Hendel does Israel

While I may no longer technically be in Israel, I have no intention of stopping who I am or what I am about. We all know the timeless Chabad teaching of "Mach Doh Eretz Yisael" - its very empowering. I'll let you know about my journey, my struggles and my dreams. JaHbless.

Monday, January 23, 2006

The chosen people...

This past shabbos, I went to the Novotel Hotel, to spend shabbos with an American birthright group. Every time I have been with birthright groups, there have been emotional and spiritual moments, which literally move both the participants, and the madricim to tears. This week was no exception. I want to share one story from this past Shabbos:

At shabbos lunch, one girl from the trip, Sonia, stood up to speak. She began by saying, that she is in fact, not Jewish. Her father comes from a family of holocaust survivors, but her mother is catholic. She was raised with little pieces of every religion, except of course, Judaism. As a child, she would always ask her Jewish grandmother about the holocaust. What was it like? How did you feel? How did you manage to survive?

Her grandmother always answered: “the Nazi’s could take everything away from us, except one thing, our G-d, I am Jew, and will always be a Jew”.

Sonia related, that on last Friday she, together with the group had visited Yad VaShem (Jerusalem’s Holocaust museum), and it had a tremendous impact on her. The words of her grandmother echoed in her mind, as she observed and learnt of all the atrocities the Nazi had committed.

Sonia began crying. She said “you know, the Nazi’s took everything away from my grandmother and her family except her Jewishness. That was the one thing they could never, ever take away. But me! Me! they managed to take it away from me, I am not Jewish, and now I don’t really know who I am! I feel Jewish, it’s the only thing I really connect to, that makes sense to me, but I wasn’t born a Jew, I am not a Jew!

While Sonia was speaking, a girl from the group leaned over and whispered into my ear a few words which hit equally as hard, she said: “I’m not Jewish either, I’m in the middle of a complete spiritual and identity crisis. My father was a Levite, my mother a (non Jewish) atheist, and me, well, I’m nothing…”

The account I heard from Sonia, showed me how deep and dark Golus is, and how much we need Moshiach. Generations of Jews are being lost, and generations of Jews are confused and have no identity. Sonia begged all of us, who are Jewish, to realize how important and valuable it is to be Jewish, and also to act, to be involved, and to live an authentic Jewish Lifestyle. I felt her pain, it is so hard to imagine, she could have and should have been a Jew, but she isn’t. So us, who are lucky enough to know who we are, lets do something about it!

It’s the strangest thing, how the deepest lessons, are learnt in the least likely of places. Sometimes we need someone else, who is somewhat objective, to teach us, how precious we really are…

and now for some pictures...

Yes, It was my 22nd birthday!
thanks, Abba Imma & Avital
and the rest of the family
for getting me such a nice

Me enjoying it!

Everyone in Mayanot loves to call me hendel,
especially Rabbi Vichinin, who won't let me
be called Moish, or Moisha or Squasha
or anything other than Moshe HENDEL,
so I gave him the best peice of the cake.
I have never seen someone get so
excited over a peice of cake!!!

An action shot of my farbrengen,
it was nice and intimate,
celebrated with good friends
old and new,
together. I couldn't be more
happy! what a blessing to be
able to celebrate a birthday
in a holy way, and out of all places

Thats, avram, only he could go around
in a singlet when its about 5 degrees
and make havdalah with a cigi
dangleing from his mouth!

and holding the besamim
is none other than
avrams old time
right hand man
moishe silverman!

I took this pucture of myself and
Dave Komer,
it wasn't meant to be this freaky
but somehow, I think we both
look kind of OK, in a weird
kind of way....

More coming soon! have an amazing week! Shavua Tov, all the blessings in the whoel world!


Anonymous cousin f said...

moisha hendel
you absolutely ROCK the most out of anyone who has a blogspot.

7:56 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dear Moshe
What moving stories! We had similar experiences when we went to Poland and meet people. Thanks for the great pics, we can't wait to see you very soon.
lots of love from Imma and Abba and all the family

2:50 PM  
Anonymous #2 said...

yes, u and komer do look freaky. see you soon.

5:37 PM  
Blogger BFF said...

may this year be one of light and blessing, everyone in the world should know that they have the best of everything they need, with moshiach, now.

1:15 AM  
Blogger ליפא שנילצער said...

יום הולדת שמח

3:26 PM  
Blogger subjewd said...

Wow, thanks for all the kind whishes and positive comments!

I tried explaining to someone who has read this blog, that just like this phisical world is barely a ray of a glimmer coming out of the never ending infinite light of Ein Sof, so to, this blog is mearly a small speck of the infinite light and wonder that i've been exprerinceing and learning these past 2 months. there hasn't been a dull moment...iäm glad though, that i've been able to share that small ray with you though!

#2 if you think we look freaky, you should see komer in all his battle gear, he is a chayal in the nachal charedi, he looks like a warrior of King David!

12:03 AM  

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