Parshas Vayera
   November 7, 2009 - 20 Cheshvan 5770



        Voices From the Ezras Nashim 

Last week a young woman was violently sexually assaulted in public for over 2 hours and not one of the bystanders came to her aid or even called for help. I learned that there is a name for the behavior of those who did nothing—Bystanders Syndrome. In today's world people lack involvement in each others lives. There is a feeling that what is happening is not happening to me and therefore no action is needed.

Last week a friend sent me a 51 second video from utube. It is called Dog Saves Dog. The video shows a very busy highway with cars and trucks proceeding at great speed. A dog is seen in the midst of the cars. The dog darts in many directions to evade the vehicles, but is eventually hit and falls. Suddenly another dog appears in traffic hundreds of feet away and on the other side of the highway. The second dog runs close to the barrier separating the highway until it comes next to the injured dog. It then jumps the barrier and cautiously approaches the injured animal. The good samaritan dog then wraps its paws around the neck of its injured comrade and inch by inch pulls it off the road raising its head and watching traffic as it goes. The injured dog survived.

Generations ago our forefather, Avraham, set an example for us when he pled for the lives of the inhabitants of Sodom and Gommorah. His behavior in confronting HaShem on the destruction of these wicked cities was based upon compassion and an understanding that each human being is capable of change and redemption. The fact that Avraham was not successful does not negate his actions. HaShem is the ultimate decider of who is to be saved, but as humans we are to do our best to aid the process.

It is indeed sad that in today's world one of the creatures over which man was given dominion is capable of emulating the traits of our forefathers better than we are. May we recognize that the lessons of the past apply to us and that emulation of virtuous acts brings a better world for each of us.

Elk's Menu
Parshas Vayera
November 7, 2009—20 Cheshvan 2009

Whole Wheat Challah
Baked in the merit of a child for a childless couple. To participate in this mitzvah please call Yehudis Halberstam—718-972-4793 for this week’s names.
Seasonal Fruit Cup
Parve Chicken Soup (((recipe)))
Salmon en Croute with Ratatouille
Macaroni and Cheese
Turkish Green Beans
Mashed Potatoes with Swiss Chard
Carrot and Raisin Salad
Lettuce Salad with Fine Herbs and Homemade Dressing
Spanish Bar Cake


Egg Salad
Tuna Salad
Gefilte Fish
Smoked Salmon Platter
Cholent with Vegetarian Kishke (((recipe)))
Cucumber Salad

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