Thousands of secular Jews began putting on tefillin recently as part of “Operation Ron” – an initiative named after Tel Aviv mayor Ron Huldai “in honor” of his recent ban of tefillin stands outside schools, initiated by Israeli journalist Boaz Golan, according to a 0404 News report.
Chabad houses around the world are reporting an increase in requests to put on tefillin. In Israel, many Israelis are also putting on tefillin with one Israeli reporting that he began to lay tefillin “after 12 years of not doing so.” Another Israeli reported that he began to put on tefillin only in protest against Huldai.
Moshe Bukai, an Israeli living in the US, posted a video of himself putting on tefillin, noting that he decided to put on tefillin after years of not doing so.
Bukai told 0404 News that: “Baruch Hashem, everything is fine in my life but now I understand that tefillin are what I was missing.”
Another Israeli sent Golan a message accompanied by a picture of him wearing tefillin, writing: “I wanted to express my great gratitude to you and Ron! I’ve been on an internal and personal journey for a long time already and I haven’t put on tefillin in months. Thanks to you and the blessed Jewish activities you’re carrying out, I’ve merited to put on tefillin again and it’s done me so much good!”
Golan initially began “Operation Ron” by calling on mayors throughout Israel to set up tefillin stands in their municipal squares and throughout the city in general and many mayors responded to his request. including the mayors of Haifa, Kiryat Ata, Kiryat Motzkin, Lod, Nof Hagalil, Petach Tikvah, Tzfat, Maalot, and Zichron Yaakov.
אורן יהודאי, שלח אליי הודעה מרגשת ואישר לפרסמה: שמי אורן ורציתי לומר לך ולרון תודה גדולה! אני במסע פנימי ואישי כבר זמן רב ולא הנחתי תפילין חודשים רבים. הודות לך ולפעילות היהודית המבורכת שאתה עושה, זכיתי שוב להניח תפילין, וזה עשה לי רק טוב! תודה גדולה בועז והמשך במעשיך. אנחנו איתך pic.twitter.com/twlHtBvV24
— Boaz Golan בועז גולן (@BoazGolan) February 16, 2020