New Torah for Temple Ahavat Achim

On December 17, 2007, when Temple Ahavat Achim burned to the ground, all religious objects, including the Temple’s torah scrolls, were lost. The Temple, having now been rebuilt, has begun the process of having a new torah hand printed in the ancient tradition.

Rabbi Yochanan Salazar is a master sofer, or scribe, who today oversaw the  Hebrew inscription of a  portion of the new torah by members of the congregation. Participation in the  process is a moral deed performed as a religious duty.

Summer residents of Gloucester (and year round visitors) Jane Paznik-Bondarin and Andrew Karlin added a letter under the watchful eye and guidance of Rabbi Salazar, starting with a ritual hand washing and ending with the award of a certificate commemorating the event.

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About Marty Luster

I'm Marty Luster, a retired attorney and politician. In 2010 my wife, mother-in-law, dog and I relocated from Central NY to Gloucester. I hope my photographs and poetry(?) reflect my love for this place and her people. My picture-poem posts can be seen at and selected black and white images can be found at
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6 Responses to New Torah for Temple Ahavat Achim

  1. Very moving Marty, and very good photography.

  2. Wonderful post and thank you

  3. Thanks for this post! Very nice photos.

  4. charlene carrier says:

    Blessings to the Jewish people ..Charlene

  5. Jane says:

    It was very moving, Fred. Marty captured the moment (as he always does). It is inspirational to take part in the ancient rite and to know that you have been a part of creating a document that will live on in the life of the community.

  6. Anonymous says:

    Thanks so much, Marty, for your lovely essay.
    Miriam Weinstein

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