Friday has rolled around so quickly once again, and it’s time for a Good News Friday post.
First, here is an beautiful heart-warming story of a young man who came to the assistance of a very elderly man who wanted to pray:
WATCH: Wow. This story absolutely warmed our hearts beyond belief. A massive amount of credit is due to this incredible young man. A true tzadik (righteous man). A translation of his post reads as follows:
A rumor reached my ears of a Jew living in a certain European country who cannot put on tefillin anymore, had no sons and no Jews in his neighborhood. With all his energy he has been begging to pray (and put on Tefillin).
I took this mitzvah upon myself and went to this man’s house, and when I entered his house and saw him I felt a terrible fear, as well as an incredible happiness I have not felt in a very long time. I could almost see my late father in this old man. This man had the same disease my father battled toward the end of his life… He had the same face, the same hands, the same cry.
I sat down and chatted with him a while. The man speaks three languages: French, Spanish and German. He showed me pictures from his past. Pictures of how healthy, strong and handsome he was. What he used to do, what he enjoyed…
And now as we were about to pray, he was so excited, I was afraid he will choke with excitement. Like he was a Bar Mitzvah boy…
When I left his home I too choked up and started crying. I kept crying on my way home… I didn’t care who saw me weeping. After all, he gave me much more than I gave him.
When he blessed me as I left his home, I knew dad was still with me.
Credit: Shalom Yosef Hbabu
I challenge anyone who still has a dry eye after watching that emotional video. Kol hakavod to this young man on honouring the elderly and his father’s memory. This is our future, Israel!
While we’re on the subject of families, here is another incredible, miraculous story of a family reunion: first cousins who each thought their other cousins were wiped out in the Shoah found each other after over half a century via Yad Vashem (via Reality):
Two pairs of Polish Jewish siblings, who each believed their entire families died in the Holocaust, met for the first time at the Yad Vashem Holocaust museum in Jerusalem.
The tale started earlier this year when one of the siblings, Fania Blakay, found a testimony in the Yad Vashem database about her father. The testimony had been filled out by her father’s brother-in-law, who Blakay had been told had died.
The brother in-law, it turns out, had actually survived the Holocaust and immigrated with his wife and daughters to Israel. The daughters — Blakay’s cousins — were living in Israel.
On Tuesday, Blakay and her brother Gennadi Band — both of whom also live in Israel — were united with their first cousins Henia Moskowitz and Rywka Patchnik.
Moskowitz said that when she initially received a call from Yad Vashem, she did not believe the news.
“At first, I thought this news was a mistake. However, today when we met, I felt a connection at first sight; my family has grown overnight,” Moskowitz said. “Thanks to Yad Vashem, we discovered that we are not alone.”
It is stories like these which keep Shoah survivors still searching for their relatives decades after the war. Yad Vashem is the most fantastic institution, not only for commemorating the dead and educating the living, but for reuniting families like these and bringing long-lost closure to the searching.
May all these cousins continue till 120 as they catch up on so many years of lost contact!
From the sublime to the not-so-ridiculous, it’s been raining! Yes, I know that might not be news in England, or anywhere else in the northern hemisphere, but for us Israelis this is extremely good news. After one of the driest Novembers on record, the rain has decided to dump itself on us in one huge bucketful! From the ToI article above:
Israel was drenched by heavy rain late Tuesday and early Wednesday, with nearly 100 millimeters (nearly four inches) measured in northern Israel.
With around 500 millimeters (29 inches) of rain falling on average every year, according to the Israel Water Authority, the overnight rainfall would account for approximately 20 percent of the annual average.
Some roads in the northern coastal city of Haifa were closed as a result of the rain but have since been reopened.
Snow was reported Wednesday morning on Mount Hermon in the Golan Heights.
The Israel Water Authority said the Sea of Galilee rose three centimeters (one inch) from the most recent rainfall and has risen 12 centimeters (four and a half inches) since the start of December. However, it needs nearly five meters (16 feet) to be full and remains over 71 centimeters (two feet) below its healthy minimum level.
Watch this video of Israel’s streams and rivers, so dry and sluggish during the summer, now running fast with water:
And here is the Sa’ar waterfall in the Golan heights, living up to it’s name (Translation: “storm”):
May the גשמי ברכה – “rains of blessing” – continue to pour their goodness onto Israel!
And on that rather soggy note, I wish you all a quiet, warm and dry (within your houses!) Shabbat Shalom! 😀