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Mar 17, 2011

New Matanos La'Evyonim Minhag

I learned a new minhag today.

In the middle of Shacharis, actually it was smack in the middle of selichos, after getting permission from the rabbi of the shul and from the gabbai, a representative of one of the local tzedaka organizations gave a klapp on the bimma and announced that he is collection tzedaka, and how so many people need help, and that they are trying to reach x amount of money for Purim, blah blah blah.

And then he said that it is a minhag to give Matanos La'Evyonim on Taanis Esther and on Purim (and then he repeated that it is a minhag to give on Taanis Esther), and minhag yisroel torah hee, customs of Israel are like actual Torah (and should be treated like obligations).

I was not aware of any such minhag of giving matanos la'evyonim on Taanis Esther. I am aware that gabbaim like to get people to give money early for matanos la'evyonim, so as to avoid as much of the Purim rush as possible, but that is a convenience, not a minhag. There, of course, is also the general mitzva of tzedaka on Taanis Esther just like on any other day, but a minhag of matanos la'evyonim?

So I am proud to say that today I learned a new minhag. Has anybody heard of this one before?


  1. He was probably referring to the minhag to give machatzit hashekel, which people in fact do connect to taanis esther. If he was in fact referring to matanos l'evyonim, then he's wrong, and, like shaking a lulav on a day that is not sukkot, would not be subject to a mistaken minhag.

  2. he was not referring to machatzit hashekel./ he was trying to encourage people to donate money to matanos la'evyonim.

  3. Is it just me or is the Kupa on steroids this year?

    Can't they fargin the other organizations to collect some as well?

  4. What's the deal with the "double" envelope from the Kupa?

    That's also a new one. Like they are going to give that envelope to 2 different poor people?

    Give me a break! I though that it was our job to give for 2 people no matter whether in a double envelope, a single envelope or just from my hand.

    I would like some truth in advertising from those people.

  5. The 2 envelopes just reminds people that they should give enough for 2 aniyim.
    I'm not the Kupa but that was my take.



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