During the COVID-19 pandemic, Shalom Task Force’s confidential hotline has seen an increase in victim-survivors calling about escalated violence in the home and increased incidents of physical violence by their abusers. Many are requesting shelter access and free legal services to help them leave their current abusive relationships. Some are calling just to be heard and believed. Based on recently released worldwide reports and statistics, Shalom Task Force is expecting a surge in calls to our hotline and Sarah’s Voice legal department in the coming months as shelter-in-place ends.

Last month, I ended my week with yet another ankle surgery on a patient who sustained an “ankle sprain” three years ago. The patient was treated at an urgent care with motrin and a brace. The patient was told the x-rays were negative for a fracture. About three weeks after the injury, the patient did some home ankle rehabilitation exercises and felt better. About a year after the injury, the patient complained of residual ankle pain and felt ankle stiffness especially in the morning. MRI was ordered which showed nothing wrong.

Our sages teach us that everything Hashem made in this world has a purpose and that when we see the wisdom and kindness found within them, we fulfill a positive mitzvah of the heart (Chovos Halevavos, ‘Duties of the Heart’, Gate of Reflection).  One of my favorite examples of how we can see the wisdom and kindness of Hashem hidden within creations is with Icebergs.

Recap: Germany has taken over Poland and declared war on England and France. Bayla realizes that she can’t go back home to Poland now, and she is very worried about her family. She remembers to give a painting to her cousin from her mother, but her cousin’s reaction to the gift is strange.