10 Shabbaton Lessons to Remember for Life

5 years ago Hannah Butcher 0

Last week, I participated in my final International Shabbaton as a CTeener. My favorite part of each Shabbaton has always been the Shabbat lectures, which include intimate, enriching, and spiritual discussions with rabbis and rebbetzins from across the nation. This year, in order to ensure that I made the most of my last Shabbaton, I participated in as many lectures as I possibly could. I took the most impactful lessons from each lecture I attended and compiled them into a brief, need-to-know list. Here is my recap!


  • True Jewish pride means to warm others before yourself. Many people act as cloaks, meaning that they only strive to warm themselves. Their own spiritual growth is the only thing that matters. However, Jews should be like Abraham– a roaring fireplace in a room, warming everyone within it.

-Rabbi Shais Taub

  • There is a difference between shame and guilt. Guilt is healthy. Shame is not. For example, a guilty thought would sound like, “What I did was a terrible thing.” A shameful thought, on the other hand, would sound like “I am a terrible person.” Shame is personally penetrating and causes you to falsely label yourself.
  • An incorrect order of personal priorities is the reason behind stress and unhappiness. In today’s society, we tend to make superficial things like social media, social status, and appearance our priorities. However, if G-d is your priority, you are bound to be happy and stress-free.
  • “Don’t marry what you love. Love what you marry.” In other words, don’t make what you love important in your life. Instead, love what you make important.
  • Other religions, like Christianity, ask what G-d can do for you (salvation). Judaism, on the other hand, asks what you can do for G-d (such as mitzvot).
  • There is a difference between the terms “Jewish” and “Jewishness.” A Jewishness lifestyle is one that strives to be G-dly– it can be what non-Jewish people strive to achieve. A Jewish lifestyle, though, is a chosen lifestyle. It is one all Jews are born with.

– Rabbi Zalman Marcus

  • Marriage is the joining of two souls into one.
  • A Jewish marriage is the joining of three entities: man, woman, and G-d.

– Rabbi Ed and Rebbetzin Bracha Leibowitz

  • For women, it is an ultimate mitzvah to visit the mikvah before marriage.

– Rebbetzin Leah Rosenfeld

  • Jewish teens are not the leaders of tomorrow. We are the leaders of today.

– Rabbi Moshe Kotlarsky

The Lake Worth chapter in front of 770.

Special thanks to all rabbis and rebbetzins who spoke to us during the 2018 Shabbaton. I know that we all absorbed as much of the lessons as we possibly could, myself included.

See you next year in New York as a chaperone!