JCC Inspirational Athlete: Rabbi Moshe Gewirtz

by Art Kravitz

It was a sunny spring Friday afternoon. I had some time to do some weight training prior to our normal 4pm spin session. I went out to the field area adjacent to the JCC building to get in a little bit of work.

Sitting at the picnic table there was Rabbi Moshe Gewirtz, surrounded by his students. He was conducting a class outside. I was thrilled, because not only would I now have physical training, but also mental training.

I listened intently to his words, not even keeping track of my rep count.

I was impressed with the manner of teaching being displayed. The students were not distracted by me or any other thing around them. They were following closely the Rabbi’s words and answering his questions as the lesson continued.

I was a little jealous of those students. It has been decades since I had a similar learning experience while a camper at Ramah in the Poconos. I was, however, thankful that these young minds have Rabbi Gewirtz to instill education and values.

One strong focus of the educational goals at The Silver Academy is to nurture the students to not only be well educated, but to become mensches. Listening to Rabbi Gewirtz conduct the class gave me assurance that he is an integral part in achieving this goal. He exemplifies being a Mensch in all aspects of his life. He is a committed human being.

He is committed to educating our children. He is committed to our Faith. He is also committed to the credo, “Healthy mind, healthy body.”

The Rabbi is a regular attendee in our Fitness Center and does not let anything interfere with that commitment. While recovering from surgery, Rabbi Gewirtz wheeled himself in his wheelchair, from his tome to our building to complete his workout. He declined any help other than allowing us to open doors for him, but he considered the wheelchair effort to be part of his workout.  Does the expression, “When life gives you lemons, make lemonade” come to mind?

We are indeed fortunate to have Rabbi Gewirtz as our teacher, friend, and role model.