by Racheli Segall, current Alisa Flatow International Student
As I make my usual Friday morning phone call to my parents I am excited by the prospect of Shabbat in Hevron. Excitedly, I tell them about the incredible hosts I will have this Shabbat- the Patriarchs and Matriarchs. We arrive in Hevron and it is instantly obvious there is something incredibly special about the community.
We daven at the Carlebach minyan located in the Ma’arah – amongst our Avot and our Imahot – we pray, we sing, we dance. Rav Simcha and his wife Leah Hochbaum warmly invited us to their Shabbat table, its filled zimrot and Torah. In Hevron, the words of the Parsha become alive right before our very eyes.
The presence of Chayalim at every corner, on every street demonstrate the immense sacrifice yet essential role the Jewish community and the Chayalim of Hevron play in preserving its Jewish roots and presence of this holy city.
Shacharit and lunch in the Ma’arah is even more inspiring, knowing that our Imahot and Avot are located in this very place. We are in awe, yet feel a deep connection as they are our ancestors – our family. Seuda Shlishit and Havdalah conclude our experience as we leave with an experience we will never forget.