Rabbi's Corner

Yom Kippur Message

As we approach Yom Kippur, the holiest day of the year, I am reminded of an incident that took place when I was a student at Rabbinical College. A student named Mendy had misplaced his tefilin and try as he may, could not find them. He panicked, for aside for being of great spiritual value, the tefillin were handwritten in beautiful script on fine parchment and had been purchased for a huge sum by his barely middle-class parents; they were his most expensive possession. At the time, it was his custom to call his parents once a week from the Yeshiva pay phone; he decided to put off the call until his tefillin were located. Weeks went by, the tefillin were not found and he did not call home because he was simply too embarrassed to speak with his parents. 

Time goes by and Mendy is paged to the faculty office. His father is on the phone. "Mendy, why have you neglected to call your worried parents? Have you forgotten who's putting you through school?" After some hesitation, Mendy came out with the story and told his father that he was simply too ashamed to call home, feeling that he had let them down. There was a long silence on the other end. Then his wise father said, "Mendy, you must always remember that the bond between a parent and a child transcends the here and now and any physical possession. No matter what, and I mean no matter what, please call home!"

My friends, there are people who tell me "Rabbi, I simply cannot come to Shul on Yom Kippur! Who am I fooling? I haven't shown my face at the Shul even once all year!" 

My response: G-d is our creator and our king but we must never forget-even for one moment- that he is our Father, our King. Our relationship with Him must transcend a subjective view that places G-d within the parameters of religion. Let us develop a deeper relationship and realize that no matter what we do (or haven't done), our Father in Heaven awaits and expects to hear from us at least once a year.

Looking forward to greeting you,

Rabbi Shmuel A. Metzger

Director, Chabad at Beekman-Sutton 

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