Real People With Nowhere to Go
August 07, 2006Rabbi Dr. Tzvi Hersh Weinreb's visit to Israel
Unbelievable! I am sitting here in OU Israel Center in the middle of a group from the North; men, women, and children; from Kiryat Shemoneh and Maalot. With Menachem Persoff (OU Israel Center, Director of Programs), Meir Schwartz (OU Israel Center, Kehillot Yisrael Program), Rav Pinchas (OU Israel Center, Zula Program), and a bunch of volunteers. They had a tiyul (trip) and now it is time for refreshments. Easily 100 of them. Each, real people with nowhere to go. The chizuk (strength) we give them is mighty.
You should have heard the applause for OU and for me when I told them I just came from U.S. So many kids -- in a daze. Like their parents they don't know what hit them. My wife Chavi is sitting and bawling and I am not much more “controlled”. One volunteer, wearing the OU Israel Center emblem, and playing music. He is now, at this moment, telling us a story.
He began the story by telling us his friend was just killed in Lebanon. But he is going on with the show because “anachnu itchem lorich kol haderech” (The OU stands with you even at the darkest of times - lit.
We are with you for the whole journey - the OU Israel Center slogan for their efforts in the North). Tomorrow I probably will be going west to pack food for the north -- a joint program of Makom Balev and NCSY kollel. Everyone credits Avi Berman, Director of the OU Israel Center, with this “interdepartmental” programming -- very powerful. You can't imagine the emotion in this room, as this fellow concludes his story with “we are gaining stength from you”! I'll keep you briefed.