Weekly Chasidic Story #869 (s5774-47 / 24
Gilad Shalit and the Lubavitcher Rebbe
The day after her son, Gilad, came home, his mother contacted
her Chabad emissary friends.
Connection: Seasonal: War Again :(
Gilad Shalit and the Lubavitcher Rebbe
"I heard this story at the Kotel on Simchat Torah and
thought it was too fantastic to be true... until I met the Chabad shaliach whose
story it is in Shul this morning and heard it from him first hand. I'm recounting
this to the best of my knowledge... I hope you'll forgive me if I get any of
the details wrong..."(as received in an email in 2011 by Shlomo Price of
"Rabbi Eliyahu and Chana Canterman are the Chabad representatives in Talbiyeh,
Jerusalem. They are typical Chabad Shluchim, with a home that is open
to all, and always willing to go the extra mile for another Jew regardless of
the inconvenience caused to themselves.
When they founded their Chabad House in the last decade, one of the projects
that the Cantermans took on, along with other Chabad Shluchim in Jerusalem
and local organisations, was to provide meals each day to the parents of Gilad
Shalit, Aviva and Noam, at the protest tents outside the Prime Minister's residence
on the border of the Jerusalem neighborhoods of Talbiyeh and Rechavia. Over
time, they became close friends with Aviva and Noam, providing not only food
but emotional and pyschological support during this difficult period.
Around Purim time last year, Chana Canterman brought a special gift to Aviva
Shalit along with her meal: a dollar that she had received many years before
from the Lubavitcher Rebbe that was to be given to a worthy charity.
"Take this dollar" said Chana, "and may it be a segulah
(merit and omen) that Gilad be released this year". Aviva accepted the
dollar gratefully and carried it with her wherever she went.
Mrs. Canterman didn't hear anything more about the dollar or think about it
until she received a text from Aviva Shalit last Wednesday, the 19th of October
2011 (the 21st of Tishrei, 5712), the day after her son, Gilad, had come home.
In the text, Aviva asked her if she remembered when she had received the dollar
from the Rebbe. Unsure, Chana replied that she didn't remember exactly when
she had received it as it was over twenty years before, but that, as with all
dollars given by the Rebbe to be distributed to charity, the date should be
written on the dollar itself.
The date on the dollar that was given to Aviva Shalit before Purim, the dollar
that Chana Canterman had received over twenty years before from the Lubavitcher
Rebbe was Chaf (the 20th of) Tishrei, the exact date on the Jewish calendar
that Gilad Shalit came home to his family and his people.
The Cantermans never publicized this story, as they don't want people to think
their motives for helping the Shalits were anything other than altruistic. However,
I felt that it was too amazing, too inspiring a story to keep from other people.
Source: Adapted by Yerachmiel Tilles from an email received by Shlomo Price
of Tsfat and submitted to Tzfatline@aol.com, the local English language mailing
list (original source of email not known to me or remembered by him-Sorry).
Tilles is co-founder and associate director of Ascent-of-Safed, and chief editor
of this website (and of KabbalaOnline.org). He has hundreds of published stories
to his credit, and many have been translated into other languages. He tells
them live at Ascent nearly every Saturday night.
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