100 couples and over 60 children from a variety of backgrounds gathered at the Bushkill Inn for a Shabbaton steeped in Emunah and Bitachon led by R’ Sholom Mordechai and Mrs. Leah Rubashkin.
When it comes to facing the challenges in life with clarity and strength, a Shiur in Emunah and Bitachon goes a long way, particularly a Shiur given by Rabbi Sholom Mordechai Rubashkin.
Many have experienced that first-hand and have become regular attendees of one of the six weekly shiurim Rabbi Rubashkin leads – two for men, studying from the text of Chovos HaLevavos, and four for women, in which Rabbi Rubashkin directly addresses challenges ranging from low self-esteem to anxiety to trauma.
The benefits they’ve seen in their personal lives have been tremendous, but a couple of months ago some of the Shiur participants decided that it was time for more than a shiur. At their urging, Rabbi Rubashkin and his family issued an invitation to “a Shabbos of Emunah and Bitachon with Rabbi Sholom M. Rubashkin.”
It was held on Shabbos Parshas Vayakhel, at the Bushkill Inn and Conference Center.
Despite inclement weather, 75 families drove more than two hours to Pennsylvania. The contrast between the frigid temperatures outside and the warm, inviting hotel was a perfect metaphor for the haven of Emunah and Bitachon they sought.
The Shabbos had all the trappings of a Shabbos getaway – savory Seudos catered by Greenwald Catering, a top-shelf performer, an exciting children’s program, etc – but, as R’ Getzel Rubashkin noted in the opening remarks, this was much more than that. The goal of the Shabbos was not to escape the weekday reality, but to transform it.
By the time the Sunday morning farewell rolled around, the attendees all agreed – it had been a transformative Shabbos.
The program included long-form addresses by Rabbi Rubashkin, presented in his inimitable style, drawn from Torah sources and illustrated by his dramatic personal experiences, clarified how to better apply our beliefs to our daily lives.
There were also opportunities for more informal conversations. During the meals and the Oneg Shabbos the men had the opportunity to shmooze with Rabbi Rubashkin and discuss the various applications of Bitachon in a more intimate, interactive way. The women had the same opportunity to interact with Mrs. Rubashkin, at their own Oneg.
There was even time set aside for one-on-one chats with Rabbi and Mrs. Rubashkin for those who wanted to discuss more private, personal matters.
A fun-filled children’s program kept the children busy so the parents could benefit from everything the Shabbos had to offer.
Shabbos was capped by a rousing Melava Malka. A full Seuda was served and Rabbi Rubashkin shared stories of Tzaddikim, while R’ Benny Friedman regaled the attendees with both heartfelt Zemiros and lively Niggunim, to which they danced until well past midnight.
After a scrumptious Sunday morning breakfast spread, Rabbi Rubashkin spoke about Bringing Bitachon Home, taking the inspiration and clarity they had experienced over the special Shabbos and internalizing it and applying it to daily life.
Beyond the packed program, many attendees found that just spending 48 hours with so many other Yidden who had made Emunah and Bitachon a conscious goal to pursue was invigorating and inspiring.
The broad cross-section of Jewish communities represented amplified this even further. “Spending Shabbos with so many different types of Yidden who united to strengthen their trust in Hashem was so inspiring. It was a continuation of the tremendous Achdus that characterized the response to Rabbi Rubashkin’s plight.”
Shiurim and study sessions of Shaar HaBitachon and other Seforim on this important topic are, Baruch Hashem, widespread. This special Shabbos was aimed at taking the next step and bringing the clarity from the mind to the heart, from an idea that we understand to the reality that we live. We hope that it is only the first of many.
For information regarding future Shabbatons, email [email protected]