By Jacques Steinberg and Jonathan Berg Co-Chairs, 613 Mitzvot Campaign
One congregant asked a Metro-North conductor to punch an extra hole in her 10-ride pass, so that a fellow passenger who didn’t have a ticket could make it to his stop.
Another congregant delivered a water bottle to a friend at school who had forgotten it, so that the friend’s mom didn’t have to make the trip.
Still another flew from New York to Los Angeles on short notice to comfort an elderly aunt, whose 97-year-old husband had been in a car accident and placed on a ventilator.
The 613 Mitzvot Campaign Committee has been overwhelmed by the stories that have poured in as we seek to meet a goal of 612 new mitzvot by December 8, Rabbi Arnowitz’ installation. On that day, we will seek to complete the 613th mitzvah, together. As of November 13, with just a few weeks to go, congregants had submitted reports to WJC of 563 mitzvot – within 49 of the goal of 612—since the project began on September 8. They have done so by placing cards in boxes at WJC, or online at: www.wjcenter.org/613mitzvot.
No. 249: “I invited my cousin for Shabbat dinner,” wrote Myra Levine-Harris. “She had taken offense at something minor five years ago & finally after repeated phone calls and birthday cards decided to come to her senses… It was a lovely dinner!”
No. 260, from Sabrina Freidus: “I participate in morning tutoring at my school… We mainly tutor underprivileged kids from the Bronx. My tutee’s name is Liva, and we work together on math.”
And, finally, No. 262: “Several months ago I organized a Yiddish Vinkle (corner) at the Osborn Retirement Facility,’’ wrote Aileen Novick. “We meet once a month to exchange experiences in and about Yiddish… The Vinkle has reawakened the Jewish spark that was missing at the Osborn.”