Why Chabad Rabbis Spent Last Shabbat on the Phone

Why Chabad Rabbis Spent Last Shabbat on the Phone

Shabbat is the Jewish day of rest. Religious observance of Shabbat includes a prohibition against operating electricity – which means not even touching phones and other electronic devices.
But this past Shabbat was different. Because Jewish law puts saving lives over everything.
Ukrainian-speaking Chabad emissaries and volunteers spent the whole day on the phone, trying to convince Ukrainian Jews to leave before it’s too late.
The volunteers went through every phone number they had, often patiently explaining to the elderly Jews the significant danger ahead, as missiles are now falling on civilian homes, and escape routes are closing in.
Then the callers provided detailed instructions on how to securely reach the busses and carpools arranged by Chabad that will bring them to safety outside of the battered Ukraine.
One such emissary was Rabbi Silberstein from Chernigov. His young daughter was distraught and confused.
“Tatty (daddy), it doesn’t feel like Shabbat when you’re on the phone the whole time.”
“You’re right,” he answered her. “But thank God we got to coordinate 13 cars to leave Chernigov over Shabbat! That’s 13 cars with 5 people in each one – we got to save 65 worlds! How fortunate we are!”

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