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    Torah ornaments – Ask the Rabbi

    Q. How much should be spent on ornaments for a Sefer Torah? And why do some donors seem to need so much public recognition?

    A. Mitzvot should not be carried out perfunctorily but with hiddur mitzvah, “adorning the mitzvah“.

    Hence an etrog, a mezuzah, a Sefer Torah or any other religious requisite should be as beautiful as one’s means allow, and the mantle and ritual silver that adorn the Torah scroll should be as splendid as possible (Bava Kama 9b; Orach Chayyim 656).

    We believe not only in adornment of religious articles but also in gratitude to their donors. Often the gift marks a special occasion, and through recognition of the donation we enhance the joy and share in their sorrow.

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