Colors: Blue Color

     People, especially the most vulnerable, are worried how they will survive this Coronavirus pandemic.  Hopefully, these resources will help.

     Instead of going to a hospital to get tested for the virus, one can go to go to the Northwell Health Urgent Care, 102-29 Queens Blvd. in Forest Hills, (718) 502-9798.  Call before going to make an appointment.  Staff will provide protective gear, like a mask, before allowing the person inside.

On Tuesday night, March 19, Chazaq and TorahAnytime hosted a livestream shiur titled “Chizuk for Turbulent Times.” First, Rabbi Moshe Tuvia Lieff, rav of Agudath Israel Bais Binyomin in Brooklyn, imparted that we should follow the guidelines of the government and of the g’dolei Yisrael. “We are completely in the hands of the Ribbono shel Olam. This mageifah is teaching us that it’s all HaKadosh Baruch Hu.” Now, we can’t daven b’tzibur. We can’t learn in typical fashion. Children are denied the privilege to protect klal Yisrael.

The turn of world events that have unfolded since late December 2019 reportedly began in the commercial center of Central China’s Hubei province of Wuhan. Most of us here in the United States take kosher food for granted. Little do we know that much of the origins of our food’s raw ingredients originate at manufacturing plants from cities including Wuhan. The Queens Jewish Link had the opportunity to discuss the chronology of the events that unfurled in China, and the glimmers of hope that emerged, along with ideas of hashgachah pratis (divine intervention), with Rabbi Mordechai Grunberg, the Orthodox Union’s longtime rabbinic field representative in China. Rabbi Grunberg spent 12 years post high school in both Yeshiva Chofetz Chaim’s Forest Hills and Israel branches, earning semicha in 1981 and launching his career as a Rabbinic Coordinator in the OU under Rabbi Menachem Genack, the head of OU Kashruth, the same year. Rabbi Grunberg, known to friends simply as Motty, is no stranger to the Queens community, having sent his first three sons to Yeshiva Tiferes Moshe (YTM) and four daughters to the Bais Yaakov Academy of Queens before making aliyah to Eretz Yisrael in 1994. His daughter Tziporah married Yoni May, son of Rabbi Yaakov May (Menahel of YTM), further strengthening their family’s connection to our area. 

Like much else in our world, food technology has taken dazzling leaps forward, but the ever-present need of human touch has long been a pivotal tool behind kosher food production. With over 500 OU-certified Chinese plants, Rabbi Mordechai Grunberg’s hands have been full for over 25 years, taking about 15 overseas trips yearly, spending almost 200 days a year abroad. This translates to Rabbi Grunberg knowing the ins and outs of Chinese society, spending one Shabbos at home and then 11 days apart from his family. For their part, the Chinese plant workers have long recognized rabbinic certification as an integral part of daily life and one they take pride incorporating. Rabbi Grunberg explained that mastering the art of forming exemplary workings relationships with the Chinese took much time but, in the end, allowed for the cultivation of a serious adherence to kosher standards.

On Wednesday, March 25, Bnos Malka Academy united virtually to daven together at the same time as the rest of klal Yisrael. At 11:30 a.m., students, parents, and teachers were invited to attend a Zoom meeting. Led by Rabbi Weichselbaum, Bnos Malka families joined together in saying T’hilim, Avinu Malkeinu, Acheinu, and Kabalas Ol Malchus Shamayim. A PowerPoint was displayed with all of the t’filos so that all in attendance could participate in saying each word.

Younger students were led through several p’rakim of T’hilim by their teachers earlier in the day.

May the t’filos of klal Yisrael be heard in Shamayim, and may Hashem annul this decree speedily.

One of the Only Countries in the World that Hashem Has Spared
by Corona Celebrates Siyum Hashas

“I looked at the orchestra and had to rub my eyes. Was I dreaming? We were in the middle of a festive Siyum HaShas and the orchestra playing lively Yiddishe niggunim was the orchestra of the Police Academy of Minsk, Belarus! Yes, just a few decades ago, those same policemen were persecuting Jews for learning Torah and possibly sending them to Siberia for their horribly counter-revolutionary activity of teaching Jews Torah and today? They were the musicians playing ‘Toras Hashem Temimah’ and ‘Siman Tov U’mazel Tov’ at our Siyum HaShas!”