In addition to daily deliveries and pick-ups, Misaskim volunteers had their hands full with other meis mitzvah related services this past week. Misaskim arranged a kosher burial for two meis mitzvaha’s and ensured another meis with a Jewish burial. The organization also welcomed two new sefer torahs to its growing family of sifrei torah.
It all began with a Misaskim volunteer who works as a manager in an assisted living facility in New Jersey. This volunteer alerted Misaskim about a Jewish niftar that was set to be cremated. The niftar did not have Medicare or Medicaid to cover burial expenses and no family member came forward to take responsibility either. Misaskim took upon itself to arrange a kosher burial, using the services provided by the Hebrew Free Burial Society. Misaskim volunteers from New Jersey and New York coordinated the transportation arrangement and brought this meis mitzvah to kevurah.
Later in the week Misaskim ensured a Jewish burial for a nifteres in Georgia. Misaskim was notified about this meis mitzvah from the nifteres’ daughter who is frum and lives in Ohio. The nifteres lived in a small community 50 miles outside of Atlanta and was married to a non-Jew. Her husband opted for a cremation since it was more affordable. When Misaskim and a local Rabbi got in touch with him and offered to take care of the burial for $2,500.00, he thought it was way too expensive. This is because he’s a veteran and was eligible for a free plot. Yet he would still have to pay for the funeral home charges that were a couple of thousand of dollars. The total cost of a cremation would cost him no more than $700.00.
Misaskim volunteers who worked on the case also learned that the nifteres’ mother was buried in Atlanta and that there was a plot available right next to her. The plot had originally been reserved for the nifters’ father. However, her father had passed away in Florida and was buried there.
The husband was offered $1000.00 to release the body. In addition, Misaskim took upon itself to foot the costs of the grave opening and other State charges. The nifteres was brought to kevura shortly thereafter.
Then, a woman from New York called Misaskim’s hotline that her aunt had passed away in Las Vegas and her friends are arranging a cremation for her. In addition, the nifteres’ body was in at the medical examiner’s office and was to undergo an autopsy. First Misaskim representatives worked with the medical examiner’s office to prevent the autopsy. Next arrangements were made with the nifteres’ friends to fly the body to New York for burial as soon as Shabbos was over.
Misaskim is pleased to relate that the week wrapped up on a positive note. Mr. and Mrs. Binyomin Pitterman graciously donated a much needed sefer torah to Misaskim. This sefer torah will be delivered to shiva homes in our communities. It will be the 19th sefer torah to join Misaskim’s family of sifrei torah. In addition, another anonymous donor donated the 20th sefer torah. This sefer torah was donated l’ilui nishmas Rabbi Yitzchok Zirkind A”H. Rabbi Zirkind was a well known talmud chachom who faithfully served the Crown Heights community with his extensive knowledge in halacha until his tragic and sudden passing at the age of 57. Rabbi Zirkind A”H was elected to the Crown Heights Bais Din as well as the executive director of the Vaad Hakashrus. Rabbi Zirkind also served as the bookkeeper for the United Bais Rivka Schools.
Misaskim is honored to have been the recipients of these two sefer torahs. We are confident that the assistance the sefer torahs will provide aveilim will be a great zchus to the donors, the rav A”H and all of Klal Yisroel.
(YWN Desk – NYC)