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October 13, 2015 / 30 Tishri, 5776
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It’s My Opinion: Teshuvah

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As the month of Elul approaches, Jews all over the world anticipate the New Year. Rosh Hashanah is an intriguing time. The notion of teshuvah (repentance) is pivotal to the holiday.


A recent incident in Coral Springs, Florida, demonstrated that the desire for penitence goes far beyond the Jewish community. It is a universal yearning. The difficulty is that sometimes teshuvah is a fleeting sentiment and not easily sustained.


Israel Camacho was recently recorded on videotape as he attempted to rob a cell phone store in Miami. The store manager, Nayaraa Goncalves, implored him to seek Jesus instead. Camacho was shaken. He apologized and left empty-handed.


Goncalves had encouraged Camacho to, “go back to church.” Apparently he had not yet followed her advice. Two hours later, Camacho was again on the streets. This time he successfully robbed a shoe store in the same general neighborhood. He had a gun. He forced the clerk to empty the cash register. 

About the Author: Shelley Benveniste is South Florida editor of The Jewish Press.

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