Arab Nurse Says Shma Yisrael With Dying Coronavirus Patient Whose Relatives Couldn’t Be With Him


JERUSALEM(VINnews) — Maher Ibrahim is an Arab male nurse serving in the coronavirus department at Afula’s Ha’Emek hospital. Due to his calling, Ibrahim has seen many unusual situations during the course of the pandemic. On Wednesday he was called to the bed of one of the patients in his last moments, Rabbi Shlomo Aharon Glaster, a prominent member of the Chabad community who had been in serious condition for the past three weeks. Maher found out that Rabbi Glasters’ relatives were stuck in heavy traffic due to the storm which Israel has been experiencing over the last few days.

האח מאהר איברהים בעבודתו במחלקה (צילום: המרכז הרפואי העמק)

Maher Ibrahim (Ha’Emek Hospital)

Thinking quickly, Ibrahim took a siddur and began reading Krias Shema with the patient. Maher, a resident of Daburiya near Har Tavor, had studied a course on Judaism in his second degree and realized the importance of saying Shma with a dying person.

Ibrahim told Kikar Hashabat that “Shlomo Aharon was a very dear person, we were attached to him the whole time he was hospitalized with us. He would bless us the whole time, the entire staff.

תוצאת תמונה עבור שלמה אהרן גלסטר

Shlomo Aharon Glaster Z’l

“On his last day, we anticipated the deterioration in his situation and contacted his family so that they would manage to part from him but he continued to deteriorate fast while his family were still on their way north from the center of the country.”

“I have accompanied numerous families in this situation during my years as a nurse and I had a feeling that since his family had yet to arrive, the appropriate thing to do in the last minutes before his passing was to read “Shma Yisrael” and this is what we did.

“When the family arrived, I told the daughter Meirav that ‘I know its important for you that when a person passes away one should say “Shma Yisrael” and therefore we said it during his last moments’ ”

The story aroused a lot of publicity and Prime Minister Netanyahu called up Maher and praised him for his sensitive act towards a dying person.

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