web analytics
December 21, 2014 / 29 Kislev, 5775
 
At a Glance
Sections
Sponsored Post
8000 meals Celebrate Eight Days of Chanukah – With 8,000 Free Meals Daily to Israel’s Poor

Join Meir Panim’s campaign to “light up” Chanukah for families in need.



Chronicles Of Crises In Our Communities

By:
Chronicles-logo

My Bubby, The Agunah (Part 2)

In last week’s column, Pesach-Yonah Malevitz honors the memory of his dear bubby on her 41st yahrtzeit by relating an incredible story that unfolded in her early years. Henya-Bluma, as the youngest of several siblings, was the only one still living at home in Korostyshev, Ukraine when her elderly parents whose welfare she had seen to passed away within months of each other. Not long thereafter, the young single woman left the country of her birth at the urging of a sister who had asked her to come live with her and her family in Chicago.

Shortly after stepping foot on American soil in December of 1909, Henya-Bluma was coaxed by her kin into meeting a “nice young man” — whom, it turned out, they’d never seen before. Since she sensed that she was invading her sister’s private space, Henya-Bluma agreed to the shidduch without much ado … and soon found herself living with a virtual stranger in their newly purchased home located in a non-Jewish neighborhood.

Henya-Bluma’s serious problems set in almost instantly after marriage — when her husband had her minding his grocery store all week long, including on Shabbos. The tenacious 22-year old would not be deterred; even as she sat behind the counter of the grocery on Shabbos, she made sure not to desecrate the holy day and devised her own little stratagem to avoid being mechalel Shabbos.

Her infuriated husband took matters in hand by locking his wife in the house whenever he went out and otherwise turning into an abusive and aggressive spouse.

Part one of the spellbinding account concludes as Henya-Bluma hands their mail carrier a letter through an open window. She had unburdened her tale of woe to a beloved uncle — a rav and a sofer who had immigrated to the United States at the same time as his niece.

Read on and be inspired as our author – the grandson of a remarkable and courageous woman – continues his narration.

Henya-Bluma received an answer to her letter within a few days. Her uncle wrote that she was to leave immediately and that he had already spoken to his daughter, Sarah, who agreed to have her cousin stay with her and her family.

            According to plan, Sarah and her husband came to fetch Henya-Bluma by day when it was presumed that her husband would not be home. He was — and watched wordlessly as she packed her few things and took her leave.

            Upon her return to the Jewish section of Chicago, Sarah and her husband arranged for Henya-Bluma to see their friend a divorce attorney — who was confident that she would be granted a civil divorce without a hassle. (A civil divorce was legally required before a bais din could issue a get.)

As the attorney had predicted, the judge awarded Henya-Bluma the divorce. Since she wished to have no further contact with her husband, she declined alimony. The divorce proceedings over with, Henya-Bluma approached her husband in a gesture of good will and told him how sorry she was that things hadn’t worked out.

            She wished him luck and said she had but one last request of him — that he grant her a get. He looked her in the eye and coldly informed her that for as long as he was alive he would never give her one. He then walked out of the courthouse and disappeared.

Henya-Bluma went to work full-time at a Jewish-owned factory and rented a small apartment nearby. The next five years were uneventful as Henya-Bluma carried on with her job, read Tehillim, davened from her Tchina and had no expectations of change to her lifestyle. The whereabouts of her husband, who had sold the grocery and rented out their house, were unknown to anyone.

            Henya-Bluma occasionally ran into Leah, a middle-aged widow who lived downstairs in the same apartment building and was employed at the same factory, in a different department. Whenever they would meet in the hallway or on the street, they would greet one another cordially but were not really friends.

One day Leah knocked on Henya-Bluma’s door. She had come to tell her neighbor that although they were not well acquainted, Henya-Bluma made a very favorable impression on her — and she had a friend whom she knew from way back in Melitopol, Ukraine. Yosef Pearlman was a 34-year old widower whose wife, Rochel, had passed away a few months earlier from tuberculosis at the age of 29.

About the Author: We encourage women and men of all ages to send in their personal stories via email to rachel@jewishpress.com or by mail to Rachel/Chronicles, c/o The Jewish Press, 4915 16th Ave., Brooklyn, N.Y. 11204. If you wish to make a contribution and help agunot, your tax-deductible donation should be sent to The Jewish Press Foundation. Please make sure to specify that it is to help agunot, as the foundation supports many worthwhile causes.


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 “Chronicles Of Crises In Our Communities”

Comments are closed.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Current Top Story
Dr. Ben Carson at the Western Wall.
Black GOP Leader Prays at the Western Wall for ‘Solomonic Wisdom’
Latest Sections Stories
Games-121914

Here are examples of games that need to be played by more than one person and an added bonus: they’re all Shabbos-friendly.

South-Florida-logo

The incident was completely unforeseeable. The only term to describe the set of circumstances surrounding it is “freak occurrence.”

South-Florida-logo

The first Chabad Center in Broward County, Chabad of South Broward, now runs nearly fifty programs and agencies. T

The NHS was also honored to have Bob Diener as keynote speaker.

Written with flowing language and engaging style, Attar weaves a spell that combines mystery, humor, adventure and Kabbalah in the most magical place in the world, the Old City of erusalem.

There are those who highlight the diversity of these different teachings, seeing each rebbe as teaching a separate path.

Rav Dynovisz will be speaking in Hebrew on Wednesday, January 7, at 7:30 p.m.

Rabbi Simeon Schreiber, senior chaplain at Mount Sinai Medical Center in Miami Beach, saw a small room in the hospital that was dark and dismal but could be used for Sabbath guests.

“The secret to a good donut is using quality ingredients and the ability to be patient and give them time to proof.”

I so desperately want to have a loving relationship with my stepsons.

The Liberty Bell is a symbol of American Independence.

Because you can’t have kids pouring huge jugs of oil into tiny glasses, unless you want to turn your house into an environmental disaster.

Try these with your kids; there’s something for every age group and once all the recipes are made, dinner will be ready!

You children will build the country and you will help restore Israel to her former glory.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/sections/family/chronicles-of-crises/chronicles-of-crises-in-our-communities-266/2013/09/18/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: