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Grateful for His Support
Our Father's 50th Yahrtzeit
by Rabbi Yakov Horowitz

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Grateful for His Support

Our Father's 50th Yahrtzeit

Kennedy. Johnson. Nixon. Nixon. Ford. Carter. Reagan. Reagan. Bush. Clinton. Clinton. Bush. Bush. Obama. Obama.

Our family observed the 50th yahrzeit of our father, Reb Shlomo Ben Reb Yakov Moshe Halevi Horowitz a"h at a Siyum Mishnayos in Brooklyn last night. I began my remarks there by reciting the names of the American Presidents who served during the years following his death, as it seemed to capture the enormity of his loss in a way that the sterile number fifty could not.

My brother Reb Yehudah made the Siyum and my sister Dvori Ostreicher eloquently spoke about her childhood and exhorted those present to become more sensitized to the raw feelings experienced by kids in our community who are being raised under trying circumstances as a zechus for our father's neshama. -->

My siblings and I did our best to keep much of the evening's focus on two things: Hashem's kindness in allowing our mother to provide us with a nurturing and wholesome home environment and to thank our family and friends for their emotional support us over the years.

A poignant Torah thought of the Kloisenberger Rebbi captured the essence of the evening. The Rebbi, who lost his entire first family in the Holocaust, asked a question on the phrase we recite in our daily davening, "Baruch gozer u'mekayem," (loosely translated as "Blessed [be Hashem] Who issues an edict and sees it through to fruition."

Since the word "gezeira" generally denotes decrees that are harsh, why would the fact that Hashem carries out the gezeira be laudatory? Would it not be more praiseworthy to say that Hashem does not carry out His gezeiros?

The Rebbi explained that the word "mekayem," which can also be translated as "to support" refers to the person who is negatively affected by the gezeira. Thus the phrase reads, "Baruch gozer" (blessed be Hashem who issues a decree) "u'mekayem" (and then supports the person - giving him/her the strength to deal with the after-effects of the gezeira.

May the neshama of our father Reb Shlomo Ben Reb Yakov Moshe Halevi have an aliya and may his memory be for a blessing.

Please find below links to columns written on previous yahrtzeits as a zechus for his neshama. I hope you find them meaningful:

tp:// -- a letter of support to kids who lost parents explaining yahrtzeits to kids. begging parents who divorce to be respectful to each otherÂ reminding parents to appreciate the gift of life and spend meaningful time with your kidsÂ in honor of the wonderful man who married my mother 47 years ago

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