Thursday, January 22, 2009

Thank You Rofeh Cholim Cancer Society

I am currently visiting my daughter Tovi and her family in St. Louis . Tovi is Reuven’s mother. Reuven and his father Rabbi Neil Kirshner have just returned (yesterday) from a trip to New York to attend a fundraising banquet. It was for an organization that helps people with serious illnesses deal with the attendant financial problems.

Cancer treatment is not cheap. And sometimes even good health insurance does not cover everything. That, among other things is where this organization comes in.

Last Tuesday night Reuven and his father were in attendance at their banquet which featured among other rabbinic leaders Rav Matisyahu Salomon and Rabbi Yaakov Perlow. At one point in the gathering one of their leaders got up and spoke specifically about Reuven while an in house video camera focused on him projecting his image onto a big screen. He suggested that every one get up and say Tehilim for Reuven at that moment. There were perhaps a thousand people there.

After that my son in law thanked everyone for saying Tehilim - and so did Reuven. It is all in a video located at – along with a more detailed account of the event.

When my daughter called me and told me about this just before I left for St. Louis - it brought tears to my eyes. Apparently it affected everyone at that dinner the same way.

I wish to also thank and Vos Iz Neias for their articles on this event.

Reuven is about the happiest and most well adjusted 5 year old I have ever seen. You would never know he has cancer. He is not symptomatic. I hope and pray that he has a long and fulfilling life of just such happiness.

That will require heavenly intervention from the true Rofeh Cholim to accomplish.

So far doctors have been unable to eradicate the cancer form his system. Although our family profusely thank them for all their continuing efforts - as well the many tens of thousands of people who are praying and saying Tehilim for him - they are still needed more than ever. Please do not stop. We need to keep doing our Hishtadlus – both physically and spiritually.

Thankfully his cancer has not spread beyond his lungs. But two difficult chemotherapies and one clinical trial later those tumors have kept coming back. He is scheduled to undergo another series of chemotherapy treatments in couple of weeks. Only God knows what lies ahead for Reuven - or for any of us!

I again want to thank everyone for their prayers and good wishes. The last words of the Bracha of Asher Yatzar are: Baruch Atah HaShem Rofeh Kol Basar U’Mafleh La’asos. Blessed are You O God, healer of all flesh - and doer of wonders. Please keep Reuven in mind.