Susan Barth
Advocate for Marriage Education in Israel

Your Sacrifice Does NOT Go Unnoticed

Today on Yom Kippur smoke came billowing out from a neighbor’s unit. Without a second thought you spring into action and make the call to the emergency services – the fire department first among them.

Within minutes, two fire trucks appear from the Beit Shemesh Fire Department as well as the Hatzalah  accompanying emergency vehicle. Crisis averted – everyone is okay, back to Yom Kippur. But wait – it is YOM KIPPUR- not just any day for those of us with the luxury of observing the holiday in some fashion (a bit unusual this year at home, but at least in as usual manner as possible). But for the first responders – be that of the fire department or the Hatzalah emergency  service – Yom Kippur takes on a different meaning. It is LIKE any other day – one dedicated to the service of others.

Magen David Adom to the Rescue

And of course let us not forget the activities on Yom Kippur of the Magen David Adom – and the mobilization that once again they had to do to treat the 2,360 people as reported by the Times of Israel story.

Another Yom Kippur Emergency Call

And then another Yom Kippur comes to mind when others had to spring into action – the Yom Kippur war of 1973. How many lives were suddenly upended with the call for reserves that reverberated that famous Yom Kippur? So many stories have come about detailing the heroic actions of the medics and the medical teams who had to mobilize to deal with the injured brought into the field.

The short video named “As Always Hadassah” tells the story of the heroism of the medical teams and soldiers on the field on the front line.

Back to the PRESENT – the battle against Corona

As we continue to fight a war that seems unending in the battle against Corona, it is important to thank those service people who are on the front line of saving lives – the medical teams, the first responders of all stripes. Today on Yom Kippur these responders put aside their observance of Yom Kippur to be available to provide the attention to the latest Corona victims.

For some the biggest decision we had to make (myself included) was where to pray for our Yom Kippur observance – home or in the myriad of outdoor prayer opportunities. But for others such as the Fire Department responders to our billowing smoke – Yom Kippur meant just another day at the “Office”.

Angels of Mercy

It is the dedication of these service providers – these angels of mercy to whom I salute and say thank you. Thank you for allowing those of us who want the peace of mind to observe Yom Kippur – to do so. And to know that if there is g-d forbid a need for the services – that they are only a call away and that someone at the other end will spring into action and be available to deal with any emergency that arises.

A simple thank you for the sacrifice seems insufficient for your ongoing daily commitment to the welfare of the residents of the State of Israel. May you each be blessed with a year of good health and all your prayers and dreams come true in revealed ways.



About the Author
Susan Barth is founder and director of Israeli non profit Together in Happiness/B'Yachad B'Osher, promoting stronger, healthier marriages impacting Israeli society. A Project Management Professional (PMP) and businesswoman from the US, Susan sponsored and chaired the First International Conference on Marriage Education in Israel (attended by over 360 professionals) in Jerusalem in memory of her parents and launched I-PREP, an innovative marriage education curriculum. On November 8, 2017, Together in Happiness co-hosted with MK Yehudah Glick a historic Knesset seminar promoting government support for pre-marriage education