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The Secret for a Good Year

Libi Astaire

For Rebbetzin Zelda Baila Rosenthal a”h, every day was like the Aseres Yemei Teshuvah. A member of the distinguished Scheinberg family, she was an inspiration to all who knew her. Although she did not survive her final battle, the nobility and joy she radiated will long live in the hearts of all who knew her.

Wednesday, October 05, 2011

 “When my mother was sick, she felt as if every day was Aseres Ymei Teshuvah. Every day was an opportunity for renewal and growth. Every day was an opportunity to make Hashem happy.”

I am sitting with Mrs. Chaya Rochel Vatch and her sister Yehudis Rosenthal. We’re in the Jerusalem apartment of their parents, Rav Menachem Rosenthal yblch”t, and Rebbetzin Zelda Baila Rosenthal a”h, who was nifteres this summer. Rebbetzin Rosenthal’s illness was so unexpected and swift that many of us still can’t believe that she won’t be here to wish us a gut yohr, her face glowing with a simchah that was hers alone.

Yet even though she won’t be with us, Rebbetzin Rosenthal still speaks to us through her shiurim, her book Precious Jewels, and the memories she has left behind. And so, during Elul, I asked Rebbetzin Rosenthal’s children if they could share some precious memories.

 

Simchas HaChayim

 

“There was no one like my mother,” says Mrs. Yosefa Carriger, Rebbetzin Rosenthal’s eldest daughter. “No one had so much ahavas Hashem, ahavas Torah, and simchas hachayim.

What exactly does that mean? Although Rebbetzin Rosenthal’s love for Shabbos and Eretz Yisrael was legendary, another excellent opportunity to see those three qualities in action was Yom Tov at the Rosenthal home.

“My mother had a love for all the chagim,” comments Mrs. Vatch. “She would tell us, ‘We are so fortunate to be Yidden and to have the Torah.’ ”

The excitement would start long before the Yom Tov arrived. Rebbetzin Rosenthal would prepare the food in advance and freeze everything, so she could spend Yom Tov, including Chol HaMoed, enjoying her family. “The cooking and cleaning wasn’t a chore,” says Mrs. Vatch. “This is what got my mother ready for Yom Tov. Even the preparations were so exciting.”

 

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