Ohr Torah Stone’s three high schools for boys (Derech Avot, Efrat; Jacob Sapirstein OTS, Ramot; and Neveh Shmuel, Efrat) came together last week for a day of learning and unity, hosted by OTS’s Yeshiva Gvoha/Army program, Yeshivat Hesder Machanaim, in memory of Joseph and Leila Applebaum.
Jerusalem and Gush Etzion are still recovering from the worst snowstorm in decades. Today – eight days after the first flakes began to blanket the Judean hills – there are still homes without electricity, businesses that cannot open, streets covered in black ice, inestimable damage to property, and huge mounds of snow everywhere. But there are also heartwarming stories which so characterize Israelis. Displays of kindness, lightheartedness and generosity on levels far higher than the tallest snowdrift. Ohr Torah Stone’s students and faculty were no exception. We are proud of our teenage high-schoolers who volunteered to shovel out the driveways of local residents and visit elderly, sick or infirm members of their communities. We are proud of our students, faculty and staff members who exemplify the Jewish values of chessed and tzedek, who never forget those amongst us who are less fortunate and never forget the ideals on which the Torah stands. May the good deeds that transpired over the past week merit an Israel that is soft and white, long after the snow melts.
Kol hakavod to US Army Chaplain Rabbi David Ruderman, a musmach of OTS’s Joseph and Gwendolyn Straus Rabbinical Seminary, for spreading the light to the troops in Kuwait over Chanukah! May he be blessed with the strength to continue warming, illuminating and shining.