Simchat Torah – Different Customs

2 Responses

  1. Michael Sedley says:

    Thanks for posting this article Rabbi.

    In the 80s (and probably going back much earlier), when Rabbi Moshe Berlove (Smicha from YU) was in Wellington, the custom in Wellington was definitely to wear Tfilin on Chol hamoed, I think that even Chaim Dovrat and his son wore Tfilin without a Bracha, even though they were Sfardi-Israeli.

    When I was in Israel in 1989, I put in Tfilin on Chol Hamoed (before I went to shul) as that had been the minhag in Wellington since my bar Mitzva.

    When I came back from Israel, and Rabbi Berlove had been replaced with (Israeli trained) Rabbi Brown, the custom in Wellington had changed, and no one wore Tfillin – probably because no one remembered what had happened the previous year, so they looked to the Rabbi for guidance, and as he hadn’t worn Tfillin in Israel, no one wore Tfillin.

    Since then I assume that the practice has changed based on whoever is in Wellington at the time.

    מועדים לשגרה

    • CzechWonderNine says:

      Over the last decade I’ve been coming to minyanim spanning four rabbionim the congregants have been mixed between those keeping Ashkenaz minhag and laying and those not – ironically, this is something we’re meant to try to avoid but it doesn’t seem to hurt anyone in practice.

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