Thousands of Women Attend Inspiring Rubashkin Chizuk Rally in Lakewood


rubashkin1Last night, the pidyon shvuyim efforts on behalf of Reb Sholom Mordechai ben Rivka Rubashkin continued with a massive asifa for women and girls at Toras Aron Hall in Lakewood, NJ. Thousands women and girls packed the hall, with the crowd spilling over into the hall’s adjacent chupah room, where a standing-room-only crowd watched the program on screens that were set up.

This event followed Monday night’s historic event at Lakewood’s Lake Terrace Hall which drew over 7,000 men.

An estimated 3,000 women attended the event, which raised some $40,000.

Last night’s women’s chizuk rally featured remarks from Mrs. Leah Rubashkin, wife of Reb Sholom Mordechai; Mrs. Roza Hindy Weiss, a daughter of Reb Sholom Mordechai; and Rav Ephraim Eliyahu Shapiro, rov of Cong. Shaaray Tefilla of North Miami Beach.

The MC was Mrs. Baila Stein.

“This has been a very challenging journey for our family, and each and every one of you who are here are a real source of chizuk for me and my family,” said Mrs. Weiss.

“My zaidy, uncles and my father up until his arrest had been doing everything they could to save the family business, and people did not know our family’s dire financial situation.

“It was hard to see the pain in my father’s eyes being unable to give as much as he used to. My husband and I knew the situation, and so when the judge determined that my father was a flight risk – a defect dual citizen, he’s Jewish and so he’s not really American and does not deserve bail – we packed our kids in the car and headed to Monsey. My brother had a friend Shaya who was willing to take us around town – door to door – to start putting together the funds we desperately needed.

“We had no clue what we were doing. Quite frankly, we didn’t give it much thought. All we knew was that we had to get my father out of jail and we needed money now!

“It was on that faithful night that we met two very special individuals who have done so much to help our family: Reb Yerachmiel Simmins and Rabbi Pinchos Lipschutz. They haven’t stopped since.”

Mr. Weiss described her experiences going around collecting funds.

“I learned that everything happens for a reason. It was the lowest that brought to such heights.

“I learned the beauty of the Yiddisher folk. Ashreichem Yisroel. How unbelievable the Jewish people are. There is none like them.

 “I met Yidden of all walks of life, of all different means, all trying to help in their own way.”

Mrs. Weiss then described her special parents, Reb Sholom Mordechai and Mrs. Leah Rubashkin.

“They really lived what they learned. And when it got so tough and it felt unbearable, they sat down together, my father and mother, and the family too at times, and learned Chovos Halevavos, Shaar Habitachon, and strengthened themselves.

“It’s only my mother who can tell her husband facing something so fearful that “‘We’ve trained together for this for twenty-eight years,'” said Mrs. Weiss with emotion. “It’s only my father who can calmly answer the prosecutors from the witness stand after they tried to break him in jail… It’s only such a person who can say, ‘I just want to get out of here and serve Hashem.'”

The next speaker was Rav Schapiro who shared two remarkable stories which demonstrated the power of one’s care and sensitivity. These tales demonstrated that showing interest in others and doing everything we can to help a fellow Yid – no matter who he is – can literally change lives and change the world.

Rav Schapiro’s words were powerful and inspiring. In fact, one attendee, as Rav Schapiro concluded his remarks, immediately wrote out a check for $1,000 to the Pidyon Shvuyim Fund which has been raising funds for Reb Sholom Mordechai’s defense.

The final speaker was Mrs. Leah Rubashkin.

“When I was thinking about the drive from the Catskills to Lakewood,” Mrs. Rubashkin told the crowd, “I started feeling a little concerned due to the fact that we’re in the Nine Days. In general, I am careful not to take long trips during the Nine Days, and so this was my knee-jerk reaction. But then I realized that what is a better way to prepare for Tisha B’Av than coming to a rally of such a beautiful showing of achdus Yisroel? What better way to end this golus than by coming to a rally which will be displaying true ahavas chinom – the very opposite of the cause of the churban, sinas chinom. And so it’s an honor to be here tonight and to join together in true unity that is only possible in our beautiful am, Am Yisroel.”

“The truth is,” she added, “that there are no words that can express the gratitude, the hakoras hatov, that I and my family feel to all of you and to all of Klal Yisroel. This whole experience has been a truly humbling experience. But it’s been a humbling experience in two ways: First of all, the fact that we have come from a place where we had the  zechus of being on the side of giving; a place where we had the merit of helping so many people from so many walks of life; a place where we had the privilege of building a gorgeous community in Postville, Iowa – a community with two mikvaos, one shul of so many diverse nuscha’os, a beautiful boys and girls school – to a situation where we are now on the receiving end. It’s not easy, and it is indeed humbling.

“Second of all, it is so humbling to witness the extraordinary joining together and unity that has taken place amongst Klal Yisroel on behalf of my husband. To see people from all walks of life, from different minhagim, with different garb – men, women, children, old and young – joining together because another Yid is suffering – is just breathtaking, and our gratitude for this phenomenal achdus is infinite.

“We are humbled that so many of you have come here tonight and so many have come to all the other rallies around the world. We are humbled by people like Rabbi Pinny Lipshutz, who has single-handedly brought this message to all of Klal Yisroel. We are humbled by the askanim – whom I will not mention all their names because I don’t even know most of their names – who have worked day and night for these rallies and to raise the enormous amount of funds they’ve raised. These people don’t sleep! And I am especially humbled by their wives who put up with it and even support it.”

Mrs. Rubashkin then related a touching story:

“I am humbled by the story that just happened last night. One of the askanim gets a call from a kid in a Munkatch camp. It was a random call, they’re going through a community directory, and he tells him that the camp is raising money for Sholom Rubashkin and he wants to know if he can help. Little did this kid know that he was calling someone who doesn’t sleep at night because he is so busy raising money himself! It is humbling that even children recognize the injustice and are doing what they can to help. We are humbled that we need their financial help, and humbled by the achdus and devotion to another Jew. I mean, there are kids raising money at lemonade stands for my husband’s defense fund! It’s just unbelievable.”

Significant funds must still be raised for the legal defense costs and the upcoming appeal. Anyone who can help out and lend support should take a moment to send a donation to the Pidyon Shvuyim Fund. The help of Yidden across the globe is severely needed.

You can easily donate by clicking on the following link:


Alternatively, you can mail contributions to:

Pidyon Shvuyim Fund

53 Olympia Lane

Monsey NY 10952

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