The damage to the Torah was obvious, but it has now been repaired.

The damage to the Torah was obvious, but it has now been repaired.

On “Shabbat” (Saturday) and Sunday, Dec. 19 and 20, there was a Torah Repair Project “Siyyum” (completion) of the Torah scroll with “sofer” (scribe) Rabbi Kevin Hale at Congregation P’nai Or, 6757 Greene St. in the Community Wing of Summit Church, West Mt. Airy.

Almost a year ago it was discovered that one of the P’nai Or Torah scrolls had sustained a mysterious gash right through one column of the beautiful hand calligraphed Hebrew text in the chapter called “V’Etchanan,” which is in the book of Deuteronomy.

There is no explanation for the damage, but immediately the congregation began to collect funds for a repair. They reached out to Rabbi Kevin Hale, who writes and repairs Torah scrolls.

He is a colleague and friend of P’Nai Or’s rabbi, Marcia Prager. “He assured us that the scroll could be repaired,” said Rabbi Prager last Thursday. “We removed the damaged panel from the scroll and sent it to him. He works closely with a sofer in Israel who actually hand-wrote an entire new panel to match the damaged one.

“It was shipped from Israel last week and will arrive here in Philadelphia along with Rabbi Kevin, who will sew the new panel back into the scroll and complete the writing of the last letters of this section with us in a special ceremony on Sunday morning, Dec 19.”

On Sunday there was also a workshop with Rabbi Hale, a luncheon, party and dance to the P’nai Or-chestra.

For more information, call 215-849-9227 or visit