This fall, residents, families, employees and supporters across Ovation Communities and beyond have been involved in a very special, once-in-a-lifetime initiative. The organization has had the unique opportunity to commission a new Torah for the Kohl Family Synagogue, under the guidance of Rabbi Levi Emmer and Rabbi Steve Adams.

The current Torahs were inherited by Ovation, and have been in use since the 1920s. In many cases they are too heavy, and difficult for residents and rabbis to hold for ceremonial purposes. The new Torah is being created specifically for the Ovation community with participation from a wide variety of audiences. Over a series of events, residents and members of the broader community have been invited to letter in the new Torah alongside a commissioned sofer (scribe), working with quill and ink in hand. This unique opportunity also fulfills a mitzvah (commandment), that of writing a Torah scroll. Following tradition, participants have also been invited to mark their legacy and make dedications to support the development of the religious artifact. “This isn’t something people get to do every day,” says Tanya Mazor-Posner, Vice President of Development. “We’re grateful to have the opportunity for our community to unite around such a meaningful, spiritual life event.”

To further celebrate the milestone, a Torah Art exhibition filled with related artifacts traveled to Ovation Communities from Congregation Emanu-El B’ne Jeshurun. Residents and families also participated in a holiday concert and lively Torah Fair.

Everyone is welcome and invited to celebrate the new Torah. A Grand Torah Celebration will be held December 9, as the piece is welcomed into its new home. The event will kick off with a final lettering opportunity, followed by a processional escorting the Torah from Ovation Chai Point to Ovation Jewish Home under a chuppah. The entire community is welcome for a Chanukah lighting ceremony, food, entertainment and celebration. “The Kohl Family Synagogue is a gathering place and is open to everyone, regardless of religious affiliation,” said Mazor-Posner. “Created with love and purpose by so many different hands, the new Torah is truly an extension of our community.” Dedications can still be made after the December 9 event. Please contact Tanya Mazor-Posner at 414-721-9260 or tmazor-posner@ovation.org.