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29 Migdal Ohr students, immigrants from the FSU, celebrated their Bat Mitzvah at Midreshet Hagalil

Twenty nine students of Migdal Ohr, immigrants from the FSU, celebrated their Bat Mitzvah together with their families at Midreshet Hagalil. The girls are students of the Machshava School. The idea to hold a joint celebration was proposed by one of the school teachers, Orly Lugasi. Rabbi Yitzchak Dovid Grossman heard of the initiative and decided to promote the project, together with the girl’s parents and the school principle, Avi Lazimi. “A school is not only a place where one learns at, but furthermore serves as a place of social activity and a source for the absorption of values”, Lazimi stated, ”this event connects the girls to their Jewish identity, their heritage and roots, and this in turn strengthens their bond to the land of Israel”.

The evening commenced with greetings by Rabbi Grossman, and continued with an artistic presentation performed by the girls. Rabbi Grossman expressed his pleasure at the success of the celebration, stating: “The Migdal Ohr institutions initiate a variety of events, and for example, we have married off scores of our alumni over the past five years. It was important to partake in an event for girls from the FSU, one which emphasized their special link to Judaism”. He continued to explain that the Bat Mitzvah is not merely another celebration, but rather is one of the most important characteristics of Judaism, signifying the important role of the woman, based on the stance of the Torah.

Marina Goffman of Natzrat Elit in the Galilee, a mother of one of the Bat Mitzvah girls, told their story: “We have come from the FSU, and are not traditional at home. I would have liked to celebrate this special occasion properly, but I didn’t know how. This event has helped tremendously”. Tal, one of the girls, described how going to the Migdal Ohr School has changed her life, giving her many tools so that she may continue on the path she has chosen. Katya, her friend from Afula, added: “I know of several girls whose parents could not afford such a beautiful celebration, and this is definitely the proper way to do it”.