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Pre-Purim Observances

Purim is preceded by two special Torah readings and a fast day. Find out their significance and associated traditions.

The Torah reading of the Shabbat that falls on or before Adar is supplemented with G‑d's commandment to Moses regarding the giving of the half-shekel.
When the Israelites left Egypt, no nation dared pick a fight with them. Only Amalek, driven by profound hatred which defied logic, came to wage battle.
The Fast of Esther: What, Why and How
On the day before Purim, we fast to commemorate how our ancestors fasted during the events leading to the Purim miracle.
Prep Up to Purim
The Shabbat before Purim is Shabbat Zachor. The day before Purim (in most years) is the Fast of Esther. Learn about the significance of these days and their associated observances.
The Laws of Giving a Half of Shekel
Machatzit HaShekel
In commemoration of the custom in the Holy Temple to give charity towards its building, we give coins half the value of the countrie's currency once a year
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