[Video and photos below.] Over fifteen hundred men and women filled Ateres Chana Hall Tuesday night for an extraordinary demonstration of Hakaros Hatov to Chai Lifeline, the international support network for families dealing with serious illness, whose vibrant Lakewood presence is changing the lives of hundreds of children and families in the Kehila on a daily basis.
The event, held Tuesday evening, July 14th, was graced by the presence of four Roshei Hayeshiva, local rabbonim and poskim. The Reception was fittingly emceed by Harav Yehoshua Abba Busel, shlita, Rosh Chabura at Bais Medrash Govoha. Divrei P’sicha were delivered by Harav Aryeh Malkiel Kotler, shlita who once again thanked Chai Lifeline for being the Shluchei D’Rachmana in our community. Opening Rabbi Simcha Scholar, Chai Lifeline’s executive vice president, stated, “We are once again strengthened and inspired by a community who gives of their time to come to support us tonight.” He then compared the consistency of the Korban Tamid with Chai Lifeline’s mission. “To be there, every day, as long as we are needed”.
Tears were shed as the entire audience sat spellbound through a special video presentation highlighting four families and the vital support that Chai Lifeline provided for them in their time of need. Rabbi Sruli Fried, Chai Lifeline NJ Regional Director presented the Community Service Award to Mr. Peter Grollman, Vice President, Government Affairs, Community Relations & Advocacy at C.H.O.P. in recognition of his partnership and cultural sensitivity to the needs of the Lakewood community, and in particular for facilitating the development of Kohanim-safe areas at C.H.O.P. Upon accepting the award, Mr. Grollman repeated the sentiments of CHOP’s recently retired C.E.O., Steven M. Altschuler, who extolled: “Chai Lifeline anticipates every single need that a family might encounter enabling us to focus on their medical care.”
Rabbi Lipa Geldwerth, shlita, Rav of Congregation Kol Torah in Midwood, graced the Reception as guest speaker. He related the words of a father whose family is a recipient of Chai Lifeline’s services, “In our family, there is a father, a mother, and there is Chai Lifeline!” He concluded by stating that the Geulah will always comes when we care for one another. We learn this from the posuk “V’chamushim Alu”, how each family brought out four others with them. This is the essence of Chai Lifeline, the Nesias Ol with Acheinu Bnei Yisroel, which will bring the Geulah B’mehera B’yameinu“.
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