Medical Procedures on Shabbat

I’ve been discussing with Jewish colleagues the traditional view of medical emergencies vis-à-vis the Sabbath, and which takes precedence according to traditional sources. I realize it’s not in the purview of this column to do an exhaustive analysis of this topic, but perhaps you could give a rule of thumb.

Shabbos Nachamu

Can you please explain the meaning of Shabbat Nachamu? I heard in a class that there are three weeks of Haftara portions leading up to the day of Tisha B’av and then seven weeks of portions of comforting, starting with Nachamu. Why would there be so many more weeks of comforting, and how could we be comforted immediately after the destruction of our people? Could you please provide some explanation or meaning to this period; it would be appreciated!


I have enjoyed having Shabbat lunch by many types of Jews, Ashkenazik, Sefardic, Hassidic, and many variations of the above. One thing I have seen in common, despite many variations of customs, is Cholent. How did it become so widespread that Jews of heralding from myriad countries all decided to eat hot stew on Shabbat morning? Why is it not eaten on Friday night as well?