How do I deposit my sheimos into the collection bin?
Sheimos should be placed inside the bin only, in a closed container (e.g. a bag). Items which may cause harm to those who collect the sheimos, like nails attached to mezuza holders, glass etched with quotes from sacred texts (from display cases and candelabra or menorah cases), glass cups used for candle-lighting, and printing plates should not be placed in sheimos collection bins unless they are safely packaged and actually do require sheimos.
Why does the collection bin have a separate opening for putting tefillin and mezuzos parchments and tefillin shel rosh boxes?
These articles have a stricter sanctity, so they are buried beneath layers of concrete inside of especially durable sealed weather-proof containers to preserve them for as long as possible.
Handling of Torah Scrolls and Nevi’im (Prophets) and Megillos must be pre-arranged with our staff. These items should not be left in sheimos collection bins.
I went to the collection bin, but it was full. What should I do?
If you got to a collection bin and found it full (a common occurrence at hectic times, such as before Pesach), please don’t leave your sheimos next to the bin! It will almost certainly come to disgrace, whether through curious passers-by ruffling through the bags or, chalila, by being disposed of by trash collectors.
In such a case one should keep the sheimos at home and wait for the bin to be emptied (usually within a few days).
We try to keep track of the rate at which the bins fill up and to empty them accordingly, but any bin could occasionally unexpectedly be filled up more quickly. Please let us know about full or almost full collection bins. This information helps greatly to maintain the efficient and orderly collection of the sheimos.
Can I put books near the collection bin?
Books in good condition should not be left next to the bins for sale or to be given away. This leads to denigration of the sacred writings, creates an unsightly appearance, and causes extra work and expense for the organization.
Can I take sheimos out of the bin or from the sacks next to it?
Searching through the collection bins disgraces the sheimos, and makes it difficult to collect, so please don’t look through the sheimos collection bins!
Children sometimes like to look through the bins, and even to go inside of them. Please teach them not to do this, and educate them about the importance of proper respect of sheimos.
In some places, the contents of the bins are packed up before we collect them with our truck. These sacks wait next to the bins for a day or two until they are loaded onto the truck and brought to burial. Please DO NOT open these sacks or look through them, and do not rest more sheimos on top of them. This leads to the sheimos being scattered and disgraced and greatly disrupts the process of collection and burial.
Can I arrange for private removal of sheimos?
Sheimos collection bins were designed to handle normal amounts of household sheimos, and not large quantities.
Public institutions or private individuals who have large amounts of sheimos, as when emptying an apartment or after a fire (r”l), etc., can arrange for the removal of their sheimos straight from where it is located. This is done by means of a large sack which is removed with a crane-bearing truck, at a pre-arranged time, for a fee to partially cover costs.
Why doesn’t the government fund the removal of sheimos?
With the developing of the printing industry in our generation, the drastic increase in the amount of sheimos began about 35 years ago. Therefore, when the laws for funding of religious services were made, the subject of sheimos was not included in the list of projects. Due to this, sheimos-related activities are not funded by the government, even though they are clearly necessary religious services for every resident.
There is no sheimos collection bin in my area. What should I do?
With the progress in printing and copying technology in our generation, a sheimos collection bin in every neighborhood is a real and pressing public need, to prevent the sheimos from being scattered all over or being sent for recycling or thrown in the trash, chas v’shalom.
Wherever there is a localized initiative to raise money to put a sheimos collection bin, Gniza Klalit will supply the bin and will provide collection and burial services for the sheimos and shared upkeep of the bin.
It is written in sifrei kodesh that whoever works to preserve the honor of sacred writings, this is a great merit. If you would like to donate a collection bin, it may be dedicated to the memory of a loved one, or for a complete recovery, blessings and success for whomever you choose. Several different dedications can be made on one bin, with easy payment schedules.
**[Press here to make a donation] Go to Donations**
How can Torah Scrolls, tefillin and mezuzos be protected from damage?
Before the holiday of Simchas Torah it is a good idea to wrap the Torah Scrolls in plastic under their mantles. This prevents the cloth coverings from transferring the moisture from people’s perspiration (during the dancing) to the scrolls themselves, which could cause the letters to be erased.
Tefillin and mezuzos
It’s important to know that sun and water are great enemies of mezuzos and tefillin. Therefore one must take care not to bring them in contact with threatening water and sun.
- Don’t leave tefillin in a car that is exposed to the sun.
- Don’t leave tefillin in a bag on a windowsill in the winter, where they are liable to get damp or wet.
- When you clean or paint the doorposts (usually around Pesach time), keep paint and water away from the mezuzah cases.
- When cleaning the doorposts with a steam-cleaning machine, take care that the steam and heat of the machine don’t ruin the mezuzos.
- When renovating or demolishing a building, remember to remove the mezuzos from the doorposts.
- To protect mezuzos which are exposed to rain and sun over a long time period, it is advisable to wrap the mezuzos in two layers. The first layer should be a ‘noisy’ plastic bag, closed at the ends with scotch tape. (Plastic which doesn’t make noise doesn’t breathe, so the natural moisture which exudes from the parchment doesn’t evaporate, and is liable to invalidate the letters)ץ The second layer should be thick paper for insulation from heat and sun. Then place the mezuzah in a closed plastic case.