Urgent appeal for Rav Nachman Horowitz
The Nation of Israel are known as rachamim bnei rachamim – merciful people who are the children of merciful people.
At this point in time, the chassid Rabbi Nachman Horowitz stands before us, in his hour of great need.
Are we going to turn our backs on him and his family, when the books are open in shemayim, and the Holy One is scrutinizing every thought, word and action?
Rav Horowitz is the grandson of the great Breslov elder from a previous generation, Rav Shmuel Horowitz, zt’l. A couple of months’ ago, Rav Nachman Horowitz’s family were dealt a severe blow, when an electrical fire started in their apartment in Meah Shearim, incinerating all their possessions and rendering their home uninhabitable.
Rav Horowitz has spent his life devoted to Torah, and at the best of times, he and his family have lived an extremely frugral lifestyle. The house was uninsured, and since the fire each member of Rav Horowitz’s family has been taken in by a different family.
Help Rav Horowitz and his family to return home!
As things currently stand, unless we – the Nation of Israel, rachamim bnei rachamim – find a way to raise sufficient funds to enable Rav Horowitz’s home to be refitted, he and his family will effectively continue to be homeless for the foreseeable future.
So, in these days before the final judgement for the year is sealed, and before we ourselves are set on a course for health or illness, life or death, riches or poverty, Hashem is giving us a test:
Are we going to ignore a devoted Torah scholar’s plight, or are we going to open our hearts, and contribute something – however small – to helping a fellow Jew rebuild his home of Torah and mitzvoth, enabling he and his family to return to a more normal life again?
Everything got incinerated
Rav Horowitz describes the situation in his own words:
“It was simply a nes (miracle) that we escaped with our lives,” he explains. “Simply, everything got incinerated – the Shabbat clothes, the weekday clothes, everything we owned in the whole house. On top of that, I have a severe health problem affecting my legs (Rav Horowitz uses a wheelchair to get around), and it’s been months, already, since I slept on a proper bed.
“At the moment, I’m sleeping on a chair, and now I need more medical treatment. My whole family is scattered all over the place. I managed to take out a few loans, but we still need to raise 80,000 shekels to fix up the house. Everything needs to be renewed.
I’ve cried so much…
“Yesterday, my wife asked me to find a way to get more clothes for the children – my youngest is walking around without shoes at the moment. I told my wife leat, leat (slowly, slowly) – and then I cried so much. My wife was also sobbing.
“Baruch Hashem, we have no complaints, our lives were saved, mamash, in a miraculous way.”
Every single penny will help us
Rav Horowitz continues:
“We’ve got to the stage where we just want to move back into the house, even though it has no electricity and nothing has been renovated [after the fire] – but we can’t even do that. My wife asked me to find a way to help her cover the costs of making the chagim – I’m not exaggerating here, Hashem knows just what we’ve been through.
“Even a single penny that is donated will help us.
“My wife is a tzaddeket (saintly individual). She’s the grand-daughter of the enormous tzaddik, Rav Shmuel Shapira, zt’l, from the chashuveh families of Jerusalem. She tells me she’s accepting all the suffering with love, but we’ve been homeless for months, now.
“My family has been split up, my older son is sleeping at my married daughter’s house, but he had a nervous breakdown because of all the stress. Baruch Hashem, he’s stabilized now, but this experience has really been like a huge hammer blow for my family.
“The Rav has been strengthening us, and he came to visit my son in the hospital, but the amount of suffering we’ve gone through recently is hard to describe. Even the smallest donation that is given to us will be a very big help.”
There is no bigger mitzvah
Rav Horowitz concludes:
“We really are accepting all of this with love, and even with joy. We even held a seudah hodaya [to thank Hashem for saving their lives]. But right now, we’re in a situation where we even have to borrow Shabbat clothes from other people, because we don’t even have those. The Electricity company alone wants us to pay 9,000 shekels to fix all the wiring, and we’re not even talking about replacing things like cupboards, and all the rest of the furniture.
“There is no bigger mitzvah than helping a family who finds themselves in this situation. In the merit of helping us, Hashem should give you the merit of having a Shana Tova, too.”
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