Tuesday, November 01, 2005

My daugther's Bat Mitzvah

This Blog is primarily about a personal connection with the Mitzvah of Shemittah. Posts here may seem irrevelant to the Mitzvah of Shemittah. They are not. At the end of the post I will try to tie in the connection.


On Sunday was my daughter's Bat Mitzva. It was in Prospect Park yeshiva and there were around 100 women and girls of all ages. The Bat Mitzvah was in solidarity with the people of Gush Katif. There was the usual singing, dancing and fun but there was also solidarity with the people of Gush Katif.The girls really got into writing letters and including 99Cent items in their packages to Gush Katif. You can see the intensity in their expressions and their understanding that this chesed is real. They really wanted those girls from Gush Katif to in some way know them that they care. They won tickets from dancing etc and with their tickets they bought prizes which they could keep or send to the people of Gush Katif. It was l'ilui Nishmas my Father z"l Yosef Zeev ben Moshe who in his lifetimes had many startovers. His first family was wiped out in the Holocaust. He remarried my Mother and had us. He tried various businesses until he became a zipper manufacturer. At age 65 he liquidated because selling the business wasn't an option because of the competition from the East. He started a the bottom this time as an employee and worked his way up. 15 years later at the age of 80 he suffered a stroke and once again, started over with OT and PT his new job. He relearned to walk and do steps and went to shul twice a day and wrote Tzedaka checks as well as bookkeeping. For 8 years he was productive in this way. His last year it was downhill but he really gave it all he had. The Bat Mitzva was also Li'lui my mother-in-law who was 15 years old at the time Nazi Germany took over Poland and was in the Warsaw Ghetto and Concentrations camps for 4 years at least. She too started over always with a love of life and full of hope.

I rewatch the TV video of the expulsion of Neve Dekalim and I cry. "Al Tastir Paneicha Mimeni". We pray that once again we will be zocheh that Hashem will shine his face upon us and we will be saved. - Vehair Panecha venivashea" as we say after lichtbenching.

Connection to Shemittah: The expulsion of Gush Katif resulted in the destruction of personal property. People lost their material possessions. Now everyone is in the process of sharing their wealth. The shemittah year is a year when ownership of produce in the field is shared by all.(shemitas karka). We are asked to give poor people whatever they need and they don't have to pay back. (shemittas kesafim). The girls at the Bat Mitzvah shared what they had.
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