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Rabbi’s Message: Mission & Mazel Tov

05/06/2022 12:39:18 PM


Dear OZ family,


I share perspective today regarding two events in Israel. The first cuts to the heart of every Israeli. The ghoulish violence that took the lives of three Israeli and made orphans of 16 children in Elad, is broadly celebrated across Palestinian populations. Murderers of Israelis are handsomely rewarded by the stipends the PA doles out to their families. In this case, the murderers escaped, so they have to settle for the adoration of their people. I do believe that many Palestinians abhor these murders, but they are cowed into silence. In the midst of such an outrage, comes the Harvard Crimson’s decision to support boycott, divestment and sanctions against the only liberal democracy in a very bad neighborhood raging with murderous hatred and repression. When such proposals never arise at Harvard against the persecutions and malevolence of nations like Venezuela, China, Cuba, Iran or North Korea, we know the proposal’s source is Anti-Semitic at its core. I will be sending some material from the OU about these issues later. If your schedule permits, please consider joining the  upcoming NORPAC Mission - it is Virtual and no physical trip to DC is required:


The second event comes with a Mazel Tov. Earlier this week, I sent a D’var Torah with various messages about the number 17. This morning, Alisa and I were informed of our 17th grandchild, as Renee and Moshe were blessed with a baby boy. I have often asked the mathematical question, how many people have to be in a room before the odds are better than 50-50 that two share a birthday. The equation is complicated, but the answer is 23. Including our 6 children this is B’li Ayin Hara, our 23rd descendant, and shares a birthday with one of the other 22, namely his father. 34 years ago today, Moshe was born, and we had his Bris in the front of the main sanctuary at Ohab Zedek. This Bris will be please God, next Friday in Beit Shemesh and you are all invited. When I asked Moshe how much the baby weighs, he said 4 and a half. That’s pretty small for a baby that was overdue almost a week. Quite so, but in Israel they weigh by Kilos, so that’s about 9 pounds. Mother and baby are doing well, and Alisa and I will be leaving for Israel next Tuesday for the Bris.


May we only celebrate Simchas in good health.


Stay well. Be healthy.  Be excellent.

Rabbi Allen Schwartz  



Rabbi Allen Schwartz

Congregation Ohab Zedek

118 West 95th Street | New York, NY  10025-6604

Phone 212.749-5150, ext 200 | Fax 212.663-3635




Thu, June 8 2023 19 Sivan 5783