Our Czech Torah Scroll
In 1973, in honor of Larchmont Temple's 25th anniversary, we obtained on permanent loan what is often referred to as a "Holocaust Torah". This phrase refers to the more than 1500 Torahs that were collected and saved from devastated towns and synagogues in 1942 by the Prague Jewish community and then rescued by what became The Memorial Scrolls Trust in 1964.
Since their rescue, more than 600 Torahs have been leased to congregations in America and around the world. Their purpose is to teach the story of their survival and the historical events that surrounded it in the hopes that we can learn from history and prevent such atrocities from happening again.
Our Scroll came from a town called Moravske-Budejovice in Czechoslovakia and was given the Scroll number MST (Memorial Scrolls Trust)#963. It has a white cover with red broken "stars" and was refurbished and acquired for Larchmont Temple by Rabbi H. Leonard Poller. Reconsecrated by his family, this scroll was dedicated to the memory of Leon Lewis, a Holocaust survivor, and his wife, Elaine Lewis. Due to its fragility, it's read only on Yom Kippur and Yom Hashoah. To learn more about the Memorial Scrolls Trust, their mission and the history of the scrolls, click here.