April 21, 2024
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Heichal HaTorah Hosts Siyum and Simchas Beis Hashoeva

Rav Stechler greets Rav Weinberger. (Credit: Ellie Wolf)

At the recent Simchas Beis Hashoeva hosted by Heichal HaTorah, Rav Aryeh Stechler, rosh yeshiva and dean, introduced and conveyed with great reverence and affection his long-standing and special relationship with Rav Moshe Weinberger, shlita, mashpia at Yeshiva University and morah d’asrah of Congregation Aish Kodesh in Woodmere, New York.

Rav Stechler introduces Rav Weinberger and describes the diligence of the talmidim in the efforts of their summer learning. (Credit: Ellie Wolf)

Rav Weinberger opened his remarks describing the Heichal siyum and Simchas Beis Hashoeva as creating a “ruach acheres,” a powerful life spirit like no other. He addressed a crowd of about 400 standing behind or seated beneath a huge custom-built sukkah filled to capacity; to the standing-room-only women’s section; and in particular to the 61 talmidim who had completed various areas of Torah learning over the summer. Paired with the idea that it’s never too late to “just start,” he emphasized the importance of “being able to see beyond what is [visible] in front of us.”

A capacity crowd fills the seats and bleachers of the sukkah. (Credit: Ellie Wolf)

The rav spoke of zman simchaseinu, the time of our rejoicing, as being so much more than a moment in time; rather, it is an expression of our yearning for the glory of the future and what we will experience in the time of Moshaich. He explained that the idea, and even the word “sukkah” alludes to our “seeing beyond this moment,” projecting a vision of what is certain to unfold in the messianic era.

The women’s section. (Credit: Ellie Wolf)

Rav Stechler then introduced the 61 students who had learned over the summer, completing over 3,000 dappim/pages of Gemara from numerous mesechtas. Extended across the risers behind the dais, these young scholars recited the Hadran, the traditional declaration used at the culmination of Torah study, further expressing the intention to apply and continue their learning.

Zusha performing. (Credit: Ellie Wolf)

The popular Chasidic music group Zusha provided traditional and contemporary tunes for the celebration. And what would a siyum be without food? A second, separate sukkah was used for hot cholent and kugel. All in all, a grand celebration of kavod haTorah and simcha.

Overflow crowd stands behind the giant sukkah. (Credit: Ellie Wolf)
Akiva Besser recites the Hadran, together with the other talmidim making a siyum on their learning. (Credit: Ellie Wolf)
Rav Weinberger expounds on a hidden concept of sukkah. (Credit: Ellie Wolf)

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