Instant Kiruv

This past Shabbos afternoon, I was asked to speak to a group of college students involved in a phenomenal program for non-religious students.

When I returned from speaking, my six year old daughter was sitting with her friend enjoying their Shabbos party (read: junk). My daughter asked how my speech went (thank G-d, she’s still interested in my life).

I said ” Fine, thanks.”

She then turned to her friend and explained “my father went to speak to people who aren’t frum yet but we want them to be frum”.

Her friend immediately replied: “Nu, did they say yes?”

10 comments on “Instant Kiruv

  1. that was ol’lim – I’ve been making maple syrup on our farm all day and I slipped – whoops!

  2. I think it’s from Psalm (Tehillim) 8:2 – in my King James translation of the Bible it reads “Out of the mouth of babes and sucklings hast Thou ordained strength”.. in the English side of my JPS Tanakh it says “From the mouth of infants and sucklings You have founded strength”… I don’t know the Hebrew well enough but I’m sure someone here does!

    What a lovely story, David, and what great kids.


  3. so, who can tell me a source for “out of the mouths of babes” (Jewish, of course)?


  4. There is a very old minhag that posits that Chumash for children should begin with Vayikra because innocent pure children should begin their learning with those aspects of Torah that also deal with innocence and purity.A child, as opposed to an adult who might be cynical and jaded even about kiruv,would express the thoughts that you mentioned and proudly shepped nachas from.

  5. We can all do our part, either in the workplace, shul, or in a store, just by being eirliche menchen and being a Kiddush H’, a little word of encouragement goes a long way.

  6. That’s gevaldig. Hey, life forces us to take a more sophisticated approach sometimes but we should still try to maintain our emunah and idealism. Sometimes all it takes is one talk to accomplish tremendous things. A true story… there was a boy in Yerushalayim that was a big mathenatical genius. He was from a non-religious family that had left the Soviet Union. One of the Israeli papers did a big write up about him when he was accepted to universtiy at a very young age. A frum English teacher at Chaim Berlin saw the article and decided to write this boy a letter, telling him about yeshiva, how intellectually stimulating it is, and that maybe he should look into it. V’cach haveh…

    When I heard about this from the letter writer, I thought “Why did Hashem bring it about this way? Is there a shortage of kiruv workers in Yerushalayim?” I think we have to realize that a small act can have big ramifications.

    This is all somewhat tangential to David’s post but that is what it made me think.

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