Rabbi Zev Leff redeeming the
grapes grown in Moshav Matityahu - 5745
you use wine from Israel for the Arba Kosos (Four Cups) of your
Seder, you may notice that the Kashrus certification on the bottle
says that it is kosher for Passover and that the wine is not made
from Revai or Orlah. What is that?
The Torah Commands
that for the first three ears of a tree of vine's life in Eretz
Yisrael, its fruit may not be used for any purpose whatsoever. The
fruit of those three years is called Orlah (closed up or forbidden).
In the fourth year, the fruit is called Neta Revai (the fourth year
planting). It has a special kind of holiness. In the time of the
Bais Hamikdash, such fruit had to be brought to Jerusalem and eaten
there. . Or, if it was too hard to bring all the fruit to Jerusalem,
it could be redeemed for money and the money would be brought to
Jerusalem. There, the owners would buy food with the money.
we have no Bais Hamikdash today, those two mitzovs are still observed
in Eretz Yisrael. Fruits of the first three years are not used.
Fourth year fruits are not eaten until they are redeemed wit a coin
and ht e coin is destroyed. That is all we can do until the Bais
Hamikdash is rebuilt.
This has been
a special year in Moshav Matityahu, A new settlement of Poale Agudath
Israel, not far from Jerusalem; because this is the first time the
town's settlers were able to make Pidyon Neta Revai (Redemption
of the Fourth Year Planting). In Israel, Moshav means a settlement
where all the people are equal partners in all the businesses, but
they own their own homes and can have private possessions. Moshav
Matityahu was founded four years ago in Modi'in, the place where
the Chashmonaim began their revolt against the Syrian-Greeks. That's
to the Chashmonaim, we had the miracle of Chanukah, so the Moshav
in Modi'in was named Matityahu after the father and first leader
of those brave tzddikim.
is a small but growing settlement. It ahs forty-six adults and a
hundred children (kein yirbu), and a kerem (vineyard) that celebrated
its fourth birthday this year.
Pidyon Neta Revai ceremony took place, there was a special Torah
learning day for the Moshav. Late that day many rabbis from the
area came and spoke.
(holiness) of the grapes was then redeemed by transferring it to
a coin. There was lively singing and dancing and fruits of Eretz
Yisrael were served.
summer months of the past three years, many of the moshav's children,
whose families are olim (immigrants) from America and England, also
helped in the planting of the kerem (vineyard). They did such jobs
as tying up the vines and pulling out weeds. Some were luck enough
to get tractor rides. Once in a while, when the kerem was just a
"baby" some of he men even had to spend Shabbat there
to prevent cows and donkeys from eating up the seedling.
of the Moshav also make their own wine every year with grapes from
a neighboring settlement, which harvest from an older vineyard.
Children often help with this to, by picking the grapes and putting
them into large containers where they will ferment. Besides the
special taste of the wine, it is very exciting to drink your on
wine on Shabbat and Pesach knowing that you made it your self. And
as an extra plus, it has that extra Kedusha, which only Eretz Yisrael
produce can have.