The Jewish Press - September 2006
Institute offers Surrogate Mishnah Study
LAKEWOOD, New Jersey. September 11, 2006. The Society for Mishnah Study commissions scholars to study the oral law for people who have recently lost a loved one. According to Jewish practice, studying the Mishnah can be a tremendous gift for the departed soul. The institute works with families when suddenly thrust into mourning and overwhelmed with emotional turmoil. Within the customs and traditions of the Jewish mourning period there is a positive light. Through this program, Torah scholars are commissioned to study Mishnah in memory of the deceased. Once the course of Mishnah study is almost completed, the mourner is notified, and the conclusion of the specified Mishnah study can be studied together with the scholar, in a translated text, thereby giving the mourner or family member the opportunity to personally memorialize the soul of their loved one in an especially significant way. A handsome certificate is presented as a memento of this fulfilled commitment to provide eternal benefit for the soul of their dear departed.
Rabbi H. has been learning Mishnah on his own for over 20 years, and has personally completed it at least once a year. Often he has been approached to help people finish their Mishnah for their deceased grandparent or parent. “The basic idea is really simple. There is a need for the Jewish public who is familiar with this custom, to complete Mishnah in time. Torah scholars are able to help. Why not match up the two? Besides the actual Mishnah study, which is good for the soul one's departed, the support of Torah scholars is another way in which to give eternal pleasure to the departed's soul in the next world,” said Rabbi H.
There are many, who are familiar with this custom, but give up because the study of over 520 chapters of Mishnah is very daunting. Many people ask their friends and relatives to help out, but many do so reluctantly, and may not even really finish the required study due to other pressing responsibilities. The institute system assures that the study will be completed.
Robin Meyerson, Publisher of America’s largest kiruv magazine, American Jewish Spirit, recently took advantage of the Institute’s services for her uncle who passed away. “The Mishnah study was extremely meaningful to my cousin and myself. This was a way to honor my cousin’s family and at the same time do a little kiruv. Having the Torah scholar study a part of the Mishnah with my cousin was the first time in a really long time that someone took the time to teach a Jewish text with my cousin so it was very heartwarming.” There are many who are unfamiliar with this custom. When someone loses a close one it is often a time where one really wants to do what is meaningful, as well as everlasting. People give millions of dollars to numerous causes to achieve this goal. Support of Torah study while concurrently having the Mishnah studied permanently ensconcing the memory of a loved one. It is a win win situation for everybody. The mourner is doing something meaningful, a Torah scholar is being supported, and the soul of the departed is reaping the benefit of Mishnah study and support of Torah.
For more information and various sponsorship opportunities, contact Chevrah Lomdei Mishnah at 732-364-7029 or at ChevrahLomdeiMishnah.org.