FFB Communal Leader Makes it Clear to BTs – “We Don’t Like You”

NJOP has posted Hillel Gross’ Address at the 10th Anniversary of the Lincoln Square Synagogue Beginners Service on Google Video.

It is probably the best FFB address to BTs in Jewish history.

Please visit the NJOP page for more details about this historic event and please view the video below.


 

This was first posted on Beyond BT on August 21, 2006

16 comments on “FFB Communal Leader Makes it Clear to BTs – “We Don’t Like You”

  1. IIRC, R Frand summarized this video in one of his Teshuvah drashos back in the early 90s. I believe it was on a joint appearance with R P Stolper and R B Wein for Kayama in Flatbush after the 1991 Gulf War.
    Then I think it’s in the book (but I forget the title, the cover is headphones around a sefer Torah). I haven’t watched, but the header reminded me immediately. – about BTs giving FFBs a deserved guilty conscience, basically.

  2. Steve said,
    “How many BTs do we know who do observe too many FFBs just going thru the motions of observance without any passion about it?”

    Any such FFBs are too many, but the reality is that people often take the path of least resistance. It’s really the other type, the committed type (FFB or BT), who shuls should be asking to become officers and to host BT dinner guests on Shabbat, etc.

  3. IIRC, R Frand summarized this video in one of his Teshuvah drashos back in the early 90s. I believe it was on a joint appearance with R P Stolper and R B Wein for Kayama in Flatbush after the 1991 Gulf War.

  4. There is a lot of truth to Mr. Gross’s comments. How else can one explain the fact that Messrs. Heilman and Shapiro and some of the audiences that they write for and speak to value pluralism as a far more important value than kiruv? How else can one explain YU’s allowing JSS to deterioriate over the years? How else can we explain a comment of the Bostoner Rebbe to an Agudah convention that when we think of a famous Gemara that contrasts BTs and Tzadikim Gmurim, it is because too many of us think that BTs have a residual “odor” from their pasts? How many BTs do we know who do observe too many FFBs just going thru the motions of observance without any passion about it?

  5. I agree 100% with Mr Gross.

    The majority of experiences I’ve had in suburban Long Island, New Jersey, Westchester & Connecticut mirror almost exactly what he describes.

    I wish more religious-for-a-while Jews would be more like him, with such a sense of clarity & honesty with what’s wrong with mainstream (if there is such a thing) Orthodoxy.

    I don’t believe in being politically correct. The truth must be told.

    Just like I had to take a hard look in the mirror & change my life after I discovered the truth of Hashem, Torah & Mitzvot, perhaps those who have been “religious for a while” should do the same.

  6. I don’t know. Many of my FFB friends who are serious and thoughtful in their avodat Hashem STILL find the twinkly-eyed BT thing irritating. Sometimes even I do.

  7. Ooh, this is so funny…now I’m gettting to the serious part…okay, this part is good, too.

  8. I hope to view/hear this later tonight. From just looking at the title, I believe that this speech is mentioned in the preface to AISHEL, by Dr. Meir Wikler, as it deals with the topic of Hachnosas Orchim, among other things. I remember it being both funny and serious at the same time.

  9. Regarding Chaim’s note #2,

    If nominated as spokesperson, I will not run; if elected I will not serve (apologies to General Sherman).

    I assume Gross actually knows the score, and I hope his audience does, too.

  10. Gross seems to be a smart man, who’s been around the block once or twice. So it’s probably safe to say that he knows that not all FFBs (nor BTs) are created equal.

  11. Really funny, but…

    Gross’ “us”, the FFB’s, come in as many varieties as BT’s do. Many FFB’s are NOT burned out, NOT tired, NOT zooming along on auto-pilot, and DON’T react to BT’s in the ways he says. I’ve met and eaten and davened with enough of them to know.

    So avoid all stereotypes.

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