In this Issue

*The beginning of Passover Starts with Prayers

*The Matzos of the Feast of Unleavened Bread

*The Weeks of the Counting of the 'Omer

*The Pressure Between the Samaritans and Their Neighbors in Neot Yehudith Holon Neighborhood is Rising.

*Samaritan Torah Fragments Written on Parchment.

Link To the Samaritan Calendar


To The Samaritan Update Index or to our Web Site, The on the Web

Photos of The

Samaritans Maintaining The Ritual of Sacrificing the Passover in 1934

   Samaritan Torah Fragments Written on Parchment; from Palestine of the 15th century is for sale. 4 leaves comprising 8 pages, archivally bound, collection of David Solomon Sassoon, with his colophon on 1st and 4th pages. Rare!! More details upon request. Item #008

Coming soon!

The Messianic Hope of the Samaritans

By Jacob, Son of Aaron, High Priest of the Samaritans, 1907


Literary Remains of the Late Emanuel Deutsch

With a Brief Memoir, 1874


The Return of the Diaspora Samaritans to Nablus at the End of the Middle Ages

By Nathan Schur

Samaritans, Smallest Minority in Holy Land, Straddle Religious Divide


By Daniel Williams

Washington Post Foreign Service

Monday, April 9, 2001; Page A13

Read the article.

The Division Between  Days

 The Evenings with us number three: first, the going down of the sun in a westerly direction; second, the immersion of the disk of the sun into the sea; and, third, the disappearance of the redness of the western skies from the sun. 

 From Dan to Beersheba

by J. P. Newman

Chapter X

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Samaritan Interactive CD-ROM from Nes Multimedia Production Ltd. The CD works on Windows and Macintosh computers. Exhibits many photos and mini movies. Addresses the Samaritan religion, chronicles, community, language and literature. There is even an interactive quiz that can test your knowledge. The Samaritan Singers reform (Osher sings with them on this cd-rom) their music on the CD-ROM. It is full of information.
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The Passover Sacrifice Will Take Place

Tomorrow Afternoon,

Friday, April 26th .

The Beginning of the Passover Starts with Prayers.

Because of the commandment that no work be permitted on the Sabbath, the sacrifice will take place in the afternoon before the Sabbath this year. Therefore, the sacrifice will occur in the afternoon, on Friday. The Samaritans will all dress in white clothes, “so that no one stands out over the next person”. Only the High Priests and Elders are allowed to wear different colored garments, traditional garments of course. The families help the older Elders to their chairs before the festivities begin. The men each have a cane or a type of staff along with wearing their sandals .
   The Elders of the Community congregate at the High Priest's house. The oldest man in the community invites the High Priest to the Passover Sacrifice, being the custom. Upon accepting the offer they all move with an assembly of people behind to the Passover Sacrificial Center. With everyone present, chanting of prayers and songs of the Passover began.  As the time grows closer, the men place the gentle lambs between their legs. The guarded lambs were inspected by the Levites and have been watched over for a total of 14 days. There will be a total of 37-40 lambs for all the families of the Samaritans. The audience bleachers will be filled, hopefully, with visitors to watch the momentous occasion. Israeli troops will as always be there for protection and they always seem to enjoy being there to view their ancient history of the exceptional event.
   All is quiet as the High Priest recites in Hebrew, Exodus 12:6, “
and the whole assembly of the congregation of Israel shall kill it in the evening”. Then finally there will be a loud repetition to the Priest’s words. It will be the words to make the sacrifice and all the Samaritans repeated them. At this moment is when the opening in the clouds will enlarged, giving the acceptance by God of the Sacrifice. If any one attended this sacrifice this year, please let us know your thoughts. Read more about the Feasts at our website. (Photo by Shomron, April, 2000)

The Celebration of Passover by the Samaritans’ Ya’aqov Ben Uzzi Ha-Cohen

 PART 1 of The Book of Enlightenment For the Instruction of the Inquirer /Jacob,Son of Aaron, (Concerning the origin and significance of the ceremonial year, the time of the institution of the Passover and the Passover when the date falls on the Sabbath.)

The Days of Passover with the Samaritans on Mount Gerizim/Larry Rynearson

The Prophecy of The End Of the Of Days By The Prophets Of Judah Is Realized  Every Passover At Kiryat Luza/Benjamim Tsedaka  

Or visit your Library and Read: National Geographic Magazine, Jan. 1920 or The Samaritans by Reinhard Pummer or read

The Samaritans, Edited by Alan Crown

The Matzos of the Feast of Unleavened Bread

On the day before the Passover, the 13th day of the Samaritan Biblical year matzos (unleavened bread) is baked. The day prior, all leaven was cleaned from the houses.  Beginning the ancient memorial of baking the Matzos. The dough is rolled into fist-sized balls. The ovPhoto of the oven en is a 28-inch or so steel shaped bowl resting upside down over a flame of wood or propane.  The men or ladies pound the dough flat and then flip it from arm to arm like pizza dough. When the dough is thin and about 18-22-inches in diameter it is placed on the steel pan to bake. After about 20 seconds, the bread is flipped over for another 20 or so seconds more. Every now and then water is sprinkled over the oven to clean the surface of any remnants than may have remained from the bread. The unleavened bread of wheat and water does not take long to bake. It is placed then on a stack for the weeks use. The bread is soft and most enjoyable to eat. It is acceptable to sample the unleavened bread but only until midnight. Then the bread must sit until the Feast begins. Also from midnight on till the seasonal festival is over, no prepared food is permitted by the Samaritans. Only what is made from natural products are permitted excluding anything leaven, of course. A treat for the children and even a few adults are homemade sugar drops. With all the matzos made, it is time to visit the family, neighbors and friends. Hot tea with sugar or fresh juice is the general welcome. (top photo: A Matzo Oven, this one happens to be fueled by propane.) (bottom photo: Osher's parents preparing the dough for the Matzos. Shoham has a great smile!) (Both photos taken by Shomron, April, 2000)

The Weeks of the Counting of the 'Omer

The counting of the 'omer starts on the first Sunday after the Passover Sacrifice making it the 28th of this month. Then as stated in Leviticus 23:15 of the Samaritan Torah, "And ye shall count unto you from the marrow after the Sabbath, from the day that ye brought the sheaf of the wave offering; seven Sabbaths shall be complete." From the first day of the 'omer, seven weeks are counted and the festival of Pentecost will be celebrated on Sunday of the eighth week. The names of the weeks as given in the KS are the following.

1. "Week of the crossing of the (Red) Sea" (Exodus 14:26-15:21)

2. "Week of the changing of the water of marah" (Exodus 15:22-26)

3. "Week of elim, where they found twelve water springs and seventy palm trees" (Exodus 15:27-16.3

4."Week of the man, which fell down upon them from heavens in the desert" (Exodus 16.4-36)

5. "Week of the welling out of water from the rock" (Exodus 17.1-7)

6. "Week of the battles against 'Amaleq" (Exodus 17.8-17)

7. "Week of standing at Mt. Sinai" (Exodus 19.1 ff.)

(From the writing of Sylvia Powels from the book,

"The Samaritans, edited by Alan Crown.

Wonderful works. Buy it and read it today.)

The Pressure Between the Samaritans and

Their Neighbors in Neot Yehudith Holon Neighborhood is Rising.

    The conspicuous difference between the traditional life style of the Samaritans and their secular neighbors from the Neot Yehudith neighborhood yielding negative effects and is overshadowing their relations. Some of the Samaritan families at the Neot Yehudith neighborhood are suffering from their neighborhood are suffering from their neighbors’ social pressure.

   The Samaritan families settled in Maalot Street in Neot Yehudith neighborhood, which is adjacent to the Samaritan quarter, mostly as they had no other choice. Housing expansion plans for the neighborhood have now been stuck for nearly two decades between the Holon Municipality and the Israel land Authority. All the effects to get the plans into momentum were of no avail.

   This inability to find housing in the Samaritan neighborhood forced more than 20 young Samaritan couples to look for housing in neighborhoods adjacent to the Samaritan quarter: Neot Yehudith and Neveh Arazim. Neveh Arazim is built of single houses whereas in Neot Yehudith the housing units are in condominiums, which increases the social friction between the groups.

   Conflicts between residents of Neot Yehudith and residents of the Samaritan neighborhood are not uncommon, particularly among those living on the bisecting line of the neighborhoods. Those are the obvious consequences of the distinct difference in the manner of traditional observances on the Sabbaths. However, the novelty of the situation is in the fact that this friction is no longer between two neighborhoods but is inside the neighborhood of Neot Yehudith itself, on the northern edge of Maalot Street. Residents from Neot Yehudith have begun complaining about the traditional vestures of the Samaritans on Saturdays. Samaritans perform the reading of the weekly portion in small groups inside the houses, to enable each prayer to take place in the reading.

   Reading is done by singing out loud, which disturbs the Sabbath rest of their neighbors who retire to their beds to sleep on Saturdays after having played cards and partied even into the hours when their Samaritan neighbors get up for their morning prayers. According to one of their neighbors the custom of playing cards and organizing parties on Friday nights into the small hours is customary everywhere in Israel. “And not as these Samaritans with their red turbans and white garments do”- so she speaks for many of the Samaritan neighbors. “You, the Samaritans, should adapt yourselves to our life style and not interrupt our Sabbath rest with your prayers and your loud conversations after prayers!” There’s also the phenomenon of voicing derisive remarks on Samaritan customs. Copies of a film about the Passover Sacrifice of the Samaritans were distributed not long ago among the residents by one of the neighbors of the Samaritans, which only increased the ridicule. Should this negative activity continue the Samaritans will react severely to racial expressions and as in the past, dissatisfied Jewish neighbors will move to live in another place. (A.B. Services)

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