“Let us Join Together for Happy Times”
BY SIVAN RAHAV-MEIR
“Hi Sivan, my name is Yakir. I run a photography business together with my partner Meor. After the Meron tragedy, we felt that we had to do something. And so we went, in our jeans and t-shirts, to visit the Engelard family, a Chassidic family that lost two sons in the tragedy, their 14-year-old son Moshe, and their 9-year-old son Yehoshua.
We met the father, Rabbi Yitzchak, who was very moved that we came, and said that we had given him strength. When we left, he said that “Am Yisrael should not get together only in times of tragedy, but also for s’machot (happy occasions).” These beautiful words stayed with me.
This week, months after that visit, I received a surprising message. The Engelard family, b’sha’ah tovah, had a baby boy. Rabbi Yitzchak contacted me and invited me to come and to be with them for happy occasions too, to join them for the brit of their son, who brought new life and comfort to the family. The last time we met, they were sitting on mourners’ chairs. This time we met and hugged, we danced and sang together. And may his name be called among Israel: Yosef Naftali.
As we left I said to Rabbi Yitzchak that now it is my turn to invite him to s’machot, and he agreed. I am attaching a picture taken at the brit, as well as the invitation to the brit, which for me was not only a brit milah, but also a reminder of the brit, the covenant, between us.”
My dear Yakir and Meor,
Seven months ago we met under very difficult and painful circumstances. I was moved then by the beauty of Am Yisrael, and I realized then that no power in the world can separate brothers.
Precisely then, amidst the pain and darkness, the special connection between us was revealed, when you transcended yourselves, put aside all of your other considerations and made the effort to come and comfort us and to join in our sorrow, all because of your sense of responsibility and love of Israel.
We promised at that moment to continue this mutual love also, and especially, in times of joy.
Thank G-d, I am happy to tell you that we had a baby boy, and I am honored to invite you to the brit.
Sivan Rahav-Meir is a media personality and lecturer. She lives in Jerusalem with her husband, Yedidya, and their five children, and serves as World Mizrachi’s Scholar-in-Residence. She is a primetime anchor on Channel 2 News, has a column in Israel’s largest newspaper, Yediot Acharonot, and has a weekly radio show on Galei Tzahal (Army Radio).