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April 21, 2014

Andrew Silow-Carroll: Passoverkill? Suggestions to make next year's seders even more culturally sensitive

Sara Israelsen Hartley: Seeking the Divine: An ancient connection in a new context

Christine M. Flowers: Priest's execution in Syria should be call to action

Courtnie Erickson: How to help kids accept the poor decisions of others

Lizette Borreli: A Glass Of Milk A Day Keeps Knee Arthritis At Bay

Lizette Borreli: 5 Health Conditions Your Breath Knows Before You Do

The Kosher Gourmet by Betty Rosbottom Coconut Walnut Bars' golden brown morsels are a beautifully balanced delectable delight

April 18, 2014

Rabbi Yonason Goldson: Clarifying one of the greatest philosophical conundrums in theology

Caroline B. Glick: The disappearance of US will

Megan Wallgren: 10 things I've learned from my teenagers

Lizette Borreli: Green Tea Boosts Brain Power, May Help Treat Dementia

John Ericson: Trying hard to be 'positive' but never succeeding? Blame Your Brain

The Kosher Gourmet by Julie Rothman Almondy, flourless torta del re (Italian king's cake), has royal roots, is simple to make, . . . but devour it because it's simply delicious

April 14, 2014

Rabbi Dr Naftali Brawer: Passover frees us from the tyranny of time

Greg Crosby: Passing Over Religion

Eric Schulzke: First degree: How America really recovered from a murder epidemic

Georgia Lee: When love is not enough: Teaching your kids about the realities of adult relationships

Cameron Huddleston: Freebies for Your Lawn and Garden

Gordon Pape: How you can tell if your financial adviser is setting you up for potential ruin

Dana Dovey: Up to 500,000 people die each year from hepatitis C-related liver disease. New Treatment Has Over 90% Success Rate

Justin Caba: Eating Watermelon Can Help Control High Blood Pressure

The Kosher Gourmet by Joshua E. London and Lou Marmon Don't dare pass over these Pesach picks for Manischewitz!

April 11, 2014

Rabbi Hillel Goldberg: Silence is much more than golden

Caroline B. Glick: Forgetting freedom at Passover

Susan Swann: How to value a child for who he is, not just what he does

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Financial Tasks You Should Tackle Right Now

Sandra Block and Lisa Gerstner: How to Profit From Your Passion

Susan Scutti: A Simple Blood Test Might Soon Diagnose Cancer

Chris Weller: Have A Slow Metabolism? Let Science Speed It Up For You

The Kosher Gourmet by Diane Rossen Worthington Whitefish Terrine: A French take on gefilte fish

April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review

Past Present

By Rabbi Ron Yitzchok Eisenman






Tragedy can stifle and destroy. It can also transform and inspire. A touching real-life account reminds us we're empowered to decide which attitude prevails


JewishWorldReview.com | I had heard about the family whose house burned down. Their local rabbi contacted me for assistance in organizing a fundraising campaign. I had experience with this, unfortunately, and helped him with the appeal letter.

At the end of the letter we added: "Whatever you can do to help — no matter how small — please help!"

After six months I called and asked my friend how the appeal was going. He replied, "Mi k'amcha Yisrae!" Donations were coming in from all over. Women were cooking meals and donating clothing to replace what was destroyed. The outpouring of help was greater than anyone had imagined.

The next week I went with him to visit the family who'd suffered the fire.



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The mother greeted us, and before I could say a word she told me of all the kindness bestowed upon her and her family: Money from people she doesn't know; hot meals prepared daily; donations of furniture, clothing, and toys. "And of course, Edith Bateman (name changed) deserves a special mention," she told us.

At the name Edith Bateman, the other rabbi looked perplexed. Mrs. Bateman, he explained, was an older woman who'd never married and lived in a rent-controlled project on the poor side of town. "What is she doing worthy of such honorable mention?" he inquired.

The woman told us that every Monday Mrs. Bateman arrives to pick up the family's laundry and every Thursday the laundry is returned, folded and ironed, along with a bag of freshly baked cookies.

We knew where our next stop would be.

At the housing project we saw children riding beat-up bikes on the patchy grass. We knocked on Edith's door and an older woman in a well-worn housedress answered. The temperature was in the 90s and the room was hot and humid. The one small fan did little to help. Mrs. Bateman invited us in and offered us water. As she placed the glasses in front of us we noticed the numbers on her arm.

"We heard you're doing the Shapiro's laundry. How did you come to this kindness?" my colleague asked her.

Edith Bateman visibly straightened up. "I was in Auschwitz," she told us. "My parents and siblings were killed. With the help of The Almighty, I survived." There was a long pause. "In the camp," she then continued, "what bothered me even more than the hunger was wearing the same worn and stinking clothing every day. We were never allowed to change or clean our clothes. This was torturous for me. I made a promise that if the Divine saved me I would make sure my family always had clean, freshly laundered clothing. However, it was not to be. I never merited marrying.

"I worked as a secretary for 30 years, and now live in rent-controlled housing. My only source of income is my Social Security check. But when I heard about the fire, I wanted to help. I have no money to donate, but I realized there was one thing I could do. I could offer to do their laundry."

She looked at us. "He has allowed me, in a way I never could have imagined, and at a time of my life I never thought possible, to fulfill the promise I made to Him 67 years ago. That is why I do their laundry."

I quietly walked over to the used washing machine in the corner of the kitchen.

As I gently placed my fingers on top of it I sensed the scent of Eden mixed with the smell of laundry detergent.

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Rabbi Ron Yitzchok Eisenman is the spiritual leader of Congregation Ahavas Israel in Passaic, N.J. He's also a columnist for Mishpacha magazine, where this column first appeared.



© 2012, Rabbi Ron Yitzchok Eisenman

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