RCC Hosts Mashgiach Workshop with Rabbi Yosef Eisen
The RCC recently hosted a major workshop on techniques for enhancing kashrus for its dedicated mashgichim. On Tuesday, May 8th, over 30 mashgichim joined the RCC Kashrus administrative staff at Adas Torah for an evening with Rabbi Yosef Eisen. Rabbi Eisen, Rabbinic Administrator of the Vaad Hakashrus of the Five Towns, is renowned for his expertise and leadership in community kashrus.
Rabbi Eisen encouraged the mashgichim to recognize their singular importance and responsibility. A mashgiach is very much like a kohein who is both a shaliach of Hashem and a shaliach of the people. He has a dual role of acting for the community interest while protecting Hashem’s halachah and guidelines. Taking the comparison a step further, Rabbi Eisen stressed that “A mashgiach is also kadosh just like the kohanim, and it is therefore vital that a mashgiach know his kochos, as well as responsibilities.”
He also stressed the importance of combining both humility and strength. The baalei mussar say that in one pocket one needs to have “Bishvili nivrei olam – the world was created just for me,” and in the other pocket ”Ani afar v’efer – I am only dust and ash.” Rabbi Eisen explained that a mashgiach cannot always be an anav, a humble person. Sometimes he needs to express himself with backbone and a sense of ownership. Practically speaking, a mashgiach must learn to strike the perfect balance with a simple formula: “B’mo’ach, v’lo b’cho’ach – With the brain, not with force.” It is essential to be firm, but you win by being smart.
The evening closed with words from Rabbi Yakov Vann, Director of Kashrus Services for the RCC. Rabbi Vann thanked the mashgichim for their hard work and expressed hakaras hatov to those mashgichim who had gone above and beyond for the sake of community kashrus.
The feedback from mashgichim was superb. One attendee stated, “It meant a lot to me that after many years of working as a mashgiach, my role was identified with great importance.” Another long-time mashgiach added that “seeing many of our fellow mashgichim gathering together reminds me of how important all of our roles really are, no matter where we are working; a hotel, restaurant, catering or small business.”