Thousands of Shluchim pose for a “class picture” outside Chabad…
As the International Kinus Hashluchim opens, excitement is mounting about the prospect of the scheduled historic Siyum of no less than thirty-six Sifrei Torah. Boldly pledged by Rabbi Moshe Kotlarsky at least year’s kinus among many other such ambitious hachlatos, the early arrival of these Sifrei Torah is a true testament to the momentum and enthusiasm behind this unprecedented initiative.
From their inception, these Sifrei Torah were designated for shluchim in remote locations where securing a Sefer Torah of their own is a daunting, if impossible, task. As the number of shluchim matching that criteria baruch Hashem far exceeds thirty-six, a raffle was held to determine the lucky recipients.
As previously reported, the first twelve winners were announced at the International Kinus Hashluchos last winter, with the remaining twenty-four Sifrei Torah still waiting for their new homes. Bringing an end to the suspense, the final list has now been announced, representing twenty-four communities from all over the world.
“In this special year of Hakhel, this unique celebration of so many new Sifrei Torah is particularly poignant,” said Rabbi Moshe Kotlarsky, Chairman of the International Kinus Hashluchim and Vice-Chairman of Merkos L’Inyonei Chinuch. “The Rebbe often spoke of the link between Hakhel and the mitzvah to write a Sefer Torah, as they are the final two mitzvos of the entire Torah, recorded in parshas Vayelech. Indeed, they share a common theme of making Yiddishkeit personal: Hakhel was an impressionable event designed to replicate the sights, sounds, and feelings of Har Sinai to everyone present. And of course, fewer things make the Torah more personal than commissioning a Sefer Torah of your own. To see these two things come together at the Kinus banquet no less is exhilarating.”
Every Chabad House receiving one of these Sifrei Torah will no doubt be greatly enhanced. In light of recent global events, one particularly special mention is the Sefer Torah dedicated to, and going to, the Jews of Ukraine. Without question, hugging a brand new scroll dedicated in their honor will provide encouragement, strength, and much brachah.
Crisscrossing the globe, Rabbi Shimon Lahiany of Marakesh, Morocco, was ecstatic to learn that he was one of the privileged few in this new batch of twenty-four winners. He is eagerly awaiting his community’s Sefer Torah. “I cannot describe just how important this is to our community,” he said, “A Sefer Torah of our own will enable us to anchor our new Chabad House and surely will bring light and holiness to the entire city.
“As a major tourist hub with twelve weekly flights from Israel, I receive calls practically every day for a Sefer Torah. Destination weddings, Bar Mitzvahs, as well as random groups—not to mention the locals, of course—are here every week, and baruch Hashem, the demand for a Sefer Torah is very high. What was until now a complex effort of borrowing and planning will now be, ‘Yes, we have one right here in the Chabad House. Come on over!”
The full list of recipients are listed below.
Rabbi and Mrs. Daniel and Raizel Huebner, Chabad of SMA, Mexico
Rabbi and Mrs. Shimon and Rachel Lahiany, Chabad Marrakech, Morocco
Rabbi and Mrs. Boruch and Nechamah Dina Hagman, Chabad Nordelta, Argentina
Rabbi and Mrs. Yochanan and Rochel Gordon, Chabad of Tasmania, Australia
Rabbi and Mrs. Gavriel Menachem Mendel and Miriam Weberman, Chabad of Crete, Greece
Rabbi and Mrs Nissen and Arielle Goldman, Chabad on Campus, Capetown, South Africa
Rabbi and Mrs. Zeev Wolf and Dvora Leah Krichevsky, Chabad Ba’Aliya Ramat Gan, Israel
Rabbi and Mrs. Yitzchok Elchonon and Henny Kuperman, Chabad of Northland, Whangarei, New Zealand
Rabbi and Mrs. Yisroel and Debora Melamed, JCC of Astrakhan, Russian Federation
Rabbi and Mrs. Shneur and Reizel Kesselman, Chabad Lubavtich Malmö, Sweden
Rabbi and Mrs. Shmuel and Chaya Berkowitz, Chabad Turks and Caicos Islands
Rabbi and Mrs. Shneur and Shaina Wineberg, Chabad of Notting Hill, United Kingdom
Rabbi and Mrs. Menachem Mendel and Frida Maryasha Gottlieb, Chabad Lviv, Ukraine
Rabbi and Mrs. Avrohom and Shterna Simmonds, Chabad-Lubavitch of Regina, Canada
Rabbi and Mrs. Leib and Sara Beila Rojtenberg – Beit Chabad Brasilia, Brazil
Rabbi and Mrs. Yerachmiel and Debbie Bensaid, Chabad of Ivory Coast, Côte d’Ivoire
Rabbi and Mrs. Pinchas and Raizel Zaklas, Chabad Croatia, Zagreb, Croatia
Rabbi and Mrs. Meir and Sterna Altabe, Beth Habad, France
Rabbi and Mrs. Moshe and Chaya Gurary, Toulouse, France
Rabbi and Mrs. Gil and Bracha Sara Leeds, Chabad Jewish Student Center at UC Berkeley, United States
Rabbi and Mrs. Yitzchak and Chana Itkin, Chabad on the Plaza, Kansas City, United States
Rabbi and Mrs. Tzvi and Hadassah Alperowitz, Chabad of Martha’s Vineyard, MA, United States
Rabbi and Mrs. Menachem and Faygie Andrusier, Chabad of Manchester, VT, United States
Rabbi and Mrs. Shmuel and Gittel Sputz, Chabad of the Caldwells, NJ, United States
Rabbi and Mrs. Meir and Mushki Shmotkin, Chabad of Alameda, CA, United States
Rabbi and Mrs. Avrohom Fruma Ita Perlstein, Chabad of Salem, OR, United States
Rabbi and Mrs. Shmuel and Chaya Levitin, Chabad of Downtown Seattle, WA, United States
Rabbi and Mrs. Mendy and Estie Gutnick, Chabad of West Parkland, FL, United States
Rabbi and Mrs. Joseph Bronstein, Congregation Judea Chabad, United States
Rabbi and Mrs. Moshe and Yocheved Raskin, Chabad Kampala, Uganda
Rabbi and Mrs. Menachem and Malka Engelsman, Chabad House Ibiza, Spain
Rabbi and Mrs. Yaakov and Chaya Mushka Raskin, Chabad of Jamaica, Jamaica
Rabbi and Mrs. Arie and Chaya Rubin, Chabad Alona, Israel
Rabbi and Mrs. Yisroel and Esther Simon, Chabad Student Centre of Kingston, Canada
Rabbi and Mrs. Eli and Sterna Chaikin, Chabad of Barbados, Maxwell, Barbados
Rabbi and Mrs. Mendel and Rochel Edelman, Chabad Lubavitch du Luxembourg, Luxembourg