The Shluchim Exchange is an online forum where Chabad emissaries share experiences and help each other when needed. Last week, after the holiday of Shavuot, Rabbi Sholom Leverton from West Windsor, New Jersey, shared the following story:

Before the holiday Rabbi Leverton had called a number of Jews in his area, inviting them to attend services Shavuot morning and hear the reading of the Ten Commandments. One of them, “Dr. Fischer,” had firmly declined. “I'm in a large medical center,” he explained, “It’s too hard to take off time in the middle of the week, even just a few hours.”

So on Shavuot morning, the rabbi was shocked to see Dr. Fischer walk into the synagogue in time for the Torah reading. What could have changed his mind?

At the kiddush after the services, the doctor stood up and asked if he could say a few words. “I was driving to the hospital this morning and I saw something I’d never seen before” he said. “Three Chabad young men were walking on the side of the highway.

“I stopped and asked them what they were doing there. Surely there’s no shul in this area? They explained that they were going to make a minyan at the local jail so that the Jewish inmates could hear the Ten Commandments read from the Torah.”

The doctor paused. "I thought to myself, am I more imprisoned than those prisoners? If they can have a minyan, I can go and pray too! I turned around and came to shul right away—work can wait.”

The post generated many impressed responses. But a few hours later, the story got even more interesting…

Rabbi Avi Richler, the shliach in Mullica Hill, New Jersey, works with the Aleph Institute, an organization that helps Jewish prisoners. He posted the following comment:

"I want to share the other side of the story," he wrote.

"I was involved in assigning those boys to visit that prison. Usually, yeshiva students who come to help out for weekends and holidays stay at the hotel in Fort Dix, a few minutes’ walk from the prison.

“I got a call last Friday that two weeks ago a wall had been erected between the military camp and the prison, and the boys would have to walk out of the base and around to the prison (seven miles each way).

“At the last second I spoke with the associate warden at the prison, and we found another hotel about two-and-a-half miles up the road where they could stay. The only problem was they had to walk on the highway…

“It seems G‑d has a plan for all of this. Perhaps this doctor would never have made it to shul without that fence being built!"