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Wednesday
Feb252015

A SADDER MAN BUT WISER NOW

A Holocaust survivor finds himself heading toward a terrible tragedy: His only daughter is interested in marrying a Gentile. After all his efforts to stop her went for naught, he came to the Rebbe, Melech HaMoshiach for dollars. He told his sad tale to the Rebbe and received a promise that everything would work out. The man’s daughter eventually married the Gentile and they even had two children…  A unique illustration of how the Rebbe is trustworthy in all his words.

 

 

Translated by Michoel Leib Dobry

Media headlines periodically highlight the issue of conversion and the uncompromising war of the Rebbe, Melech HaMoshiach over the definition of “Who is a Jew?” which is someone born of a Jewish mother or a person who converted according to Torah law. In this context, we bring the following story, which I heard personally from R’ Menachem Nachum Gerlitzky.

In 5753, Rabbi Gerlitzky went on mivtzaim to a geriatric center in one of the local neighborhoods of Brooklyn. He spoke before the resident seniors about the greatness of the Rebbe, Melech HaMoshiach, explaining how “the Sh’china speaks from his throat,” and how every word he utters is with the utmost precision and accuracy.

He described how the Rebbe prophesied the victory of the Six Day War, the fall of the Soviet Union, and the tremendous immigration to Eretz Yisroel that followed. He then concluded with a few of the miracles he had personally witnessed at the Rebbe’s weekly Sunday dollars distribution.

Suddenly, one of the elderly participants stood up and called out, “Rabbi, I’m warning you. Don’t say another word on the subject.”

Surprised by the outburst, Rabbi Gerlitzky became silent as the man continued to speak with great venom: “I am a Holocaust survivor, the only one from my entire family to survive. I immigrated to the United States, got married, and my wife and I had one daughter. One day, after she came of age, she brought home some terrible news: She had become acquainted with a non-Jewish man and she wanted to marry him. All of my pleas went for nothing, and whenever I asked someone to intervene on my behalf, they couldn’t seem to help.

“Finally, someone came to me and said, ‘Go to the Lubavitcher Rebbe. He helps everyone and he’ll surely help you as well.’ I arrived at 770 for Sunday dollars and I waited in line for four hours. When my turn came, I told the Rebbe, ‘My daughter wants to marry a Gentile!’

“‘Don’t worry,’ the Rebbe answered me, ‘everything will work out.’

“What can I tell you?” the elderly Jew continued angrily. “Nothing worked out! My daughter married the Gentile, they had two children – and these are my grandchildren…”

At one point during his tirade the elderly man blurted out, “And that’s the way it is with all Orthodox rabbis, too…”

Rabbi Gerlitzky then turned to him and asked, “What do you have against Orthodox rabbis?”

“When I wanted to divorce my wife,” the man replied, “the rabbis wouldn’t agree to arrange a ‘get’ for us.”

“Why wouldn’t they agree?” Rabbi Gerlitzky inquired with puzzlement.

“They claimed that the conversion that my wife had done before our wedding was a Conservative conversion,” he replied, “and therefore, it was invalid…”

Rabbi Gerlitzky immediately took the opportunity to explain to everyone the true definition of “Who is a Jew?” and the entire group grasped the meaning of the Rebbe’s words and how they had been totally fulfilled: “Don’t worry, everything will work out.

The tragedy would have been if his daughter had married a Jew (in addition to the tragedy already caused by the Conservative conversion, which merely assisted Hitler, may his name be erased, in eradicating this Holocaust survivor’s entire Jewish family r”l).

During the remainder of Rabbi Gerlitzky’s presentation the elderly Jew sat quietly and listened. When the rabbi finished, the man said, “You’re right. In spite of the conversion, she really was a Gentile. Whenever she would get drunk she would call me a ‘dirty Jew’…”

“His words are trustworthy, not one returns unfulfilled!”

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