A letter from Shua about Chassidah, her daughter…
Dear Soreph Gamaliel,
I appreciated your encouraging letter to Shichat-Yah that someone just handed to me a couple of days ago for her. I’m sure she will be so happy to get it. Although she might write herself, I thought about sending you a couple more of her recent letters – one is to the judge of the next higher court where we are appealing the last decision. One to Nechonah. She was the girl who ran away from her foster-family after the separation of her brother Rea (who now lives with Noach in the home of another judge). Anyway, now she lives in an institution all by herself, not too far from here, but only seeing her parents once in two weeks.
Shifchat-Yah lives 2½ hours away from here in a Franciscan convent of nuns with high walls around indeed and a big metal gate that closes automatically.
She is watched (as all the other girls are) at her every step, because the other girls can be suicidal, aggressive, or addicted to drugs – and all of them are taking medications regularly.
This is where my daughter lives; this is what the Jugendamt has replaced her home, Klosterzimmern, with.
As Shifchat-Yah once put it in a letter, “I’m seeing everyday a lot damaged souls and all their hurts. They don’t know how they should continue life. But I’m thankful there is a place, where all those hurts can be taken away…”
She is an amazing person – all she does is think about others: how to write to them, make and send little gifts and notes of appreciation.
Every now and then she gets a chance meanwhile to share with one of the educators and sometimes with the girls about our life – her zeal and conviction must be contagious – it makes people want to come here…it makes up for the attacks and scoffing she also has to endure for the person she is, the conviction she has and traditions she fervently keeps — like wearing her Sus pants, eating clean food (which she has to check and make sure of), not going to church or participating in the religious choir – even not being able to sing in music class or play violin with the violin teachers provided, for they sing only those “Gottesliede”…the religious songs that she simply can not sing.
I never had to tell her this, but she has nothing to do with that other spirit. She was called even before some principle who tried to explain to her why she can’t sing those songs – even though it’s the “same God,” as they try to assure her…
So I copied her our violin books and she goes along with it by herself. When we see here once a week we go for an hour for a walk through the hilly vineyards and talk. Boas gives her every week a little assignment, something to ponder…food for thought!
Maybe sometime I can finish and send the next five pages that I just wrote about Addar, her brother…but I cannot get it together yet, my head is spinning — I just believe with all my heart that in all of this our Father is saving us, He is true to His promises, and He does the miracle to turn our hearts and the hearts of our children. To us that’s the greatest thing – the thing He is doing with us, making us real.
The work He does in our FIRST GENERATION to instill into them the very character and revelation it will take to go into the race…We talk a lot about the banner of the Slain Lamb and how – coming to the reality of it is the transition from the natural to the spiritual – from “playing in the sandbox and hearing the teachings for years” to the “living of it”… It’s so amazing, perplexing, bewildering, crushing, hopeful, incomprehensible – still what we are called for…
I am so so thankful for friends, for our covenanted people, for our cause, our Master, the Body, His Word, His unfathomable Chessed*…in everything I just want to press on to learn to love. Love a lot more. Inspire the next generation. Pray for them. Believe in them. Spur them on. They have to do it. They have to continue. Thank you again for your letter. It comforted me.
Shua, wife of Boas
Read about the Markeli family.
*Chessed is the Hebrew word variously translated “lovingkindness” or “steadfast, covenant love.” It never fails.