Weekly Newsletter

TGIS: Thank G-d It’s Shabbat

Shalom Lovely Community!

I hope that you are having a great week and looking forward to a beautiful Shabbat ahead. As you know, we are deep into the second wave of coronavirus infections in South Africa, and it is once again time for increased caution. Our country has again passed the milestone of 10 000 new infections daily, and although we are not going back into significant government-imposed lockdown, we must all be responsible for protecting our own health and that of those around us.

We had an interesting discussion at our weekly “Morality” shiur last night around whether it’s necessary and appropriate for the government to legislate moral behaviour. Examples include coronavirus precautions, rules around smoking, and restrictions on recreational use of drugs. One important caveat made was that any laws made have to be applied consistently and reliably to have any real impact. A second was that we should be careful to make laws that people are not motivated to keep, as laws create criminals – the gangs of the early 20th century in America were funded and made powerful through the prohibition. On the other hand, an analogy which is very fitting to explain Rabbi Sacks’ view of our times is “The Tragedy of the Commons” – a concept explored in the early 19th century by the British economist William Forster Lloyd. The idea is that we have a communal pasture (a “commons”) in the middle of our village without enough grass for sustainable grazing for 2 animals for each of us. I realise that if I were to graze a third animal, there would be minimal damage to the common area, but a great deal of benefit to me. The problem comes in when we all try to do that, and suddenly the entire area is destroyed. (As the saying goes today, “That’s why we can’t have nice things”.) In so many areas of life and society, these principles apply:

  1. If we all keep the rules, we all benefit.
  2. If you all keep the rules, but I break them – I get a large benefit, and there’s not (always) much damage to you.
  3. If we all break the rules, we all lose.

For example – if we are all honest, we know that we can trust one another. If one person is dishonest, he will be able to leverage everyone’s trust to his advantage; if no one is honest (or if enough people are dishonest enough of the time), we lose trust and so many things become a great deal more difficult. This is especially true in coronaland. If we’re all careful, we’re all safer. If enough of us aren’t, personal precautions are less effective. Therefore we need to find ways to keep the vast majority of people behaving safely, even when it inconveniences them. The best way is for everyone to have a personal moral sense of their own responsibility. Another factor is societal pressure, for it to be “not done” to behave without the proper hygiene. The third is the rule of law, that people should fear the consequences for their actions.

By the way – I think that this model can apply to the Mitzvot of the Torah as well, with interesting and surprising consequences! But more on that another time.

The Chief Rabbi and his medical team have released a new set of protocols for Shuls, specifically for the second wave. Highlights are:

  • All existed protocols still apply, and must be strictly enforced, including distancing, no socialising, no communal singing and so forth.
  • Maximum of 50 people at a service.
  • No use of Shul books – please bring your own Siddur and Chumash.
  • Elderly infirm and those who comorbidities, as well as teens who have attended mass-gathering events – should not attend.
  • No food or drink on the Shul premises. We previously had approval for our “snack packs” for children, but unfortunately putting that on hold – children’s services may still continue.
  • Each service much have a COVID marshal, who must ensure that the protocols are followed.

If you’re lying low during the second wave, but would still love some wholesome community engagement, Community Time is here! This Sunday night we will hear from Rabbi Maizels – an international legend in the world of Kashrut, and raconteur of the best Kashrut stories I have ever heard, about some of his Kashrut adventures. Come along and bring your questions.

Finally I have been experiencing a strange glitch with my daily WhatsApp Torah Thought. Many people (and I cannot find a pattern) have not been receiving since 2 December. If you are one of them, and would like to receive, please let me know – I’m working on solutions!

Aviva, Shalva, Tzuriya, Azriel, Neriya and I wish you all Shabbat Shalom.

Rabbi Sam Thurgood

Rebuild Committee Update

Torah Reading Pages |


Parshat  Artscroll Koren Living Torah Hirsch




Shabbat Times |



Earliest Candle Lighting 18:26
Latest Candle Lighting 19:15
Zoom Mincha and Kabbalat Shabbat | https://zoom.us/j/2012833604 18:30
Latest time for morning Shema 09:04
Shabbat afternoon Mincha 19:35
Shabbat ends 20:35
Zoom Maariv and Havdallah | https://zoom.us/j/2012833604 20:45



Davening Schedule

Please make sure to book for all services well in advance here: bit.ly/attendBMM  If you are unable to attend, but would like someone to say Kaddish on your behalf, please contact Wendy.


Friday afternoon Mincha &  Kabbalat Shabbat|Weizmann Parking Lot and Zoom service 6:30pm https://zoom.us/j/2012833604
Shabbat morning Weizmann Campus  9-11am N/A
Shabbat afternoon Weizmann Campus 7:30pm N/A
Mincha|Monday to Thursday|Weizmann Parking Lot 6:15pm https://zoom.us/j/2012833604
Shacharit|Marais Road Small Shul Monday – Friday Morning                                                     


6:45am during Chanukah        7am https://zoom.us/j/6132461836 This minyan takes place in partnership with Marais Road Shul
Shacharit|Morasha Zoom|Monday – Friday Morning 7:15am during Chanukah    7:30am     https://zoom.us/j/2012833604


Announcements |

The Rabbi, Rebbetzin, and Committee wish you Shabbat Shalom.


Morasha WhatsApp Groups:

Community Announcements: http://bit.ly/MorashaWhatsapp

Minyan (Online Davening Together): https://bit.ly/MorashaDavening

Children’s Torah Stories: https://chat.whatsapp.com/KNuaWuN9r8GIheiCkJRh9f

Morasha Daf Yomi Discussions: http://bit.ly/BMM-DafYomi

Shiurim Around Cape Town: https://chat.whatsapp.com/KBVoD2nJ8TcBMBfa4RTrY3


Contact : info@morasha.co.za | 021 434 8680


 The Yahrzeit begins the evening before the date



Weekly Learning


Tuesday 8:30pm Halachot of Corona Rabbi Doron Podlashuk https://zoom.us/j/9996131818 Password: 1818
Wednesday 7:30-8:30pm Morality Rabbi Sam Thurgood https://zoom.us/j/2012833604
Wednesday 7:30-8:30pm Gemoral Sukkah Rabbi Gavriel Ziegler Zoom (contact Rav Gav)


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