Translation by Yehoshua Siskin
In Israel today, there are also moments like these, as Tamar Weizer writes from Tel Aviv.
“On Shabbat, police came to our synagogue. As we had done on every other recent Shabbat, we prayed in the yard outside the synagogue building, yearning for the taste of Shabbat that we knew before the world went crazy. In truth, I had hesitated about coming to pray, but then I thought that on ‘Shabbat Bereishit’ it was fitting that I should hear the beautiful passages about creation of the world. I dressed, organized the kids, and entered the improvised women’s section.
In the yard, there were more people than usual. It was the Bar Mitzvah of a secular boy, and all of his excited family stood with us. Suddenly, a policeman and a policewoman arrived. To their credit it should be said that they were relatively quiet and I saw how they delicately lowered the volume on their wallkie-talkies that were attached to their belts. There was noticeable discomfort among the crowd. Everyone was wearing a mask while keeping proper distance from one another and yet, despite this, there was unease. The police asked how much longer the prayers would last and it was explained to them that in another few moments the Bar Mitzvah boy would finish reading the Torah. The policewoman turned to the boy’s mother and requested that when the Torah reading was finished, the guests should immediately leave the area, and so they did.
But then, one moment before the police returned to their patrol vehicle, Rav Chaim Eidels, a Gur chasid, addressed them: ‘Friends, please stay with us two more minutes. We would like to thank you with all our hearts for protecting us, for caring about us. Thank you so much!’ He began to clap, all the assembled joined him, and then he continued: ‘Each Shabbat, we bless the soldiers and the security forces and this Shabbat we would like to bless you in particular.’
Imagine a policeman and a policewoman standing next to people praying from all sectors of society with a rabbi who was wearing a spodik, a tall, black fur hat worn by certain Chasidim on Shabbat. ‘May God, who blessed our forefathers Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, bless our soldiers and security forces, who stand over our land and the cities of our God, from the border of Lebanon to the desert of Egypt, from the Great Sea to the Arava, on land, in the air, and on the sea.'”
Just another moment to be enshrined in the corona museum that will be built one day.