A Chanukah Story


From the Desk of Greg Schneider, Claims Conference Executive Vice President:

The posting may be accessed at: http://blog.claimscon.org/2010/12/08/a-chanukah-story

Hi All,

I just wanted to share a heart-warming connect2 Chanukah story.

One of our visiting volunteers Caroline Pincus, wrote me about her lovely visit yesterday with our survivor Mascha Miller, who lives on the Upper West Side of Manhattan.

Going beyond her duty of visiting Mascha for an hour for a friendly visit, Caroline decided to stay a little longer in order to make sure she can help the 96 year old survivor light the Chanukah Menorah. Caroline knew that Mascha does not have a home attendant for weekends, and so she would need assistance in lighting the candles and performing this special Chanukah mitzvah.

The volunteer described how beautiful it was to get to light this menorah with her survivor friend. She went further to relay that they recited the first verse of Maoz Tzur (Chanukah Blessing) together. I questioned Caroline about this, since I know that Mascha is not an observant woman and was surprised to hear about the prayer.

Caroline explained that her survivor told her afterwards that she was raised observant and knew how to pray well, but then was not observant in her adulthood and prayed seldomly. However, when Caroline sang the verse with her it all came back to her at the age of 96! The volunteer explained “it was so beautiful to watch her recall all the words as we recited it together.”

I found it inspiring how the small good deeds of our dedicated volunteers very often lead to these magical moments! As the verse says (Gd says):  ”Pischu Li Pesech  Kichudo Shel Machat, V’ani Eftach Licha Pesach Shel Oolam”/ “ Open up for me an opening like the (size of the) hole of a needle and I will open up for you an opening the size of a hallway.”

Happy Holidays,

Elisheva Lock
Director: Connect2: Friendly Visiting for Holocaust Survivors

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