Printed from ChabadofLA.com

Shul Bulletin

Announcements - Vayishlach

  • Women are invited to the bridal Shower for Mushky Wolowik, Wednesday, Kislev 21/Dec 5, 8:00 pm at 366 N. Citrus Ave. Click here for more info. 
  • Click here for KYY newsletter.
  • Rabbi & Mrs. Mendy Spalter invite you to a farbrengen this Friday night for the refuah shlaima of Chaya Mushka bas Hadassa Shaina, at the home of the Butel family at 257 S Citrus Blvd.
  • Unity Farbrengen’s for Men and Women in honor of Yud-Tes Kislev. Click here for more info.
  • Aleph is in need of volunteers to go to visit Yidden in prisons near LA during Chanukah. Click here for more info and to read the incredible story about how important this mivtza is to the Rebbe. Because it takes 2 weeks to process, we need to know ASAP which night you want to go.
  • Nichum Availim: Mincha Today at the Labkowsky family will be 12:30 pm. Hamokom Yenachem eschem Besoch Shaar Avaylay Tzion VeYerushalayim. Vehukeetzu Veranenu Shochnay Ufur vehu besochom!
  • The ladies Bikur Cholim invite the community to a special chanuka bazaar. Click here for more info. 
  • Please say Tehillim for Chaya Mushka bas Hadassah Shaina.

Shabbos Schedule - Vayishlach

  • Shabbos Candle Lighting: 4:25 pm
  • Shiur Chassidus with Rabbi Raichik: 9:00 am
  • Last Time To Read Shema: 9:11 am
  • Early Minyan Shacharis: 9:30 am
  • Shacharis: 10:00 am
  • Kol Yakov Yehuda: 10:15
  • Mincha: 4:25 pm
  • Shabbos Ends: 5:28 pm
  • Father & Son Learning: 7:15 pm
  • Start saying V’sein Tal Umatar L’Vrochah Tuesday, Kislev 20/December 4 at Ma’ariv.

Kiddush Sponsors

  • Mr. & Mrs. Moshe Davidoff for the first yahrtzeit of Mrs. Esther Davidoff’s father Aharon ben Boruch ob"m. May the neshomo have an aliya.
  • Rabbi & Mrs. Simcha Frankel in honor of Rabbi Simcha Frankel’s birthday. May he have a shnas hatzlocho begashmiyus ubruchniyus.
  • Rabbi & Mrs. Fischel Grossman in honor of Rabbi Fischel Grossman’s birthday. May he have a shnas hatzlocho begashmiyus ubruchniyus.
  • Mr. & Mrs. Avrohom Aron Grunfeld in honor of their 15th anniversary. May they have many more happy years together. in honor of their anniversary. May they have many more happy years together.
    Also in honor of Mr. Avrohom Aron Grunfeld’s birthday. May he have a shnas hatzlocho begashmiyus ubruchniyus.
  • Mr. & Dr. Martin Leaderman in honor of their anniversary. May they have many more happy years together. in honor of their anniversary. May they have many more happy years together.
    Also in honor of Mr. Martin Leaderman’s birthday. May he have a shnas hatzlocho begashmiyus ubruchniyus.
  • Rabbi & Mrs. Yosef Yitzchok Halevi Shagalov in honor of Rabbi Yosef Yitzchok Shagalov’s birthday. May he have a shnas hatzlocho begashmiyus ubruchniyus.

Early Minyan Kiddush Sponsors

  • Rabbi & Mrs. Zalmy Fogelman in honor of Rabbi Zalmy Fogelman’s birthday. May he have a shnas hatzlocho begashmiyus ubruchniyus.
  • Rabbi & Mrs. Yecheskel Raeburn in honor of their anniversary. May they have many more happy years together. in honor of their anniversary. May they have many more happy years together.

Women's Shabbos Shiur

At the home of Mrs. Yocheved Lezak
423 N Fuller Ave.
4:00 pm
Speaker: Rabbi Mendel Liberman - Shliach in Ashklon

Mazal Tov To

  • Rabbi & Mrs. Mendy Simons on the birth of their daughter.

Upcoming Birthdays

  • Rabbi Zalmy Fogelman - 17 Kislev 
  • Shneur Zalman Freeman - 17 Kislev
  • Schneur Zalman Labkowsky - 18 Kislev
  • Rabbi Fischel Grossman - 18 Kislev
  • Levi Yitzchok Gross - 18 Kislev
  • Mr. Steve Zipp - 18 Kislev
  • Mr. Martin Leaderman - 19 Kislev
  • Rabbi Schneur Zalman Schmukler - 19 Kislev
  • Shneur Zalman Klyne - 21 Kislev
  • Moshe Davidson - 23 Kislev

Upcoming Anniversaries

  • Rabbi & Mrs. Shaya Berkowitz - 19 Kislev
  • Rabbi & Mrs. Yecheskel Raeburn - 19 Kislev

Upcoming Yahrtzeits

  • Chana Etka bas Note Zeev (Mrs. Chaya Leah Berger’s mother) - 17 Kislev
  • Aharon ben Boruch (Mrs. Esther Davidoff’s father) - 19 Kislev 
  • Yeshayohu ben Aharon (Mrs. Fradel Bukiet’s father) - 20 Kislev
  • Chaya bas Avrohom (Mr. Benyomin Hoffman’s mother) - 20 Kislev

Devar Torah

A Long Distance Fabrengen
What a Yud-Tes Kislev farbrengen can accomplish

By Rabbi Shimon Raichik

“Yud-Tes Kislev is a day to farbreng together, resolve to establish times to study Torah and Chessidus, and follow the ways and customs of Chassidus, with true love and friendship” (Hayom Yom).

A 'lost soul' finds himself at a Yud-Tes Kislev farbrengen, as described by the Previous Rebbe on Acharon shel Pesach, 1934:

In the city of Petersburg there once lived a wealthy man who was born into a Chassidic family in the Mohilev region. At the age of fourteen, he left his community and moved to the big city of Petersburg. There he succumbed to the pressures and pleasures of the time and place, until he eventually desecrated Shabbos, ate treif food, etc.

Nevertheless, he maintained some interest in Chabad. When the Alter Rebbe's portrait was first publicized, he commissioned a famous artist to make a large copy of it, as well as a portrait of my great- grandfather, the Tzemach Tzedek. He prominently displayed the paintings in his library, adjoining his study.

Years passed, and his business prospered. The Jewish names he gave his children at birth were soon replaced by Russian names. His extravagant house- hold pursued the pleasures of the world with passion. His social circle was comprised mostly of non-Jews, or assimilated Jews who had forgotten their roots.

One day, in the winter of 1892, he had to visit the home of a local Chassidic merchant regarding a business matter. Coming in, he saw the rooms filled with people sitting around festive tables and everyone was singing joyously. The heartwarming scene reminded him of his childhood years at his parents' home.

The host immediately rose to welcome his guest and ushered him into his office, to discuss their business. The Chossid had known this man's parents, and was aware that he had strayed very far.

When their business was done, the guest asked:

"Excuse me, but what occasion are you celebrating today? Do I owe you a Mazel Tov for a family event?" "Yes," replied the host, ''we are indeed celebrating a family simchah. We were just talking long distance with our parents in Gan Eden. We were so glad to hear good regards from them, that we have gathered to celebrate."

Seeing the perplexed look on his guest's face, the host continued: "Today is Yud-Tes Kislev, the day of the Alter Rebbe's liberation. There is a great celebration right now in the Alter Rebbe's abode in Heaven. The Tzaddikim have assembled there to wish him Mazel Tov on his liberation and the growth of Chassidism. Our parents and grandparents who used to travel long distances to visit the Rebbes of their respective generations are also joining in the celebration. We, their children and grandchildren, are rejoicing together here, joining them up there, celebrating this holiday."

Hearing these poignant words, the guest felt like joining the farbrengen for a while. Feeling strange and distant, he was ashamed to do so. How could he, who ate treif food, join these pious people?

Reading his guest's mind, the host invited him to join the celebration, saying: "By the way, my dear friend, while you're here with.us,' you will get regards from your father and grandfather, too ... " The host did everything to make him feel at home.

A seudas Mitzvah is always a wonderful occasion among Chassidim, especially a seudah held in honor of Yud-Tes Kislev, which is celebrated in cities and towns around the world. This celebration was being held in the very place where the miracle of liberation had occurred. This farbrengen happened over 40 years ago, when the elderly Chassidim (including Reb Yitzchok and Reb Zalman Rubashov) who had known the Chassidim and misnagdim who were present at the first Yud-Tes Kislev, were still alive. This Yud-Tes Kislev feast was thus celebrated with exceptional joy and enthusiasm.

Several hours passed. The guest forgot entirely that he had reserved theater tickets for his friends and himself. So absorbed was he among his Chassidic brethren, that is seemed to him that he was back in his parents' home.

He recalled the festive Yud-Tes Kislev dinners that were served in his grandfather's little shul, He also remembered the special dinner which his grand- mother, mother and aunts used to prepare when his grandfather came home from visiting the Rebbe in Lubavitch. Recollections from his youth now sprang to life. He fondly recalled Reb Boruch Asher the melamed, the Chassidic teacher of his childhood.

He stayed at the farbrengen for several hours. In 1897, a friend of mine told me that when this man came home from the Yud-Tes Kislev farbrengen, he walked straight into his library and recited the Maariv prayers with heartbreaking sobs of sincere regret that came from deep within him.

Within a few days he bought new dishes, kashered his kitchen, and became a new person.

Some people turn to repentance through a pogrom or because of a harsh dictator such as Haman. But why wait for hard- ship? Repentance can better be aroused by a loving farbrengen, or by memories of a true Jewish home. Better through kindness than through suffering, G-d forbid.

Letter from Aleph

Bs"d

Dear Anash:

Aleph is in need of volunteers to go to visit Yidden in prisons near LA, during Chanukah. Read the incredible story about how important this Mivtza is by the Rebbe. 

It's a really beautiful and meaningful experience lighting the Chanukah candles and bringing light and warmth to such a dark and cold and cruel environment.

Because it takes 2 weeks to process, we need to know ASAP if/which night would work for you?

Please email ys@aleph-institute.org if you're able to go one or two evenings during Chanukah.

Thank you
Zvi Boyarsky
zvi@aleph-institute.org

Story: Candles Behind Bars
By Eli & Malka Touger

Rabbi Shabsi Katz, the Rabbi of Pretoria, the administrative capital of South Africa, and the Jewish Chaplain for the Department of Prisons in that country, maintained a relationship with the Lubavitcher Rebbe for many years.

In December of 1978, he came to visit the Rebbe for the third time. At a private audience with the Rebbe a few days before Chanukah, the Rebbe asked Rabbi Katz what was being done for Jewish prisoners in South Africa. Rabbi Katz explained that conditions in South African prisons were much harsher than in New York, but that Jewish prisoners were not obligated to work on Rosh Hashanah, Yom Kippur or Passover, and on Passover, they were given food certified kosher for the holiday by Pretoria's rabbinate.

The Rebbe asked: "And what about Chanukah? Can the inmates light Chanukah candles?" One must appreciate, the Rebbe said, how important it is for a person sitting alone in a cell to light a Chanukah menorah. One cannot fathom the warmth and hope this brings, and how this will uplift his spirits in such a dark environment.

Rabbi Katz promised that when he returned to South Africa he would begin working on the project, so that next year the inmates could light Chanukah candles. The Rebbe, however, was not satisfied, and inquired: What aboutthis Chanukah?

Rabbi Katz pointed out that Chanukah was only a few days off. Since he was in New York, he doubted it would be possible to do anything. The Rebbe replied that as soon as their meeting ended, Rabbi Katz should use the telephones in the outside office to make any calls that were necessary.

Rabbi Katz then reminded the Rebbe that in South Africa it was four o'clock in the morning; at that hour, he dared not wake the general in charge of correctional facilities.

The Rebbe did not accept Rabbi Katz's reply, saying that, on the contrary, when the general saw that the matter was so important that he was called from overseas in the middle of the night, he would be impressed, and would appreciate the need for Jewish prisoners to light candles this year.

As soon as Rabbi Katz left the Rebbe's office, one of the secretaries led him to the small side office across the hall from the Rebbe's. He showed him the phones and told him to make himself at home.

Rabbi Katz first called his secretary in Pretoria to find the home number of General Sephton, who was a Dominee of the Dutch Reformed Church and Religious Director of Prisons. At the same time, he asked his secretary to call the general and tell him he would soon be receiving a call from overseas. And so, when he called General Sephton a few minutes later, the general was not upset, but instead, inquired how he could help.

Rabbi Katz explained that he had just completed a private meeting with one of the leaders of world Jewry, who had expressed concern about the Jewish inmates in South African prisons. The leader had explained how important it was for the prisoners to light Chanukah menorahs, and how this would bring them warmth, light and hope.

General Sephton was moved. In spite of the fact that his office was due to close that day -- it was December 24 -- he said that if Rabbi Katz was calling at that time of night from overseas, he could understand how urgent the matter was, and that as soon as he got to his office in the morning he would send a telex to all the prison facilities in South Africa telling them to make it possible for all Jewish prisoners in South Africa to light candles this Chanukah.

Next morning, when the Rebbe came to Lubavitch headquarters at 770 Easterm Parkway, Rabbi Katz was in the foyer. "Nu?" motioned the Rebbe. When he heard that the mission had been accomplished, the Rebbe gave him a broad smile and told Rabbi Katz that he wanted to see him after the morning prayers.

When Rabbi Katz entered the Rebbe's room, the Rebbe told him that there are 50 states in the US, and all but one allowed Jewish inmates to light Chanukah candles. "Would you believe it," said the Rebbe, "it is only here -- in New York State -- that prisoners cannot light menorahs for Chanukah!"

The Rebbe asked that Rabbi Katz see to it that the inmates of New York State prisons lit Chanukah candles that year. "Tell them what you did, that they should learn from South Africa, and do the same here," he advised.

Rabbi Katz did not know where to start; he told the Rebbe that he did not know whom to contact first.

"Rabbi J. J. Hecht has been working hard on this project, and will know whom to turn to," the Rebbe answered him.

When Rabbi Katz sought out Rabbi Hecht, it was Rabbi Hecht's turn to be astonished. He pointed out that it was December 24, and already past noon; nobody would be at their desks at that time. Could officials be reached at their office parties?

But after Rabbi Katz told him about his audience with the Rebbe, and his personal call to General Sephton inSouth Africa, Rabbi Hecht relaxed. Past experience had told him, he said, that if the Rebbe asked someone to do something right away, things worked out well even if the timing seemed bad.

After a few calls, Rabbi Hecht was able to locate the director of the New York State Correctional System, and found him in a jovial mood. Rabbi Hecht then introduced Rabbi Katz, who informed the director that Jewish prisoners in South Africa would be lighting Chanukah candles that year, and suggested that if this could happen inSouth Africa, surely it should happen in New York. The director agreed, remarking that if in South Africa, where Jews are such a minority, the prisons gave them permission to light candles, there was no reason why it shouldn't happen in New York. He promised to attend to the matter in time for Chanukah.

Rabbi Katz looked at his watch. It was several minutes before three, and the Rebbe would come out for the afternoon minchah prayers at 3:15. He hurried back to 770 and positioned himself outside the Rebbe's room. When the Rebbe came out for the afternoon prayers, he saw Rabbi Katz and motioned "Nu?" Rabbi Katzindicated that the mission had been accomplished. "I want to see you after minchah!" the Rebbe smiled.

Rabbi Katz was surprised. What mission would be waiting for him after minchah? When he entered the Rebbe's room, however, the Rebbe did not have another project for him. Instead, the Rebbe said that as he had done him a personal favor, he would like to do something in return.

Rabbi Katz was bewildered. He told the Rebbe that it had been a privilege and an honor to do what he had done. He had received so much in blessings and guidance from the Rebbe throughout the years that he certainly did not expect anything more.

The Rebbe did not accept this answer. So Rabbi Katz thought quickly, and asked the Rebbe for a Tanya (the book authored by the founder of Chabad, Rabbi Schneur Zalman of Liadi, and regarded as the "bible of Chassidism") for his son, who would certainly appreciate it. The Rebbe told him that one would be in the outer office shortly. When Rabbi Katz returned to pick it up, he found a Hebrew Tanya waiting for Rabbi Katz himself, a leather-bound, deluxe Hebrew/English Tanya for his son, "Challenge" (a book on Chabad) for General Sephton in South Africa, and "Woman of Valor" (an anthology of Chassidic teachings on women) for the general's wife.

When Rabbi Katz returned to South Africa, he called General Sephton. Before he could say anything, the general reassured him that he had sent the telexes the day he had received the call from America, and that the Jewish prisoners had indeed kindled Chanukah candles that year. When Rabbi Katz told the general that the Rebbe had sent gifts for him, the general said he would be right over to pick them up.

Indeed, within an hour, the general was sitting in Rabbi Katz's living room. Asked why he had hurried so, he replied that when a person sitting in New York thinks about somebody living on the other side of the globe -- especially somebody imprisoned for wrongdoing -- and seeks out someone to bring him light and warmth, he is a genuine leader.

"And if such a leader sends something for me, I want it as soon as possible," said the general. 

Announcements - Vayetzei

  • Click here for KYY newsletter.
  • Rabbi & Mrs. Mendy Spalter invite you to a farbrengen this Friday night for the refuah shlaima of Chaya Mushka bas Hadassa Shaina, at the home of Rabbi and Mrs. Shimon Raichik 6724 Beverly Blvd.
  • The ladies Bikur Cholim invite the community to a special chanuka bazar. Click here for more info. 
  • Please say Tehillim for Chaya Mushka bas Hadassah Shaina and Menachem Mendel Halevi ben Ita.

Shabbos Schedule - Vayetzei

  • Shabbos Candle Lighting: 4:27 pm
  • Late Minyan for Kabolas Shabbos: 6:20 pm 
  • Shiur Chassidus with Rabbi Raichik: 9:00 am
  • Last Time To Read Shema: 9:07 am
  • Early Minyan Shacharis: 9:30 am
  • Shacharis: 10:00 am
  • Kol Yakov Yehuda: 10:15
  • Mincha: 4:25 pm
  • Shabbos Ends: 5:30 pm
  • Father & Son Learning: 7:15 pm

Early Minyan Kiddush Sponsors

  • Mr. & Mrs. Jack Soussana in honor of their son Nesanel Chananya’s 7th birthday. May he have a shnas hatzlocho begashmiyus ubruchniyus.

Women's Shabbos Shiur

 At the home of  Mrs. Bracha Finkelstein
444 N Poinsettia Pl.
3:45 pm
Speaker: Rabbi Shaya Berkowitz

Mazal Tov To

  • Rabbi & Mrs. Reuven Nathanson on the birth of their granddaughter Leah Raizel Kaufmann (to Saadya and Chaya Sara Kaufmann).
  • Mr. and Mrs. Nota Berger and the entire Berger family on their son’s bar mitzva. 

Upcoming Birthdays

  • Nesanel Chananya Soussana - 10 Kislev
  • Rabbi Simcha Boruch Frankel - 10 Kislev
  • Mr. Mendel-Hilel Ganzburg - 10 Kislev
  • Shmuel Thaler - 10 Kislev
  • Yehoshua Moshe - 11 Kislev
  • Rabbi Moshe Levin - 11 Kislev
  • Mr. Israel Goldshmid - 15 Kislev
  • Rabbi Gershon Schusterman - 15 Kislev

Upcoming Anniversaries

  • Rabbi & Mrs. Moishe Carlebach - 14 Kislev
  • Rabbi & Mrs. Yossi Solomon - 14 Kislev

Upcoming Yahrtzeits

  • Shulamis bas Hershel (Rabbi Jonathan Glabman’s mother) - 12 Kislev
  • Leib ben Julius (Mrs. Vickie Elson’s father) - 13 Kislev

Devar Torah

On the Essence of a Fabrengen:
One Heartfelt Saying can Change Everything 

By Rabbi Shimon Raichik

Chassidim spend time going to fabrengens, especially during this month of Kislev, a month filled with the Yomim Tovim of Yud, Yud Tes Kislev and Chanukah. What do we accomplish by going to a fabrengen? Is the purpose of a fabrengen to hear a good lecture, or be entertained? Perhaps it’s the accomplishment of getting together in a friendly atmosphere, speaking with others and having a good time. After all it’s a much better to get together over mashke and herring than to watch football and eat turkey.

There are many important reasons for a fabrengen. We accomplish a lot by participating in fabrengens. In the coming weeks, we will try to explain the most essential aspects of fabrengens and why they are important in our lives today. In this article we will focus on the purpose of a fabrengen to move you to a place that you never have been. Although we are not on the level of the Chassidim of the previous generations, nevertheless the following story from Likutei Dibburim (v. 4 pg. 1588) illustrates the power of a fabrengen to break through to a higher level in the service of Hashem. 

May each one of us merit to get involved in and take inspiration from the fabrengens, each person in his or her way to go to a new and higher level in their service of Hashem. 

Chassidim of the Mittler Rebbe in the town of Shklov used to say that even an indirect remark from Michoel the Melamed was so strong that it readied a person ready to properly receive the words of the Rebbe in yechidus. Reb Shlomo Maneson was a chosid of Mittler Rebbe. He came from a wealthy background as well as being wealthy in his own right. He was educated and guided from the chassidim of the Alter Rebbe. After he would go into yechidus by the Mittler Rebbe, he would come out and make fabrengen and dance in the circle as was customary. Although he acted appropriately, nevertheless, there was something missing. They were not reflecting a true chassidishe warmth; it was a too “balabatish”. 

Reb Shlomo, along with all other young chassidishe men in Shklov, would daven with great fervor and would attend the chassidishe fabrengens. One time, Reb Michoel the melamed, sat alone on the side by a fabrengen as he was beating his chest and his head while complaining about himself out loud. He said; “Ribbono Shel Olam, have compassion on me. Help me that I should have true vitality and pleasure in the words ‘Vehair Eineinu’ (Enlighten our eyes in your Torah, our hearts should cleave to your mitzvos, and unify our hearts to love and fear your name (said in the morning berachos of the Shema) ) just like the vitality and pleasure that Shlomo Maneson has when he says the words, “Haosher Vehakavod Milfanecha” (Riches and honor are in front of you. (said in morning prayer of “Viyavorech David”))” 

Michoel the Melamed said what he did without any intention to disrespect Reb Shlomo. He was speaking to himself. He was thinking about himself and how unhappy he was with his level in service of Hashem. He was lamenting his lack of a “derher”, a feeling and insight to this request that ‘Veha’air Enieinu’ should be an absolute truth just like Reb Shlomo prayed for riches and honor. Nevertheless, when Reb Shlomo heard it, it made a huge impression on him. Soon there after he left for Lubavitch, spent time by the Mittler Rebbe in Lubavitch and became an altogether different person. 

From this we see the impact of Chassidishe fabrengen. The eight years that Reb Shlomo traveled to Lubavitch and had Yechidus, for some reason did not have their full impact. Something was getting in the way. It was the indirect remark of Reb Michoel the Melamed that made such a strong impression on him, enough to break through what stood in the way, and made him ready and suitable for the words of the Mittler Rebbe. 

The real depth of this story was the true emes of Reb Michoel’s service. The words that affected Reb Shlomo were not directed toward or intended to fix Reb Shlomo.  Reb Michoel was motivated by his own lack of service and said a true and heartfelt request asking Hashem to enlighten his eyes in the Torah etc. This is what moved Reb Shlomo. Michoel had been by the Alter Rebbe when his chassidim had achieved a true avodah, an avodah without excuses. Love and fear by these elder chassidim was inscribed in the very way that they walked.  When their avodah was incomplete, it affected them very deeply. The light of truth reflected in Reb Michoel’s feelings of deep pain in his request to Hashem to have a vitality and pleasure for Torah and Mitzvos, just like the vital pleasure that Reb Shlomo had in praying for wealth in honor had a general affect Shlomo that cancelled out his resistance. It nullified the blockage which held Reb Shlomo back in his life making him unable to receive the holy words from the Mittler Rebbe in his yechidus with true chassidishe warmth.

After telling this story, the Previous Rebbe, ended by saying that chassidim should be healthy and well and that by making fabrengens together, in the ways of the chassidim, they truly enliven their souls. 

A true chassidishe fabrengen provides the “general nullification”. This means that a real fabrengen has the power to cancel out whatever stands in the way. From there each person must do what he needs to in his particular service in an orderly fashion, by turning away from the bad and doing what is good. Hashem Yisborach should make each one successful in his Torah and in his service of his heart. It should be with you and through you that we merit to carry out Hashem’s intention to make a dwelling place for Hashem in this lower world. 

Announcements - Toldos

  • Click here for KYY newsletter.
  • Rabbi & Mrs. Mendy Spalter invite you to a farbrengen this Friday night for the refuah shlaima of Chaya Mushka bas Hadassa Shaina, at the home of Sara and Dovid Morris at 116 S Orange Dr.
  • The LA shidduch Network invites all women to attend their Melava Malka, this motzei shabbos, 3 Kislev/ Nov 17. "A Match Made in Heaven" with Tzirel Frankel. We are joining forces with Maayon Yisoel & having a comedian who will entertain us with her shidduchim experiences. Click here for more info.
  • Request from Rabbi Raichik: This year be"h on Ches Shevat it is going to be the 15th Yahrtzeit of my father, Harav Menachem Shmuel Dovid Halevi Raichik, ob"m. If anyone has a copy of the Chabad Chodesh from Elul 1998-1999 where we had a write-up about my father in Poland during the World War, please forward it to me as soon as possible. 
  • Bikur Cholim: Mrs. Phyllis Spiller (mother of Charna Mentz) is currently at Kennedy Care Center at 619 N. Fairfax Ave. and would greatly appreciate having visitors.
  • Tehillim: Please say Tehillim for Chaya Mushka bas Hadassah Shaina and Menachem Mendel Halevi ben Ita.

Shabbos Schedule - Toldos

  • Shabbos Candle Lighting: 4:30 pm
  • Shiur Chassidus with Rabbi Raichik: 9:00 am
  • Last Time To Read Shema: 9:02 am
  • Early Minyan Shacharis: 9:30 am
  • Shacharis: 10:00 am
  • Kol Yakov Yehuda: 10:15
  • Mesibas Shabbos for Girls: 3:30 pm at the Grossman's - 366 N Citrus Ave.
  • Mincha: 4:30 pm
  • Shabbos Ends: 5:33 pm
  • Father & Son Learning: 7:15 pm

Kiddush Sponsors

  • Mr. & Mrs. Yirmiyahu Andrusier in honor of Mr. Yirmiyahu Andrusier’s birthday. May he have a shnas hatzlocho begashmiyus ubruchniyus.
  • The Bastomski Family for the yahrtzeit of their grandfather Yisroel Bastomski ob"m. May the neshomo have an aliya.
  • Rabbi & Mrs. Fischel Grossman for the yahrtzeit of Rabbi Fischel Grossman’s father Nota Moshe ben Tzvi ob"m. May the neshomo have an aliya.
  • Mr. & Mrs. Berl Sroka for the first yahrtzeit of Mr. Berl Sroka's mother Miriam bas Pesach halevi ob"m. May the neshomo have an aliya.
    Also in honor of Mrs. Mindy Sroka's father Yosef Ben Noson halevi ob"m. May the neshomo have an aliya.
  • Rabbi & Mrs. Yona Mordechai Weiss for the yahrtzeit of Mrs. Hadassah Weiss’s father Ben-Zion Yisroel Meir ben Menachem Monish ob"m. May the neshomo have an aliya.

Early Minyan Kiddush Sponsors

  • Mr. & Mrs. Moshe Fishman in honor of the marriage of their son Naftali to Shterny Rapp. May they be Zoche to build a binyan aday ad.
  • Rabbi & Mrs. Sholom Ber Kesselman in honor of Rabbi Sholom Ber Kesselman’s birthday. May he have a shnas hatzlocho begashmiyus ubruchniyus.

Women's Shabbos Shiur

At the home of Mrs. Sima Zeifman
421 N Poinsettia Pl.
3:30 pm
Speaker: Rabbi Levi Kramer

Mazal Tov To

  • Mr. & Mrs. Moshe Fishman on the marriage of their son Naftali to Shterny Rapp.

Upcoming Birthdays

  • Yecheskel Pinson - 3 Kislev
  • Menachem Mendel Levenberg - 4 Kislev
  • Dr. Sholem Gimpel - 4 Kislev
  • Rabbi Yerachmiel Helfant - 5 Kislev
  • Shneur Zalman Plotke - 5 Kislev
  • Avremi Raichik - 6 Kislev
  • Mr. Yirmiyahu Andrusier - 6 Kislev
  • Tzvi Grossman - 6 Kislev
  • Rabbi Yosef  Y. Shusterman - 8 Kislev
  • Rabbi Sholom Raichik - 9 Kislev

Upcoming Anniversaries

  • Mr. & Mrs. David Rafael Gutierrez - 3 Kislev
  • Mr. & Mrs. Ariel Haratz - 4 Kislev
  • Rabbi & Mrs. Yosef Yitzchok Mishulovin - 7 Kislev
  • Rabbi & Mrs. Yrachmiel Wolowik - 8 Kislev

Upcoming Yahrtzeits

  • Miriam bas Pesach halevi (Mr. Berl Sroka's mother) - 3 Kislev
  • Yisroel Bastomski - 6 Kislev
  • Chaya bas Sendor (Mrs. Marsha Alperin’s mother) - 6 Kislev
  • Nota Moshe ben Tzvi (Rabbi Fischel Grossman’s father) - 7 Kislev
  • Ben-Zion Yisroel Meir ben Menachem Monish (Mrs. Hadassah Weiss’s father) - 9 Kislev

Devar Torah

Living for the Moment

By Rabbi Shimon Raichik

This week Chabad Chassidim all over the world celebrated Rosh Chodesh Kislev, the day marking the Rebbe’s recovery from the massive heart attack he had on Shmini Atzeres 1977 during hakafos. His doctor Dr Weiss said that this heart attack was a “number 10”, and that no one believed that it was possible for the Rebbe to come back as he did. On Rosh Chodesh Kislev the Rebbe returned home after spending six weeks recovering in his office turned hospital room in 770.

It is challenging at times when we go over the story with those who were not there or have never seen the Rebbe. They say that they do not feel a connection, and that we are telling them stories from the past that are not relevant to them today. They may show up at the fabrengen for a half an hour out of respect, but they will tell you that while you were there and therefore you have feelings for these things they were not and therefore do not share those feelings. They are where they are and more interested in the present moment. Therefore why should we be bugging them about things that they will never achieve?

We have a few yomim tovim in Kislev. Chanukah is celebrated because of things that happened in the time of the Beis HaMikdash 2200 years ago. Why do we celebrate? Were you there? Was your father or even your grandfather there? Also Yud Tes Kislev; why do we celebrate? Were you there? Was your father or even your grandfather there either?

Every day of our lives, as we live them, one day at a time, we live far more that what seems on the surface to be the present moment. This is because the present moment has within it the past and the future as well. The future is built upon how we live in the present. If there is no present, if we are not infusing the present moment with the vitality and simcha of the candle of the mitzvos and the light of the Torah, then we have no future. Today cannot be the way it should be without a connection to the past. In the first maamar of the Rebbe, Baasi L’Gani, the Rebbe said that we are the seventh generation of the first generation of the Alter Rebbe. Moshe Rabbenu; in the merit of being the seventh generation from Avraham Avinu (Echod haya Avraham), we merited to receive the Torah. The Torah could not be given in the seventh generation, without the past, without Avraham Avinu. Without the Alter Rebbe, in the past, we would not have arrived to the seventh generation; one is built upon the other.

The events that led up to the Alter Rebbe’s redemption on Yud Tes Kislev were caused by a decree that happened because so many secrets of the Torah were being revealed. On Yud Tes Kislev the Alter Rebbe won the case and he continued to reveal Toras HaChassidus in a much greater way than before. We are here today because of the Alter Rebbe. We are not just commemorating the past we are celebrating our present situation in the here and now!

This is also true about Chanukah. We are here today due to the heroism of a few Chashmonaim. If not for them we would have assimilated into Greek culture and become Hellenists. Today, the way we are, our merit to be Jewish and have the quality of life we do is because of the Chashmonaim and their mesirus nefesh.

During the six weeks that the Rebbe was in his room, our future hung in the balance. We did not know how the Rebbe was going to continue. As mentioned before, Dr Weiss said that the Rebbe’s survival and return to health were miraculous and beyond all odds. On Rosh Chodesh Kislev the Rebbe emerged victorious, and continued his leadership in an even greater way than before:

Tzivos Hashem began after Rosh Chodesh Kislev.
The Sefer Torah uniting Klal Yisroel began after Rosh Chodesh Kislev.
The mivtzah of learning Rambam began after Rosh Chodesh Kislev.
The vast expansion Chabad Houses began after Rosh Chodesh Kislev.
A large percentange of our Yeshivos and Schools began after Rosh Chodesh Kislev.

The expansion of Shluchim all over the Globe is incomparable from before to after Rosh Chodesh Kislev. The very fact that we have communities with Chabad Houses all over the world with schools Yeshivos and services, and we have where to daven and to send our children to learn are all reasons for why we should celebrate Rosh Chodesh Kislev today.

Why have we continued to grow so much since Gimmel Tammuz? It’s because we know that the Rebbe is NOT A LEGACY, the Rebbe is ALIVE for us today!

To be able to feel alive and connected, we need to learn Chassidus every day. We need to nourish our minds and souls, not just by remembering our Bar Mitzvah Maamar that we learned so long ago. Is our entire Yiddishkeit relegated to what we learned once upon a time in Cheder? G-d forbid! We need to learn every day Chassidus to give us new life and fresh vitality so that when a Yom Tov comes up we are in the mood and not dried out. We will have a feeling and an understanding of what the Yom Tov really means. Then we will greet the Yom Tov with the anticipation of the experience, what can be accomplished and can be taken away from the Yom Tov. Our future and our children’s future depend on this.

When the Rebbe was sick in bed he continued to speak Chassidus from his room. He continued to worry about Eretz Yisroel. He wanted people to continue writing in and gave brochos for shidduchim etc. He remained strong and engaged about settling Eretz Yisroel. Later the Rebbe foresaw what is happening today in Eretz Yisroel and did all that was possible. The Rebbe said that if Israel continues with this peace process then no one in Eretz Yisroel would be safe. He mentioned the names of cities that no one believed would be attacked. He continued to beg and to warn. We all witnessed and saw the emes of Moshe Emes v’Toraso emes in all the Rebbe’s words and campaigns. 

When we reflect on all of this we realize that we need to be connected in a way that is beyond time and space to emes, to Moshe emes v’Toraso emes. Inspired by the day of Rosh Chodesh Kislev let us take on new and fresh resolutions, today, to increase in learning Chassidus and doing all of the minhagim and the mivtzoim of the Rebbe, today.

We should all daven and add in tzekadaka and mitzvos for the safety of the Jewish people all over the world, especially for our brothers and sisters in Eretz Yisroel who are under siege. We pray that Hashem should protect all of them.

Announcements - Chayei Sarah

  • Click here for KYY newsletter.
  • Rabbi & Mrs. Mendy Spalter invite you to a farbrengen this Friday night for the refuah shlaima of Chaya Mushka bas Hadassa Shaina, at the home of Rabbi and Mrs. Thaler 418 N Martel.
  • Farbrengen for men in shul Wednesday night, 8:00 pm, in honor of the Rosh Chodesh Kislev. Guest speaker - Rabbi Mendel Lipskier from Sherman Oaks.
  • Nichum Availim: Mrs. Yocheved Novack is sitting shiva for the passing of her father Mr. Arnold Gordon at 1231 South Sherbourne Drive (Downstairs). Email: ymn@novack.us. Phone: (323) 378-0223 (Calls preferred earlier in the day). Hamokom Yenachem eschem Besoch Shaar Avaylay Tzion VeYerushalayim. Vehukeetzu Veranenu Shochnay Ufur vehu besochom. 
  • The LA shidduch Network invites all women to attend their Melava Malka, next motzei shabbos, 3 Kislev/ Nov 17. "A Match Made in Heaven" with Tzirel Frankel. We are joining forces with Maayon Yisoel & having a comedian who will entertain us with her shidduchim experiences. Click here for more info.
  • Please say Tehillim for Chaya Mushka bas Hadassah Shaina and Menachem Mendel Halevi ben Ita.

Shabbos Schedule - Chayei Sarah

  • Shabbos Candle Lighting: 4:34 pm
  • Shabbos Mevarchim Tehillim: 8:15 am
  • Followed by a Shiur Chassidus
  • Tehillim Club: 9:00 am
  • Last Time To Read Shema: 8:59 am
  • Early Minyan Shacharis: 10:00 am
  • Shacharis: 10:15 am
  • Mincha: 4:35 pm
  • Shabbos Ends: 5:37 pm
  • Father & Son Learning: 7:15 pm
  • Molad of Chodesh Kislev: Wednesday, MarCheshvon 29/November 14 3:25 am + 10 chalakim
  • Rosh Chodesh Kislev: Thursday, November 15.

Early Minyan Kiddush Sponsors

  • Rabbi & Mrs. Ari Goldman in honor of Ari’s birthday. May he have a shnas hatzlocho begashmiyus ubruchniyus.
  • R' Lazer Handelsman for a zechus for a refuah sheleimah for all the choilim of our city and klall yisroel.
    Also for the yahrtzeit of his grandfather R' Yitzchock ben R' Yonah ob"m. May the neshomo have an aliya.

Women's Shabbos Shiur

 At the home of Mrs. Ruchama Thaler
418 N Martel Ave.
3:30 pm
Speaker: Mrs. Chana Rochel Schusterman

Mazal Tov To

  • Yekusiel and Hindi Kalmenson on the birth of their daughter. Mazal Tov to the grandparents Rabbi & Mrs. Yossi Chazanow.
  • Yossi and Menucha Burston on the birth of their daughter. Mazal Tov to the grandparents Rabbi & Mrs.Chaim Binyomin Burston.

Upcoming Birthdays

  • Rabbi Moishe Kasowitz - 26 Cheshvan
  • Mr. Eli Kagan - 27 Cheshvan
  • Hershel Tsikman - 27 Cheshvan
  • Mr. Simcha Kagan - 27 Cheshvan
  • Adam Brooke - 27 Cheshvan 
  • Rabbi Sholom Ber Kesselman - 28 Cheshvan
  • Rabbi Tzvi Ferszt - 1 Kislev
  • Boruch Shalom Allison - 1 Kislev

Upcoming Anniversaries

  • Rabbi & Mrs. Dovi Goldman - 1 Kislev
  • Rabbi & Mrs. Ari Goldman - 1 Kislev

Upcoming Yahrtzeits

  • Shmuel Gronim ben Yitzchok Meir (Mrs. Yehudit Schneerson’s father) - 1 Kislev

Devar Torah

“Keep on Truckin’!” Part 2
Guidance for Leading the Well Examined Life
with Confidence and Simcha

By Rabbi Shimon Raichik

This week’s parsha discusses how after the akeida Avraham Avinu thought about making a shidduch for Yitzchok. After being told about Rivka’s birth he made a plan to send his servant Eliezer to arrange for the shidduch. The parsha goes through all the details. This story teaches us that before we act we need to make a cheshbon, a plan. Once we have made a plan, we need to turn it into action. In a broader sense, we need to take time to reflect about the meaning of our life. We need to take stock of what we have done so far and where we are headed. On the other hand we need to put aside all considerations when it comes time to act and place our full focus on accomplishing the tasks in front of us.

This week, Rabbi Y. Segal, told me a story about a Jew who was a tremendous Torah scholar. He learned in Tomchei Tomimim in the town of Lubavitch and eventually moved to Yerushalayim. He never got married. Once he told Rabbi Segal that when he was already an older bochur, the Rebbe Rashab asked him what he was doing about shidduchim. He answered that he was ‘thinking about it’. The Rebbe Rashab said, “You’re not allowed to think about a shidduch, (you’re not allowed to just take time to think about it)!” Rather, you need to take action. From this story we learn that we need to make plans, but those plans must lead to action. The plans cannot be so overdone that they get in the way of progress.

The Rebbe, in Igros Kodesh, v. 8 pg. 267, says that a businessman doesn’t close his business and make an inventory every time he has a week or two of lower profits. Instead he spends the valuable time to get more business. It is far more sensible to balance your books from time to time and not on a weekly basis. This avoids the upset of the inevitable ups and downs that occur. So too in kedusha, we also need to make cheshbonos. They should only be done however at specially appointed times. This is particularly true if the additional reflection will only bring confusion into our lives.

On page 72 of volume 8, the Rebbe says that the time for this cheshbon is in the month of Elul before Rosh Hashana when a spiritual inventory of the year is proper and necessary. Otherwise, the only way that one should consider making an additional cheshbon is if it doesn’t weaken his service of Hashem. It goes without saying that one should not make a cheshbon if there is any possibility at all that it will lead to any kind of worry or worse, despair. The Baal Shem Tov teaches, ‘Serve Hashem with simcha,’ that the service should be done with simcha, and the word ‘service’ includes “knowing Him in all your ways”, in all areas of life.

The Rebbe brings in the Rebbe Rashab’s name (Igros Kodesh v.12 pg.205) that there is litmus test to determine which side desires or thoughts come from. The test is to see if they will get in the way of positive action. If it does then it is impure and from the other side. The Rebbe writes in v. 12 pg. 431 that a cheshbon that did not bear fruit is not pure. The Rebbe Rashab says, (brought in Hayom Yom) “If it brings confusion about what to do it is from the other side.”

On the other hand (v. 12 pg. 431), the Rebbe wrote the following answer to an individual who told the Rebbe that he tried to influence others but was not successful. The Rebbe gave an example from the mitzvah of searching for chametz. He said that the mitzvah is to search. A person that searched for chametz but didn’t find any (and therefore has nothing to burn), has nevertheless completed the mitzvah according to Halacha. The Torah was not given to ministering angels rather to human beings.

This is also true with regard to the mitzvah of caring for others and Ahavas Yisroel. The Rebbe wrote that since you took the time to point out something that you were supposed to and you tried to help someone to improve their situation; even though it is almost a certainty that a mistake was made in the cheshbon, still (!), one action is superior to a thousand complaints and you should continue to try. By fulfilling your shlichus from above, nothing will be withheld, and eventually your attempts will be successful and lead things in the proper direction.

Announcements - Vayeira

  • Click here for KYY newsletter.
  • Rabbi & Mrs. Mendy Spalter invite you to a farbrengen this Friday night for the refuah shlaima of Chaya Mushka bas Hadassa Shaina, at the home of Menny and Hudy Lipskier 121 S Orange Dr.
  • Farbrengen for men in shul Sunday night, 8:00 pm, in honor of the Chof Cheshvon - birthday of the Rebbe Rashab. Guest speaker - Rabbi Lesches from Monsey, NY.
  • Nichum Availim: Mrs. Mindy Sroka is sitting shiva in NY for the passing of her father r’ Yosef ben r’ Noson Flamenbaum ob”m. She can be reached at (310) 350-6509. She is getting up on Wednesday morning. Hamokom Yenachem eschem Besoch Shaar Avaylay Tzion VeYerushalayim. Vehukeetzu Veranenu Shochnay Ufur vehu besochom!
  • Please say Tehillim for Chaya Mushka bas Hadassah Shaina and Menachem Mendel Halevi ben Ita.

Shabbos Schedule - Vayeira

  • Shabbos Candle Lighting: 5:40 pm
  • Shiur Chassidus with Rabbi Raichik: 9:00 am
  • Last Time To Read Shema: 9:55 am
  • Early Minyan Shacharis: 9:30 am
  • Shacharis: 10:00 am
  • Mesibos Shabbos for Girls: 4:30 pm in Shul
  • Mincha: 5:40 pm
  • Shabbos Ends: 6:43 pm
  • Motzei Shabbos - Turn Clocks Back One Hour

Kiddush Sponsors

  • Mr. & Mrs. Nachum Cherman in honor of the bas-mitzvah of their daughter Masha Rivkah. May they have much nachas from her and may she grow up to Torah, to Chupa and to Maasim Tovim.
  • Rabbi & Mrs. Levi Raichik in honor of Mrs. Miriam Raichik's birthday. May she have a shnas hatzlocho begashmiyus ubruchniyus.

Early Minyan Kiddush Sponsors

  • Mr. & Mrs. Yossi Goldman in honor of Yossi Goldman's birthday. May he have a shnas hatzlocho begashmiyus ubruchniyus.
  • Rabbi and Mrs. Levi Lesches in honor of the birth of their daughter Dina Gittel. May they have much nachas from her and may she grow up to Torah, to Chupa and to Maasim Tovim. 
  • Rabbi & Mrs. Zali Munitz in honor of thier son Mendel's birthday. May he have a shnas hatzlocho begashmiyus ubruchniyus.
  • Mr. & Mrs. Jack Soussana for the yahrtzeit of Mrs. Elka Soussana's mother Keira bas Yosef ob"m. May the neshomo have an aliya. 

Women's Shabbos Shiur

At the home of Mrs. Yehudit Schneerson
364 N Fuller Ave.
4:30 pm
Speaker: Rabbi Shaya Berkowitz

Mazal Tov To

  • Mr. & Mrs. Nachum Cherman on the bas-mitzvah of their daughter Masha Rivkah.

Upcoming Birthdays

  • Mr. Yossi Goldman - 20 Cheshvan
  • Menachem Mendel Stark - 20 Cheshvan
  • Dr. Ira Cohen - 21 Cheshvan
  • Mr. Shmuel Eiferman - 22 Cheshvan
  • Yisroel Dovid Tsikman - 24 Cheshvan
  • Rabbi Tzvi Kravitz - 24 Cheshvan
  • Dovid Yehudah Ben Adam - 24 Cheshvan

Upcoming Anniversaries

  • Rabbi & Mrs. Jonathan Glabman - 20 Cheshvan
  • Rabbi & Mrs. Tzvi Kravitz - 24 Cheshvan

Upcoming Yahrtzeits

  • Keira bas Yosef (Mrs. Elka Soussana's mother) - 19 Cheshvon

Devar Torah

How We See Ourselves:
An Artist's Perspective 

By Rabbi Shimon Raichik

This week's parsha speaks about the tests that Hashem gave Avraham Avinu which culminated in the biggest and final test of the akeida.  So too, each one of us in our personal lives have tests of our own that we go through. Sometimes our challenges can pile up until the point that we lift up our hands in despair. We say; enough! These challenges arrive in many shapes and sizes. They can come from working for a mosad and not seeing progress, to business, health to personal shortcomings.

In Igros Kodesh volume 4 page 222 the Rebbe addresses the topic of challenges and despair. While answering an artist's questions about his difficulties in overcoming personal difficulties, the Rebbe uses an artist and his art as a metaphor for acheiving and maintaining a perspective that transcends life's trails and tribulations. Since the Baal Shem Tov said that everything we see teaches a lesson in the service of Hashem, so too with art. An artist must find a way, using the outer manifestation of the picture to express the inner essence of the subject. This can be difficult if at first he does not see the inner aspect that he seeks to reveal. He must delve deeper into the subject until he is able to realize it because it was covered by its surface. So too, our 'art', our service of Hashem is to reveal the essence of aiyn od milvado, that everything in truth is living solely from the word of Hashem. 

Every Jew has a neshama, he or she  is a child of Hashem and is always connected (as explained in the Tanya chapter 2). Hashem wants to benefit the neshama by enabling it the merit to earn it's own reward. For this he has given us the Torah and mitzvos so that through our own service we can merit the highest levels. One may ask; what if some do not complete their mission, are they lost? The Alter Rebbe explains in chapter 39 of the Tanya, that "Lo yidach memenu yidach", that no one will ever be completely pushed away and that eventually everyone will fulfill their purpose.

Therefore if someone is being tested, and these tests seem too difficult, he should remember that Hashem, the one who created his neshama gave him those tests and that surely he made it possible to complete his mission.  Hashem does not make a burden too difficult to carry. This is true even if we have fallen through in the past. Nevertheless, the Torah says that we are his children; Hashem refers to each and every one of us as his firstborn! Reminding us of this should give us the simcha that we can and will make it. Hashem requests of us just to open up to Him like the eye of a needle, and He will open up to us like the entryway of the Bais HaMikdash. 

Still someone may say that although Hashem has this calculation, nevertheless it looks quite different to me. Because I am so low i do not see how i can ever be successful in overcoming my personal challenges, and therefore I consider myself lost. So who is correct? If you have a disagreement between the Rav and the talmid, who do you follow? The Rav! Look deeper into the picture and you will see that the essence is "v'amech kulam tzadikim", that every Jew is a tzadik in his essence, and therefore you DO have the energy and the ability to succeed! 

This is especially true for those who have merited to be amongst the congregation of chassidim, to be connected to "Ilana d' Chaya" to the Rabbeim. Therefore we should use our talents to their utmost to help with yiras shomayim, fear of heaven.

The Rebbe ends by saying not to leave for tomorrow what can be accomplished today. Tomorrow is for what tomorrow brings while today is to accomplish the work of today with our utmost in all it's aspects. If we will open up to our avodah like the eye of a needle then Hashem will open up like the entryway of the Bais HaMikdash!

The point of this letter is that we need to know who we are. We are Jews that Hashem created; we are his children etc.. When we do just a little bit then Hashem will help us ten fold. We should not get caught up in the superficial facade of this world. By learning Chassidus we will begin see everything according to the true perspective of the Torah.

(Adapted from Igros Kodesh v.4 pg. 222)

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