Beth Shifra Thanks the many that made this year a success! 5776-2016
PASSOVER 2016 AT BETH SHIFRA: A Festival to Remember
We have celebrated the festival of matzos once again and, thanks to Beth Shifra, and its generous contributors and dedicated staff, hundreds of people, who otherwise would have had no Seder and no holiday, have great Pesach memories – some for the first time in their life. Since 1970, Beth Shifra, a Brooklyn-based organization, has made it its mission help those of the New York Jewish community who need help the most: poor people (and there are many), new immigrants, elderly people, shut-ins and just plain, ordinary people who otherwise might have little or no connection with Yiddishkeit.
“It was absolutely unbelievable,” marveled Rabbi Chaim Prussman, who founded the organization 45 years ago and who has led it ever since. “We were able to serve hot meals and give food packages to every person that came. Everyone was served with a smile, and at no cost to them. We turned away no one!” A great many people showed up for the Seders each night at Beth Shifra’s new Pesach headquarters, 2102 Ave T, Brooklyn.
Rabbi Prussman said a long list of people deserve a lot of recognition for making Beth Shifra’s Pesach 2016 as successful as it was. Certainly, right near the top of the list is the management of the White Shul. “Rabbi Sroya Sorscher and
Rabbi Mordechai Sorscher and his congregants get a big yasher koach,” said Rabbi Prussman. We also thank the lecturers: Rav Berkstein both of Rabbi Sorscher’s brothers who enlightened our participants with their inspired insights. We are grateful to the Jewish Press, Faigy at the Algemeiner, Zev Brenner, Country Yossi for helping to publicize our work. We also want to thank our volunteers, who helped package and disseminated packages. The Sorcer family helped tremendously in making it the best Pesach ever! They were there for us from the beginning. Shai Auerbach was our right-hand-man from beginning to end and most importantly his advice gave us the tools to make Pesach 5776 a success. We also thank our suppliers: Manischewitz Kedem Wines, Streit’s Matzah Co, The Brandsdorfer Family, BaTempte, Klein’s Ice Cream, Redi Record, RiteLite Toys, Paskez, Jack’s Eggs, Shuey’s Take Out Grill -2988 Nostrand Ave (718-513-6565), Quality Frozen Foods, Paperific on 38th, and Met Council.
The preparations were complicated, but with everyone pulling together, the job got done. With Rabbis Sroya and Mordechai Sorscher, everything was so clean, and every inch of the refrigerator and the ovens were immaculate.
Once the kitchen was prepared, the fridges and freezer delivered, silverware, prizes and pallets of food in place, the process started taking shape. The cook started Sunday and worked until erev Pesach. The bagging of the food parcels took from the morning hours to the evening. Many people came to the sedarim, which were standing room only. The week of chol hamoed also saw a huge turnout, with activities for children, adults and singles. We hosted a special children’s show, enlightening shiurim and a Jewish singles program. The participants came from many directions, near and far and enjoyed a welcoming meal and music, and were given boxes of matzah, grape juice, fish, cookies, vegetables and other treats for the holiday.
While the kitchen at the White Shul was being kashered and food and wine were being brought in to prepare for the holiday, other preparations were under way as well. A major task was getting the word out to New York’s large, diverse Jewish community that there was a place where they could come and eat during the holiday – and it wouldn’t cost them a dime. Rabbi Prussman sent out notices and paid advertisements about the upcoming Seders and food distribution in Russian, Yiddish and English newspapers. Editor Ari Kagan from the Russian-language newspaper covered the Russian front and had it sent to a number of other Russian papers, four Yiddish newspapers, and Rabbi and Rebbitzen Friedman’s papers, The Title as well as Der Yid, The Blatt and the Algeimeiner Journal; six English newspapers – Country Yossi Family Magazine, TV Views, The Connections, Jewish Press, Twenties and Thirties and Hamodia. The printing companies: Expressway Printing, Colonial Records, Star Direct mailing helped us get the word out. Two radio shows, Country Yossi and Zev Brenner, made announcements.
Please DO YOUR PART to help Beth Shifra pay for Passover and continue to serve our community year-round. Make a tax-deductible contribution to: Beth Shifra, 1719 Avenue P, Brooklyn, N.Y. 11229. Please send to: Beth Shifra, P.O. Box 700, Brooklyn, N.Y. 11229.
FOR MORE INFORMATION, PLEASE CONTACT US AT BETH SHIFRA, tel. (718) 449-1397, or visit our website: www.bethshifra.org. We are pleased to announce that this year we had 31,095 hits in March and 43,552 hits in April!
Beth Shifra’s activities on behalf of New York’s Jewish community have been endorsed by many gedolim, prominent rabbis and numerous community leaders.
All these good times, kindness and mitzvos don’t happen by themselves. In addition to the inspiring donations of supplies and manpower, many expenses accrue. We cannot continue our indispensable services without your generous contribution.
Please contact us now with your support and in these merits may we be blessed with a year of health, happiness, and nachas.