I had the most unusual phone call. A man called up anonymously, no caller ID, and asked, “Can I speak to a rabbi?”“Yes, sure,” I answered.
“I have an unusual question. I was born a Jew. Both my parents are Jewish. A number of years ago, for whatever reason, I converted out – r’l. I’d like to know can I undo my conversion?”
“Of course,” I responded, explaining that a Jew remains a Jew and can never change his identity. But before going into the details of what he needed to do, I asked him, “What prompted you to call now? Why are you suddenly interested in undoing your conversion?”
He said, “The other night I saw a car driving around and it had a Menorah on top and I can’t explain it, but all of a sudden I had these thoughts and feeling that I must undo the conversion. I went back home, and I googled and started searching for a rabbi until I found your number and here I am.”
I said, “WOW!” I was completely blown away, but the caller didn’t understand what was so remarkable about his story.
He asked me, “Why are you saying WOW!?”
I asked him, “Do you know the story and miracle of Chanukah?”
He answered, “Yes.”
I continued, “Remember how the Jews were searching and searching and finally found a hidden jug of pure oil with the seal of the High Priest? I feel like I am experiencing a modern-day Chanukah miracle right now.”
I explained to him that the pure and holy jug of oil – the pure neshama (soul) of a Jew, with the seal of the Kohen Gadol, was on the line at this very moment.
“You have uncovered your pure, untouchable Jewish soul. That’s why I’m amazed,” I said.
I encouraged him to light the Chanukah Menorah as his first step to reclaiming his Judaism. I also told him about going to the Mikvah and putting on Tefillin. These are beginning steps to reclaiming your heritage.
Totally floored by hearing how a Menorah on top of a car brought a fellow Jew back home, the rabbi added: “We don’t have the slightest clue of the far-reaching effects of the Rebbe’s Mivtzah Chanukah. Just by having a Menorah on top of a car – we have no idea whom it will impress and what it will accomplish. It’s just unbelievable!”
Shared by Rabbi Dovid Flinkenstein – Chabad of Wilmette