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Rabbi Chaim Coffman
Rabbi Coffman has helped people from all across the spectrum to prepare themselves properly for Orthodox Conversion to Judaism. His students admire his vast knowledge and appreciate his warm, personal attention and endearing sense of humor.
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Welcome to Rabbi Chaim Coffman's Blog!

I would like to thank you for visiting my blog, Beyond Orthodox Conversion to Judaism.

The conversion process can be a lengthy and daunting one to say the least and I want you to know that I am here to help you through it.

I have been teaching newcomers to Judaism for over a decade and over the last few years I have seen that conversion candidates really lack the support and knowledge they need to navigate the conversion process and successfully integrate into the Orthodox Jewish community.

I created my mentorship program in order to help make this whole experience as smooth and as painless as possible! (Can't do much about the growing pains, though ;)

Feel free to get to know me a little through the posts on my blog and visit the mentorship and syllabus page if you are interested in possible joining us.

I sincerely wish you all the best in your search for truth and spiritual growth.

Looking forward to meeting you,
Chaim Coffman

My Rebbe, Rav Moshe Sternbuch

In case you were wondering why I have all of these articles written by Rav Moshe Sternbuch, he is my Rebbe, and one of the gedolei hador (greatest Rabbis of our generation).

Rav Sternbuch fully endorses me and supports my mentorship program.

He is the address for all of my halachic or hashkafic (practical and philosophical) questions that I or my students may have.

The articles are based on his weekly talks on the Torah portion that the Rav gives in Jerusalem in his kollel. As a member of the kollel I get first dibbs on the photocopies and I type them up for my blog so you can all benefit from the Rav's erudition and insight.
Thursday, November 20, 2014

When Tragedy Occurs

Words cannot describe the terrible tragedy that occurred in the Jerusalem neighborhood of Har Nof. I happen to learn in the neighborhood every day down the block from that synagogue and the words "SHOCK" doesn't do it justice.

There is outrage and demand that something must be done to stop all the violence. What is the Jewish perspective on what is going on?

Unfortunately, tragedy is not new to the Jewish people. We have persevered over the millennia through many; the destruction of the two Temples in Jerusalem, the Chimenliki massacres, the Inquisition, the Holocaust...G-d's ways are hidden and we often do not understand what our eyes see.

There are a few things to take away from what has happened. 1) Never has there been an attack in Israel that occurred in a synagogue like this 2) The sheer brutality and lack of concern in the way this attack took place was just horrific.

The problem is that if we know that G-d is good and He alone runs the world, how do we explain what happened? There are no satisfactory answers but we do know that tzdikkim (righteous people) are taken as an atonement for us.

That means when there is a greater decree sometimes G-d has to take the best of our people as an atonement for the sins of the masses. This means that as the Talmud tells us the Jewish people are responsible one for the other, we have to look inward at what we possibly could do better so that these tragedies don't happen in the future.

At the same time, we sometimes get a glimpse in the future of why these things happen. Just like the three teens that were killed over the summer, the result was finding and destroying hundreds of tunnels that could have caused unthinkable damage. It just so happens that these three boys had to be the "sacrifice" for that to be uncovered.

This may add a little comfort for the grieving parents but it shows that nothing happens for no reason. Every bullet has its mark so-to-speak and G-d is the one who ultimately judges and makes it happen.

We with our tiny brains cannot fathom this. We just see things with lack of vision. We see destruction, murder and blood; chaos for no apparent reason. There is a bigger picture that we are not privy too but everything from above is calculated.

G-d runs the world and we have to accept that. He is the true judge. May we know no more sorrow and may He bring Moshiach speedily in our days!