Rabbi Levi Silman, who runs the student department at the Chabad Centre of Cape Town in South Africa, shared the following on social media:
Many years ago, when I was a rabbinic intern, I did a lot of time in South Jersey assisting the local Jewish communities.
At one point, I was in Vineland and staying at the home of Rabbi Yisroel and Nechama Rapaport.
The visit to their home was a wonderful experience, to enjoy the warmth and love that they exuded.
I slept in a guest room and found something there that caught my attention. The room was filled with sports memorabilia. Boxes and bags with tons of cards, equipment, etc.
I was a bit taken aback.
It’s all fine and well to be a sports fan, but can there be a limit? The time, money and effort that must go into this. Has R’ Yisroel nothing better to do?
But then I learned that the rabbi had little or no interest in these things.
What happened was that a member of his community fell on hard times. The rabbi wanted to help but the guy refused to take a handout.
So the good rabbi came up with a scheme that he wanted to buy the guy’s sports memorabilia which the man agreed to. With the money, the guy was able to get back on his feet and feel like a mentch again.
I never forgot those 2 lessons I learned on that day:
1. Don’t be quick to judge.
2. Find ways to help people so that they don’t feel like they are a charity case.
May his memory be for a blessing.
Rabbi Yisroel Rapoport, 55, passed away unexpectedly and suddenly and the world immediately lost a bastion of kindness who stopped at nothing for the sake of another Yid. Please help rally behind his family in this most difficult time and continue his legacy of helping another with a smile on our face at yisroelslegacy.com
This campaign is being overseen by the following Vaad: Rabbi Moshe Herson, Rabbi Mendy Herson, Rabbi Shmuel Dovid Rapoport, Rabbi Avraham Rapoport Rabbi Mendy Mangel and Rabbi Avi Richler.