Refuah Shelemah for Tina Bat Bella

Kimha 2021

One of the customs that we observe before Pesah is called “Kimha De’pischa,” which literally means, “flour of Pesah.” In ancient times, everyone would donate a certain measure of flour to the poor people in the community to enable them to bake Masot, the essential component of the Pesah celebration. Nowadays, it is customary to allocate some money for charity, to assist needy members of the community in purchasing their supplies for Pesah.

The Kimha De’pischa donation is a very important Misva, and is in fact codified in the Shulhan Aruch (Orah Haim 429:1). The Mishna Berura (Rav Yisrael Meir Kagan, 1839-1933) and Kaf Ha’haim (Rav Yaakob Haim Sofer (1870-1939) note that although Torah scholars are generally exempt from mandatory communal taxes, they are included in the requirement of Kimha De’pischa. The reason for this exception is the ruling of the Rambam (Rabbi Moshe Maimonides, Spain-Egypt, 1135-1204), in Hilchot Yom Tob (chapter 6), that the Misva of “Ve’samahta Be’hagecha” – rejoicing on Yom Tob – includes a requirement to give charity. A person cannot truly experience joy while he knows that there are widows, orphans and poor members of his community who are unable to properly celebrate the holiday.

Thus, in order to fulfill the Misva to rejoice on Yom Tob, one must have provided assistance to the poor before the Yom Tob. As such, the requirement to give charity in advance of Yom Tob is one of the laws of Yom Tob, and not part of the standard Misva of charity

The Sha’ar Ha’siyun (supplemental notes to the Mishna Berura) adds that this Misva is especially applicable to Pesah, the holiday when we celebrate our freedom. We cannot truly celebrate our status as a free people if there are impoverished members of our nation who cannot afford proper provisions. Specifically before Pesah, as part of our preparations for this holiday, we are obligated to allocate some of our Pesah expenses to assist the poor. Pesah is a costly holiday for everyone, but it is especially so for those suffering financial hardship, and it behooves us to assist them to the best of our ability.

Rebbittsen Sandra Mansour, wife of Rabbi Eli J Mansour, has for many years collected quietly on her own, and has helped many families each year prepare for Pesah. The Rebbittsen pays directly to food merchants and clothiers, and provides ‘coupons’ to families who are not able on their own to cover their holiday costs. Her list of families in need has grown tremendously, and so we beseech you today to contribute to her collection. This collection has been named 'MALCHUT YOSEF' in memory of Yosef ben Sabut, the Rebbittsen's father.

We recommend a donation of minimum $26.00. The charge will appear on your credit card statement under ‘TORAH LEARNING RESOURCES’.

T’zku L’misvot and Hag Kasher Ve’Sameah!

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