות המזרח לברך הגומל על כל חולי אף על פי שאין בו סכנה, ובלבד שהיה
מרותק למטה בחוליו

לכן לענין
מי שחלה בקורונה בצורה
רצינית, עד כדי כך שהיה שוכב במיטה, כאשר יבריא בחוליו, עליו לברך ברכת הגומל בפני
עשרה בני אדם מישראל. אבל אם חלה באופן שלא הרגיש כלל בתסמיני המחלה, אינו רשאי
לברך ברכת הגומל, כי על ענין כמו זה לא תיקנו רבותינו ברכה. אולם, “טוב
להודות לה'”, ויודה בפיו בפרקי תהלים וכדומה. אך לא בברכה ממש

“Ha’Gomel” Blessing for One Who Has Recovered from the Coronavirus

Question: If one was sick with the Coronavirus but
was not in any life-threatening danger and the illness merely caused one to be
bedridden, must one recite the “Ha’Gomel” blessing?

Answer: In the previous Halacha we explained that there are four
types of people that must recite the “Ha’Gomel” blessing:
Sea travelers upon safely docking, individuals travelling through the desert
upon reaching an inhabited settlement, a sick person who has recovered, and an
incarcerated person who was released. A way to remember these four types is
with the verse וכל החיי”ם יודוך סלה.
This is an acronym for CH’avushY’amY’isurimM’idbarChavush refers
to one who was imprisoned and then freed, Yam refers to sea
travellers who have docked safely, Yisurim refers to the
suffering experienced by a person who was ill and now healed, and Midbar refers
to those travelling through the desert who have reached an inhabited place.

the obligation of one who was sick and then healed to recite the “Ha’Gomel” blessing,
the Ramban writes in his Sefer Torat Ha’Adam: “Regarding the “Ha’Gomel” blessing
for a sick person who has recovered, this does not apply specifically to a
person with a life-threatening illness; rather, as long as one was bedridden,
one must praise Hashem with the “Ha’Gomel” blessing, for anyone
who has been bedridden is considered to have been seated on the prosecutor’s
bench awaiting judgment and needs a great defense in order to be saved. Hashem
in His great mercy provided this person with the necessary defense through the
Mitzvot and good deeds that he has performed.”

Rashba and other Rishonim write similarly. The Meiri quotes the opinions that
write that only one who recovers from a life-threatening illness recites the “Ha’Gomel” blessing
and then writes, “I do not agree with this; rather anyone who was bedridden and
then arose [from his illness] must recite the “Ha’Gomel” blessing for
he is considered to have been judged on the prosecutor’s bench.”

speaking, Maran Ha’Shulchan Aruch (Chapter 219, Section 8) rules, as follows:
“For any illness, even one which is not life-threatening, one must recite the “Ha’Gomel” blessing,
for as long as one was bedridden and since recovered, one is considered to have
been seated on the prosecutor’s bench awaiting judgment.” The Rama there notes,
however, “Some say that one only recites the “Ha’Gomel” blessing
for a life-threatening illness, such as an internal injury, and this is the
Ashkenazi custom.” Nevertheless, some say that even according to the Ashkenazi
custom, if one’s illness caused one to be confined to bed, one must recite
the “Ha’Gomel” blessing.

widespread custom among the Sephardic and Middle Eastern Jews is to recite
the “Ha’Gomel” blessing for any illness, even
non-life-threatening, so long as one was bedridden as a result of the illness.

halachically speaking, 
if one fell ill as a result of COVID-19 to the extent that one
became bedridden, when one recovers, one must recite the “Ha’Gomel” blessing
when one recovers. Nevertheless, even if one tests positive for COVID-19
antibodies but one did not suffer from any of the common symptoms, one may not
recite the blessing, for our Sages did not enact the blessing to be recited
under such circumstances. Nevertheless, it is appropriate for one to offer
thanks to Hashem by reciting several chapters of Tehillim and the like.