CHASSIDISHE STORY ON THE PARSHA
וכל אשר יקרא לו האדם נפש חיה הוא שמו (בראשית ב:יט)R’ Moshe Betzalel Reich z’’l was an ardent Belzer Chassid with a strong connection to the Frierdige Rav, Reb Yissocher Dov Rokeach of Belz zt’’l. It used to take him three weeks to travel from his hometown Kubetech, Hungary, to the city of Belz in Western Ukraine, near the Polish border.
Once, when he handed his kvittel (note with a personal request) to Reb Yissocher Dov zt’’l, the Rebbe told him: “It’s so strenuous for you to travel to Belz every time you have a request or question. Therefore, from today on, each time you seek my advice or want to ask something, even just to share something with me, write it down on paper and place the paper inside a Chumash – and I’ll send you my response and brachos from afar.”
R’ Moshe Betzalel did exactly what his Rebbe advised and merited seeing lots of Bracha and success. After three years, R’ Moshe Betzalel traveled again to see his Rebbe. When he walked into the room of Reb Yissocher Dov of Belz zt’’l, he stood aghast – the Rebbe was listing all the kvittels that R’ Moshe Betzalel had written at home.
At this opportunity, R’ Moshe Betzalel asked the Rebbe to bless him so his children would stay alive, as a few passed away between a half-year-old and eighteen months old. Since his wife was due to give birth shortly, they were very worried about the future of their unborn child.
Reb Yissocher Dov zt’’l counseled R’ Moshe Betzalel to do three things to protect their unborn child.
1. As soon as the child is born, he should wash his hands for ‘netilas yadayim’.
2. He should name the child after an animal, for example, Aryeh, Tzvi, Dov, etc.
3. Right after his birth, he should place an order from a prominent scribe to write tefillin for the child.
Of course, R’ Moshe Betzalel followed Reb Yissocher Dov’s zt’’l advice and named his newborn son Aryeh. Indeed, R’ Aryeh Reich z’’l lived long years, surviving WWII with his tefillin intact.
(As told by a grandchild of R’ Moshe Betzalel, R’ Ben Zion Friedman)
Filed under Parshas Bereishis | The Frierdige Rov