Colorado resident Ron Werner, along with his father Robert (Bob), of Aventura, Fla., and brother Michael of Chicago, IL., dedicated a completed Sefer Torah (Torah scroll) in memory of his mother on Sunday, September 11th, on top of the ancient Jewish fortress of Masada. The Florence J. Werner Scroll upon completion will be presented to the Alexander Muss High School in Israel and will eventually be used on the school’s second campus, which will form part of Jewish National Fund-USA’s planned 20-acre World Zionist Village in Be’er Sheva.
The Werners traveled to Masada, where Rabbi Louis, a Sofer Stam (scribe), carries on this ancient, holy transcription process. Incorporating the 304,805 letters of the five books of Moses, Sefer Torahs have been written the same way for the past three thousand years. These Torah Scrolls are written entirely by ink and quill on parchment. Any mistakes can invalidate it.
“On the second day of my mother’s shiva, my father came to me and said, ‘I’ve been up all night, thinking about how I want one of those Torah scrolls you did on Masada,’” Ron said at the dedication ceremony.
Previously, Ron had participated in Jewish National Fund-USA’s Be Inscribed program, which gives participants the chance to have a letter, word, or portion of a Torah written at the top of Masada.
This new scroll contributes to the Werner family legacy of consecrating Torahs. Previously, Ron and his mother commemorated Bob’s 75th birthday by dedicating a Torah to the Werners’ synagogue. The elder Werners also bestowed one in Ron’s honor to Alexander Muss High School in Israel which he attended.
Today a successful co-owner of Colorado-based furniture source HW Home, Ron serves as the president of JNF-USA’s Muss High School in Israel, while his father, Bob, co-chairs the school’s 50th anniversary campaign. Together, they are developing a $10 million scholarship endowment to bring 5,000 students to Israel each year.
“Today we’re starting a new scroll. My father will write the first letter of the scroll in memory of his wife and our mother that will be used at the High School in Israel. We are here connecting the dots and connecting generations,” Ron said.