English French German Greek Hebrew Hindi Italian Portuguese Russian Spanish
Decrease font size Default font size Increase font size

<<Click here to go Back


The Mitzvah In Being A Pen Pal . . Testimonials Page 3

These are letters from different Pen Pals on the outside, which will help you understand more about the rewards of being a Pal to a Jew in prison:

From a recently released prisoner:
It is good to be home. 36 months was a long time. I do want to tell you that I still write to the pen pal  who wrote to me in prison. He helped me keep going. He is a wonderful person...Thank you so much for sending me an inmate's address. I am putting a stamp on the envelope right after I send you this email and I will let you know when I hear back. If I can write to a few other inmates, please let me know.

" I am now ashamed at myself.  Several months ago you had to send me many Emails, answering all of my doubts about writing to a Jewish inmate.  I now have had 4 wonderful letters from Samuel xxxxxx .  He is an interesting person and has enlightened me on topics from pre-Columbian art to zoology...A to Z.  I am ready to write another Jewish inmate ... match me again please."

I just wanted you to know that I DID get a letter from Reuben yesterday (he asked that I NOT call him "Mr. Bxxxxx." - makes him feel old, and that he likes to be called Reuben!) It was 6 handwritten pages long and FULL of information about himself! I was SOooooo excited last night when my husband and I read it together !! I am working on my husband to having his own "Jewish prisoner" to write to..... (-: .... I can't wait to write Reuben back! So again, todah rabah for sending me Reuben !

From a pen pal in Canada :
Shalom, just letting you know that Benjamin's letter arrived today, a wonderful 5 pages, I was in tears after the 2nd page...I feel that I would like one more pen pal, it is so good to help someone that feels abandoned.  Does my heart good.

From a pen pal in Israel :
I am in touch with my lady in jail and we have a nice correspondence going on. I send her pictures and explanations of things here in Israel and she tells me that she shares them with other Jews there. She doesn't have anyone in her family visiting her and she says she is very happy to get my letters. It really makes you appreciate what you have. I talked to my husband about writing to a male prisoner - if you don't have any more women - if it is some young man, under 30,  he wouldn't mind. (someone my children's age) so if you have a young man send us his name. May G-d give you all the health and strength to continue in your important work.

From Asher, a Rabbi in the US :
I will forward your email to our bulletin editor and we'll include the Pen Pal instructions. Meanwhile, I would like to write a letter myself to an inmate. Please send me the information needed, this Mitzvah and obligation is often forgotten... I had best practice what I preach.

An active pen pal in Australia got so excited (and upset) about our difficulty in finding enough pen pals she sent an Email to everyone she knew:
" Hey...My friends....The Aleph Institute are still desperately looking for pen pals for our Jewish prisoners. I myself have 2 pen pals already, both in different parts of the USA . Email me if you want to hear more about them, I'll be happy to share them with you, they are both very very nice and there is  nothing to be afraid of. Please be a light for these people who are living in the dark.  IT DOES MAKE A DIFFERENCE!!! TRUST ME !!! "

From England :
Hello, my name is Abigail and I would like to have Jewish pen pals. My hobbies are religion, languages, animals, charity, volunteering, human rights, books, insect watching, nature, singing, writing... I would like to find especially someone who could help me to improve my Hebrew and Yiddish by writing in these languages with translation to some other languages. I can read in English, Czech, French, German, Italian, Russian, some Spanish, Esperanto and Farsi (Persian). I could possibly take about 8 pen pals, as I am working at home so I have enough time to write...If you don't find anybody speaking Yiddish or Hebrew it doesn't matter. I can write to others as well. Thank you. Have a nice day, bye.

From a pen pal in Arizona :
I'm thinking about participating in your Pen Pal program. I have a unique perspective. Twelve years ago, I was incarcerated for 10 months. I spent four months in county jails and six months in federal prison. At some time during this experience, I somehow got on the Aleph mailing list and continue to receive your publications..... I'd like to discuss being a pen pal of someone middle age with children. Perhaps my in-prison experience, and the spiritual journey I've been on during that time and since,  can help someone else.

From a pen pal in NZ:
I thought I was doing the mitzvah but the tables have been turned and the 2 inmates seem to be loving and caring for me ..... ...we relate so easily on Jewish living - talking about festivals and our daily observances. family matters, and I learn about the USA, and they about NZ.

From Moshe in Ohio:
I was negative to start with but I now have become so positive about life..... he's a pen friend that but for Aleph I would never have met..... we teach each other lots about life experiences, you matched us perfectly.  Do you use a crystal ball ?

From a pen pal in the US :
I found you (Aleph) in the notices on a Temple bulletin - isn't that lucky for me! ...... I've never written before to anyone I didn't know, and I know you'll find this hard to believe but it is easier to write openly to a stranger ........Thank you (Aleph) for doing an important humane service to forgotten people, and for giving me the opportunity to be a part of it.

Everyone can do this Mitzvah with only a postage stamp....Just complete the
"Let Us Match You With A Pen Pal " web page section, and we will get back to you.