A very special man I knew passed away last week.
Abe Robinson was blessed with a long and productive life.
He was in full control of his faculties and left behind a wonderful family.
All of his descendants are Torah observant Jews.
Excelling in their relationship with G-d and with other people.
… Abe came to America as a teenager.
And at a time when most American Jews were drifting away from Judaism?
Never lost his love for Torah.
He became a lawyer and never compromised his Torah observance.
Always observed Shabbat. Kosher. And practiced law with absolute honesty and integrity.
No one ever heard him say a bad word about anyone. Never!
He greeted every single person with a smile.
And always put the needs of others before his.
(He had “ordered” his children not to personally eulogize him, wanting to save them the pain.
“And if you do”, he would say?
“I will get up and leave”!)
Abe was the “candy man” in the synagogue. Handing out candy to the little kids.
Because he loved them!
And wanted them to love coming to Shule!
…There is a very precious memory that I will always have.
Something that very few people knew about. Because he didn’t want them to!
We would often attend the morning services in the same synagogue.
At a point in the service, a pushka (tzedakah box) would be brought around.
(Jewish tradition teaches that prayers have more power when we show that we care for others.)
Like most people there, Abe would put in some tzedakah.
And then I noticed him doing something else.
… There were usually a few young men from Keshet at the services.
(Keshet is a wonderful program for Jewish children and young adults with special needs.)
Abe would “sneak” each one a dollar bill.
So they could give tzedakah. So that they could feel part of the “congregation”.
And because he loved them like his own kids.
… Abe Robinson, of blessed memory, taught me a very big lesson.
With a small gesture? And a lot of love?
And sometimes by putting a dollar to good use?
You can make someone feel like a million bucks!
All the best,