21 November 2011

Like Avraham Avinu

Walking along Keren Kayemet, the main thoroughfare in Rehavia, Jerusalem, my husband spotted a 'young' man engaging in conversation with some local school kids in the small park across from the public school. The young man was speaking to one of the kids, a young boy. Actually, my husband noticed, he was putting tefillin on this young boy. The young school girls with the boy were all smiles and giggles.

My husband noticed this same interaction by this young man with other school kids in the same park, on other days. One time he was just speaking to a few school kids that had gathered. My husband said, in praise of this young man: He must be a Lubavitcher. Here he is a young man himself but he is busy doing G-d's work, quietly and humbly. But he was causing a rash gadol in Shomayim, not affected by his surroundings, but instead, like Avraham Avinu, reaching out to unaffiliated Jewish youth to bring them closer to HaShem. It was during the parshios of Avraham Avinu.

In Rehavia/Shaare Chessed we have not one, but two ChaBaD centers, one for outreach specifically, but with daily minyanim, and another which is more of a shul and Beis Medrash. This Beis Medrash has a plaque dedicated to Miriam Swerdlov's grand daughter Alta Shula a"h, when she was here for the dedication last year. Both centers I'm sure are a strong contribution and magnet for the alienated Israeli youth and unaffiliated Jews who come to visit Yerushalayim.

Here we are around 5000 miles away from Crown Heights in the Middle East and there is one Lubavitcher young man doing what the Rebbe's raison d'ĂȘtre was and is.