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The bottom line is that we should never know of such an ordeal, but I thought it worthwhile to pass the lesson on.

May Hashem protect us from all harm.

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A devoted reader

Dear Rachel,

This past Friday as my wife and I were preparing for Shabbos without the benefit of electricity, we felt like we were catching a glimpse of what an erev Shabbos was like for our predecessors in the early 18th century. We take too many things for granted.

Humbled in Hoboken

Dear Readers,

As they try to reorder their shattered existence, devastated families are at a loss to make sense out of the latest calamity to hit these shores. For some it proved to be a temporary inconvenience, but for countless others the destruction is overwhelming. While fathoming G-d’s ways is beyond our scope, we know that we are expected to be and to do the best we can with the resources He has endowed us with.

From the small New Jersey neighborhood where one small generator is passed around so that each family can maintain a refrigerator cool enough to keep foods from spoiling, to the family in the dark granted access to power (albeit limited) via an extension cord leading from a neighbor’s home where power has already been restored, widespread acts of chessed in our communities are baruch Hashem vibrant and pulsating.

Thank you, dear readers, for your wonderful contributions to this column. Mi k’Amcha Yisroel, indeed!

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