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The Shoes of Zion and the Love of Zion

ציון חנוכה
צילום: שרון גבאי

"Shalom, Sivan. My name is Roni Moskowitz, graduate of Midreshet Danieli. Last Friday we held a goodbye party for Zion Hanukkah, from the famous shop "Shoes of Zion" in the Mahane Yehudah market in Jerusalem. This dear man, 84 years old, has been sitting there since he was 8 years old, and making shoes for us. At the conclusion of a sad legal battle, he had to leave the shop. Zion is amongst the elderly of Jerusalem, a man whose shop everyone emerged from with a smile and a blessing. Every purchase at his shop was a lesson: there are those who went in only to hear a Dvar Torah or a kind word, there are the needy ones who got shoes with a discount or for free, and his bright countenance has accompanied everybody long after the shoes were worn out. Zion has no family or children, and he has dedicated his life 'to serving the community', as he himself said at the goodbye party. This sounds naive in a generation in which service is sometimes hard to come by. Zion really feels that he is a vessel, a channel. He didn't just sell shoes. Without a tint of cynicism, he felt that his job was to help our generation walk this land. Thousands and thousands of people owe him their comfortable steps all across our country. In the goodbye party I told those who were there how the Midrashah made me look for the good in society and magnify it, and this is how I found Zion and his story. We talked also about the Pinchas Portion, in which the aspiration to get a piece of land in Israel is described, as well as the good spirit that we must have upon our entrance into the Land. Zion is precisely this type of those quiet, humble people who form the foundation of the home we are building here together, but who no one would ever talk about or thank. So we did."


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