This week on TU B’Av, thousands of women came from all over to Tel Shiloh to celebrate. Granted, the local vineyards, full of ripe grapes wasn’t the location for the celebrations. The archeological and religious site of Shiloh Hakeduma, Ancient Shiloh was set up beautifully for the festive occasion. It is definitely large enough so that even with the thousands of women who came to celebrate, it wasn’t crowded.
The relatively minor “holiday” of TU B’Av has morphed into an Israeli “Valentine’s Day,” which isn’t quite what it should be. You never saw heart-shaped candies and romantic getaways marketed in Israel mid-summer until recent years. And besides Biblical scholars, nobody had a clue that there was some significance to the date.
Biblical TU B’Av celebrations took place in Shiloh. This was an opportunity for unity between the Jewish tribes by marrying together. Single women would dress in white and dance together observed by men looking for wives. That’s how men and women would meet; today’s “singles get-togethers” are really nothing new. They happened every summer in my “backyard.”
In recent years the administration of Shiloh Hakeduma, Ancient Shiloh, produces a blockbuster event for women called מחוללות בכרמים Mecholilot Bacramim, Dancing in the Vineyards. Thousand of women come to Tel Shiloh to celebrate together.
There are various “dance” workshops, crafts, gifts, clothing, jewelry and more for sale, besides food. Young women were dressed in bridal gowns for a special fashion show. And of course you hear music all the time. Many women come to pray and be at the Holy Site of Shiloh.
I did my best to talk up the Women’s Rosh Chodesh Prayers with whomever I could. And I’ll take this opportunity to remind you that in less than two weeks it’s Rosh Chodesh Elul. Please mark it in your calendar/diary/event planner so you can join us, Gd willing. If you have more questions about it, please contact me firstname.lastname@example.org with “Rosh Chodesh” as subject. Our women’s dovening isn’t a version of male synagogue prayers. We sing Hallel out loud and then doven Musaf individually.
Women’s Prayers at Shiloh Hakeduma, Tel Shiloh
Rosh Chodesh Elul 5777
Wednesday, August 23, 2017
1st of Elul, 5777, 8:30am
Hallel and Musaf for Rosh Chodesh
Tour of Tel Shiloh
Dvar Torah, Short Torah Lesson
Please come and invite family, friends and neighbors.
תפילת נשים ראש חודש אלול
בשילה הקדומה, תל שילה
יום ד’ 23-8-2017
א’ אלול, תשע”ז 8:30
הלל ומוסף לראש חודש
יהיה דבר תורה קצר וסיור בתל
כדאי לבוא ולהזמין חברות, משפחה ושכנות
The highlight of the TU B’Av מחוללות בכרמים Mecholilot Bacramim, Dancing in the Vineyards was a big musical production featuring an amazing singer, Victoria, plus a Spanish Dance, a story told in Modern Dance and finally the popular singer, Sarit Hadad. Following are photos, and I’d like to remind you that Shiloh Hakeduma is open to visitors Sunday through Friday. There’s also another enormous event for women a week before Rosh Hashana, Tefilat Chana. For more information call 02-994-4019. Following the pictures there are a few video clips.