web analytics
August 21, 2014 / 25 Av, 5774
Israel at War: Operation Protective Edge
 
 
At a Glance
News & Views
Sponsored Post
Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat (L) visits the JewishPress.com booth at The Event. And the Winners of the JewishPress.com Raffle Are…

Congratulations to all the winners of the JewishPress.com raffle at The Event



Yom Kippur Inspires Determination in Wake of Colorado Floods

Some 300 people came specifically because of the floods.
The Chabad Jewish Center in Longmont, Colo., was struck by flash floods.

The Chabad Jewish Center in Longmont, Colo., was struck by flash floods.
Photo Credit: Chabad.org

As heavy rains and flash-flooding continued to batter the Boulder, Colo., area straight through Yom Kippur, and with rains continuing to hamper rescue efforts throughout the region on Sunday, Chabad rabbis told of devastation and devotion, as well as a dedication to volunteerism in the tough and uncertain days ahead.

Despite severe flooding in the synagogue of the Chabad on Campus center in Boulder, Rabbi Yisroel Wilhem, co-director of Chabad of the University of Colorado, held Yom Kippur services upstairs in the lobby of the building, which is above the flood line.

“We had about 300 people in attendance. Many people were not able to leave their homes because of the devastation, but many, many others came specifically because of what has been going on,” Wilhelm said on Sunday morning.

He noted that while some who were expected to attend were not able to make it, there were many new faces as well. His sermon, he said, focused on galvanizing his community—comprised heavily of students at the University of Colorado—to get out and help others.

As soon as the holy day ended on Saturday evening, despite flooding in his own home, Wilhelm began to organize hundreds of volunteers to help locals who have been affected by the rains. He created a Facebook page and a web site where both volunteers, as well as people in need of help, can sign up. He had 25 students volunteering on Friday and expected upwards of 50 students to be on hand on Sunday, helping people salvage their personal effects and valuables from their waterlogged homes.

“I have my new hero,” said Wilhelm. “A student who lives up the canyon was told by the police that he could not make his way down to services because of the flooding since the road was not there anymore. He just came down with his bike. He was wet and dirty to his waist because he had to cross two ‘rivers’ while holding his bike in the air. He stayed with us for Yom Kippur.”

The student, Jefferey Schnissel, is a chemistry major at University of Colorado. Schnissel, who is still recovering from a wrist injury, said the roads between his residence Cold Creek Canyon and the Chabad center had been washed away, and the only way he was able to come was via a patchwork of bike trails and streets.

 ‘Especially Poignant’ Yom Kippur Services

“At times, it was scary, and I did not know where to turn next, but I knew that I needed to be at Chabad for Yom Kippur and that I was in G‑d’s hands,” he said.

“The services were awesome. It seemed like the whole community gravitated together. People felt a sense of refuge.”

Rabbi Yaakov Borenstein, co-director of the Chabad Jewish Center in nearby Longmont, serves as a chaplain with the Longmont Police department. Borenstein received an urgent phone call on Thursday evening asking for reliable people to distribute blankets, cash cards and other necessities to people in need. With less than 24 hours before the start Yom Kippur, he recruited 10 members of his community to get ready to work. They were there until 6 or 7 the next morning.

Meanwhile, the Borentsteins themselves were ordered to evacuate their home, which was subsequently damaged by the flooding.

“It was 3 a.m., and our electricity was out,” said Borenstein, “So there we were with flashlights fishing around for clothes for the kids, as well as everything we would need for our Yom Kippur services.” The Borensteins got the last room in the same hotel where they had previously booked the meeting room to host Yom Kippur services. “We also paid for rooms in a nearby hotel for a number of other families who had lost their homes.”

Borenstein says the services were especially poignant, as despair and gloom hovered in the atmosphere. “We have not had a flood in Colorado in 100 years. That means that no one has insurance.

“Looking forward, we are going to have to help everyone get back on their feet. Across the street from the Chabad center, houses are devastated. Thank G‑d our door faced away from the current, and we managed to sandbag the doorways in time, but others were not as fortunate. People were crying, knowing that it is going to be a very, very hard year.”

About the Author: Chabad.org is a division of the Chabad-Lubavitch Media Center, under the auspices of the Lubavitch World Headquarters


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 “Yom Kippur Inspires Determination in Wake of Colorado Floods”

Comments are closed.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Current Top Story
An IDF patrol along the Gaza border.
Ground Op on Horizon with Emergency Orders to 10,000 IDF Reservists
Latest News Stories

The White House has unblocked the weapons shipment to Israel that they had recently blocked.

Rocket remainder

10:58pm Negev 10:32 pm Eshkol 9:38 pm Ashdod, Ashkelon, Ashkelon Coast 8:47 pm Modiin-Maccabim-Reut, and area. Iron Dome Interception. 8:46 pm Beit El 20:00 pm  Iron Dome downs two rockets over Be’er Sheva; three others explode in open areas. 19:42 pm     Two warnings of rockets in Be’er Sheva, warnings of rockets Hatzerim , site […]

An IDF patrol along the Gaza border.

The IDF readies what it does not want unless there is no alternative – a deep ground invasion of Gaza. Hamas also is ready.

If “the only thing we have to fear is fear itself,” Diaspora Jews are in big trouble.

The security cabinet authorised Thursday the emergency call-up of 10,000 IDF reservists. Defense Minister Moshe Ya’alon said Israel would continue to pursue Hamas leaders anywhere and at any time, and added that the current campaign would “take time.” Ya’alon called on the Israeli public to display patience and strength while the army deals with the […]

The Jewish community in Belfast, Northern Ireland is bracing for violent backlash as the city prepares for an appearance by radical British MP George Galloway on Saturday night. Last month, Palestinian supporters smashed windows twice at the Belfast Hebrew Congregation following a pro-Palestinian demonstration in the city. Now, representatives for Galloway say the 1,000-seat Ulster […]

Israeli school year will begin as planned, and schools “are prepared for any security-related events.”

Gaza workers continue to search for the body of Hamas military chief Mohammed Deif after an IAF air strike August 20.

PA Arabs stoned an Egged bus near Halhoul, north of Hebron Wednesday. The attack took place near the site where the bodies of Eyal Yifrah, Gil-Ad Sha’ar and Naftali Fraenkel were discovered on June 30. No injuries or property damage were reported.

Non-stop rockets on south; Yadlin: Hamas rocket stockpiles dwindling.

Prime Minister Netanyahu praised joint IDF, Shin Bet efforts ending in terror deaths.

Three more terrorists killed in IAF air strike on Sheikh Radwan section of Gaza City Thursday.

One Israeli man was wounded Thursday making sure children escaped rocket fire in time.

Raed al-Attar was an extremely dangerous, sophisticated Hamas terrorist. But he is dead.

Royal Jordanian Airlines has again canceled flights to Tel Aviv over fears of rocket fire from Hamas.

More Articles from Chabad.org
Gabriel Felder was selected for the prestigious honor of representing his graduating class at The George Washington University commencement, marking the second year in a row that a Jewish student leader has done so.

Felder said he and his fellow students learned well the teaching of the Rebbe.

chabad building attacked

Chabad Rabbi Michael Oishie had left the building just 20 minutes before the attack.

Canadian Chabad rabbis accompanied Harper on his trip.

“It was quite an institutionalized racism, and we didn’t come to get involved in politics.”

Gematria is more than random wordplay.

We are brought into this confusing, fascinating, infuriating world for such a short amount of time, and it’s our mission to accomplish what we can for the several decades we are allotted.

If one has only enough money to afford either a cup of wine for Shabbat kiddush or oil for his Hanukkah lamp, the mitzvah of Hanukkah takes precedence.

Originally published at Chabad.org. Chabad Lubavitch emissaries will begin arriving in New York next week from all parts of the world for the Kinus Hashluchim—the annual get-together of emissaries, their parents, friends and supporters, and a record number are expected to attend this year. Organizers have spent more than six months planning for the Chabad […]

    Latest Poll

    Do you think the FAA ban on US flights to Israel is political?






    View Results

    Loading ... Loading ...

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/yom-kippur-inspires-determination-in-wake-of-colorado-floods/2013/09/16/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: