Shevach High School brought in Aseres Y’mei T’shuvah with an inspiring and motivating yom iyun. Mrs. Shulamith Insel, Menaheles, opened the program by stressing that during the Yamim Nora’im, Hashem is not only our Judge, but He is our greatest Advocate as well. “Melech Chafetz BaChayim” – He wants us to merit life. He wants us to succeed.
This thought, Mrs. Insel went on to explain, should give us much comfort and encouragement. She shared the Chazal that states that Hashem wants us to make an opening for Him the size of the eye of a needle, to do even one small kabalah. Hashem promises that, in turn, He will make an opening for us as large as the entrance to an entire hall. He will guarantee our success.
The program was dedicated to expounding upon the theme of “Melech Chafetz BaChayim.” Spearheaded by Mrs. Bayla Tropper and the senior Yom Iyun heads – Adina Davidov, Yael Goldfarb, Maya Harpaz, Rivky Jakubovics, Naomi Miller, Avital Pleshtiyev, and Shifra Yusupov – the morning was replete with a special guest speaker, an original theme song, a beautiful banner, and a thought-provoking publication.
The students were addressed by Rabbi Eliezer Feuer, Rav of Shaar HaShamayim in Bayswater, New York. He described the challenging times in which we live. Our emotions should center around the ability of each one of us to transform ourselves at this time. Each of us has a golden opportunity and the responsibility to take small steps to become what we can be.
During the rest of the year, we are “regular,” but during Elul and Tishrei we strive to achieve more and be more. Greatness lies deep within us and is ready to be awakened during these awesome days. We can find this greatness with small changes. These small changes are represented by the blowing of the shofar. There is one sustained blast, but there are also three shorter ones, and nine shorter ones still. But the blowing of the shofar ends with the t’kiah g’dolah, the one great blast.
Rabbi Feuer emphasized that at this time of year, most of us need to change where we are heading. He peppered his talk with inspirational stories and left the students with the message that life is an upward journey. Both he and Mrs. Insel confirmed that Hashem is our greatest advocate and greatest support.
Senior students Devorah Loiterman, Aliza Taub, and Yael Zimmerman then presented a beautiful banner depicting a father lifting up his son kissing a mezuzah – an action the child could not do without his father’s help – conveying the message of Hashem’s drive for our success. The seniors followed with a well-choreographed choir and an original theme song composed by Shayna Hoch and Devorah Lind. A video, arranged by Yael Goldfarb, was presented with applicable stories and words of Chazal that truly drove the message home in a creative and visual manner.
The senior class took the lead in giving over the commitment to take the lessons of the program and act upon them in the coming year. It was a morning that is sure to make a difference in the lives of the Shevach students.