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Home » Chabad, The Rebbe

Yud Shevat: Former Rebbe's Date of Passing

Submitted by on January 29, 2006 – 4:49 amNo Comment | 3,220 views
The tenth day of the
Hebrew month of Shevat marks the passing of the illustrious Rabbi
Yoseph Y. Schneerson, the sixth Rebbe of the Chabad Chassidic movement.
He was born in 1870 and upon the passing of his father, the fifth
Rebbe, he accepted the mantle of Chabad leadership.
 
He steered the movement
through the perilous era of Stalinism in communist Russia. His tenure
of leadership saw the mass breakdown of organized religion in Russia,
the mass murder of six million in the holocaust and the mass
assimilation of American and worldwide Jewry.
 
To each of these crises he
responded with bold leadership. In Russia he organized an underground
network of Jewish outreach centers. Post holocaust he begged, cajoled
and demanded of his fellow survivors to steadfastly maintain their
faith in G-d. To the assimilation of American Jewry he responded with a
resolute proclamation that Jewish America is not different from Jewish
Europe.
 
In 1940, upon arriving to
American he was apprised of the mood and status of American Jewry. His
own followers reminded him that Jews in America were different and that
he would need to soften his message and develop a new and subtle
approach.
 
The former Rebbe's
response demonsted his faith in the Jewish soul. He said that Jews
throughout the world thirst for the substance that Torah Judaism offers
and that in this regard American Jewry is no different. He was
confident that if offered, they would grasp the opportunity to build a
thriving community of Jewish religion and culture.
 
While his contemporaries
thought him a little radical, the Rebbe proceeded to send his
emissaries to various cities and established many Jewish outreach
organizations and education centers.
 
Today, many years later,
the Rebbe's vision rings prophetic. Today we see many Jewish
communities that have sprung up throughout the Unites states and
throughout the world. Today we live in a world that has been
reinvigorated by the Rebbe's vision, redirected through the Rebbe's
leadership.
 
We know that on the day of
his passing the Rebbe will be looking down and smiling upon us from
above. He will be exhorting the almighty in prayer, asking him to give
us the strength to continue his work. We must live up to his
expectations and continue in the legacy that he has left us.
 
Let us ensure that the
hard work initiated by the former Rebbe and adopted by his son in law,
the following Rebbe, will have a lasting effect upon future
generations. Let us ensure the continuity of our people, our children
and most of all our faith. Let us aspire to live in the image set
before us by the Rebbe.

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