Through her hundreds of daily visitors, Rebbetzin Batsheva Kanievsky raised and distributed millions of dollars, discreetly and without fanfare, to help widows and orphans in need across Israel. The Ner Echad movement, created to inspire unity among Jewish women worldwide, carries on her illustrious legacy.
The late Rebbetzin Batsheva Kanievsky, who passed away in October 2011 at the age of 79, continues to be an inspiration to Jewish women around the world even after her demise. Ner Echad (Hebrew for “One Light”), a pioneering global movement to unite Jewish women around the world, is a testament to her spiritual greatness and vision.
A native of B’nei Brak, an orthodox Tel Aviv suburb, Rebbitzen Kanievsky radiated love, comfort and inspiration to each and every woman who came to see her, regardless of background, affiliation or status. Through her hundreds of daily visitors, she also raised and distributed millions of dollars, discreetly and without fanfare, to help widows and orphans in need across Israel. Ner Echad was created to carry on her illustrious legacy.
How It Works
Every Friday before sunset, Ner Echad members in Israel and around the world welcome Shabbat together as part of one massive group. They light candles while simultaneously praying for family, friends, and each other, and contributing one dollar in unison to the Batsheva Kanievksy Widow and Children Fund.
Each week, members receive a weekly notification of candle-lighting time in their local area and a particular member’s name to have in mind when lighting Shabbat candles as well as praying for the reason specified. Ner Echad members span the gamut, from women to whom candle-lighting is one of the only mitzvot (Torah commandments) they perform to ultra-Orthodox and Hasidic – and everything in between. Yet all of these women have each another in mind each week, connecting them all at a heightened spiritual moment.
Members automatically donate a dollar a week in honor of Shabbat. All these dollars from around the world are collected at the exact same moment, at candle-lighting time in Jerusalem – the spiritual center of the world—making it one tremendous united act of charity. The dollars go 100% exclusively to the Batsheva Kanievsky Widow and Children’s Fund, overseen by the Kanievsky family, and are distributed to the poor across Israel. Through these seemingly minute individual donations of a dollar a week, Ner Echad has raised $76,488 in the 13 months since its launch.
Lighting Up the World
The spiritual strength of performing these mitzvot in unison by thousands of women around the world is an extraordinary source of blessing to all of us. Members take pleasure in being a part of something global; it’s inspiring, and it’s powerful.
Ner Echad spreads solely through a grassroots approach. Women tell their friends and family, speakers talk about it in their lectures, synagogues put it into their bulletins… everyone tries to foster Jewish unity in any way they can.
Ner Echad is grounded in the fundamental philosophy taught by our Sages, “There is no (spiritual) comparison between an individual doing a good deed alone and a group doing a good deed together!”
By: Ner Echad Staff