An Overview of Events in the Community
JLE, 152-154 Golders Green Road, NW11 8HE
Women's Gateshead Shabbaton in association with Gesher, 6 - 8 May 2011. £75 for women aged 18+. For more information email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Young Professionals Paris Trip - Thursday 12 - Sunday 15 May 2011. £249 for ages 21 - 35. For more information email email@example.com.
Ohr Yisrael Synagogue, Borehamwood
Three day trip to Poland in association with JRoots. Sunday 22 - Tuesday 24 May, £330 plus flights. For more information contact Deborah on 020 8953 8385.
Ask the Rabbi
with Rabbi Harvey Belovski
Questions from the PaL Mailbag...
Why is Lag B'Omer traditionally associated with trips, outings and picnics?
Lag B'Omer is the 33rd day of the 49 days counted between Pesach and Shavuos. Although the Torah itself treats this period as a kind of countdown from Exodus to Revelation, with a strong agricultural theme (Pesach is the early barley harvest; Shavuos the first wheat harvest), in later Jewish history, it came to have sad overtones. Thousands of students of Rabbi Akiva died at this time of year in the Roman era, and many Jewish communities were decimated by Crusaders in mediaeval times. According to tradition, Lag B'Omer was the day on which the plague that affected Rabbi Akiva's students terminated. As such, it is a day of celebration with a semi-festive air, but there is something deeper - according to the Talmud, the students died because they didn't treat each other with sufficient respect. Family outings, picnics and other endeavours that build firm relationships with one another are a perfect way to spend the day.