Jerusalem 1970-1980

  • 1972 – R’ Chaim Shalom Deitsch received a suggestion from Kolel Chabad to become Rosh Kolel in the Tzemach Tzedek synagogue in the old city of Jerusalem.  In 1973, R’ Deitsch traveled to the Rebbe to ask for his approval. In 1974, R’ Deitsch received a blessing and official approval from the Rebbe to be Rosh Kolel.  Ever since then, R’ Deitsch has been the spiritual and intellectual authority of the newly married men and others (ba’alei tshuva, both Israeli and from elsewhere) who learn Torah in the morning from 9 am to 1 pm in the Tzemach Tzedek synagogue. R’ Deitsch teaches chasidus every morning in the kolel, and often farbrengs on the Chabad holidays such as yud-tes Kislev, yud-beis Tammuz, etc.  His farbrengens are the best attended (hundreds of chasidim and others join) in Jerusalem and are often broadcast via internet, as are his daily morning shiurim.
  • 1976-1978 – Three years in a row, the Rebbe sent shluchim (emissaries) to Israel.  These emissaries generally remained in Israel and later became rabbonim, teachers, and administrators throughout Israel.  The first group, in 1976, was housed and studied chasidut in Yeshivat Torat Emet, and came to the old city to study nigleh (gemora and poskim) in the Tzemach Tzedek in the mornings until early afternoon.  Their task was “to inspire Jews to keep Torah and its mitzvoth and to build the land, physically and spiritually.”
  • 1978 – Two of the shluchim (R’ Avraham Pevzner and R’ Shalom Duchman sh’yichyu) who were in the first group (1976) had a personal audience (yechidus) with the Rebbe in 1978, and the Rebbe gave them specific instructions: “Since you are traveling to Yerushalayim (old city?), and there are other young men traveling there, as well as others from the previous group, you should open a yeshiva in the Tzemach Tzedek shul under the administration of Kolel Chabad.    You [two] should be involved in the administration of this yeshiva, one of you involved in spiritual matters and the other in physical matters (according to your own decision).  From time to time, make farbrengens with the students, learn with them – these matters are your responsibilities.  Get involved in this energetically, in a manner that is appropriate to Chabad, without disturbing anyone else.  And since we are speaking here of single young men, this [yeshiva] should have no connection with the kolel of married men.  Your involvement with this is for the purpose of developing and forming a basis within the old city, of Chabad matters in the old city of Jerusalem, especially as it concerns the mivtzaim (mitzvah campaigns of the Rebbe).  These are your general instructions.”
  • 1978 – The Rebbe continued in the above conversation: “Regarding your own private matters, since there is a kolel learning in the Tzemach Tzedek, you should learn there for at least a year or two according to the seder of the kolel, and since the kolel is learning for only half a day, during the second half is when you should be involved with the single young men, the mivtzah campaigns, etc…whatever expenses are involved should be discussed with the administration of Kolel Chabad and from here they will receive instructions.  It is your responsibility to remain in contact with them or they with you.  Since we hear nothing from the kolel regarding involvement in the mivtzaim (mitzvah campaigns of the Rebbe), at least not under the administration of Kolel Chabad, and in regard to raising money outside of Israel, therefore, either one or both of you should raise money outside of Israel (by way of tzedaka boxes or similar means), while the other should be involved in the mivtzaim…”
  • 1978 – The Rebbe continued: “Nothing has been heard lately regarding a Chabad house in the old city of Jerusalem, and therefore when you arrive to Jerusalem, clarify the matter and write to me (and act on this matter).  Since Jerusalem demands special attention, you should get involved with the greatest possible energy, in regard to kolel Chabad (the mivtzaim, etc) – whether they were already involved or not – and in regard to a Chabad House in the “new” Jerusalem if there is a need for it.  Fort gezunderheit (“Travel well”)!  (Translated from “Hiskashrus” #69, parshat Chayei Sarah, 24 Cheshvan 5756/19995).

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