June 19, 2024
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Has Anyone Given You Anything to Pass Along?

Kosher certificatoin.

In the airport, on my way back from London, I was asked the usual question by the customs agent: “Has anyone handed you anything to give to anyone?”

And the truth is that my answer is a resounding “Yes!” “Someone” has given me something very precious to pass along: an abundance of support, concern, love, prayer and feelings of unity from the Jewish community of London directly to Israel.

It was a privilege to be among the 40 speakers from Israel to travel to Britain on behalf of “Mizrachi U.K.” It was a privilege to see how the huge turmoil since October 7 has inspired people to do more: one person is making aliyah; another is organizing a rally; someone else is organizing a special prayer service and challah bake; another is bringing the families of hostages to speak here, and yet another is raising funds and organizing solidarity missions to Israel.

Yael Jackson, from the London suburb of Borehamwood, helped organize an event attended by many more people than expected (as usual, they were looking for more chairs!). She shared the following insight:

“A few years ago, the covid crisis separated us from one another. Never before had we felt so isolated and alone. By contrast, the current crisis has brought us together like never before. People we’ve never seen before have come to be with us. We’ve never been so united!”

Sderot then and now.

Sderot Then and Now: Spot the Differences

This composite photo of Sderot from October 7, 2023, alongside that of Sderot from Independence Day 2024 tells our story. To quote the prophet Michah: “Rejoice not against me, my enemy; although I have fallen, I will rise…”

 

Kosher… and the Beauty of Shabbat

At the start of the war, a soldier on reserve duty came to Muzi Anidger’s restaurant and was disappointed to find that it did not have kosher certification. Then and there, Muzi made the decision to make all the necessary changes so that his restaurant would be eligible for kosher certification. Since then, he’s regaled tens of thousands of customers in northern Israel with his offerings.

Disproving all the naysayers, six months later, when it was time to renew his kosher certification, Muzi made an announcement to all and sundry that he was continuing to run the restaurant according to the laws of kashrut and Shabbat.

“I always served fantastically delicious food, and it was actually kosher,” Muzi wrote to me. “The only obstacle to receiving kosher certification was the fact that the business was open on Shabbat. In the last half year, I learned to love Shabbat, and the serenity that it brings to body and soul. Our family once again experiences togetherness. The peace and the great atmosphere led me to understand that there is nothing that can compete with Shabbat.”

Who said that the inspiration brought on by the war would be short-lived?

Yitzkor stickers.

A Response to the ‘Holy Stickers’

Sara Shapiro is a teacher at the Hebrew Academy in Marlboro, New Jersey. In response to my article about the “holy stickers” that can be found all over Israel with messages from those who lost their lives since October 7, she sent me the following: “Based on your idea, I decided to do an activity with my middle school students. We prepared a special yizkor plaque and included selected quotes in both Hebrew and English. So, even if we can’t come to Israel right now, we’ll still be able to benefit from the impact of those messages.”

*Translated by Yehoshua Siskin, Janine Muller Sherr


Want to read more by Sivan Rahav Meir? Google The Daily Thought or visit sivanrahavmeir.com

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