19th LVN Shabbos of Inspiration

Last week, LVN in the U.S. held its annual Spring Lag BaOmer Shabbaton in South Fallsburg, N.Y. Over 130 girls from LVN branches across the U.S. and Canada traveled to upstate New York to take part in this convention, whose theme, “Connections,” gave new meaning to the word. The participants gained insight into how to connect with Hashem and each other in a most meaningful way. The girls went home deeply inspired, taking with them tangible lessons to apply in their daily lives.



Memories of the 19th Lechu V’Nelcha Shabbos

Entering the Raleigh Hotel, I immediately began to feel a transformation, entering a world that was quite reminiscent of my seminary days. From the very start, I knew that I had made the right decision to join Harav Todros Miller, shlita, Rebbetzin Dinah Fink, and all the speakers and girls from many different places and backgrounds, for this chance to invest in a better self. The balance of learning and recreation allowed me to maximize the Shabbos as both a time to gain the chizuk and tools to keep plowing forward, as well as an opportunity to relax from all the pressures that my daily life entails. From the initial welcome to the final goodbye, I felt disconnected from the rest of the world and floated on cloud nine.

Being a single girl in today’s society is not easy, as in addition to the pressures involved in finding a job and shidduchim, there is no set time for one to sit in a classroom listening to teachers impart lessons of hashkafah and chizuk. Therefore, when I discovered Lechu V’Nelcha I realized that my quality of life was about to improve. Going to the weekly shiur given by Rebbetzin Fink has been tremendously rewarding as I see myself growing stronger in my ideals, rather than chas v’shalom losing that which I worked on in my years of schooling, or at the very best, struggling to maintain the status quo.

Yet, the Lechu V’Nelcha shiur alone can’t even begin to compare to what the Shabbaton did for me. Sitting in shiurim given by the exemplars of chinuch in our generation, with no distractions to compete for my attention, brought home to me just how lucky I am to be able to be a part of Lechu V’Nelcha.

Rav Miller’s shiurim were packed with a mixture of lessons and chizuk, given over in a way that spoke straight to my neshamah. The words “lech lecha” took on a new meaning as I learned the concept of constantly being on the move in ruchniyus and the unique koach of Shabbos as the mekor habrachah. Even more than that was the chizuk that his shiur gave on the survival of the Yidden. As he spoke about the value in galus Mitzrayim, and how we came out a new people, a sense of understanding illuminated the room. We sat there b’achdus, listening to him explain that Hashem’s chessed can be found in every situation that we experience, even the most difficult. It gave me the ability to realize that rather than struggling to survive a hardship, I have the ability to rise above and come out serving my Borei on an even higher plane than before.

His other shiurim, as well as the workshops given by Mrs. Miryam Swerdlov, Rebbetzin Shlomtzy Weisz, Rebbetzin Esti Halberstadt, and Dr. Aviva Biberfeld, were all so practical and down to earth that I walked away from the Shabbaton with tools that I will carry with me for the rest of my life.

It was also, though, the lighter parts of Shabbos that I wish I could hold on to for a bit longer. It isn’t often that I get to join together with other girls to have a good time. Whether it was singing together, playing sports, or just schmoozing, it was liberating and uplifting at the same time to meet new girls who are so similar and get to know them. The friends I made on the Shabbaton are friends that I will stay connected to, as we share a kinship through our experiences together, as a part of the Lechu V’Nelcha family.

One girl told me as we were preparing to leave, that the Shabbaton had been so rich and full of content, that she felt as if she had experienced a year’s worth of learning.