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July 30, 2016 / 24 Tammuz, 5776

Posts Tagged ‘city’

Rocket Attack from Gaza (Video)

Sunday, November 18th, 2012

This is the beautiful city of Shderot – it’s a quiet town filled with people who want the quieter life. They have been under attack for 12 years and counting. When they hear either an air raid siren or the announcement “Color Red” – they know they have 15 seconds to get to safety.

On Friday, it took us at least 15 seconds to move everyone from the dining room to the bomb shelter. 15 seconds. It’s taken you longer to read to this point in the post.

This is a video, taken yesterday by someone who was not very smart. I don’t want others to do the same and yet, it’s a wonderful opportunity to let you feel what it is like. Imagine your eyes were like the camera – searching the skies, looking, waiting. You know it is coming…and then the BOOM…that is so loud, the shock knocks the person down and we lose the picture – and then it comes back…look at two things at the end of the short clip.

First, look at how close it is to this person and second, notice that it is in the middle of a city. There is no military installation there – just a city, just people, who want to live in a quiet city that because of Gaza, hasn’t been really quiet in 12 years.

Visit A Soldier’s Mother.

Paula R. Stern

Emunah In G-d

Friday, November 16th, 2012

The Rubles

Our forefathers were giants when it came to having faith and a belief that G-d would take care of them. Nothing worried them save that they wasted time not studying our holy Torah. They relied on G-d to take care of their needs.

The gaon and tzaddik Rav Chaim of Volozhin, one of the dearest disciples of the Vilna Gaon, established a yeshiva to perpetuate the principles and aims of his teacher. Providing sustenance for the pupils was a difficult task and Rav Chaim often suffered great privations but he never despaired, for he trusted in the L-rd.

Once, during the Franco-Prussian war, a merchant entered the yeshiva and said to Rav Chaim, “Rabi, I have just completed the purchase of merchandise for my business and I still have a thousand rubles left over. I’m afraid to carry it with me for the roads are infested with bandits who wouldn’t hesitate to take my life if they knew I had such a sum with me. Therefore, I would like to entrust it to you to keep until I return next year.”

Rav Chaim took the money and gave the merchant a receipt. The merchant was very happy that he had discovered a Rav who would take good care of his money. Ad times were tough, Rav Chaim was overjoyed at this windfall and he immediately made good use of this money.

The Merchant Returns

A number of years passed and the merchant returned to the yeshiva. He approached the secretary, showed him the receipt and asked to have his money returned.

The secretary excused himself while he went to the home of Rav Chaim. “Rabi,” he cried, “the man who entrusted you with his money three years ago has now come back and he is claiming his money. What shall we do? The yeshiva’s treasury is empty.”

“Tell him to return tomorrow,” Rav Chaim answered.

When the secretary departed, the Rav’s wife turned to him and asked, “Where do you hope to get the money by tomorrow? You know we barely have enough money to survive.”

“G-d will provide,” answered the gaon.

Rav Chaim appeared unperturbed. In the morning he arose as usual, said his prayers, studied the Torah and gave his regular shiur to his pupils, continuing as if nothing had occurred.

Help Arrives In Time

Towards evening a messenger from the baron appeared at the home of Rav Chaim. “My master, the baron, has a thousand rubles which he desires to exchange for gold,” said the messenger. “He is planning a trip abroad and he needs gold. He knows that you received gold from distant countries and he therefore requests that you write your supporters abroad to send you gold. In the meantime, he is giving you the money to use for the exchange. He realizes that it may take time to accumulate the gold, therefore, I will return in a few months.” Leaving a thousand rubles, the messenger departed.

An hour later, when the merchant entered, Rav Chaim gave him back the thousand rubles he had entrusted to him three years earlier.

To such heights did our sages trust in the Lord and the Lord reciprocated.

Profited On The Wrong Merchandise

Rav Chaim of Volozhin had a pupil, Rav Yosef Zundil, whose piety and saintliness were legend. He, too, inherited from his rebbe the strong belief in G-d, to trust in Him and He’ll take care of you.

Rav Zundil owned a small shop which his wife took care of. She did all the knitting and repairing while her husband studied Torah day and night. This way they lived a meager and contented life.

Once his wife came to him and said, “There is a large fair opening in the main city where merchandise of various countries will be on display. While I don’t want to disturb you from your studies, if you will visit this fair and purchase a year’s supply of thread and cotton, I’ll never have to waste your time and mine for the next year in purchasing it from our local dealers. Also, we’ll be able to save a lot of money.”

Rabbi Sholom Klass

Friday Morning Overnight Update

Friday, November 16th, 2012

7:35 AM NYC closed the area around the Israeli Consulate in light of the protests and for security reasons. Security has also been increased around other Israeli sites in the city.

The Federation announced they are donating 5 million dollars to Israelis in the South.

A Suspicious Object was found near the Jerusalem light rail at the Herzl train stop.

IDF was busy pounding terror targets overnight.

6:55 AM Missile hits house in Ashdod. No injuries.

 

Jewish Press News Briefs

Rockets Hit Ashdod

Thursday, November 15th, 2012

9:29 AM Rockets landing in Ashdod. Sirens sounding throughout the city.

Jewish Press News Briefs

I Love Tel Aviv

Wednesday, November 14th, 2012

My wife and I were in Tel Aviv this week to accompany her mother to the very modern and professional Ramat Aviv Medical Center for a treatment her mom needed. Thank God, everything is OK with the biopsy they took. Afterwards, we strolled around the city a little to enjoy the change of atmosphere.

What’s amazing about Tel Aviv is that everyone speaks Hebrew! At first glance, it doesn’t seem like the most religious place in the country, but everyone there, no matter how weird or secular he looks, speaks the Holy Tongue. Even a drunk who approached us for a handout spoke to us in Hebrew! The only people we met there who didn’t speak Hebrew was a busload of kids on some study program from America.

“Who do you think is closer to God?” I asked my wife. “These Jewish kids from America who don’t know Hebrew, or anything about Judaism, or the Jews in Tel Aviv who know Hebrew and not very much more about Judaism?”

“I’m not privileged to know God’s rating system,” she answered wryly. “It seems to me that God loves everyone equally.”

My wife is a very nice person. I’m very lucky to have married her.

Tel Aviv is filled with beautiful boutiques, sidewalk cafes, theaters, and art galleries. Its architecture along the seaside is very modern artsy and creative. It has a bohemian, Paris-like feeling about it. My wife noted that the women were very fashionably dressed, though modesty wasn’t one of their strong points. I kept my glance down at my shoes, so I can’t confirm her report. I know there are many devout Diasporians who are always screaming “Gevalt! The immodesty in Israel is terrible! Gevalt! There are so many heretics there! Gevalt! Tel Aviv is worse than Las Vegas!”

There is an interesting Midrash in “Yalkut Shimoney, Eichah” that describes God’s great anguish that His children are in exile, dwelling amongst the gentiles. “Gevalt!” G-d moans. “If only My children were with Me in Eretz Yisrael, even if they contaminate My Land with their sins.”

Our Sages tell us that God cries out at midnight with pain over His sadness that His children are in foreign lands. “Woe to the father that has exiled his children!” He roars. In contrast, God is happy when His children are in Israel. Look what He has done in returning us to our borders! The city of Tel Aviv began as a sand dune. Today, a few short decades later, it is a booming modern metropolis, spreading for miles and miles in every direction. God has done all this! Only a blind person can’t see it.

I know there are people who aren’t happy with this state of affairs. They don’t agree with the way God is bringing about the Redemption. If they were God, they would do things differently. For one thing, they would limit the Redemption to religious Jews only. But, like my wife said, God loves all Jews, the religious and the not yet religious. So in His great love and wisdom, He decided to give the secular Zionists the great mitzvah of resettling and rebuilding the Land of Israel after an exile of nearly two thousand years, a mitzvah that is equal in weight to all of the commandments of the Torah!

God loves Tel Aviv too! Look how He has built it up out of the sand dunes to being such a thriving dynamic city! Some “Ultra Religious” Jews maintain it’s the work of the Satan. What ignorance! The Gemara teaches that everything is from God, even the path of a leaf as it falls from a tree. When you stick your hand in your pocket to pull out a dime, and a nickel comes out instead, that’s from G-d too. So something as enormous as the city of Tel Aviv, and the rebuilding of Israel into a world superpower, isn’t from God?

For me, strolling around Tel Aviv and seeing how the words of our Prophets have come to pass in our generation, is as much of a spiritual experience as spending a day in the holy city of Tzfat. I can’t wait to go back to Tel Aviv for another uplifting visit!

Tzvi Fishman

Red Alert in Be’er Sheva, 10 Rockets Fell

Wednesday, November 14th, 2012

At least 10 rockets were fired at Be’er Sheva in the Negev this evening. Several sirens were sounded in the city

Throngs of Israeli student pack the Be’er Sheva train station, due to the closing of Ben Gurion University. To accommodate the masses of students, Israel Rail Road is sending extra long trains to evacuate the students looking to escape northward.

One of the Kassam rockets fell in a shopping mall in the city. A building was damaged but there were no casualties.

Two of the rockets were blocked by the Iron Dome system.

Jewish Press News Briefs

The City that has Problems with Synagogues

Wednesday, November 14th, 2012

My congressional campaign is over, but one of the main reasons I ran remains. What first impelled me to seek public office was the feeling of powerlessness to stop Muammar Kaddafi from coming to stay in the home immediately next door to me in Englewood, N.J., in the autumn of 2009.

And though we ultimately succeeded, with God’s blessing, in pushing him out, I could not persuade my city to challenge the tax exemption of an international terrorist which forced me, and all the other residents of Englewood, to be complicit in evil in having to subsidize a murderous government’s compound in our midst. (The staff living there did not have the decency to even once lower their flag to half-staff in the wake of the murder of Ambassador Chris Stevens in Benghazi.)

If only my city were to treat me with the same courtesy they accorded Kaddafi.

For the past year my congregants and I have been locked in a bitter struggle with Englewood to get our home properly zoned as a Synagogue. We have hosted prayer, religious services, and educational events for more than 13 years, but the city continues to cite us as requiring a variance in order to host communal worship. The same city that could not, for three decades, muster the courage to challenge the Libyans’ tax-exempt presence in our town has obstructed a fair hearing of our congregants’ right to establish a house of worship. As the Chairman of our Board, Michael Fromm, has put it, “It’s an outrage. We have had hearings canceled for nefarious reasons, the rules have been changed mid-game, city officials have abused their power to thwart us, board members have publicly displayed prejudice against us, and we have been held to a higher standard than international terrorists.”

The city’s efforts to block our Synagogue application have been brazen. First, they canceled our hearing at the Board of Adjustment – for which we had prepared for months at considerable expense – on the very same day it was to take place on October 24, 2011. Then, after having our hearing unlawfully canceled by one Board, we spent thousands more to ready ourselves for a hearing at the Planning Board, appointed and overseen by the City’s mayor, Frank Huttle. Unbelievably, they too found a legal loophole to deny us from even being heard. The full video of the hearing is available here and you may draw your own conclusions as to the fairness of their arguments and vote.

So, thousands of dollars later we were back at the Board of Adjustment for a hearing scheduled for May 21, 2012. Then, just a week before the hearing we were forwarded a letter, authored by Ken Albert, the City Engineer, dated March 27, 2012, that demanded, for the first time, a host of new improvements in order for us to even qualify for the hearing. Bizarrely, the city stamped his letter April 24th, 2012, suggesting they had sat on the letter for a full month prior to forwarding it, thereby making it impossible for our hearing to go ahead as planned.

We acquired a new date of June 25, 2012 only to have that hearing canceled by Chairwoman Rosemary Byrne a mere four hours before it was scheduled, wasting thousands more of our organization’s money. Was the city’s strategy to have us squander all our funds without even a hearing so that we would throw in the towel?

We finally decided to go public about the many obstacles and cancellations thrown in our path for the creation of a House of Worship, while leaving the Libyans to live peacefully at Englewood taxpayer expense. We also prepared a Federal lawsuit against the city under the Religious Land Use and Institutionalized Persons Act. Once the newspaper reports appeared, we were granted a hearing.

We’ve had two since. Unfortunately, the hearings have been characterized by what would seem to be a predetermined outcome. A simple read of the transcripts provides a great deal of illumination, with one board member in particular, Harry Reidler, seeming particularly vexed by our application.

Reidler, who is a member of the local Democratic Municipal Committee, several times raised my Congressional bid in the district (Republican) even though it was never germane to our Synagogue’s application. When, for the first time, he brought up my race for Congress he was interrupted three times by the Chairwoman and told, “Wait.” Still he objected, saying ‘…I mean, we know that this Rabbi is running for Congress.”

Rabbi Shmuley Boteach

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/indepth/columns/america-rabbi-shmuley-boteach/the-city-that-has-problems-with-synagogues/2012/11/14/

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