The Menorahs of my Son Menachem Mendel z”l by Nechama Zirkind

The Menorahs of my Son Menachem Mendel z”l by Nechama Zirkind

In honor of today’s Shloshim of 20-Year-Old Menachem Mendel Zirkind of Crown Heights Brooklyn.

Menachem Mendel loved people and people loved him. He had a unique way about him and encouraged people in many areas.
He had a special way about him and shared his most valuable thing, which is a connection with Hashem and a connection with mitzvos.
Every year, Menachem Mendel would prepare menorahs in advance for Chanukah.
He would go out of his way to find Yidden to share the beautiful Mitzva of lighting the Chanukah Menorah. He even posted a sign on his hospital-room door offering free menorahs to passersby.

This Monday night, the second night of Chanukah I got a call from one of the doctors who had taken care of Menachem Mendel a while back.
(We changed hospitals around 2 years ago and this doctor was no longer caring for him medically. However they still kept a connection and Menachem Mendel would sometimes visit him in his office and put on tefillin with him and chat)
It was a pretty emotional phone call if you can imagine…
He told me that Menachem Mendel was the only person who cared about encouraging him to be proud to be a Jew.
He told me that last year Menachem Mendel had given him a menorah as a gift even though he was not his doctor at the time.
It is very emotional for this doctor and he was telling me about all the little booklets about Jewish topics and other nice things that he has from my son and that he treasures them.
He told me that he had just lit the precious menorah from Menachem Mendel. And how thankful he is for the friendship and Jewish connection.
Another emotional phone call was with the nurse at the specialist office.
She told me that the whole team is mourning Menachem Mendel, each in their own way.
She was remembering how last Chanukah, she went to see Menachem Mendel while he was in the hospital.
He was not able to light the menorah with real candles and fire, because of the oxygen he was on.
He took 9 electric tea lights (small battery operated lights which look like a tea light candle) and lined up 8 of them in a straight row, to act as a menorah, with the 9th light slightly removed, to act as the shamash.
She told me that he was telling her all about Chanukah and made it feel like Chanukah for her.
When she came home she lit the menorah with real candles together with her parents.
I told her that I remember him telling me about this story last year and how he was trying to do the mitzva in the the best possible way.
She told me that she is lighting the menorah at home this year, with her parents and remembering Menachem Mendel.
This year, it is up to us to continue for Menachem Mendel. We started a project that we called “Menorahs for Menachem Mendel.”
We gave out some of the precious menorahs that Menachem Mendel had prepared in advance.
Even though the Menorah is physical
It is not really a physical thing
It is a gift
A gift of love
A gift of connection with Hashem
A gift of connection with a fellow Jew
It is a gift from Menachem Mendel to you
And from you to Menachem Mendel
It is for you to give out to someone who otherwise would not light the menorah
And this is really his gift to the world
This card can be printed out and given together with a menorah and candles.
Menachem Mendel would go out of his way to find Yidden to share the beautiful Mitzva of lighting the Chanukah Menorah with.
Will you give this gift to Menachem Mendel and go out of your way/ your comfort zone?
Join the MM’s Menorahs Whatsapp group to share photos/stories of menorahs distributed in honor of Menachem Mendel
Learn more about Chanukah 

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