A Shidduch for Raizy

A Shidduch for Raizy

Last summer we joined the Bernstein* Family for a Shabbat meal. The Bernsteins are one of my favorite families, and their daughter, Raizy*, is one of my favorite human beings.

Raizy was the babysitter for our Tuesday night date for several years. She’s beautiful and responsible and kind and smart and deeply religious. The kind of young woman who is a role model for the kind of daughters I want to raise (and the kind of person I want to become one day!)

But at that meal, Raizy seemed down. At one point, her father requested that Hashem bless us that coming year with “Geulat haKlal v’Geulat HaPrat,” redemption of the Jewish people and of each individual as well. And when he said “Geulat HaPrat” he looked so pointedly at Raizy that she blushed and got up and started clearing the plates.

It was only then that I understood how nervous Raizy and her parents were getting.

When she had turned 18 several years before, Raizy showed up one Tuesday night without glasses on. When my daughters asked her why, Raizy teased, “I got contact lenses. I don’t want to wear glasses at my wedding!”

But since then, Raizy had finished seminary and had even started working as a teacher. She had already turned 21, but there was no wedding on the horizon.

Several months before, Raizy’s father had even asked Josh whether we know somebody for Raizy. At the time I had thought that was really funny. The Bernsteins are a Yerushalmi Charedi family—more open than some, but still. How would we possibly know somebody suitable?

But, in retrospect, I realized that this was a reflection of just how desperate they were becoming as the years passed.

A few days after the meal at their house, I called the father to ask him what kind of boy they were looking for for Raizy. He told me they were looking for a boy who was “Litvish light” and named a bunch of families in the neighborhood that, he felt, fit that description.

That was exactly a year ago, last Av. And for the next few weeks, whenever I ran into the wife from one of those families, I asked her if she or her husband knew somebody suitable for Raizy.

The reactions were always pretty much the same. Something like: “Raizy is a wonderful girl. If I had a brother or a son of marriageable age, I would scoop her up for myself! But we don’t know any unmarried boys, sorry.”

And then, right after Succot, I was walking by the Bernsteins’ house, and I noticed the older children carrying folding tables into the house. “Why do you need so many tables?” I asked them. And they just smiled swallowed-canary smiles and didn’t answer.

Hmmm, this was interesting! My excitement overcame my embarrassment, and I called Mrs. Bernstein and asked her if there was an event at their house that night…”Well, yes, we are having an engagement party for Raizy tonight, please join us!”

And I did. And I was so overjoyed!

And as silly as this might sound, I felt as though I was a partner in the simcha.

Maybe a wife I had spoken with had spoken with her husband about Raizy and he had spoken with somebody else, and the shidduch was made?

Or maybe on a spiritual level, my prayers and efforts for Raizy had some impact in Heaven which made this shidduch happen?

Possibly yes. Probably no.

But I do notice that this happens to me all the time.

Just this year….

I davened for a woman who had had several miscarriages, and then she had a baby!

I davened for a relative to get a job, and b”H she did, and in quite a miraculous way!

I davened intensely for many months that Hashem should send Nachlaot some justice, and b”H, after three years a second Nachlaot pedophile was finally convicted last month!

Did my small practical or spiritual efforts help the redemption come this year to Raizy and others?

I have no idea.

But I am still certain of the fact that my job is to keep on trying.

Summoning up the courage to do what I can to change the things I can, one teensy effort at a time.


  1. Daven for me! 😉

  2. Thank you for a most beautiful and inspirational does of chizuk!

  3. We never know whose tefillot are the ones being answered, but it feels good to know that things you davened for happened. Sometimes I am sure it is the collective prayers of a lot of people and their mitzvot that tip the scales. We just have to do our share. There are so many people out there looking for their bashert. Let’s hope they find each other soon!

  4. I love to feel that my tefillos have been answered. I have been doing this my entire life and bh I always find results.
    A few weeks ago my friend had a baby who we knew was going to need surgery right away. When I heard she was in labor, I davened so hard that the baby not need immediate surgery. Then she had the baby and we didn’t hear any news. I was going crazy not knowing and I realized it’s because I always like to know that my hard tefillos are answered and in this case, I just didn’t know!

    Anyway, I teach my kids this too. This Shabbos we davened that my daughter would win the prize at groups this week. My children have only won once in almost a year and my daughter was upset that she didn’t get a prize in camp this week. So we davened together and when she won later that day, I felt that it really taught my children such a valuable lesson.

    Anyway Chana, thanks for davening for me;)

  5. Also, my friend Chana who converted recently said that she chose the name Chana because she always felt that she had a direct connection to Hashem and had a special relationship with tefillah. Chana in the Navi had this too, so that’s why she chose the name Chana. I loved this as my middle name is Chana and I have always felt this way too but did not know this about the name.

  6. From what I’ve learned, there are two benefits to davenning for someone. One is that your tefillot help that person, no matter what the situation actually looks like to us (case in point: we even daven for a dying person, in the hope that even if there is no miracle, at least that person will suffer less)
    The second benefit is for the person who prays, because the act of davenning for another has an impact on the person praying. Also, we have an obligation to do our hishtadlut, no matter what we think the outcome will be. We do our part, and Hashem makes the decisions

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