Thursday, July 31, 2008

N'Shei Chabad 9 Days Event

Documentary on Yeshivas Menachem Mendel Lubavitch of Monsey

Tzemach Tzedek Women's Kiddush-Farbrengen

The Women's Kiddush at Tzemach Tzedek will be held upstairs (with food) in the weekday beis medrash room, directly after davening, under the ongoing guidance of Rabbi Markowitz. Food will also be available downstairs for women who prefer to remain there.

This week, Parshas Masei, the guest speaker at the Kiddush will be Rabbi Yeruchem Cohen, who recently returned from Eretz Yisrael where he earned Semicha!

Women are also encouraged to share stories and words of inspiration at the kiddush.

Note: Volunteers are needed to help set up the women's kiddush immediately after davening. Also, women are asked not to congregate in the men's lobby while the kiddush is being set up. Thank you for your cooperation.

Mazel Tov Cohens!

Mazel tov to Rabbi Yeruchem Cohen on receiving semicha!

Levaya Today

Boruch Dayan HaEmes
We are deeply saddened to inform you of the passing of the mother of Rabbi Ben-Tzion Saloff.

The levaya will be held today, Thursday, at 5:00 PM at the Sons of Israel cemetery on Brick Church Road.

Shiva will take place at the Saloff home, 36 Park Avenue in South Monsey.

Shacharis: 7:00 AM
Mincha: 8:00 PM
Maariv: 8:45 PM

Hamokom Yenachem eschem Besoch Shaar Avaylay Tzion VeYerushalayim.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Mazel Tov Rappoports!

Mazal tov to Yechiel and Yocheved Rappoport on the birth of a baby girl!

Office Space for Rent

Office space for rent in Pomona. Large airy office on Route 202, close to Palisades Parkway. Available immediately. Quiet environment conducive to productivity. For more information call Mendi at 845-222-6323.

Monday, July 28, 2008

Farbrengen In Honor of Rabbi Wichnin's Yarzeit

There will be a farbrengen at K'hal Tzemach Tzedek this Tuesday night, July 29, following Maariv, which is at 9:30 PM, in honor of the Yarzeit of Rabbi Dovid Wichnin A"H, the founding Rav of K'hal Tzemach Tzedek Lubavitch of Monsey. All are encouraged to participate.

Community Sefer Torah Update

Lost Tallis

My new Lubavitch tallis was mistakenly taken 3 weeks ago from the top of the right hand shelf in the coat area of Tzemach Tzedek. It is a very large, with initials in the silk corner “mem resh” and very fine tzitzis. If you have it please call Moshe Reitman at 917-301-5537.

Yeshivas Menachem Mendel Building Update

Yeshivas Menachem Mendel Lubavitch of Monsey took another step in realizing its dream of building its new facility on Remsen Avenue in Monsey.
Today the Yeshiva met with Ramapo Town Supervisor Christopher St. Lawrence, Director of the Building's Department Alan Simon and other Town officials to discuss the 31,000 square foot facility. In early August, the Yeshiva will formally present its project for approval to the first of three Town committees.

Special thanks to Tzirel Friedman for assisting the Yeshiva in facilitating these meetings.

Friday, July 25, 2008

Mazel Tov Susskinds!

Mazel tov to Ari and Deenie Susskind on the birth of a baby boy! Mazel tov to the grandparents Dr. Yisroel and Nava Susskind!

The shalom zachor will take place tonight at the Susskind home, 201 West Maple Avenue.

The Bris will I"YH take place this Monday morning, July 28, at 9:30 AM at the Susskind home, 201 West Maple Avenue.

Seeking Pre-School Teacher

Chabad Preschool of the River Towns is looking to hire a pre-school teacher in Dobbs Ferry, NY for the upcoming 2008-2009 school year. We are approximately a 25-minute drive from Monsey. For more information please contact Chevee Hein at 914-693-6100 or 973-216-5943 or

N'Shei Chabad Bookstore Update

Latest arrivals include:

I Go to a Wedding from HaChai Publishing, suitable for pre-schoolers.

Rebbe, Mystic, Leader, Translated by Rabbi Elchonon Lesches. A biography of Reb Leivik, the Rebbe's father.

A Tzadik and His Students by Rabbi Shloma Majeski

Also, siddurim, tzitzis and a large selection of sefarim.

For more information please call Mrs. Abramowitz at 845-558-8249.

Certain Rockland Kosher Meats Now Under the Hashgocha of Rabbi Lesches!

As the Lubavitcher community in Monsey continues to grow the fact that there was a weak supply of quality meat available in Monsey under Lubavitcher hashgacha had become an inconvenience to many.

Therefore, for the benefit of the community, Rabbi Boruch Lesches, the Rav of the Lubavitcher community in Monsey, has worked tirelessly over the last few months to increase the amount of meat that is available locally and is under Lubavitcher hashgacha.

As of Friday, all beef and beef products sold in the Rockland Kosher Supermarket that is in a Rockland Kosher package currently under the supervision of Rabbi Polotcheck are also under Lubavitch hashgacha under the supervision of Rabbi Boruch Lesches. This includes packaged beef, cold cuts and beef cold cuts sold from the deli counter. Excluded are all veal and lamb products, all poultry products and any beef products from a company other than Rockland Kosher.

Rockland Kosher will continue to supply both David Elliot and Montreal Kosher poultry products for the Lubavitcher community.

Reb Mordechai Baruch is available at Rockland Kosher’s meat department to answer any questions.

A tremendous thank you is due to Rabbi Lesches and to the owner of Rockland Kosher, Mr. Pinchas Klein, to the manager of Rockland Kosher, Mr. Weiss, to the butcher of Rockland Kosher, Reb Mordechai Baruch and to Rabbi Naftali Marrus.

3 Weeks Free at Cuts Fitness

Two free 3 week passes to Cuts Fitness for Men (men’s only gym next door to Tuvia's) available for anyone who is serious about using them. They expire on August 20th. If you are interested please call 845-659-2388.

Women's Kiddush at Tzemach Tzedek

A new format for the women's Kiddush at Tzemach Tzedek will be inaugurated this week. Women are invited to partake of Kiddush downstairs as per the usual routine, and after approximately 15 minutes, to gather upstairs in the Ezras Nashim for a special shiur/farbrengen, featuring guest speakers, including Rabbi Zalman Leib Markowitz and Mrs. Aidel Backman. All participants who so desire are also encouraged to share divrei Torah, inspirational stories or other words of wisdom. Looking forward to seeing you there and to sharing ideas about how to make our shul's kiddush comfortable and meaningful for women!

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Helen Hayes Hospital to Open New Square Clinic

By Jane Lerner, The Journal News

NEW SQUARE - The state Department of Health has approved a plan for Helen Hayes Hospital to open an outpatient rehabilitation clinic in the Refuah Health Center, according to state documents.

The new clinic will cost $119,726, according to the state.

Helen Hayes, a state-run rehabilitation center in West Haverstraw, will offer physical and occupational therapy to patients who need those services at the New Square clinic.

"This will offer another option for people to get Helen Hayes-quality therapy at a different location," said Mary Creagh, spokeswoman for the West Haverstraw rehab hospital.

The new clinic is scheduled to open after the first of the year, she said.

It will be staffed by physical therapists and occupational therapists from Helen Hayes. The center will probably hire workers to fill the positions.

Helen Hayes officials will meet with Refuah staff next week to discuss the renovations that will be needed for the new clinic, Creagh said.

The director of Refuah did not respond to a request for comment.

The Refuah Heath Center opened in New Square in 1993. It offers medical and dental care to adults and children.

The center, at 728 N. Main St., primarily serves the area's large Hasidic Jewish population, but also serves "all who wish to avail themselves of the center," its Web site says.

Anyone with a valid prescription will be able to use the new Helen Hayes clinic, Creagh said.

The rehab hospital also has a satellite clinic at Nyack Hospital, which it opened in 2003.

The Nyack Hospital clinic offers occupational therapy, physical therapy and cardiac rehabilitation services.

People who receive outpatient care at the main hospital in West Haverstraw will be offered a choice of getting services there or at the two clinics, Creagh said.

"If they live closer to Nyack or Spring Valley, it might be more convenient for them," she said.

Rehabilitation hospitals nationwide have been under pressure from the federal government to switch their services from inpatient to outpatient.

At Helen Hayes, outpatients visits increased 58 percent in the last fiscal year, while inpatient admissions declined 12 percent.

The Journal News

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Cheder Chabad Building Update

Approximately two years ago members of Monsey Anash generously donated about $115,000for the Cheder to buy a building to house the entire Cheder. Unfortunately, this deal fell through at the last moment.

While some of these funds remain in our restricted building fund account, other funds were used as a down payment to purchase a house and land on Viola Road jointly with Yeshivas Menachem Mendel. After careful review by the Town of Ramapo this property was deemed unsuitable for a school because it was discovered for the first time that the adjoining property contained an underground stream. While the Cheder and Yeshiva still own this property and are seeking to sell it, the house on the property is rented out netting the Cheder about $400 each month (which in today’s market makes this a good investment.)

The Cheder is deeply committed to finding and securing appropriate sites for its Boys and Girls Schools. We are interested in putting together a committee to help us reach this goal. If you know of any appropriate sites or are interested in assisting us in any manner, please email us at

Monday, July 21, 2008

CPR Class

If you are interested in taking a CPR class with certification please contact Mayer Duvid Hanson at

Sunday, July 20, 2008

17th of Tammuz Schedule

The schedule at K'hal Tzemach Tzedek for today, Shiva Asar B'Tammuz, is as follows:

Shacharis 1: 8:00 AM
Shacharis 2: 9:30 AM
Mincha: 8:00 PM
Maariv: 8:55 PM
Fast Ends: 9:03 PM

Friday, July 18, 2008

Boruch Dayan HaEmes - Dr. Yaakov Hayes A"H

We are deeply saddened to inform you of the passing of Dr. Yaakov (Jacob) Hayes A”H, a long time resident of Monsey.

The Levaya will take place this Sunday, July 20, at 1:15 PM at Rabbi Waxman’s shul on Harvest Court (near Mesivta Beis Shraga).

Shiva will be at the Hayes home, 12 Besen Parkway in South Monsey.

Shachris is at 7:30 AM and Mincha is at 8:00 PM and Maariv is at 9:15 PM. If you are able to please help make the minyanim.

The Niftar is survived by Yibadlu Lechaim Tovim, his wife Baila Hayes and his children: Mrs. Raitzel Wenger (Montreal), Rabbi Dovid Hayes (Ottawa) Mr. Yosef Hayes (Monsey / California), Mrs. Yehudis Baitz (Crown Heights), Mr. Avrohom (Avi) Hayes (Flatbush) and Mr. Mendy (Mark) Hayes (Florida).

Hamokom Yenachem eschem Besoch Shaar Avaylay Tzion VeYerushalayim.


This Monday evening, July 21, there will be a conference call at which time profiles of singles that are looking for shidduchim are presented. The call is monitored by representatives from all over the USA and Canada. If you would like provide a profile of a single person that you know please contact Rachel Sabol at or 845-354-4321 before this Sunday night. No names are used.

Also, if anyone is interested in starting a shidduch group, based on the guidelines of the very successful Chicago group, please let me know. This would involve one evening a month to meet and give tzedaka, learn and brainstorm. Please call me for more information.

Yeshivas Menachem Mendel Lubavitch Files Building Plans

This past Wednesday, Yud Gimmel Tammuz, Yeshivas Menachem Mendel Lubavitch of Monsey filed its plans with the Town of Ramapo to build a new building on its Remsen Avenue property. The plans are for a 31,000 square foot Yeshiva, Dormitory, Shul and Mikvah. The plans were designed by architect David Mayerfeld together with local engineer Steve Sparacco.

Cheder Chabad Update - New Girls Principal

In follow up of our memorandum of the 16th of Sivan, we are pleased to announce that Mrs. Chaya Rosenbluh of Monsey has been chosen to be the new Menaheles of Cheder Chabad Girls School.

Mrs. Rosenbluh is a highly acclaimed teacher and program director who has over 15 years of experience teaching in the finest schools, both in the United States and abroad. Her experience includes teaching at Bais Yaakov of Boro Park, Lubavitch Girls School in London, Beis Rivkah in Crown Heights, and last year, as our 7th grade teacher and program director in Cheder Chabad.

She has a Bachelors degree in Education and has completed the necessary tests for New York State Certification.

Mrs. Rosenbluh, a mother of 5 Cheder children, has the experience and know-how to lead a worthy institution such as Cheder Chabad Girls, and will B’ezras Hashem give us the well-established Chabad leadership we need. A daughter of Rabbi and Rebbetzin Hertz of London, England, Mrs. Rosenbluh has long been a sought-after teacher, and we are lucky and privileged to have her on our team.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

New Class at Chabad of New City

Chabad of New City is offering a 3 class series on the July 23, July 30 and August 6 at the Chabad Center, 315 Main Street in New City, from 7:45 to 8:45 PM. The fee is $25. For more information or to enroll please contact
or 845-634-0951.

Shabbos Hosts Needed

As the community continues to grow there are couples and families that would like to spend a Shabbos in Monsey to experience our community. If you would like to join the list of people contacted whenever hosts are needed please email Yisroel Schulman at Please include notes such as the maximum amount of people you can host.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Beis Menachem BBQ

Filmed and produced by Bracha Siklos

Seeking Short Term Rental

If you know of a house or large apartment for a family near Tzemach Tzedek for the months of September or October please contact Zalman.

Amazing Opportunity! All Donations to Cheder Chabad Today and Tomorrow Will Be Tripled!

At last night’s Yud Beis Tammuz Farbrengen Rabbi Lesches spoke at length about the Frierdicker Rebbe’s mesiras nefesh for chinuch for children and asked the community to have similar mesiras nefesh in support of our local Cheder Chabad, which over the summer months is going through a deep financial crisis.

Rabbi Lesches’ remarks motivated community philanthropist Avraham Hayman to offer a two for one financial match for all pledges made to the Cheder on Yud Bais (Tuesday) or Yud Gimmel (Wednesday) Tammuz. Avraham’s offer is valid for all donations to the Cheder of up to $1,000 per family. If you pledge $1,000 your donation becomes $3000; $500 equals $1,500; $100 equals $300 and so forth.

The Cheder really needs the funds in order to complete all of the wonderful enhancements we have planned (i.e., boys moving into the new building; hiring of two full-time principals, etc.).

All donations are tax-deductible and will receive a tax-deductible receipt and all names participating in this campaign will be brought to the Ohel (please include mother’s name of donor).

Please contact the Cheder today or tomorrow with your contribution at 845-356-1213 or

Thanks in advance for responding as generously as you can.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Beis Menachem BBQ

Over 200 men, women and children from the greater Monsey community participated in the K’hal Beis Menachem First Annual BBQ!
Following a delicious buffet of salads and barbequed hotdogs, hamburgers, chicken and steaks, the crowd heard greetings from Rabbi Boruch Lesches, the Rav of K’hal Tzemach Tzedek Lubavitch.

Rabbi Lesches spoke about the unique role that the shul plays and of his strongencouragement to Rabbi Kagan to be the shul’s spiritual leader. The event MC, Rabbi Dov Oliver, who is one of the driving forces behind the shul’s growth in addition to being the director of the Hillel at Rockland Community College, then introduced the Rav of K’hal Beis Menachem, Rabbi Dr. Chaim Dovid Kagan.

Rabbi Kagan gave over a Dvar Torah and introduced the shul Treasurer, Eli Zisman, to present an award to Mr. Louie Phiffer, the shul’s beloved candyman. Reb Louie was presented with a beautiful personalized candyman’s talis bag. And finally, after thunderous yelling of “We want Lipa!” the crowd was treated to more than 90 minutes of beautiful and energetic singing by the world renowned Chassidic singer Lipa Schmeltzer!

Pictures by Mordechai Litzman

New Sefer Torah Sold Out!

In a true testament of the generosity and kavod haTorah of the community all of the parshiyos and kibbudim for the new Monsey community Sefer Torah were sold out in less than 1 week! If you are interested in being made aware should any parshiyos become available please contact A payment form will be posted shortly.

Friday, July 11, 2008

Yud Beis Tammuz Farbrengen

This Monday night, July 14, there will be a farbrengen with Rabbi Lesches at K’hal Tzemach Tzedek in honor of Yud Beis Tammuz. Mincha will be at 8:00 PM followed by the farbrengen and a Siyum HaRambam. All are strongly encouraged to participate!

Nachy Eisenberg - Auto Leasing

Leaseland Auto Leasing and Sales has been serving the Monsey Jewish community for over 17 years with unparalleled customer service. Please call us for all your automotive needs. We offer competitive rates on leasing and financing, courtesy cars, free pick up and drop off, trade- ins and warranties. Please contact Nachy Eisenberg at 845-426-5327 ext. 5 or 2008 Nissan Pathfinder now available at a great price!

Thursday, July 10, 2008

This Shabbos - Machon Chana Yeshivacation Monsey Shabbaton

Machon Chana is offering special activities for women in the Monsey community this Shabbos.

From Gimmel Tammuz to Yud-Beis Tammuz: A Time of Spiritual Growth for Ourselves, Our Families & Our Community

All sessions will take place at K'hal Tzemach Tzedek.

Shabbos Day
12:30 to 1:15 PM - Following the Kiddush downstairs, women are invited to the Ezras Nashim for a Shiur/Farbrengen on the topic of "Maintaining Chassidishkeit in Today's Environment" by Rabbi Kalman Weinfeld, Menahel, Chovevei Torah-Crown Heights

Shabbos Afternoon Workshops
5:30 to 8:00 PM - Shalosh Seudos in the Daily Beis Medrash Room

5:30-6:45 PM (2 concurrent workshops, #1 in Kiddush Room, #2 in Daily Beis Medrash Room)
1. "Instilling a love of Yiddishkeit in young children" by Chaya (Labkowski) Weinfeld, 1st grade teacher, Bnos Menachem
2. "Shidduchim - navigating the system" by Rebbetzin Sara Labkowski, Founder & Director, Machon Chana & Ohr Chana HS & Mrs. Shaindel Blasberg, Shadchan

6:45 to 8:00 PM
1. "BTs" raising 'FFBs'" by Mrs. Shaindel Blasberg
2. "Staying balanced, focused and inspired" by Rebbetzin Sara Labkowski

10:30 PM
Melave Malka for Yeshivacation Women (women in community welcome)in the Kiddush Room
"How Handwriting Reveals Your Soul," Graphology Workshop by Yaakov Rosenthal
Musical selections by Suri Levilov

New Community Sefer Torah Campaign!

For the first time a new Sefer Torah is being written by Anash of the Greater Monsey community! You can see which parshiyos are still available by clicking here. Every family that contributes $1,000 or more will be recognized on the back of the Sefer Torah mantel (cover). To reserve a parsha please contact

Mazel Tov Goldbergs!

Mazel tov to Rabbi Yisroel and Shoshi Goldberg, Shluchim in New City, on the birth of a baby girl! A celebration will take place this Sunday morning, July 13, from 10:30 AM to 12:00 PM, at the Goldberg home, 21F Heritage Drive in New City.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

A Tribute to the Rebbe

Close to 200 people joined together last night at the new JCC campus for A Tribute to the Rebbe organized by the Shluchim of Rockland County.
Rabbi Avremel Kotlarsky, Regional Director of Chabad of Rockland, began the program with warm opening remarks and acknowledged the distinguished dignitaries that were present. Rabbi Chaim Tzvi Ehrenreich, director of the Chabad JEC of Chestnut Ridge, read Perek 20 of Tehilim for the Z’chus of protection of our brethren in Eretz Yisroel. Rabbi Shmuel Zanvel Gancz, director of the Chabad Jewish Center of Suffern, read the letter that Congressman Elliot Engel sent in honor of the event. Rabbi Yisroel Goldberg, director of Community Outreach at Chabad of Rockland, read the proclamation that Assemblyman Ken Zebrowsky sent on of behalf of the New York State Senate in honor of the Rebbe. A short biographical film on the Rebbe’s life was shown as well as the film Challenge to which the audience reacted to tremendously.

The highlight of the evening was the inspiring talk that was delivered by Rabbi Mendel Kaplan, of Chabad of Thornhill, Ontario. Rabbi Kaplan, was able to relate the Rebbe’s way of dealing with the global challenges of today.

Everyone was treated to a delicious buffet dessert. To conclude the evening, Rabbi Naftali Marrus, sang Sheyibone, the song with which the Rebbe would often times conclude his farbrengens.

Kol hakovod to Rabbis Kotlarsky, Goldberg, Ehrenreich and Gancz for a tremendous Kiddush Hashem!

Pictures by Mayer Perline

Cheder Chabad Shacharis Minyan

Cheder Chabad is pleased to announce that we are starting a daily shachris minyan in the upcoming school year at our new location, 4 Widman Court. The minyan will take place Monday through Friday at 7:40 AM (Hodu at 7:50) and on Sunday at 8:10 AM (Hodu 8:20).

Since our school only goes up to 7th grade, we need assistance from the community to make up our minyan. Please contact us at 845-201-0203 or if you are able to join this minyan.

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Weinstein Aufruf

Rabbi and Mrs. Naftoli Weinstein cordially invite you to the Aufruf of their son Sruli which will take place this Shabbos parshas Balak at K’hal Nusach Ari, 485 Viola Road. Shacharis is at 9:30 AM followed by a kiddush and farbrengen.

Lesches Sheva Brachos

Picture by Avraham Hayman

Master Mind

Sunday, July 6, 2008

Mazel Tov Pollocks!

Mazel tov to Reuven and Tzipora Pollock on the birth of a granddaughter born to Avi and Zahava Pollock!

Farbrengen Tonight

Please note the updated schedule:

The Gimmel Tammuz farbrengen for men with Rabbi Lesches will take place tonight at K’hal Tzemach Tzedek. Mincha will be at 8:00 PM followed by the farbrengen.

Details about the writing of a new Sefer Torah by the Anash community of greater Monsey will be announced during the farbrengen.

All are encouraged to participate!

Saturday, July 5, 2008

Hasidim to Mark Schneerson's Death with Rockland Tribute

By Suzan Clarke, The Journal News

Followers of Rabbi Menachem Mendel Schneerson will mark the 14th anniversary of his death Tuesday with a commemorative tribute at JCC Rockland in West Nyack.

The event is a first in Rockland, presented by the three Chabad houses in the county - New City, Chestnut Ridge and Suffern - said Rabbi Chaim Ehrenreich of Chabad in Chestnut Ridge.

The event will feature a video presentation on the life and message of the man known as "the rebbe," as well as a talk by Rabbi Mendel Kaplan, spiritual leader of Chabad at Flamingo in Thornhill, Ontario, Canada.

The event's purpose is to honor the rebbe's legacy and introduce his universal message to the community, Ehrenreich said.

"It's not a congregational event; it's a communitywide event and the reason, one of the reasons, we chose this type of event is because many people don't know about the rebbe, and they think of the rebbe as a Hasidic leader. But we want to introduce people to the idea that the rebbe was not only a Hasidic leader of a Hasidic group, but rather a world Jewish leader," Ehrenreich said. Hundreds of people in Rockland County, he said, had "discovered their Judaism" through a Chabad house.

As a teenager, Ehrenreich frequented Sunday gatherings led by Schneerson. He said thousands of people would ask the rebbe for a moment of his time, either to ask for advice or for a blessing.

"His presence was inspiring. Just to be there with him, your focus changed," he said. "It wasn't just about you, it wasn't just about your own selfish motives. You automatically were transformed or taken to another level where there was a greater picture, a divine perspective ... it was a soul experience."

Key facets of Schneerson's legacy are his remarkable scholarship and his idea that every Jew counts, he said.

Ehrenreich will join thousands of people from around the world Sunday as they visit Schneerson's grave in Queens on the anniversary of his death, according to the Jewish calendar. Prayers will be offered at the grave.

Chabad, a worldwide movement based in Crown Heights, Brooklyn, focuses on educational outreach and inspiring Jews to perform mitzvot as a way to establish a connection with God.

Easily the most famous Hasidic leader of modern times, Schneerson led the Lubavitch movement for 44 years until his death on June 12, 1994. The Jewish calendar is lunar, however, so the anniversary of his death does not always fall on the same date on the Gregorian calendar commonly in use.

He was a deeply charismatic leader and brilliant scholar.

Under his leadership, the movement flourished, with Chabad houses being established worldwide. Lubavitchers work vigorously to bring Jews back into the fold - an effort some other sects of Hasidim frown upon.

Some followers believed Schneerson to be the messiah, and a small group continues to believe he will return in this role.

The name "Lubavitch" refers to a town in Lithuania where the movement was based during the 19th century.

The Journal News

Friday, July 4, 2008

Thoughts for Gimel Tammuz

Posted by Rabbi Simcha Werner

The following is a letter from the Rebbe (Igros Kodesh VI pg. 285) to a Tomim. The Rebbe has faith in us; do not let the Rebbe down!

29 Av, 5712
Brooklyn, NY

Greetings and blessings,

For a person like yourself, it is surely unnecessary to elaborate on the concept explained in many places in Chassidus, and also in works of Mussar: that a divine blessing [“arousal from above”] requires a fit vessel, appropriate effort on man’s part [an “arousal from below”]. It is absolutely obvious that one should not initiate something that runs directly contrary to the “arousal from above” for which one is [requesting and] praying.

[In light of the above,] How shocked was I to see your appearance in the office of the Merkos Le’Inyonei Chinuch, that you labored and compelled your divine soul to remove, Heaven forfend, the “Image of G-d” from your face, by cutting and removing the thirteen fixtures of the beard, which correspond to the thirteen pathways of divine mercy! They are the channels for one’s livelihood, as is explained in the Zohar and in Chassidus in several places. Elaboration upon this is unnecessary, especially for one who hails from the Sephardic community who have held fast to the study of the Zohar for all time. There, no opposition ever existed to it, as did exist in several places in earlier days among the Ashkenazim.

It is difficult and burdensome for me to elaborate upon this. Surely these lines will suffice. I give you the benefit of the doubt that perhaps your intention [in cutting your beard] was as follows: You have seen and contemplated the statement of our Sages that earning one’s livelihood is as difficult as splitting the Red Sea.[1] It, therefore occurred to you that perhaps it is worthwhile to assist the A-lmighty (Who sustains [all creatures] from the eggs of lice until the horns of the wild ox[2]) in His task by causing your outward appearance to resemble the gentiles. This would then make it easier for you to be given a rabbinical position, or the like.

However, even one who is not intelligent will easily understand that this is contrary to simple faith: to suggest that laxity in observance of the mitzvos of the Torah—i.e., distancing oneself from the Source [of life]—will bring the person to be granted a large flow of blessing. You should study in-depth that which is explained concerning [the verse], “[He will bless himself in his heart, saying, ‘Peace will be with me, though I follow the caprices of my heart] adding the watered to the thirsty.”[3]

It is my firm hope that the efforts that my father-in-law, the Rebbe, of blessed memory invested in you as his student and his Chossid will assist you to leave behind the aforementioned mistaken thinking. If the hand of someone else is enticing you [to cut your beard], then explain to him as well that such conduct is contrary not only to divine intellect, but also to human intellect. For every Jew believes that G-d is the Master, even of this physical and coarse world. He and only He is the one to allocate sustenance to a person and his family. Thus, the human effort [“arousal from below”] should also be consistent with this.

From one who awaits good news and blesses you with spiritual and material success, which, for a Jewish man and woman, go hand in hand,

The Rebbe's Signature

PS: Our Nesi’im have elaborated upon [the prohibition of] cutting one’s beard: Tzemach Tzedek, Shu”t Yoreh Dei’ah, 93. Tzemach Tzedek, Chiddushim leMakkos, ch. 3. Piskei Dinim on Yoreh Dei’ah, 181, sec. 2. Derech Mitzvosecha, 2:221b. In the book known as Amudei Arazim of Rabbi Margolis of Yerushalayim, towards the end he compiled the opinions of the later rabbinical authorities, etc., concerning all the above.

[1] Pesachim, 118a.
[2] Shabbos, 107b.
[3] Devorim, 29:18. This is explained in Kuntres U’Ma’ayon, ma’amar 5.

For a comprehensive treatment regarding the cutting and growth of the beard in Jewish law, please see sefer Hadras Ponim Zokein (a new expanded edition recently came out) which is available at all sefarim stores. The following is a quotation from a letter from the Lubavitcher Rebbe regarding this sefer, dated 12 Teves, 5739: "I trust you have seen the Sefer Hadras Ponim Zokon, whose author is a Talmid of the Mirer Yeshiva, which was published recently, with Haskomos by prominent Rabbonim, on the great significance and the must and importance of growing a full beard. The Sefer includes also Teshuvos beruros by Gdolei Yisroel who had been asked for an opinion in this matter".

Yeshivacation Upstate Schedule

Click here for the schedule of classes for the Yeshivacation Upstate program.

Shabbos Erev Gimmel Tammuz at Tzemach Tzedek

As per the custom to get an aliya on the shabbos preceding 3 Tammuz, there will be an extra laining at K’hal Tzemach Tzedek at 8:30 AM, as well as multiple lainings during davening.

Shul Schedules

The davening and shiurim schedules for Beis Menachem and Tzemach Tzedek North have been added to the blog (see below).

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Mazel Tov to Rabbi and Rebbetzin Lesches and Family!

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Mazel Tov Abramowitzs!

Mazel tov to Yitzchok and Yehudis Abramowitz on the birth of a granddaughter born to Naomi and Moshe Naiditch of Jerusalem!


Shusterman Buffet Reception:
Rabbi and Mrs Yisroel Shusterman invite all of our Cheder and Anash friends to the Buffet Reception to greet the new Chosson and Kallah which will take place tonight, Thursday, July 3 at the Tzemach Tzedek Shul, from 7:45 to 10:00 PM. We look forward to greeting you there.

N'shei Chabad Gimmel Tammuz Farbrengen Update:
Due to unforeseen circumstances, the speaker for this evening’s event has been changed. We are fortunate to have Mrs. Nechama Bernstein of Crown Heights joining us. Mrs.Bernstein has been on the lecture circuit throughout the United States as well as a long time educator at Beis Rivkah School. Time and venue remain the same.