web analytics
September 21, 2014 / 26 Elul, 5774
At a Glance
Judaism
Sponsored Post
Apartment 758x530 Africa-Israel at the Israel Real Estate Exhibition in New York

Africa Israel Residences, part of the Africa Israel Investments Group led by international businessman Lev Leviev, will present 7 leading projects on the The Israel Real Estate Exhibition in New York on Sep 14-15, 2014.



Just A Little Lollipop

Rebbetzin Esther Jungreis

Rebbetzin Esther Jungreis

As I’ve written over the past few weeks, my husband, HaRav Meshulem HaLevi Jungreis, ztl, was a blessing to one and all. Whoever came in contact with him glowed in his sunshine.

As a matter of fact, I am currently writing a book, Be A Blessing, inspired by the man I’ll always call My Rabbi.

A few weeks ago a handsome young fellow came to see me at Hineni. “Rebbetzin,” he said, “I have a question. Am I duty bound to invite my father to my wedding?”

I looked at him. It was not a question most people would ask. He noticed my quizzical expression and proceeded to explain.

“Rebbetzin, my father abused us. He left my mother when I was just a little boy of five. There were all kinds of problems. He left deep scars on our hearts and souls.”

And then this young man went on to describe some of the things his father had done.

“So tell me,” he said. “Do I have to invite him to my wedding?”

“Why do you ask me this?” I asked. “Are you engaged?”

“No,” he replied.

“Are you dating anyone seriously?”

He shook his head. He wasn’t dating anyone seriously.

“So why don’t we defer this conversation to a time when you’ll be planning your wedding?”

Even as I said that I realized how deeply hurt he was. His soul just wanted to scream his outrage. He wanted to cry out and express his anger and he couldn’t think of anything more dreadful than a son rejecting the presence of a parent at his wedding.

“Do you know what kept me going all these years?” he asked. “The year my father abandoned us, my mother was ill. She was struggling to make ends meet. Although we belonged to a synagogue, no one in our shul reached out to us.

“One day as Mom was searching the papers looking for bargains, she noticed an advertisement for a bazaar at a synagogue. ‘Maybe we’ll go to the bazaar and find something to buy,’ she said to me.

“The synagogue she was referring to was Congregation Ohr Torah of North Woodmere, Long Island.”

My heart started beating faster and I wondered where this story was going. As I’ve mentioned in previous columns, Ohr Torah was the shul my husband and I established in what had been a spiritual wasteland. I remember well those days of fundraising bazaars. My husband would always stop in to thank the volunteers and greet the people who came to browse.

“I saw a very tall person,” the young man continued. “He had the nicest face, the kindest eyes. Suddenly he stopped to greet me. He smiled at me, patted my cheeks, and asked, ‘What is your Jewish name?’

“I told him ‘Michoel’ and the man said to me, ‘That is the most beautiful name. Michoel was an angel of G-d. He was the angel of blessings, and that’s your mission – to be a blessing and share that blessing with others.’

“At the time I didn’t quite understand what the rabbi was saying but I did understand that he was the kindest man I’d ever met. He gave me a yarmulke and a lollipop and said, ‘Let’s make a berachah, a blessing.’ And he taught me the berachah for candy.

“His message kept me going. ‘This is one of the first teachings you have to remember,’ he said. ‘Always try to be a blessing. Thank G-d and thank all people – and be a blessing.’

“I never saw the rabbi again. But the sweetness of the lollipop and the yarmulke that covered my head went a long way. It penetrated my heart and mind. To this day when I think of a yarmulke I associate it with protection and the sweetness of that lollipop remains on my palate.

About the Author:


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

No Responses to “Just A Little Lollipop”

Comments are closed.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Current Top Story
Dozens of children were traumatized but escaped injury Sunday morning when Arabs in eastern Jerusalem attacked their bus.
‘Benign Neglect’ May Be Setting Up Eastern Jerusalem Jews for Expulsion
Latest Judaism Stories
Hertzberg-092614

Perhaps the most important leadership lesson Elkana taught us is to never underestimate the difference a single person can make.

Teller-Rabbi-Hanoch-NEW

“he’s my rabbi” the Black painter said with pride, pulling out a photo of the Rebbe from his wallet

Rabbi Avi Weiss, head of theYeshivat Chovevei Torah. Rabbi Asher Lopatin will be replacing him as head of the school.

The Torah notes that even when we are dispersed God will return us to Him.

Rabbi Sacks

Simply, for Rambam the number 14 (2×7) was his favored organizing principle.

One of the cornerstones of our Jewish life is chesed, kindness. Chesed can only be taught by example

Our understanding of what is and what is not possible creates imagined ceilings of opportunity for us.

This young, innocent child gave me a powerful, warm surge of energy and strength.

The Chafetz Chaim answered that there are two forms of teshuvah; teshuvah m’ahava and teshuvah m’yirah.

Question: I recently loaned money to a friend who has been able to repay only part of it. This was an interest-free loan. We exchanged a signed IOU, not a proper shtar with witnesses, since I have always trusted her integrity and only wanted a document that confirms what was loaned and what was repaid. Now that shemittah is approaching, what should I do? Should I forgive the loan? And if my friend is not able to repay it, may I deduct the unpaid money from my ma’aser requirement?

Name Withheld

A Role Reversal
‘Return, O Wayward Sons…’
(Chagigah 15a)

When the Kleins returned, however, they were dismayed to see that the renters did a poor job cleaning up after themselves.

In Parshas Re’eh the Torah tells us about the bechira to adhere to the commandments of Hashem and refrain from sin. In Parshas Nitzavim, the Torah tells us that we have the choice to repent after we have sinned.

As Moshe is about to die, why does God tell him about how the Israelites will ruin everything?

Jonah objected to God accepting repentance based on ulterior motives and likely for short duration.

This week’s parsha offers a new covenant; a covenant that speaks to national life unlike any other

More Articles from Rebbetzin Esther Jungreis
Rebbetzin Esther Jungreis

One of the cornerstones of our Jewish life is chesed, kindness. Chesed can only be taught by example

Rebbetzin Esther Jungreis

“There is nothing new under the sun” is as valid today as it was yesterday.

The time immediately preceding Mashiach’s arrival is likened to the birth pangs of a woman in labor.

If we regard pain and suffering as mere coincidence, we will feel no motivation to examine our lives

What does Hashem want of us? That we should protect each other and the awesome heritage He gave us.

Gratitude=Great Attitude. Appreciation is always appropriate.

The two words “thank you” have no time expiration; even if spoken after many years they’re as potent as ever.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/judaism/rebbetzins-viewpointrebbetzin-jungreis/just-a-little-lollipop/2014/06/12/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: