Join The Conversation With Mishpacha's Weekly Newsletter



A Kindness Repaid

Eliezer Shulman

Rav Yechiel Michel Stern, the rav of Jerusalem’s Ezras Torah neighborhood and author of several famous seforim, tells Mishpacha about his miraculous recovery from a serious illness — in the merit of a chesed he did forty-two years ago.

Wednesday, February 02, 2011

A highly potent cocktail of drugs slowly drips from the IV into the back of Rav Yechiel Michel Stern’s right hand. Rav Stern will be spending the next two hours here in a medical clinic near Jerusalem’s Bikur Cholim Hospital, as his doctors administer a regular dose of chemotherapy. But the grueling regimen doesn’t affect his upbeat spirit in the least. “Hodu laHashem, Give thanks to Hashem,” he says as we begin to speak. It’s a refrain I will hear throughout our conversation.

A year ago, before the fifteenth yahrtzeit of Rav Shlomo Zalman Auerbach, ztz”l, I sought to speak with Rav Yechiel Michel Stern, a ben bayis in Rav Shlomo Zalman’s household and nephew by marriage, who authored the biography HaMaor HaGadol on the gadol. But the conversation was short and painful. “I’m very sick. I have to undergo a serious surgery and I’m not sure how it will end. I’m too busy right now for an interview,” he refused me regretfully, but firmly.

I was deeply disappointed. Rav Stern, who has served as the rav of the Ezras Torah neighborhood in Jerusalem for over forty years, is renowned in the Torah world for the seforim he has authored on Torah and halachah. To date, he has published eighty-four such seforim! His works are clear and elucidating, and he brings vivid examples of the cases he describes. The news that he was seriously ill was very troubling for me. Over the subsequent few weeks, I kept tabs on his medical condition through friends and neighbors, who told me he was consulting with senior specialists. With the passage of time, though, the whole matter slipped my mind.

Almost a year went by. Two weeks ago, I needed one of the seforim that he authored and I remembered the Rav’s illness. A friend told me that his condition had improved dramatically. “He experienced a tremendous miracle because of some dream. He promised to publicize what he had been through, but he hasn’t yet found the time for it,” the friend told me. I called Rav Stern. He sounded vibrant, energetic, and very busy.

“Interview?” he queried. “When will I have time?”

“I heard that you promised to publicize the miracle,” I said.

“That’s true,” he said and then immediately instructed me: “Come on Thursday evening to the clinic. I have to spend two hours there for treatment, during which I can tell you the story.”

 

To read the rest of this story, please buy this issue of Mishpacha or sign up for a weekly subscription.

Share this page with a friend. Fill in the information below, and we'll email your friend a link to this page on your behalf.

Your name
Your email address
You friend's name
Your friend's email address
Please type the characters you see in the image into the box provided.
CAPTCHA
Message


MM217
 
Not a Newspaper
Shoshana Friedman A deeper difference between newspapers and magazines
Services in Shards
Rabbi Moshe Grylak “Such a painful, malicious lie!”
The Pittsburgh Protests: All Politics All the Time
Yonoson Rosenblum The old rule — “no enemies on the left” — still applies
Danger: School Crossing
Eytan Kobre The hypocrisy of YAFFED’s assertion is breathtaking
Real Laughter and Real Tears
Rabbi Avrohom Neuberger The two sides of a life lived with emunah
Work/Life Solutions with Eli Langer
Moe Mernick I was proud to be “that guy with the yarmulke”
Is Ktchong! a Mitzvah? When Prayer and Charity Collide
Rabbi Emanuel Feldman These cannot both be done effectively at the same time
An Honest Shidduch
Jacob L. Freedman “Baruch Hashem I’m cured, and this will be my secret”
A Blessing in Disguise
Riki Goldstein “I never thought the song would catch on as it has”
Ishay and Motti Strike a Common Chord
Riki Goldstein Bringing together two worlds of Jewish music
What’s your favorite Motzaei Shabbos niggun?
Riki Goldstein From the holy and separate back to the mundane
Rightfully Mine
Faigy Peritzman Don’t regret the job you didn’t land; it was never yours
Growing Greener Grass
Sarah Chana Radcliffe Nurture your blessings and watch them blossom
My Way or the High Way
Rebbetzin Debbie Greenblatt We know what we want — but do we know what He wants?