5th LVN Shabbaton in Eretz Yisrael!

Last weekend, Parashas Beshalach, 30 girls from all over Yerushalayim experienced a crescendo of tremendous pleasure and inspiration during their 5th Lechu V’Nelcha Shabbaton!  Thank you to family Burstyn who so generously invited the group back to Moshav Mattisyahu, an idyllic setting for what proved to be an extraordinary experience.  Graced with the presence of Rebbetzin Dinah Fink, director of Lechu V’Nelcha, who had flown in from the U.S. to participate, the group took part in a Shabbaton that they will reminisce about long after the winter has drawn to a close.

The Shabbaton, under the devoted tutelage of Mrs. Miriam Marks, was catered and organized by the girls themselves. Following the theme of “Ashirah l’Hashem bechayai,” they planned a Shabbos that was incredible in its every detail and design.    Along with cooking all the food for the Shabbos meals, the girls were divided into groups, with each group responsible for designing table settings and centerpieces correlating to the chosen theme for one of the four seudos that they would be sharing together. The girls proved that they were certainly up to the task, outdoing themselves to create an atmosphere for each meal that was both pleasing to the eye, and intriguing to the mind.

Following a warm welcome by Mrs. Marks, the girls visited Rebbetzin Barzel, in Kiryat Sefer, where they were deeply inspired hearing about her illustrious grandmother, Sima Yehudis Shneider, who cooked for her husband’s yeshiva until she was 80 years of age! They then headed back to the moshav where they davened a moving and uplifting Kabbalas Shabbos, followed by the seudah replete with beautiful zemiros and delicious food.  During the seudah, Mindy Kaufman, a Lechu V’Nelcha participant shared with her friends a beautiful dvar Torah how the Torah and mitzvos are there for people who recognize the beauty in themselves and don’t want to ruin their own neshamah.

After the seudah, they had the privilege to hear an in-depth shiur from Rabbi Zev Leff, Rav of Moshav Mattisyahu about the meaning of real simchah and what this world is really all about.

Mrs. Mark gave a dynamic and powerful workshop where she discussed that nisyonos are tailored to bring us to our greatest potential and experience shliemus and ultimate simchah. The girls shared how they receive and spread simchah and learnt that being able to receive is also an act of giving.

A uniting kumzitz accompanied by oneg Shabbos was the perfect way to end a most amazing evening.

Shabbos morning, after a delicious, home baked kiddush, Rebbetzin Fink shared with the girls a beautifully inspiring shiur on why Hashem made us all different and how we have to know who we are to be able to sing to Hashem our own individual shirah.

The seudah was once again replete with divrei Torah and zemiros, with Rebbetzin Fink giving the girls a taste of the depth of meaning hidden in the zemiros that we regularly sing every Shabbos. During the seudah, Shayna Sussman, one of the LVN participants, shared with her friends a beautiful dvar Torah explaining that Hashem wants us to have a relationship with Him, for us, and if we want to connect to Hashem and have Him treat us in a gentle manner then we need to keep the Torah and mitzvos.

An interactive and thought-provoking workshop was given by Mrs. Shulamis Burstyn where the girls acquired brilliant tools to manage emotions in all situations. They also discussed different skills for good communication that can deepen relationships with others and with oneself.

Shalosh Seudas, the girls had a peak of inspiration as they listened to four of their friends participate in a panel about ”The life of a working girl”. Their friends shared personal struggles and means for growth and it was so heartwarming and moving to hear real life discussions and divrei chizuk from friends in similar situations as themselves.

After Havdalah, the girls had a wonderful finale to their Shabbaton on simchah, with a laughter workshop by Mrs. Yehudis Kotler. Singing to the humorous rhymes and actions the girls were inspired how to bring laughter and happiness in every situation and how a real good laugh does wonders to their whole being. And laugh they definitely did!!  The girls then danced together, trying to grab hold of the special camaraderie that the Shabbos together had created.

A Shabbos such as the one experienced by the girls of LVN in Eretz Yisrael, is one that is overflowing with memories and inspiration, each one a treasure, sure to give the participants much motivation to keep striving, to keep endeavoring, to give nachas to Avinu Shebashamayim. And that is the trademark result of a Lechu V’Nelcha event!

Said one participant, “After spending many hours over Shabbos hearing, sharing and discussing fascinating concepts and topics I can say without a doubt that I am a changed person with a new and deeper understanding. The sweet taste of pure emes became so concrete and applicable as opposed to abstract ideas. There is also so much to learn from each one of the phenomenal girls part of Lechu V’Nelcha.   I truly experienced the feeling of me’ein Olam Haba. As a result of the galus, we are in a world of sheker and confusion and yet I was zoche to receive such clarity on various topics that were on my mind such as self value, gaavah, receiving compliments, specific halachos concerning issues that were on my mind…’’

May we all be zocheh to join together in the very near future to experience another such Shabbos of ruchniyus, b’vias goel tzedek, b’vias hamashiach!