Jul 14, 2008
A Professional Shabbes Goy
A professional shabbes goy!
In the Bible Belt neighborhood of Mattesdorf in Jerusalem, the shabbes goy recently took on official employment. They set him up with a hut in which to spend shabbes. Part of the time he spends in the hut waiting for people to come to him for assistance, and part of the time he patrols the neighborhood to see if people need help.
He is armed with a price list so peope will know how much it costs to turn on the air conditioner, to turn on the lights, to get a ride to the hospital, etc.
The halachos involved in the issue of telling a goy to do things for you are very complex, but the basics are the goy has to be doing it for himself, and you cannot tell him directly - you can only hint to him. So the goy in Mattesdorf has some keywords, depending on what you need done, and with that he will set off to do your "work" for you.
I do not know if you are meant to tell him where the money is so he can take it when he does the "work", or if he extends credit on payment until after Shabbos.
I think every religious neighborhood should have one of these!