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A Blessing in Disguise

By Rav David Lhungdim

If someone wishes to search for a place of miracle, whether hidden or visible, I think the perfect place where one can find the divine hands of God, is in Sderot.

I wish to share one such incident that I experienced. It was on this joyous festival of Simchat Torah, which falls on Shabbat. I asked my sister Rivka Guite and her husband Zevulun Guite about their plan to celebrate the Shabbat, they told me they were going to stay with my mother until the end of the festivals.

On 7th of Oct, the day, the terrorist organization Hamas penetrated deep into the heart of Sderot city, brutally killing and kidnapping innocent civilians, sending a barrage of rockets, and recklessly pounding the city of Sderot like wildfire. That night was unlucky because the southern parts of Israel witnessed a sleepless night that continued throughout the sabbath.

On October 8, Sunday, in the morning, Zevulun Guite went to take his clinic card, and to his dismay, just to find his house was gone, his house razed to the ground by rockets. Nothing was left except for their precious lives. Had they stayed in their house for Shabbat, they could have been the victims of Hamas brutality towards innocent civilians. Even though they have lost everything, we thank G-d for saving their precious lives.

Zevulun Guite and Rivka Guite's house was directly hit by rocket fire from Gaza by Hamas terrorist

Zevulun Guite and Rivka Guite

As Hamas fired thousands of rockets endlessly, the like of which the southern parts of Israel have never witnessed, we heard from the municipality of Sderot that anyone who wished to evacuate from Sderot should be given help, so I was busy helping my community evacuate from Sderot. My wife Sarah and our community secretary, Enosh Lhouvum, were also busy helping our community members amidst rockets falling inside the city.

On October 10, most of our community members were evacuated. We bid farewell to each other with tears in our eyes, some to the northern part of Israel and some to the Dead Sea Hotel. Here is the saddest part of our lives because we sent the elderly men and women with some families to the Dead Sea Hotel. They were separated from their loved ones.

Among the family members, there were elders who never wanted to leave Sderot because they felt that Sderot was part of their lives. To mention a few of their names, Ovadia Singsit and Barzilai Singsit, sent their beloved families to a safe zone, and they stayed behind.

Barzillai Singsit was separated from his family he was reluctant to leave Sderoth and was one among the last to be evacuated, and was reunited with his family in the Leonardo hotel in Jerusalem

Ovadia Singsit was one among the elders reluctant to leave Sderot he sent his beloved family to Afula and later on he was among the last to be evacuated and later came to join his community in the Olive Tree Hotel in Jerusalem.

I got a phone call from my colleague in Kollel; they told me the circumstances were very dangerous, and they begged me to leave Sderoth as soon as possible. My wife also begged me for our children's sake, and I told them that as community Rabbi, I would be the last to leave Sderoth until all my community members were evacuated to a safer place.

On 12 October Thursday, the situation began to worsen, debris from rockets dismantled by the Iron Dome could be seen everywhere around the city, around 21 families of our community were still in Sderot, as the situation worsened with the passing hour some of our community members asked what are we going to do with such dire situation, they told me we are waiting for your decision.

I told them to wait until I received a final and solid conclusion from the municipality, I looked at the clock on the wall the hour was 21:10, I phoned Edward Assistant of Mayor Alon Davidi that I was waiting for a final decision from the government and from the mayor regarding my community because, among the 21 families, there were still some who never had the intention of leaving Sderoth.

Within a minute I received a phone call from the Mayor's assistant that I would receive 3 buses for my remaining community members on Friday morning at 9:30 a:m at Gil Rabin School and a hotel was already reserved for all of my remaining community members in Jerusalem hotel, I informed my community members about the final decision, and then I receive a phone call from elderly women who plead not to leave their husband in such condition, I give them a warm promise that I will be the last to leave Sderoth and not a single soul from my community will be left behind, so I rang the elders that I won't leave Sderot until they are move to a safer zone and I told them the decision which I receive from the municipality, thanks G-d they accepted my plea.

On October 13th, at 9:00 a.m., we walked towards Casdor neighborhood, where Gil Rabin school was located. On the way, we passed by our synagogue, "Alfei Menashe," the first Beith Kenesseth for Benei Menashe in Israel, established in 2014. Tears began to roll down my cheeks, but I didn't want my family members to see me in such depression.

Around 10:00, all of my community members were already present; they were taken from their houses to Gil Rabin School by volunteers from Khamal and Khamal Neshek, and I was proud to see Itzkhak Hangshing, one of my community members, be part of it. Around 10:30, the buses arrived, and they began to get into the bus.

I asked Itzkhak Hangshing, are you coming? He replied, Ha Rav, I will volunteer for our people; that's the least I can contribute to our country. With a heavy heart, I breathe and climb into the bus, and I wish him a long and good life.

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Oct 25, 2023
Rated 5 out of 5 stars.

a miracle indeed


Oct 18, 2023

Hatchung nung Israel Pathen in eiveng jing tauhen


Oct 18, 2023
Rated 5 out of 5 stars.

😭😭😭😭 may G protect us


Oct 18, 2023
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