Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Support for Israeli Backpackers

According to a report in the Ma'ariv newspaper ten percent of Israeli youth traveling abroad after their army service come to Australia. In Melbourne these travelers are catered to by Rabbi Dudu and Sara Lieder from their Chabad House on Carslile Street. Many young people who have never experienced a Shabbos or Yom Tov, lit Shabbos candles or put on tefillin are having their first taste of yiddishkeit not in the Holy Land but in the Land Down Under.

A few months ago Mrs Riva Cohen found out that while the Lieders provided Shabbos meals for dozens of Israelis each week their budget could not meet the expense of providing meat or chicken for these meals. She promptly formed Ohel Sara where she invited women in our community to contribute towards ensuring that a full Shabbos meal could be provided. This is not just about a free meal for some young people travelling around Australia but, by proving a complete Shabbos meal, this encourages them to spend more time at the Shabbos table with the Lieders. This provides them with a genuine, warm Shabbos experience which they often have never been part of before.

Every dollar raised goes exclusively toward these meals. In order to contribute to this worthy cause you can write a check to Solomon Kosher Butcher, purchase a Solomon voucher or leave cash in an envelope and slip it under Mrs Cohen's door. Alternatively you can email me at aussieecho@gmail.com and I will advise you how to make a contribution.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

New Principal At Last!

Rabbi Berger (on the left) at Yeshivah Ateres Menachem in Ottowa

After many years of searching a new principal for Yeshivah College has finally been found. Don Wolf yesterday announced through the Yeshivah Centre website that Rabbi Mordechai Berger of Canada has been appointed principal to take over from Rabbi Glick next year.

When he visited in September Rabbi Berger made a good impression on the community and hopefully this appointment will mark a change in the way Yeshivah College is run.

Rabbi Berger was described by Don Wolf before his visit in these terms:
Rabbi Mordechai Berger, from Ottowa, Canada, is Founder & Principal of Yeshivas Ateres Menachem of Ottawa, a combined program of Yeshivah Studies with vocational and technology courses. He is an innovative educator, renowned for developing and implementing systems to maximise the educational performance of students.
I wish him well in his new position and wish him hatzlocho in dealing with the parents, other teachers and especially the administration.

Saturday, October 20, 2007

Points of Interest in Paris

Shturem has published a link to Google maps of places in Paris which may have interest to Chabadniks. The map appears here and was compiled by Jewish Educational Media to coincide with the release of the DVD The Early Years Volume III, which focuses on the Rebbe and Rebbetzin’s life in Paris in 1938-1940.

Thursday, October 11, 2007

View the Unexpected

I enjoyed watching this interesting video and learnt something about a group of people who I didn't know existed. The Beth Shalom B'nai Zaken Ethiopian Hebrew Congregation is a "Hebrew Israelite" group in Chicago. According to their website (see it here) there are 150,000 people in the United States who follow similar teachings. They consider themselves most similar to Modern Orthodox Jews while admitting that they do not observe halacha - for example they do not eat pork or shellfish but do mix meat and dairy.

If you are interested I would suggest watching the video first and then checking out their website. One thing that struck me was their passion which is certainly more exciting than in most shuls.

Thanks to Jake.

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Motzoei Simchas Torah 5738 (1977)

This is a short excerpt of the Rebbe's sicha after his heart attack on Shmini Atzeres in 1977. I think that the Rebbe spoke for 15 or 20 minutes from his "hospital room" in his office. You can hear the weakness in his voice which is sad - but it must have been reassuring for the chassidim to hear him after the shock of his illness.

The video is from JEM.

Monday, October 08, 2007

Rabbi Mordy Katz again

The famous Rabbi Katz has produced another video. Some of the jokes have been heard before but all are funny. Enjoy!

Saturday, October 06, 2007

More Hakafot Shniyot

Shvut Ami - a new settlement B"H

Tel Aviv


Ramot Alef - the unique simcha of the misnagdim!

These are some more videos that I found from "Second Hakafos" in Israel this year. They are a sample of some very different communities which, to me, is part of the beauty of yiddishkeit.

VeYa'akov Holach Ledarko

Motzoei Simchat Tora in Kfar Chabad

Another set of Tishrei Yomim Tovim have passed and hopefully we all got something out of this holiday season.

The video above is of "Hakafot Shniyot" in Kfar Chabad this year. Israeli's seem to be jealous that we in Chutz La'aretz have a separate day for Simchas Torah. Throughout Israel Hakafot Shniyot are held on Motzoei Shmini Atsers/Simchas Torah in town squares, halls etc. I suppose it is a nice way to continue the spirit.

Monday, October 01, 2007

Hoshanna Rabbo with the Rebbe

Although we are a few days away I wanted to post this video from Hoshanna Rabbo 5748 (1987). It shows the Rebbe during Shacharis, giving out lekach to those that didn't receive it on erev Yom Kippur and a few seconds of 770 being prepared for Hakafos. Note the many different types of yidden who came to the Rebbe.

Quite poignant memories.