The start of the school year had already passed. Our youngest son was waiting for community leaders to determine what should be done for the students of his beloved school that had recently fallen apart due to lack of funds. The result turned out to be better than anyone could have ever expected.
After Reb Elimelech had restored the glory of his colleague, Reb Shmelkeh of Nikolsburg, he departed home to Lizhensk. He was en route when a voice descended from Heaven and proclaimed, “In the merit of your helping Reb Shmelkeh you have the privilege of blessing whomever you desire during the next 24 hours. And your blessing will be fulfilled.”
A long drama had taken place. Moses had led the people from slavery to the beginning of the road to freedom. The people themselves had witnessed G-d at Mount Sinai, the only time in all history when an entire people became the recipients of revelation. Then came the disappearance of Moses for his long sojourn at the top of the mountain, an absence which led to the Israelites’ greatest collective sin, the making of the Golden Calf. Moses returned to the mountain to plead for forgiveness, which was granted.
Dear Rebbetzin Jungreis, The letter you shared last week from a troubled wife who became a ba’alas teshuvah, a returnee to religious observance, hit a sensitive spot in my heart. My husband and I have also been struggling with this problem – albeit from a different perspective.
The Gemara says that anything made forbidden by a court must have an explicit permission put forth by another court in order for the prohibition to be removed.
“And you (Moshe) speak to the Children of Israel saying, ‘But my Shabbos you are to observe; for it is a sign between Me and you for your generations, to know that I am Hashem Who sanctifies you” (Shemos 31:13).
If you took a bus to synagogue on a rainy Shabbat or Yom Tov day, with umbrella in hand, would that be OK? There is no melachah involved because you are not driving. There is no amira le’nochri (asking a non‑Jew to perform a melachah on your behalf) involved because you are not asking the non‑Jew to drive for you. He is driving of his own accord for other non‑Jews. There is no violation of techum Shabbat (the prohibition not to travel on Shabbat or Yom Tov more than 2,000 amot beyond one's residence), because the bus travels only in the city.
Question: May someone who desecrates the Sabbath lead the services if he has yahrzeit? If yes, may he replace someone else who has yahrzeit? Hayim Grosz (Via E-Mail)
The Golds were planning a two-week vacation. Mrs. Gold did not want to travel with her jewelry, but was concerned about leaving it in their apartment while they traveled.
Question: The Talmud (Ta’anit 29a) notes that we should be more joyous starting from the beginning of Adar. Does this period of joy continue after Purim?
Moshe Rabbeinu was the greatest human being who ever lived. The Rambam tells us that of all the prophets he alone was able to speak to Hashem directly. Normally, a prophet must go into an altered state of consciousness to experience Hashem. Otherwise the experience would cause sensory overload, and he would die.
Out On A Limb ‘One May Reset A Fracture’ (Shabbos 148a)
The first and only time I said I was a rabbi was also the first and only time I had a gun pointed at me. What led me to that moment was my need to stay on the Upper West Side for a Shabbos and a hospitality committee that arranged for me to stay with a man who lived in the former janitor’s apartment on the fifth floor of a synagogue.
Framing the epic events of this week’s sedrah are two objects: the two sets of tablets – the first given before, and the second after, the sin of the Golden Calf. Of the first, we read: “The tablets were the work of G-d; the writing was the writing of G-d, engraved on the tablets.”
Last week I shared a letter from a troubled and confused young woman. She had become a ba’alas teshuvah after marriage. Her husband, however, has not changed his secular ways and thinking. The following is my response.
Purim is a time of great celebration. Many of our traditions for this chag require food - festive meals, mishloach manos. Abundant food can mean abundant pitfalls for the food allergic. How can one navigate this maze of food allergy landmines?
Here are some wonderful dishes to share with your family and friends this coming Purim
A colossal failure of mammoth proportions. Shaul HaMelech fails in his mission to destroy the nation of Amalek in its entirety and to this day, we suffer from its ever-present force of evil.
Someone sent me this e-mail: “The ABC’s of Purim: They tried to kill us. We survived. Let’s eat.”