Oh my God. I don’t appreciate the Kollel

My friend pointed out something very disturbing to me. Especially disturbing because it was also about me.

Almost every Friday night of the year, our amazing local organization the Kollel hosts Friday night dinner. It’s the whole deal, over there. A beautiful meal, dvar Torah and good times.

But how many of us actually appreciate this unbelievable service? I mean, really appreciate it.

Sadly, I think most of us don’t. You know what my measurement is? My friend pointed out that almost no one ever gets up to help.

Oh. my. God. We totally think this whole thing is just coming to us! I am sure that some of the attendants donate to the Kollel, hopefully regularly or as much as their pockets allow, but when you get something you really appreciate, you don’t just sit there and take it. You have a feeling of owing something back.

I’m so happy that at least I can have a bit of a clearer conscience because it just so happens that last week I served dessert (it was fun too, by the way). But, um, it was my first time. My FIRST time and I’ve been going to the Kollel regularly since I arrived in Vancouver around 2.5 years ago.

I’m so embarrassed but I’m writing this because we must change! I really think my friend is right that it might be a beautiful experiment for the Kollel to just not serve dinner for a couple of weeks. Because guess what. They don’t have to.

The Kollel is a place where all Jews are so welcome. No one ever ever EVER makes you feel uncomfortable about money – I’ve never been asked for a donation, EVER – and it’s probably the most effective social place for Jews – at least young Jews – in town.

Please, lets work on this, people.


12 thoughts on “Oh my God. I don’t appreciate the Kollel

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  1. SO true. we often take the most giving elements in our lives for granted. kollel’s wonderful and its true- there are lots of donors we don’t know about that fund all the important things they do that enhance our lives.
    you nailed it.

  2. Thanks Danya! I really hope I am able to change this about myself. All this time I thought I was appreciating the Kollel. I always said so and I told people how amazing it is, etc., but I’m not sure I’ve been truly appreciating it, or at least not all of it.

  3. I can’t believe it dee! you know how much work goes into having guests. And to have some many week after week.

    Kol Hakavod for being so honest about this! I’m sure that they really appreciate the help.

  4. Thanks Tsip. I know, it’s not good. But I hope people will read this and choose to change if they see themselves in it too.

    Speaking of guilt, read my latest post on blog midrash about guilt. :)

    K, must sleep. Oy.

  5. Funny. I always felt the same way. And I volunteered to maintain their website, helped set up tables from time to time. And yet, I knew I could do more. Much more.

  6. Tsip, no prob. : ) Avrum, unbelievably, I haven’t really been conscious enough about this until now! It’s good my friend said something. He’s one of those people that helps all the time at the Kollel which makes us other people feel OK with sitting and doing close to nothing all the time. I’m glad he pointed this out to me!

  7. Nice post. The Kollel really is something very special and you are right that we need to take time to acknowledge it and help out, as well. Kudos to both you and the Kollel!

  8. I think it is an age related thing. People your age all seem to react that way. I am in the 50+ age group. The one time I was at Kollel dinner, I arrived early and helped make the salad. See a major difference? Don’t know why that is, but I’m sure glad you recognize it and have brought it to the attention of your peers. That’s the first step in making a change.

    1. Thanks Debbie for your comment. Yeah, see I realized with this realization that we really DO think it’s coming to us! Not good. btw, at the same time, I got an invite to join a group against having to pay for facebook. It said something like, “We will not pay for fb! We will stop using it.” And I was thinking, “Do you not realize that it’s unbelievable that we use all these free services online?!” I didn’t join because, though of course I don’t want to pay for fb, and I might stop using it if I do have to, it just seemed like chutzpa. I dunno, maybe it’s different.

      Shabbat Shalom!

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