Thursday, January 12, 2006

More Readers respond to Mr. Schick - Where Chabad is Heading

51. Beloved Chabad Rabbis and Rebbetzin
Elisheva - usa
01/10/2006 09:43

The author either has no direct knowledge of Chabad, or has a big case of jealousy. He completely mis-represents what goes on, making up a fiction. What it comes down to is that it is anti-Judaism propaganda.

52. Where is Chabad heading
Tsvi Epstein - USA
01/10/2006 09:46

I do not know what the author has seen, but it sure is different in our neck of the woods. Chabad has been a tremendous asset in our community and works hand-in-hand with the rest of the traditional shuls in the area. Tsvi (Bar Yohai Sephardi Minyan)

53. Where is Chabad heading
Richard Rubinstein - California
01/10/2006 09:47

Mr. Shick, with all due respect, you don't get it. Chabad is supporting out reach to all Jew's regardless of their degree of orthodoxy. The major value here is having a group in Judiasm that embraces all Jew's without endorsing practices which are not consistent with halacha. We have been divided for too long based upon history of orthodox communities rejecting in their syngogues Jew's that did not follow all halacha and the process of Jew's running from orthodox communities to set up conservative and reform groups. Is it not apparant that Chabad is bringing us together under one roof. This is an enormous benefit to the Jewish people and to all of humanity. Your negative remarks about CHABAD are superficial and demonstrate a lack of depth on your part in really understanding Chabad. Richard Rubinstein

54. Levy
Marc - Israel
01/10/2006 09:48

I think Chabads biggest problem is the fact that a seemingly large percentage of its followers seem to be on a path of apparent idol worship. i.e Yechi....etc. Whether or not they condone driving to shul on Shabbat or not the fact that they bring people closer to Judaism on a platform of idolworship is more troubling. The fact that a "baal teshuvah" can adorn a "yechi kippah" before he can even read hebrew properly telss me Chabads priorities are really out of place

55. jealous of chabad
david - australia
01/10/2006 09:49

the teachings of chabad chassidus allow an individual to stand strong in his way of life without feeling threatened by the outside world accepting each soul as if its a family member its somthing a litvak will never understand

56. Chabad, kiruv and the late Rebbe
Gil J. Yashar
01/10/2006 09:53

I am surprised that the author didn't even hint at the Halakhicly problematic (according to the overwhelming majority of Gedolay Ha'Dor and Talmiday Chachomim) belief that the Rebbe is definitely the Moshiach, especially since he has died. It takes away an important argument used to counter Christian missionaries that Jesus couldn't have been the Moshiach since he died and did not bring world peace and redemption. As far as the Chabad's methods of kiruv, they are not so far from methods used by Aish HaTorah, run by the strictest Litvaks -- hospitality, friendship and encouragement to grow in Judaism little by little (Bi'Zmano U'Vi'eeto).

57. Think twice and three times Chabadnikim
Shlomo - Israel
01/10/2006 09:56

In some way the article was quite obvious and tell us what we all know: Chabad is doing a great deal of good, Chabad's "walmart" influence is changing the face of Yiddishkeit, sometimes for the better and sometimes not. What really amazes me and I believe the author did this with intention: there is not ONE mention of the MOST controversial, dangerous, and damaging trends in Chabad, which is the proclamation the the last Lubavitch Rebbe OH"M as the Mashiach. It is greatly to the author's credit that he avoided this topic, or perhaps, the entire article (which does not specify the negative trends in chabad) is actually referring to this? In any case, I left Chabad over the intense and unforgivable (particularly for Chassidim) lunacy over the last Rebbe's potential to be reborn and save the Jewish people AND I also left, since I and many feel that Chabad (due to its success/near-worship of its Rebbe) have succumbed to a classic case of Jewish arrogance...the derek feels superior.

58. The inaccuracues
01/10/2006 09:59

As usual, this attack is chock full of errors, which expose it for what it is. Dershowitz was not the keynote speaker at the banquet. He was invited to address the banquet as one of the lay leaders. The keynote speaker was Rabbi Berel Lazar, Chief Rabbi of Russia. The difference is fundamental. Chabad does not look to someone like Dershowitz for guidance. Guidance comes from the Rebbe, and from those who follow the Rebbe's teachings. However, Chabad does engage people like Dershowitz. Many hundreds of people each year are brought to Shemiras Hatorah through Chabad's shluchim. And, many thousands of people are made to feel that they still have a portion in Elokei Yisroel through Chabad.

59. Hello? Is there anyone out there?
Shlomo - Israel
01/10/2006 10:05

I am amazed, after reading many commentaries (or attacks) on this article...first of all, there is a sense of great denial in the article and the naive can you be...Dershowitz was no is an assimiliated, intermarrying children, supporter of a palestinian terrorist state (therefore explusion of 50,000 more Jews in Israel) and giveway of Chevron and all of Shomron....his views are say Chabad "made a mistake" is delusional...investigate..and you will find the reasons....BUT the true delusion is to avoid the GREAT topic that needs "confrontation"...which is the growing and nearly majority opinion in Chabad that the deceased last Rebbe must be/could be/has to be the Mashiach, which is THE issue of whether Chabad is "acceptable" as a derek. Personally, I feel Chabad should stop looking outward and start reflecting inward and "tighten" the ship...if Messianic Rebbe-ism is acceptable/part of Chabad...then its expansion is a danger to our mesorah.

60. In the Rebbe's own words
Letters of the Rebbe
01/10/2006 10:12

Exerpt from a letter Chanukah 5703: The love which one Jew must feel toward another Jew spurs the heart to great feelings of mercy for those who do not do teshuvah in the present time.

61. intollerance
mica - USA
01/10/2006 10:30

How can we expect others to be tolerant of us and our beliefs if we are intollerant of ourselves.

62. Sinas Chinam
Oihev Yisroel
01/10/2006 10:33

Who needs ant-Semites with such vitriol from a Jew who sits on his tuchas and condemns hundreds of couple who have sacrificed the comforts of immediate family, frum community, kosher markets and mikvas, day schools for their children not to mention a thankless job, where rabbi & rebbetzin are on call 365 days a year, 7 days a week, without compromising one iota of their personal level of observance, so that maybe, one Jew will find his way back home. What a genuine shame at the J post would post such hateful speech.

63. Are you CRAZY???
Janita - Israel
01/10/2006 10:39

Are you crazy? Do you even realize what a significant movement Chabad is and how effective it is in bringing back Jews to Judaism??? I grew up totally assimilated in Canada and did everything that I could do to run away from who I was. After meeting a young Chabad rabbi my life totally changed and I began to embrace Judaism...slowly. What's great about Chabad is that it is so accepting and non-judgemental. Chabad knows that for a Jew to return to Judaism, most people can't jump in with both's baby steps. Chabad just wants you to do what you can and move at your own pace. In my neighbourhood in Toronto, there is a phenomenon of completely secular jews coming back to Judaism, and many becoming Orthodox, because of Chabad. How the writer as a jew can slander a name that is synonymous with bringing people back to G-d and the Torah is completely uncomprehensible. I am now living in Israel, in our Holy Land, and I thank HaShem for bringing Chabad into my life.

64. Sounds like sour grapes
Rachel BenDavid - Israel
01/10/2006 10:39

This entire article is nothing more than sour grapes, and an invitation to loshon hara. Shick's "accusations" are not backed up by concrete examples. If his intention is to "give tochacha" to the Chabad leadership, than this would have been better accomplished by a private letter to the right people. Shame on you, and shame on the JPost for printing this.

65. Subtlies not understood
01/10/2006 10:40

The issues raised in this article clearly went over the heads of its readers. They seem to be totally oblivious to the danger of having a keynote speaker who endorses intermarriage. I think that some soul searching is truely in order here before attacking the wirter of this article ofr having the courage to say what he said.

66. Wrong! Chabad brough me back.
Leon - USA
01/10/2006 10:41

No only me, in my Chabad shul 90% came back. Try that! Any attempt to harm chabad will be defended!

67. Chabad
Harvey Abraham - USA
01/10/2006 10:41

On Shabbat and Holidays my wife and I walk a few blocks to my Tradional Orthodox Schule. During the week we drive to shiurim given by the Chabad Rabbi several towns and miles away from us, much too far to walk. Recently, an injury to my hip prevented me from walking even the few blocks to my Schule, but Iit would not affect my ability to drive. I thought this would justify my DRIVING to Chabad on Shabbat (alone - my wife never would !) and so sort of happily posed this to the Chabad Rabbi. His response was a distinctly negative FROWN. Needless to say, I LIMPED to my local Schule that Shabbat. The Chabad Rabbis we know here teach Torah and Mitzvot and in no way 'cheapen' or lessen commitment to Orthodox Halacha. I am not a Chabadnik, but in my estimation, Chabad and the re-establishment of Israel are the best things to happen for Jewry im 70+ years.

68. Re: Chabad & Shabtai Tzvi
Iris C - Israel
01/10/2006 10:50

Comment #43 was exactly right. This op-ed made some great points, but the biggest problem for the Jewish people with Chabad is the Mashiach business of believing in a dead messiah. I believe well over 50% of Chabad believes this. I have said it over and over: we are going to lose hundreds of thousands if not millions of Jews in 50 years or less to this false Messiah Judaism if we don't head off this problem.

69. Incredible ignorance
Tally Elhyani - Italy
01/10/2006 10:51

Incredibly this man shows a total ignorance of what chabad is all about

70. K
J - Israel
01/10/2006 11:14

Perhaps the recipe for success is not discussing at nauseum the details of how to exclude those who don't conform, or how to get them to tow the party line. In their ability to adapt and be flexible, on the fly, is where Chabad's success lies. Less talk, more action would be a good way for all Jewish organizations to follow

71. Rabbi Jacob Joseph Yeshiva
Shlomo M
01/10/2006 11:19

" In sharp contrast to the present attitude of showing the door to students who do not fully measure up, in the 1940's and 1950's there was greater tolerance and this sense of tolerance has yielded much good fruit over the years." This is a direct quote from Mr. Schick's blog. RJJ has been around for a very long time close to one hundred years. How many students attend this illustrious school? If you had heeded your own words there would be thousands, alas there are less than 100. Why? One who "trembles" while remembering Rabbi Aharon Kotler, as you do, you are obligated to speak against Chabad even when you know that Chabad is doing the right thing. By the way Chabad has reclaimed RJJ alumni. I know of one in particular! He may even be a donor to your school. Check your tephilin and ask for mechila!

72. Marvin is bored
01/10/2006 11:23

Ummm, Mr. Schick, in light of all the turmoil concerning the health of Mr. Sharon, your response is a critisism of Chabad? Interesting where the priorities lie.

73. Words from the heart
Am Yisroel Chai
01/10/2006 11:29

To all of the hard working Chabad Rabbis and Rebbitzens who are too busy bringing Jews back to Judaism and don t have the time to defend their ways, thank you. Thank you for teaching Klal Yisroel with Ahavas Yisroel. Thank you for teaching not preaching. Thank you for being the Lamplighters of Klal Yisroel. Thank you for your absolute selflessness. Thank you for not giving up on Klal Yisroel. May Hashem fulfill your dreams with Kibbutz Nidchei Yisroel Bevias Goel Tzedek.

74. Chabad
Chana - Israel
01/10/2006 11:49

Mas Mr. Schick ever been in a foreign country and needed to find kosher food, a minyan, or help, and not known where to turn? Thousands of Jews have been in these situations -- some in their own hometowns!, needing Jewish counseling or ritual assistance, and not knowing where to turn -- and known that the local "Chabad House" was the place to turn. Tens of thousands of Jews have had some sort of Jewish experience, and been turned on to Judaism on some level, because of Chabadnik's committment to their Rebbe's teachings of "inclusion". Inclusion isn't acceptance. Inclusion means including the Jew as a member of the Jewish community, and hoping that each mitzva that s/he does do will lead to more mitzvot. Chabad would never sanction going against Torah, but they don't condem Jews for mitzvot that they don't do, hoping that that's a way to get them to do more mitzvot. I bet that that outlook has bought more Jews to Judaism that Mr. Schick's!

75. Chabad Chabad?
01/10/2006 11:53

The author of the article is pained with the problem that Chabad, while reaching out to nonobservant Jews, stays as an isolationist and maverick movement within Judaism. Chabadniks only accept their own Torah. The movement spent over 200 in complete isolation, while being next door to some of the greatest Torah giants. Chabadniks never had any regard for other rabbis. Most people writing in defence of Chabad here never had a chance to truely learn the Torah or live it nonChabad. Unfortunately, the only Torah they know is Chabadism with their own Shulchan Aruch. For example, why does Chabad start shaharit at 10 am, after zman tefila? While on a surface it's Jewish, it's a violation. Chabad also misleads many people into believing that some people are holier than others because of some superficial miracles and that the rebbe or his relatives definitely have answers to all the problems in life. Chabad sells only the Chabad Judaism to those who need to really find their own

76. Chabad and ahavat Yisrael
aviva - israel
01/10/2006 12:01

Have you ever tried walking into an orthodox shul, as a non-religious Jew. You don't know what to do, and no-one is there to help you. They just stare. Chabad is different. Jews who go to Chabad go there because Chabad is open and welcoming to every Jew, and they don't feel judged. If they weren't going to Chabad, for sure they wouldn't be going to an orthodox shul. Chabad is doing the outreach that is incumbent on all religious Jews. If you have suggestions for improvement please express them in a more positive way.

77. Excellent Article
Avrahom - Israel
01/10/2006 12:08

As someone who 'came-back' through Chabad, I must say that the author raises excellent points. Chabad does outreach and the Rebbe was a very special person instrumental in transforming Judaism in America. However, since the Rebbe DIED (yes, he was buried about 12 years ago), anything goes. Mickey-Mouse Mechitzas, OU-D at caterings, and goyim getting Aliyah's because the Shaliach doesn't have the Yiras Shamyim to tell the Oleh that he is a goy according to Halacha. All this stems from Avodah Zarah, because the Shelumchim are more afraid of losing the donor (who comes to Shul in his Mercedes, is dressed for the beach, and gets the last Aliyah to the screams of Yasher Koach while afterwards he and his Shicksa greet the Rabbi for Kiddush!). If this is Yiddishkeit, I can do without it. Bottom line, is Chabad wants to keep you ignorant of Mitzvos, because if you learn Shulchan Aruch, you understand that many Sheluchim (not all) are against H-shem and his Torah.

78. I was there
01/10/2006 12:09

I was there at the dinner when Allan D. spoke. Far from endorsing intermarriage as many here said, he actualy spoke about the influence chabad is having on campus fighting intermarriage.

79. To the author
Marc Levy - Israel
01/10/2006 12:29

Mr Schick....kol hakavod !!! You have said in writing what all of us are afraid to say. But if you just could have mentioned THE problem, i.e. the LATE Rebbe and Moshiach. Where are we as Jews going if the biggest "kiruv" movement is bringing people in to a religion of idolotary ? How is this thinking being "a light unto the nations". So in actual fact I see how a movement that spreads this "affirmative Messianism" could very easily use Mr Derschowitz and what he very obviously stands for as a key-note speaker.

80. chabads growth
gary - usa
01/10/2006 12:40

it is really irrelevant what anyone says about chabad action speaks louder than a thousand words they are the only ones which really care about world jewry therefore with time they will become world jewry and none of the jealous and bitter individuals will beable to do anything about it they have woken up way to late this article is an excuse for the selfish and self serving orthodox establishment

81. Constructive critisism isn't "Sinat Chinam"
01/10/2006 12:44

People seem to get defensive without paying attention to the content of the critique,take the critisism and work to correct it,burying your head in the sand isn't doing anyone any good

82. Chabad
Steven Burgeman - USA/Israel
01/10/2006 12:45

The author states that "[f]or all of Chabad's kindnesses, this is not what Judaism is primarily about." On the contrary, kindness is what Judaism is primarily about within the boundaries of Torah and Mitzvot. The author states that "[o]ur religion is about Torah and mitzvot, about obedience and limitations, and about maintaining our laws and traditions today so that they will be transmitted to the next generations." I think everyone is in agreement with the author on these later points; but the difficulty I saw in the article is in the lack of merging the latter with kindness. This seems to be the typical age-old dynamics between Chasidut and Misnagdim. Balance requires a merging of the heart and mind. The strength of Chabad is that it's not threatened by those coming home, but not yet fully observant. It is because it is doing what is right that Chabad is the largest Orthodox Jewish organization today which will ensure the survival of Judaism..

83. re:chabad and shabtai tzvi
steven - usa
01/10/2006 12:53

i wouldnt lecture chabad on losing jews they are the only ones which know how to save jews and whoever tries to destroy them are digging there own grave noone will really listen because everyone knows they have been responsible for judaisms growth in this generation and to deny that is denying reality which schik has so very well done

84. Everlasting Merits
Areyh Labe - South Africa
01/10/2006 12:57

My Zaida once told me a story that when you arrive in Gan Aden after 120 years and Hashem places before you all your merits, one of the most surprising aspects will be the merits you will have gained from those who follow in Hashems ways as a consequence of your deeds and actions. Chabad keep up the wonderful Kiruv work

85. Lashon HaRa
Joe - USA
01/10/2006 13:07

While I understand the author's concern, I worry that mud-slinging empties his arguement of validity. If religious Jews are so worried about who does Kiruv, outreach, and how- then they should get in the game. They also attacked Shlomo Carlebach, and still do, in the most disgraceful manner! Religious Jews should be aware that our exile is a result of baseless hatred between Jews, specifically Lashon HarRa, RA being Ratzon Atzmi, selfishness. Religious Jews must stop being reactive, stop blaming others for their problems, stop being a stereo-type of weak, finger-pointing, complainers. We must be examples of selflessness if we want to inspire others to learn Torah. People who represent Torah, often lack middot and derech eretz, common thoughtful behavior, and allow themselves to feel superior. A Tzaddick, righteous person, is humble, not angry and panicked. We must fix ourselves, each of us!

86. Learn it before you knock it
Danny - Israel
01/10/2006 13:08

The "standard" orthodox have had many years and formal institutions (and money) to provide non-orthodox Jews with a sense of Jewishness. They have alienated the uninitiated and their halachic and political squabbling has made life more difficult and fragmented for their own adherents. Rather than knocking Chabad, Mr. Shick would do well to ask why God has chosen Chabad for success and Mr. Shicks' institutions for failure?

87. Valid concerns but Invalid criticism
Aaron - USA
01/10/2006 13:14

Although the author might have valid concerns (I don't know since I am not an expert in this field) I believe the criticism of lubavitch is wrong. Lubavitch does not condone driving to shul in a car. They condone shul participation but every little step counts. Those same people driving to shul today are likely to learn more in the future and walk instead. In contrast, you can compare this to groups like Satmar who have an attitude of "I dont want that ignoramos in my shul" I would prefer lubavitch any day.

88. Where Chabad is Heading
01/10/2006 13:26

CHaBaD is based on its chassidut. and the purpose of chassidut CHaBaD (which stands for CHochma, Bina, and Daat- the three steps to internalizing wisdom) is about developing a relationship with G-d, (without which keeping His Torah and Mitzvot are much farther from our physical reality.) Now, all Jews are the Chosen People, all sons of the One G-d. Therefore, all Jews should have an equal right- free choice- in becoming aware of their potential to enhance this relationship. So I have two options. Either to solely develop MY relationship with G-d, through living in an environment surrounded by Torah and Mitzvot. OR, to take a global perspective, and do my utmost to enable EVERY JEW to develop that same potential that I strive for. This is your Chabad Shliach. P.S. one who lives with the doctrines of chassidut is called a "chassid." the term "chassid" is sourced in talmudic terminology (and prior), refering to one who goes BEYOND THE LETTER OF THE LAW.

89. Chabad
01/10/2006 13:42

The Para Adumo has a strange contradiction to it. The Kohen who prepares it becomes impure. The man who is impure becomes pure. It's the same with Chabad. They improve those who are far from Judaism and .................... So what's correct? Reb Schach Zatzal.

90. You are acting like arrogant unthankful children
01/10/2006 13:47

It s so sad to see as per usual when people go and knock something that is providing a vital link between a secular life and an orthodox life. It s very easy for all you religious people to sit on your high horse and criticise Chabad s every move when you do nothing to help those that are secular. Like myself who was a secular Jew and was brought back through Chabad, I fail to see how my "form of Judaism" is as easy as the author made it out to be. In fact the life I lead seems to be more demanding than my peers who were brought up religiously in other sects. For once could someone thank Chabad for what they do, which IS A LOT OF GOOD and stop acting like arrogant unthankful children. In every group of every society there is good and not so good. I could write a thesis on disgusting behaviour I have personally witnessed from Bnei Akiva, Aish Hatorah, just to mention a few. On a side note to mark levy. Grow up!! That wasn t what the article was about..

Akiva Goldberg - ISRAEL
01/10/2006 13:48

How could anyone knock Chabad? Finally we are seeing a movement among Ashkenic orthodoxy which mirrors the attitudes of our Sefardic brothers. Just like they all daven in Orthodox shuls regardless of their level of observsnce so should the Ashkenazim. If we were more accepting we probably would have some many Ashkenazim marrying out and assimilating. You want proof? Look at how few Sefardim marry out and assimilate. Chabad b"H is bringing all those people back!

92. With a Grain of Salt
David - New York
01/10/2006 13:51

In our world, every lie has a bit of truth... Although Mr. Schick's conclusions are quite distant from reality, he nevertheless makes a few good points. While it is possible that a numbered few of Chabad emmisaries need to reevaluate their kiruv methods, making sure they are in sync with the cardinal principles of Judaism - the overwhelming majority of Chabad Shluchim function within a strict framework of Torah obervance, while simultaneously stretching out a non-imposing hand to help as many Jews come to Torah observance as possible. Mr. Shick sweeping comments, and blanket statements are therefore highly inappropriate. Chabad has struggled with opponents since the day of its inception, but the help of the One Above, they have triumphed. So will they continue to do in the face of all the Shick's and Bergers. False accusations against Chabad and its legitimate leadership about Shabtai Tzvi and Messianism, are just cynical outbursts of jealousy. Nothing to worry about.

93. Throwing Stones
Adam A. - USA
01/10/2006 13:57

A good friend once told me "no one kept Shabbos because someone threw stones at them" (referring to "religious" Jews in Brooklyn stoning the Jewish kids in line for a movie Friday night). Rather, it is a welcoming attitude that fosters an environment where non-religious Jews want to embrace Torah Judaism. I have been to Chabad centers around the USA and abroad and always encounter the same welcoming, understanding attitude while the shluchim encourage learning and increased performance of mitzvos. Be sure, the Rebbe is smiling down from shamayim on the mitzvos that are done in his name, despite those that would defame him. Hastening the coming of Moshiach, whomever He may be, was the Rebbe's goal, not identifying Him (or Her). The Baal Shem Tov said, "there are 2 kinds of Jews; those that are Torah observant, and those that are not yet Torah observant." Thanks to Chabad, I have moved towards the former.

94. Which Chabad?
Roni - Israel
01/10/2006 14:20

One thing wasn't clearly stated in this article: is the question about the Messianic or the Jewish Chabad?

95. t
Shick-always fighting, you care only for shick!
01/10/2006 14:37

96. Chabad-The most religous peoplw in the world
Bob - Ex partner of Shick
01/10/2006 14:44

Shick you have a tradition of fighting every major Jewish org. it seems like you have never been at a chabad, No Kolel or yeshivish family, will ever reach the level of a the rebbe's emissarys, who have Mesiras Nefesh for Cholov Yisroel Pas Yisroel, and some of their kids will neverknow what milk is till they get to NY, so shick your a just a jeaoulous, typical Misnaged, who can not appreciate the worlds appreciation for true authentic Yiras shomayim and ahavas Yisroel,

97. Shame on Shick, discusting.
Max G. - RJJ Alumni
01/10/2006 14:50

Shick, I just toll RJJ out of my will, and put Chabad instead, not that I know any chabad, but there is no one that cares for you & me, as much as any chabad fellow, Shick you are the wose than Korach!

98. Chabad
Shmuel - usa
01/10/2006 14:53

It is a most interesting article. Several important points, however were left out. Firstly, many Jews if it was not for Chabad would have no attachment whatsoever to Judaism therefoire it serves a very important pupose. Secondly, the Rabbi's of Chabad are top notch in regards to their knowledge of Halacha, prayer, and devotion and anyone feeling otherwise is sorely misinformed. Thirdly, we must not forget that Chabad is a business, and therfore to keep its customers, it can not be overly critical of its participants. If it is it would not have any influence whatsoever in these Jews. Let us not forget that our nature is stiff necked and to blame Chabad for all our woes is ludicrous and inappropriate. Fourthly, the Rebbe gave to each one of us a sense of hope, a promise and and fervent desire to welcome the Mossiach, which depends very much upon each one of our actions. Instead of being hyercritical and overreactive, let us find merit in serving G-d.

99. Chabad
01/10/2006 14:53

I was riased in the Bronx and attended an orthodox shul. In college i strayed from the faith and did not come back until my twin boys were born. At the sametime I was introduced to a Rabbi from Chabad. I immediately responded to his non judgemental attitutde. i soon joined and served 5 years on the Executive Committee of the Shul. My tiwns had their brice and Bar Mitzvah at Chabad and I have celebrated every holiday and many shabatts there. No one ever asked if I drove to get there, they were just happy to see me. It has been 16 years since I was introduced to Chabad and I am proud to affiliate with them. I also respect the criticism, much of which is true. Nonetheless, there is no other group of Jews that have an equally positive impact on getting Jews to identify as Jews. They lead by example and ask nothing for it. Who else can make such a claim. Chabad is only to be respected.

100. Chabad-Walmart
Yossie Nemes - US
01/10/2006 15:01

Marvin, I know YOU ARE A FRIEND and mean your criticism constructively to make us better. I just looked over all our Chabad discount 2005 receipts from Wal-Mart. We bought myriads of new Teffillin wearers, a miilon Mezuzos and tens of thousands of new Shabbat observers. Before hurricane Katrina I had fifteen men walking to shul, of whom only three have returned. We are struggling with a minyan for the first time in fifteen years. Last month I helped convince one of our best friends, inspired by the hand of Hashem during Katrina, to stay home and keep Shabbos and NOT drive to Shul. Marvin can you be our Tzente this Shabbos? Yes, thank God, Chabad is growing rapidly and yes THERE IS a lot of discussion and reflection on the importance of bringing in and inspiring all of our brethren without compromising Halacha. This was what most of the workshops at the Shluchim conference were about. Marvin, see you at Chabad for Cholent next time you are in Hong Kong/Shangchai/Boise or Honolulu!

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