Shabbat in Belz

Frum family closephoto © 2008 David Howard | more info (via: Wylio)
Last Shabbat, for the first time ever I attended Friday night prayers at my favorite shul, the huge Belzer synagogue in Kiryat Belz, Jerusalem. When I arrived, there was an unusually large crowd in the women’s section, and I didn’t really know why until the Belzer choir started singing their otherworldly, sweet-as-honey Lecha Dodi niggun.

You won’t believe me, but I think I could hear Hashem Himself singing along with the Chassidim in an undertone, and I imagined the angels above circling around to celebrate the beginning of Shabbat with all of the Belzers.

The most moving moment of the Friday night prayers was when the little boys, hundreds of them, call out “Amen!” in unison. What a holy and unforgettable “Amen” it was! Hearing those little boys, I imagined the unfathomable tragedy of the million Jewish children murdered in the Holocaust. And I thought of these little Chassidic boys who are being raised keeping the same traditions as many of those lost children, speaking the same language as they did, and loving the Torah and mitzvot with all their hearts and souls– just like so many of those lost souls who lost their lives sanctifying G-d’s name.

A tear came to my eyes imagining Hashem’s tremendous nachas to have such holy kinderlach filling His world and His synagogues once again.

Oifen Pripetchik is probably my favorite song. It moves me so deeply. I am dedicating this to all our holy children who still bring God’s light into the world with their shining faces as their teachers teach them “Dem Aleph Beis.”

The huge bar mitzvah celebration for the Belzer Rebbe’s grandson

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7 comments

  1. Maybe this is a silly question- and please understand that I am American raised and now living in a Haredi community for very little time here in israel, with no hassidic affiliation, I am sphardi. Are there a lot of visitors that come to the belzer shul on shabbos that arent belzer hassidim? is it inviting?
    I mean, I could go to any shul in America and I have attended various shuls there without a problem, but it seems so different here…

    • JewishMOM.com

      hi sara, in the women’s section, on friday nights I think the majority of people there are non-belzers. Shabbat mornings, it’s almost all belzers, as far as I can tell (that’s when I usually go there to daven). But the belz community, I think, encourages visitors. And I feel really comfortable there, even though I look and dress VERY different from them.

    • sure!!! there are a lot visitors every week and the belz hassidim know very well how to host them!!!

  2. very nice.By the way the clip that you used for the Belz Bar Mitzvah in Jerusalem is one of the clip that I recorded – it was an amazing event

  3. I am not a Belzer & i have found them super hospitable when i visited

  4. wow, thats great to hear I hope to visit there. Thanks for geting back on this Chana Jenny- I recommended this blog to so many woman – I also joined the hebura and met someone who really needed to hear about your blog- she will hopefully get the inspiration she needs to feel more fulfilled at her role as a jewish mom to 4 kids under 5. I myself have 5 under 5 and you have been a God send for me- I love that I can learn how to improve what I do and how to correct and spiritually boost everything up- I am also a YEmima Hassid- absolutely love her to the bone! So, thanks again for spending hours a week putting together this wonderful blog.

  5. I was involved numerous times with Belzer chasidim and on two occasions with the holy and super smart Belzer rabbi, I am amazed of their love to klal yisroel, the rebbe and all his organizations such as HIDABRUT, tzohar, ezra lemarpe and much more are for all of klal yisroel. I felt very comfortable being in a belzer shtebel in london.

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