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From Destruction To Rebirth

Tisha B’Av, the saddest day of the year for the Jewish people, is observed this coming Sunday. We commemorate the destruction of both the first and second Temples in Jerusalem, and also other tragedies that befell the Jewish people including the Inquisition (1492) and the expulsion of the Jews from England in 1290. In more contemporary history, the ninth of Av was the day that Jews from the Warsaw ghetto were transported to Treblinka and in 1994 the Jewish community center in Argentina was bombed, killing eighty one people.

To internalize these fateful days, we sit as mourners on low stools, read the Book of Eicha (Lamentations) and abstain from food and drink. Even our children know that they will not receive special treats on Tisha B’av.
Tradition tells us that Sin’at Chinom- unjustified hatred for one’s fellow man- was the primary reason for the destruction of the Second Temple. Love and empathy was lacking at that time in our history.

The best remedy for senseless hatred is unconditional love. We, at Lev Lalev Children’s Home and Orphanage in Netanya, Israel provide unconditional love to our needy and vulnerable girls. With the support of a worldwide network of friends, we are rebuilding the lives of those orphaned girls who have experienced their own personal destruction before arriving at the Children’s Home.

Rather than dwell on the negative, we begin an annual healing process immediately after observing Tsha B’Av. The Shabbat that follows Tsha B”Av is called Shabbas Nachamu- the Shabbas of comfort. Shortly thereafter on the fifteenth of the month of Av, we observe “Tu B’av” which is the Jewish Sadie Hawkins day. At Lev Lalev we begin a festive summer camp program as we provide our girls with a much needed program of travel and fun.

TheTwoBateiHaMikdashIn a philosophical way, we might call this period, “From Destruction to Rebirth”. It is not only the experience of our girls at the Orphanage, but it is the history of the Jewish people. Od Avinu Chai. The Jewish people, despite many hardships, continue to live, prosper, and succeed. Our prayer is that Hashem should continue to protect us, and all good people, and shine His light upon us.

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