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Lifestyle of a Jewish Family with Seventeen Children

Some people worry about having one child because of career or finances. Many people in Europe nowadays think that families with three or four children are big. But, there are much bigger families where their parents lived in difficult times and nevertheless raised a lot of children.

One of examples of such a family is Zushe Greenberg born in a Jewish family with other sixteen siblings. The father of these children was persecuted for his religious beliefs in Communist Russia. There was nothing he could do about it because he was not allowed to leave the country as he was denied an exit visa.

Nevertheless, when he was nineteen he tried to cross the border to Poland for which he was arrested. He was then sentenced to 25 years of hard labour in a Siberian prison camp. Released after seven years because Stalin died, he got married and moved to Israel with his family.

Asked by his children about how he managed to raise so many children without worrying about future he replied: "After all these miracles I should worry about a few pieces of bread? If God gave me the strength to survive all the hardships, surely He could give me the strength to provide the needs of my family."

His approach is based on Judaism according to which having children is a divine blessing for mankind. Every child brings a new flow of blessings. Moreover, every new child does not negatively impact financial and spiritual stability of the family. It is because the whole family benefits from the Divine blessings brought by the child.

Besides, according to Lubavitcher Rebbe, an American Orthodox Jewish rabbi, it is for God to decide about how many children He can look after. He also added that: "He who feeds and sustains the whole world is able to take care of the children, as well as the parents."


So, if he was able to have a happy family having seventeen children why would anyone worry about having just one child?

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