Monday, March 11, 2013

Hikind's Ahavas Yisroel Highlighted at Gush Katif Museum Dinner in NY

On March 9, motzei Shabbos, Rabbi Shalom Dov Wolpo, Founder and President of the Gush Katif Museum, arranged a beautiful event with Dr. Joseph Frager and Dr. Paul Brody as Chairmen for the evening and key note speaker Governor Mike Huckabee. Dr. Frager also introduced honoree Assemblyman Dov Hikind.

Gov. Mike Huckabee, keynote speaker at the Gush Katif Museum Dinner, being presented with a Baruch Nachshon painting of Jerusalem, flanked by Rabbi Sholom Dov Wolpo and Dr. Paul Brody. From left, Dr. Joe Frager, Rivka Goldshchmidt, and Assemblyman Dov Hikind; from right, Rabbi David Algaze, Odeleya Jacobs and Helen Freedman.
In a prepared introduction, Dr. Brody noted, “Everyone here tonight is a friend of Gush Katif, but some people go beyond the normal boundaries of friendship. Assemblyman Dov Hikind has remained one these extraordinary friends. His ahavas Yisroel—his appreciation for what the Gush Katif community had accomplished and deep sensitivity for what the residents were facing—led our Assemblyman to organize numerous trips to the community at his own expense.

“In 2005, Dov led three separate Chizuk Missions where he exposed influential Americans to the beautiful life that was created and maintained in Gush Katif. He proudly showed these expeditions the industries that had been created from sand dunes; the rich and rewarding family lives; the unparalleled spirituality; the pride and love of Eretz Yisroel felt by parents and children alike.

“Assemblyman Hikind did not believe that his missions would change the decision by the Israeli government; rather, he only hoped to give the residents of Gush Katif chizuk; he sought to show them that their brothers and sisters in America genuinely cared about them and their tragic plight.

“Assemblyman Hikind spent the final Shabbos before Tisha b’Av—the last Shabbat before the expulsion—in Gush Katif with the residents, sharing their pain and sorrow at the fate that had befallen them. He has told me privately that it was the most memorable Shabbos he's ever experienced.

Dov Hikind remains a friend to Gush Kaitif—to its former residents and to the memory of this once holy and beautiful community.”

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