A SPECIAL PRAYER, © Michael Segal
My father is the most unselfish person I know - always thinking of others first before thinking of himself. Perhaps that is why he chose to be a Rabbi, to serve God by helping other people.
Every Christmas, my father, Rabbi Jack Segal, volunteers at a hospital in Houston so that Christian employees can spend Christmas with their loved ones, away from the hospital. One specific Christm as my father was working the telephone switchboard at the hospital, answering basic questions and transferring phone calls. One of the calls my father received that day was from a woman, obviously upset.
"Sir, I understand my nephew was in a terrible car accident this morning. Please tell me how he is."
After the woman gave my father the boy's name, my father checked the computer and said, "Your nephew is listed in critical condition. I'm truly sorry. I hope he'll get better." As soon as my father said, "critical, the woman immediately began to sob and she screamed, "OH MY GOSH! WHAT SHOULD I DO? WHAT CAN I DO?"
Hearing those words, my father, the Rabbi, softly stated, "Prayer might be helpful at this time."
The woman quickly replied, "Yes--oh, yes. But it's been ten years since I've been to a church and I've forgotten how to pray." The woman quickly asked my father, "Sir, do you know how to pray? Could you say a prayer for me while I listen on the phone?"
My father quickly answered her, "Of course, and began saying the ancient prayer for healing in Hebrew, the Mee Shebayroch. At the end of the prayer my father stated, "Amen!"
"Thank you, thank you so much, the woman on the phone replied after hearing my father's "Amen..." However she went on to add, "I truly appreciate your prayer; but, I have one major problem. I did not understand the prayer--since I do not speak Spanish."
My father inwardly chuckled and said, "Ma'am, that was not Spanish. I'm a Rabbi and that prayer was in Hebrew."
The woman sighed heavily a sigh of relief and said, "Hebrew? That's great. That's God's language. Now He won't need a translator!"