The first time I met R’ Schwab was in Connecticut at his son-in-law’s summer kiruv program. I was newly religious and 25 years old. It was Shabbos and I was invited to the head table where R’ Schwab sat to my left. I had no clue who he was. When I sat down, he turned to me and greeted me. I don’t even recall what he said, if it was simply gut Shabbos, a term I might not have recognized at the time, or something else. People say hello for all kinds of reasons, sometimes to be friendly, sometimes because it’s customary, sometimes to sell you something. And very often they don’t greet you at all or they do it half-hearted. This greeting seemed to come with complete focus, with complete sincerity, to come as if because I were an important person, as if he could not possibly not greet me because after all I was so important. Here I was a kid really. And there he was a distinguished old man, likely a rabbi, but I had a significance to him. I remember feeling so utterly respected. He had turned his body, in a wheelchair, to face me and his greeting was accompanied by a nod. I have never forgotten it. It fills me with a feeling of my own b’ztelem elokim to this day. During the meal we chatted a bit and I asked him a few questions and shared a few of my thoughts and he was so utterly focused on me as he talked to me and so appreciative of my words.
Shiurim on Melachim II