Reader-submitted: Raffling off a trip to Florida is placing a Michshal in front of me

Recently I received a phone call soliciting a donation for a local organization. Specifically, he asked if I would be interested in purchasing a raffle ticket for a trip to Florida with a “private house and a private pool”.

I politely declined.

I personally don’t feel that it’s appropriate to raffle off such a vacation. I wouldn’t take such a trip if it wasn’t been given to me, so if I would win such a trip, the organization would be placing a נכשל in front of me.

I’m not speaking for anyone else, but personally I don’t feel that my Rosh Yeshiva would be comfortable with me taking such a vacation and I think that the organization should reconsider what they raffle off next time.

Thank you.

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  1. Come on really? If it’s not appropriate for you the aibeshter will protect you, like all true tzadikkim. For everyone else including your Rosh Hayeshiva what is wrong with a vacation to a private house that has a pool.
    Maybe I should move out of my house that is private with a pool as its not appropriate!
    Unless your nichashel is that you suffer from agoraphobia and never leave your home.

  2. Gimme a break! Everything is an issue. Everything is a crisis. Live and let live. If you don’t want to go to Florida, don’t go. Don’t make a frum issue out of it.

  3. the issue that you’re having has been one of my pet peeves for a long time. jewish schools and organizations are so desperate for donations that they will do whatever it takes to get them. instead of convincing people to donate by explaining to them the virtues of that organization or yeshiva they would prefer to wave a “carrot stick” (i.e. florida trip) in front of a potential donor and in that way lure him/her into donating. that’s what “chinese auctions” are all about. ‘we won’t bother telling you all the good things of our yeshiva/organization which would probably bore you anyway. just look at what you can win!’ these mosdos know their clientele so they are experts in knowing what turns them on. that florida trip that you were offered wasn’t targeted for you, per se. follow your instincts and do what you feel is right.

  4. Not sure what the problem is here. Florida has kosher food, minyanim etc. It can be very relaxing to get away for a few days and the fact that there is a private pool means you can enjoy the nice weather without having to leave your daled amos. They are not telling you to go to the beach or anything, what is wrong with getting away for a few days and relaxing?

  5. A lot of times they offer you the tickets to elsewhere which may work for you or they even offer you the value in cash – albeit a little less but still a nice win.

  6. The trip is an incentive for people to donate. If you don’t want to go, for whatever reason, then donate without entering the raffle. Perhaps all prizes should be eliminated? After all, any material prize can be labeled inappropriate for someone somewhere.

  7. That is an interesting way of looking at things I guess. I mean, no one is really forcing you to but the raffle, right? Although I do hear the point that a mosad should try to be a bit more spiritually sensitive to what they raffle off. Ya I know….Private Pool etc blah blah blah…It’s not about going. It’s more about flaunting the idea…Have a safe trip 🙂

  8. I think you really need help,
    If you have so many issues that you can’t control yourself, get help, but like why should this public,
    Everyone has to stop trying to dictate what other people do in their private lives
    Everyone has their own cheshbonis
    Some people have never had a vacation and are about to have a nervous breakdown
    Some people need it for sholim bayis
    And some have family in Florida
    But you really need to get a life sir

  9. Huh?????
    If you feel that way then as you did just decline! What’s it have to do with posting your feeling on here?????????
    If my feeling is that I should not wear jewlery should I post here that no organization should raffel that?????????

  10. Sounds like you really need a vacation. From someone who has been to the kosher villas before, it is the best way and most kosher way to enjoy a much needed break. As was mentioned before, there are 5 shuls within a 2 minute walk.

  11. Can all us on both sides of this issue gently, calmly make our points. A persuasive argument is far more powerful then a bitter or cynical post. Shouldn’t we give thought that our posts are viewed by the public at large who form oppinions about us often by the tone of our posts as much as by the substance. Thank you

  12. While I understand for most being in Florida alone isn’t too much to handle. If he feels it’s too much for him that’s very nice. Most aren’t on his level.
    Why publish this letter?

  13. Come on everybody, give the guy a break. He has a decent point. There are a significant amount of frum yidden that do not think Florida is an appropriate vacation place. Im sure there are some rabbanim that would advise their members of their kehilla to find a different destination to get away to. So why should an organization raffle off something that not EVERYBODY deems appropriate. It shouldnt be hard to find something pareve fr everybody.

  14. “Everyone has to stop trying to dictate what other people do in their private lives”

    “Live and let live”

    Is this Judaism?since when??

    cf. Sanhedrin 103.: ; Shabbos 54:;
    Tamid 28.Tochacha; Ramban Ki Sisa 32:21; Devorim
    27.26:; Rambam Hilchos Teshuva 4:1:;Chinch Mitzva 339
    ;Sha’are Teshuva 3:59;
    Rama Yoreh De’ah 334:48

  15. Last winter, when I was in Miami Beach, it felt like an Aguda Convention.

    There in Miami, all at the very same time, were Rav Aaron Schechter (Chaim Berlin), Rav Don Segal (The Mashgiach), Rav Moshe Wolfson (Torah Vodaas / Emunas Yisroel), Rav Yitzchok Sorotzkin (Mesivta of Lakewood) and Rav Benzion Halbershtam (Bobov)!

    The city is packed with Frum Yidden, Mosdos HaTora, Shuls, Kollelim and Batei Medrashim.

    One can easily find a place to learn, daven, hear a shiur and get Kosher food; all while enjoying the sunshine and pleasant weather.

    I’m not quite sure what the michshal in Miami is. NYC and NJ have plenty of places where a Ben Torah does not belong as well. But one can easily manage to stay away from them. Miami is a big city and is no different. You can spend a week in Miami enjoying the sun and have an uplifting vacation.

    Perhaps you are looking in the wrong places for information on Miami?

    Next time, put in for the raffle… and I hope that you win!

  16. @29 beachboy:

    “famous zug from r yakov kamentsky zl. that there’s alot of yiras shomaim in florida…..whoever went there left it there……”

    Interesting, because I have heard this b’sheim many other Gedolim as well, especially Reb Yoilish of Satmar. But nobody has ever said that they heard if directly from any Gadol or can quote when it was said. So it is likely just a cute vort that was never uttered by a Gadol.

    Satmar Ruv spent time each winter in Miami Beach for many years as a guest of Reb Moishe Berkowitz. The Berkowitz family can relate many nice stories about his stay.

    Reb Ya’akov himself went to visit Miami Beach for many years in the 70’s. He had dinner with Reb Mordcha Schapiro, Rov of Beth Israel Miami Beach on Tuesday and Wednesday night of the week he was there. You can canfirm by asking Reb Ephrain Schapiro (his son) of North Miami Beach’s Shaarei Tefiloh.

  17. You should put all the money you have into buying this raffle. In fact you should start an organization to buy raffles like this so others have less of a chance of winning. Thus saving the Klal from Averios Chamurois.

  18. I grew up in South Beach and many , many Gedolim , Rebbes and holocuast survivors would come visit, I guess I got all their yiras shomayim?

  19. if you don’t like that they are raffling off a ticket to florida tehn don’t announce it to the public because some people don’t care

  20. after reading most of the comments . I wanted to post my personal experience in North Miami Beach . ZERO PRITZUS AT ALL
    You’ll see that this place is a Frum Yiddish neighborhood
    Posted on: 08/28/2017 – By: Yidis
    We were hesitating taking our daughter to rest up after undergoing surgery to Miami which isn’t the best place ברוחניות for a Heimish Williamsburg girl. However, we needed to take her to a warm climate in January so she can walk around and sit outside. And, a place close to a shul and kosher food. So, we were recommended by our good friend that knew about our situation to contact Mr. Weinberger from Florida Kosher Villas to rent a private house in North Miami Beach and it should be the best thing for her ברוחניות & בגשמיות, we took his advice and made the call. The answer was “don’t worry bring her down here you’ll see that this place is a Frum Yiddish neighborhood” I must admit that you were one thousand percent right. We felt like we are in a Heimish Chasidic country in the NY Catskills. Regarding the house with private pool we rented; it was beautiful “spotless “Fresh and clean I wish everyone would go to to North Miami Beach only for vacation reasons and not for רפואה situations; but Florida Kosher Villas is the place to call for a Heimish Chasidishe Vacation.I would like to express my sincere thanks to your family for all your help and service the Florida Kosher Villas has given us thru our entire stay in North Miami Beach.

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