January 20, 2014 / 19 Shevat 5774
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As the Rabbinic Director of United with Israel, I am honored to share beautiful Torah messages from Israel with you each week. For three years now, our weekly 'Living Torah' articles have reached so many people around the world and the feedback has been amazing! We recently added a new weekly Living Torah feature that takes a current Israeli news topic and explains the Torah point of view. Again, the feedback has been very positive and this inspires me to keep on sending you more... Today I am writing to tell you about a very important campaign to plant fruit trees. Besides being a wonderful mitzvah (good deed) - to beautify the Land of Israel and make it fruitful - it's even more pressing to do so right now. I can explain: - In December, parts of Israel were hit with a massive blizzard. As beautiful and majestic as the snow was, over 10,000 trees were lost by severe icing conditions. We believe that those trees must be replaced... - We are approaching the Shemittah (Sabbatical) year, starting this September. As God commands us in the Torah, we cannot work the Land for an entire year. That means no fruit trees will be planted for a very long time! - In Israel, we just finished celebrating Tu B'Shvat - the New Year for Trees. Now is the ideal time to start planting fruit trees all across the Land! Please click below to learn about our Fruit Tree Planting project http://unitedwithisrael.org/plant-fruit-trees/ On behalf of the People of Israel, I ask you to participate in this very special project. Our goal is to plant 10,000 trees before the Sabbatical year begins. We warmly welcome individuals and organizations that choose to plant entire orchards of trees - a wonderful idea! This is a special opportunity to contribute to the physical and spiritual beauty of our Land. At a time when it is needed most... You can help us reach our goal and have a share in a great 'Mitzvah'! Dedications can be made in honor or memory of loved ones. Everyone will receive authentic tree certificates directly from Israel. Planting fruit trees in Israel is fully tax deductible in the USA. Click below to watch a great video and learn more about the project. You'll be inspired to get your fruit trees planted today! http://unitedwithisrael.org/plant-fruit-trees/ With Blessings from the Land of Israel, Rabbi Ari Enkin United with Israel PS - Please forward this email to family, friends and leaders of your community. It would be wonderful to have your favorite organization or congregation participate by planting there very own orchard. . . To "plant by phone", or for more info, please call: Israel: +972-2-533-7841 USA: +1-646-213-4003 To order trees online or by mail, please visit: http://unitedwithisrael.org/plant-fruit-trees/ . United with Israel 8/19 Maor St. Box 71530 Bet Shemesh, HaDarom 99623 Israel +972-2-533-7841===
- 763 – The Battle of Bakhamra between Alids and Abbasids near Kufa ends in a decisive Abbasid victory.
- 1525 – The Swiss Anabaptist Movement is founded when Conrad Grebel, Felix Manz, George Blaurock, and about a dozen others baptize each other in the home of Manz's mother in Zürich, breaking a thousand-year tradition of church-state union.
- 1535 – Following the Affair of the Placards, French Protestants are burned at the stake in front of the Cathedral of Notre-Dame de Paris
- 1749 – The Verona Philharmonic Theatre is destroyed by fire. It is rebuilt in 1754.
- 1789 – The first American novel, The Power of Sympathy or the Triumph of Nature Founded in Truth, is printed in Boston, Massachusetts.
- 1793 – After being found guilty of treason by the French Convention, Louis XVI of France is executed by guillotine.
- 1861 – American Civil War: Jefferson Davis resigns from the United States Senate.
- 1899 – Opel manufactures its first automobile.
- 1908 – New York City passes the Sullivan Ordinance, making it illegal for women to smoke in public, only to have the measure vetoed by the mayor.
- 1911 – The first Monte Carlo Rally takes place.
- 1919 – Meeting of the First Dáil Éireann in the Mansion House Dublin. Sinn Féin adopts Ireland's first constitution. The first engagement of Irish War of Independence, Sologhead Beg, County Tipperary.
- 1931 – Sir Isaac Isaacs is sworn in as the first Australian-born Governor-General of Australia.
- 1954 – The first nuclear-powered submarine, the USS Nautilus, is launched in Groton, Connecticut by Mamie Eisenhower, the First Lady of the United States.
- 1971 – The current Emley Moor transmitting station, the tallest free-standing structure in the United Kingdom, begins transmitting UHF broadcasts.
- 1999 – War on Drugs: In one of the largest drug busts in American history, the United States Coast Guard intercepts a ship with over 4,300 kilograms (9,500 lb) of cocaine on board.
- 1338 – Charles V of France, French king (d. 1380)
- 1610 – Elizabeth Fones, English-American settler (d. 1673)
- 1735 – Johann Gottfried Eckard, German pianist and composer (d. 1809)
- 1738 – Ethan Allen, American military leader (d. 1789)
- 1820 – Joseph Wolf, German illustrator (d. 1899)
- 1879 – Joseph Roffo, French rugby player (d. 1933)
- 1882 – Pavel Florensky, Russian theologian and mathematician (d. 1937)
- 1905 – Christian Dior, French fashion designer, founded Christian Dior S.A. (d. 1957)
- 1913 – William Ungar, Polish-American author and philanthropist, founded the National Envelope Corporation (d. 2013)
- 1922 – Telly Savalas, American actor (d. 1994)
- 1924 – Benny Hill, English comedian (d. 1992)
- 1938 – Wolfman Jack, American radio host and actor (d. 1995)
- 1941 – Plácido Domingo, Spanish tenor and conductor
- 1972 – Cat Power, American singer-songwriter and actress
- 1974 – Rove McManus, Australian comedian, television host, and producer
- 2004 – Princess Ingrid Alexandra of Norway