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Author:  Renee
E-mail:  not available
Date:  10/26/2003 10:20:00 AM
Subject:  Children
Message:  Thank you Raphael for your very heartfelt post.
What is happening all around us is very very upsetting.

It is easy to hurl the blame at educators who do not properly educate our children, but how can they?

Were they themselves raised in loving, Jewish homes full of Chesed? (you should know a bit about your child's teacher before you entrust your precious little ones into their care).

Did they learn Aleph Beit, Chumash with Rashi and Navi in the proper order so that their Jewish minds and souls would be properly developed in the right time? Or were they plopped down in front of a Gemora at age 8 without the time to develop the proper background or understanding?

How about our homes?
Are we busy running to this meeting and that class instead of being parents to our children?

Are we simcha hopping on Shabbat? (without the proper time to sit at the table in instill Torah into the minds of our children).

We were struggling to name ten families who still sit down to Shabbat lunch, it seems as though everyone we know just grazes from the community kiddushim while their children wander about with their friends doing all sorts of things.

Are our children stuck away in "groups" or with Gentile babysitters on Shabbat instead of sitting in the synagogue with their parents? (in my work with anti missionary organizations I have seen numerous homes where Gentile babysitters invite missionaries into the house to teach to the small children when the parents are reliably in synagogue on Shabbat morning)

Who is giving our children the proper Jewish outlook and derech eretz?

This brings up the topic of Gentile secular studies teachers and babysitters. My old copy of the Kitzur Shulhan Aruh forbids it, for fear that the children might follow in their ways. (and yet it is virtually universal today because many rely on the idea that "today's Gentiles are not idolators").

I have seen so many middle class Gentile women taking menial babysitting jobs in Jewish homes and overqualified Gentile educators taking much lower paying jobs in Jewish schools in order to introduce their foreign ideas to our children, no wonder there is universal doubt in so many young people.

Again in my personal work with anti missionary organizations, we have on numerous occasions traced a FFB child's involvement in a non Jewish organization to a Gentile teacher's "proof that the Torah is mythology", or a Gentile maids scary story of the "war of the end of Days". (these are Bais Yaakov girls and Mesivta boys).

As the child of wealthy parents, I will personally tell you that as a result of three Xtian maids, my siblings and I all know the entire catechism by heart. Had my grandmother not made it her business to be at our home while my mother was away, I wonder where we would be today?

Who is teaching our children "Torah Imecha" if Mommy is out all the time going to "Learn", shop, or working to pay tuition or camp? Are we entrusting the earliest chinuch of our children to people whose cooking we are forbidden to eat for fear of intermarriage????

If our children do not have a solid upbringing from their Jewish parents, we cannot expect underpaid, undertrained teachers in our schools to instill the proper Jewish values in our children.

It is the parents responsibility to give Chinuch to their children (it is said in the Shema). When a parent hires an agent (teacher, Rebbe etc) to fulfill their responsibility of giving Chinuch to their children, it does not remove the primary responsibility of Chinuch from the parents.

I am not saying that the schools are not to blame, but it is important to remember that we are hiring the schools to fulfill our basic responsibilities. If they are failing, we, the parents are the ones who must take responsibility to make the correction.

Forgive, my ranting, I only hope that someone out there will think about it.

Reply:  Every aspect is important. The children who spend 10 hours a day with teachers and in schools where they are not treated properly, are certainly mostly affected by that. Then when they complain to their parents, they're given the "teacher is always right" attitude. That's a big part of it.

On the issue of Christian housekeepers. Although my children are not often left alone with our housekeeper, they do have some opportunities to say things that they shouldn't say. My oldest daughter is fifteen and my son is ten, and then there are two little twin girls 20 months old.
My children are explained their religion and are allowed to ask anything. I don't know who started the issue, either one of my kids or the housekeeper, but after three or four hours of discussions (that I was aware of, but stayed in the background), my children convinced her to renounce the possibility that a human (Jesus) can be a God. Of course, in the morning she went right back to her automatic beliefs, and I told my kids to drop it. They did a great job, and I was proud to see how clear and strong their beliefs were. But on the other hand, you are very right. People don't have a clue what their housekeepers are feeding their kids. It can be very dangerous. I'm always listening, and snooping, and if the kids hear anything, they come & tell me. Christian housekeepers are certainly better than athiest housekeepers or teachers. It's hard to sell a Jesus concept, but it's much easier to push the concept that there is no God at all, so do what you want. Then they learn about evolution in the FRUM schools. I had a teacher in 11th grade in Adelphia Yeshiva, Carl Small, he tought chemistry. He was Jewish and went to "Cheder," but then left the religion. He was an avid athiest. He didn't believe in any God. Then one day the topic of the holocaust came up, and he said "I'll never forgive God for the Holocaust." We had a field day with that. That's one of the most ridiculous misunderstandings in Judaism. Many say that there can't be a God, because of the Holocaust. The Holocaust itself is a clear proof that there is a God. I visited Auschwitz. I learned that there were 100,000 prisoners there being watched by 40 Germans. This is absurd! How can that be possible? How can a massacre to such a magnitude be carried out without being stopped? It defies logic. Then the person will tell you, but God is good and couldn't do this. Well look at the places in the Torah were he describes the punishments that will happen to those who don't follow the Torah. We were a pretty tough crew in those days. Everything is in the good book. Yes, God is good, but in order to understand his ways, you need to study a lot. Not just a quick browse here and there. The thing that people don't understand is that when a person dies "Al Kiddush Hashem," for the sanctity of God's name, like those that died for being Jewish and an overwhelming majority must have been humiliated and brought to a realization that they regretted their sins and did a full Teshuva, there is no higher place in Heaven than their place. The ones that came to Auschwitz, exhausted, hungry, and disoriented from the trip, and then were sent straight to the gas chambers, as sick as it is and as horrible as it was, they were in a daze, and before they knew it they were up in Heaven. No major judgments. No problems. Just large parades of Talmidei Chachamim and Tzaddikim from all generations led by Avraham, Yitzchak, and Yaakov. And everyone else. Parading them to there place in Heaven. With thousands of angels leading the way. When someone dies like this, we are horrified, and we miss them, but they're doing OK. They're saying, "calm down, I'm fine, I'm doing great here." Even the ones that were so far from religion did Teshuva (repentance) at the end, because the character trait of humility was forced on thim, killing all those negative traits that kept them from repentance, from God, wanting to be Goyim (non-Jews). This Holocaust concept has been a recurring process throughout our exile, but we don't get the hint.   Let's go people! Let's take the hint and commit to follow the rules given by God, and the exile will end immediately. It is 100% in our hands.

"Forgive, my ranting, I only hope that someone out there will think about it."


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