New Home For Torah, Immigrants


The latest group of Jewish immigrants from Ethiopia arrived in Israel earlier this month.

Within a few days of their arrival at the Ibim absorption center near the Gaza border,

several hundred newcomers took shelter from rockets launched by Hamas in the recent conflict with Israel. When they arrived earlier at Ben-Gurion Airport, they had received a security briefing. The first Hebrew term they learned was Tzeva Adom, Code Red, which indicates they should run for cover.

When the fighting ended, the olim danced.

The members of the Falash Mura group, Ethiopian Jews whose relatives had converted to Christianity a century ago, welcomed a new Torah scroll at the absorption center, above, in a ceremony that also marked the start of their new lives in Israel.

“This was a moving event and reflects the amazing resilience of these recent olim who, like all the residents of Southern Israel, had to face an onslaught of rocket fire in recent weeks,” said Yehuda Sharf, director of the Jewish Agency’s Aliyah, Absorption & Special Operations Unit.