By Chanita Teitz
After Shabbos, my husband and I watched a very interesting video–a tour of the Old City of Yerushalayim with Rabbi Berel Wein, taped a number of years ago, before the Churva Shul was rebuilt.
On the tour, Rabbi Wein pointed out all the old shuls that are in the Jewish Quarter. Some of these shuls date back to the Middle Ages. During those centuries, the Jewish population of the Old City was so small and powerless and they were always subservient to the rulers of the day–the Byzantines, the Mamelukes, the Ottoman Turks, and most recently the British. For so many centuries, Jews had to ask permission from the authorities who occupied our land to buy property, build a shul or yeshiva, earn a livelihood, and live in our holy city. They felt the galus. They were like strangers in their own land.
Today, we take living and visiting Israel so for granted that we have forgotten what mesirus nefesh the gedolim of years ago went through to get to the shores of Eretz Yisrael. Instead of appreciating what we have in our generation, the different groups in Israel fight among themselves. As we have said before, we are one big family and there’s a lot of sibling rivalry among us.
In times of national crisis, when there is a threat of war or annihilation, Israelis come together to fight the common enemy. But when life goes back to routine, the belligerence, name-calling, and accusations begin again.
Wouldn’t you like to see the political parties in Israel start treating each other with respect, committing to the greater good of all K’lal Yisrael and not just interested in what’s good for their own group?
Once again, the entire community is invited to the annual KGH Lag B’Omer Hadlakah in front of Rabbi Friedman’s shul on 141st Street, between 72nd Avenue and 72nd Road on Motzaei Shabbos, Lag B’Omer, April 27 at 10 p.m. There will be singing, dancing, and prizes for the children. Come, bring your children, and make this a beautiful event for the entire community, on the yahrzeit of Rebbe Shimon bar Yochai.
If anyone is interested to help sponsor the event and help defray the costs, and have a part of the zechus, please contact Eliglaser@gmail.com.
A Lag B’Omer shiur at the Lander College for Men, given by the esteemed Rosh HaYeshiva, Rav Yonason Sacks, shlita, will take place this Sunday, April 28, at 9:30 a.m. with a scrumptious breakfast starting at 9. This program is free of charge and for men only. Please RSVP to Joshua.Sturm@touro.edu.
Rabbi Moshe Chalkowski of Neve Yerushalayim will give a shiur for women on Monday, April 29, 8:00 p.m. on “Understanding World Events, Both General and Jewish” at the home of Stuart and Lise Panish, 71-14 136th Street, Kew Gardens Hills. Appointments are available before or after the shiur. Please e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org for further information.
The Queens Bnos Melochim event will take place on May 1 with a showing of the video presentation, “Yours Forever” at the Young Israel of Kew Gardens Hills, 70-11 150th Street at 7:45 p.m. Admission is $10. For more information call 718-793-6841.
Mazal Tov . . .
To Ushie and Yelli Koenig on the bar mitzvah of their son Yehuda.
To Devorah and Dov Elias on the bar mitzvah of their son Eli.
To Ruchie and Izzy Sherman on the engagement of their son Tzvi to Ilana Horowitz. v
Chanita Teitz is a real-estate broker at Astor Brokerage, with offices in Kew Gardens Hills and Fresh Meadows. For all your real-estate needs in Queens, call her at 718-263-4500 or e-mail email@example.com.