December 31, 2018 By Miriam Hirsch

Chanukah, as Experienced by Elisheva

On a quiet street in the disheveled neighborhood of Bnei Braq, only one window is menorah-less. That’s the home of Elisheva Pomerantz, an orphaned 8 year old girl who is still waiting for her father to return after his long day working at the local seforim shop. Elisheva sits at the window, alone, lonely. Her tummy grumbles at the smell of sufganiyot coming from the apartment next door.

She feels sorry that Abba will come home soon and there will be no sign of Chanukah. She decides to prepare some dinner for the two of them. She rummages through the cabinets, the fridge, the drawer, but all she finds is a can of tomato sauce and some traveling candles.

The tears begin to trickle down her face. It’s too much sadness to bear. It’s too much responsibility to shoulder. It’s too lonely to walk this journey. But then she hears Abba calling out. His voice sounds happy. Stronger somewhat. Abba burst through the door, his hands filled with Chanukah goodness. Candles, sufganiyot, groceries and even some ice cream for dessert. Elisheva cannot believe her eyes. The entire home seems flooded with light, her entire heart is filled with joy. She begins to set the table, making pretty decorations with the napkins and laying out the Chanukah treats.

Elisheva’s life just changed because her father received an Oneg Shabbos V’Yom Tov check.