Over 450 Shuls in over 200 cities across North America and beyond dedicated Parshas Vayechi as TEAM Shabbos. With Drashos, Shiurim, Parshah sheets, news articles and events in communities from coast to coast, an estimated 100,000 people were impacted. It is not too early to start looking ahead to next year. Please click here to sign up your Shul and rabbi for TEAM Shabbos 5779. Please encourage other Rabbonim and Kiruv workers in your area to join as well.
“This third year was a big year for us,” said Rabbi Zohn, director of NASCK. “We’ve now created a Chazakah, Shuls sign up yearly, because they know the issues are important. Their congregants know that there is a place to turn to with questions. Even more importantly, many of those questions are being asked for the first time. By planning ahead, difficult, painful and rushed decisions are avoided and last-minute crises are averted. I couldn’t be happier with the overwhelmingly positive response of this past TEAM Shabbos.”
Different communities focused on different topics, although stressing the importance of signing Halachic Living Wills was a common choice. Many Rabbonim chose to focus on the Mitzvah of Kibbud Av Va’eim and the tremendous opportunity and Z’chus that people have when they care for their elderly parents. (See article by Rabbi A.Z. Ginzberg) In addition to Shabbos sermons and Shiurim, many communities held events, some of which can be seen here (LINK TO VIDEOS).
NASCK has received positive feedback from laymen and leaders alike. Rabbi Eli Belizon, the Rav of Young Israel of Fair Lawn, said, “We Baruch Hashem had a successful Shabbos. Thank you for all your help and determination.” Rabbi Shalom Lubin said, “Team Shabbos was a big hit in Parsippany. I spoke about it in my Drashah, then gave a broader Shiur before Minchah, discussing many topics with my Mispallilim that we haven’t previously discussed, about proper K’vurah and cremation issues. Yasher Koach Gadol!”
The response of the community has been overwhelming. Multiple communities have requested events, to be run together with NASCK or with our guidance. NASCK has also been bombarded with requests for EMES cards and Halachic Living Wills. These can be downloaded or ordered at: (PUT IN LINK TO NASCK PAGE) In addition, many calls continue to come in, with questions ranging from Tahara procedures and best burial practices to guidance on how to stop a cremation.
Thank you for making TEAM Shabbos a great success. We look forward to increasing the number of Shuls next year and to broadening the focus of the topics. Please assist us with your participation, your ideas, Divrei Torah or articles you contribute or direct us to, etc. We would love to post them for others to use.