Author Archive | admin

Sukkah Design

Dear Rabbi Simon, After 15 years of faithful service, the timber of our Succah is now rotting and requires replacing. I am designing a new timber succah and want to clarify a couple of halachic issues. 1) In order to make the sechach more wind resistant , I want the sechach to rest on wooden battens […]

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Creation and other Miracles

Dear Rabbi Simon, I hope you had a good Yom Tov. The Sun stood still for Joshua (ch. 10) prolonging the day. Hundreds of years later, the day was shortened for King Chizkiyahu (2 Kings ch. 20). Have these miracles caused observable astronomical effects? Are there any other miracles in Tenach whose effects can be […]

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Kosher Dog Food

Dear Rabbi Simon, Interesting question from a new client with his puppy… ‘What rules apply to dog food in a strictly kosher home?’ I have always been of the opinion that as it’s the dog that’s eating the food there shouldn’t be an issue, but I think the client has a point about wet, canned […]

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Sha’atnez in Crewel Embroidery

Sha’atnez Q&A: Life can be Crewel, but is it allowed? Dear Rabbi Simon I want to take up embroidery and I am particularly interested in crewel work which is traditionally made from wool on a cloth of linen or one with some linen content. Given this is sha’atnez I don’t think I can do this – […]

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Cremation and Kaddish

Dear Rabbi Simon, A distant elderly Jewish relative died last month and he chose to be cremated. Is it still appropriate to say Kaddish for him? Many thanks, Martin Dear Martin, The sombre and distasteful subject of cremation is discussed (and decried) in the Torah literature. The practice has become very common in non-Orthodox circles, and […]

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Alternative to Wine & Grape Juice for Seder

Dear Rabbi Simon, I can’t drink wine, and grape juice does not agree with me.  Can I substitute pomegranate juice, or something else, even sparkling water. Many thanks for answering my question, Leah Dear Leah, Under the extenuating circumstances you describe, you may substitute another beverage for that of the grape. (Another option is to […]

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Pesach Cleaning Hob and Counter Tops

Dear Rabbi Simon I have just moved house and have a few questions relating to Pesach cleaning. Hob: I now have an electric hob instead of gas.  Do you just clean and turn it on high for 10 minutes or do you have to pour boiling water over it (will it crack?) Counter tops: you […]

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Counting the Omer

Dear Rabbi Simon, I just now remembered to count the Omer from last night! In looking at my watch, I see that it is now 20:07, and sunset (according to my app) is 20:05. However I think that I actually began the counting (with the short declaration of intent, “behold I am prepared and ready…”) […]

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“Kvatter” – what do I need to know?

Hi Rabbi, I have been given the honour with Debbie to be Kvatter at a Bris tomorrow. What am I expected to do? And what does the honour entail? Thank you. Regards David Hi David, Kvatter (Kvatterin in the feminine) is the Yiddish term (probably from the old German meaning “in place of the father”) for […]

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