Rabbis of Ukraine Surprise the Minister of the Diaspora While Touring Kfar Chabad

A tour of the Etrog orchard, listening to the sound of the shofar, visiting a beehive, and donning tefillin, were the focus of the visit to Kfar Chabad in Central Israel of Mr. Nachman Shai, Israeli’s Diaspora Minister. The minister was surprised to learn that among the hosts were three of Ukraine’s leading rabbis who granted him a “Token of Salvation” for his assistance to the Jewish communities in Ukraine during the past year.

Photos by Shneur Schiff

The Minister of the Diaspora, Mr. Nachman Shay, made a comprehensive visit to the Kfar Chabad village towards the upcoming New Year and was surprised to learn that among the hosts waiting for him at the entrance of the village were three dominant community rabbis from Ukraine; Rabbi Moshe Moskowitz – Chief Rabbi of Kharkiv, Rabbi Nachum Erntroy – Chief Rabbi of Zaparozehe, and Rabbi Mordechai Lavanhartz – from Kyiv. They came especially to welcome him and acknowledge his activities for the benefit of the Jews of Ukraine in the most challenging year of their lives.

These three central cities have been in the headlines many times in the last months since the crisis broke out. The rabbis who remained on duty are in continuous touch with the Minister of the Diaspora, and he was excited to meet them in person during his special visit to the Chabad village.

Minister Shai’s visit began in the village’s etrog orchard. He was received by the Chasidic farmer Elazar Garlick who told him about the history of the orchard that provides thousands of beautiful etrogs globally every year. From there, Minister Shai continued to the village’s beehives, where he was received by the Schneerson family. The minister was shown the honey production process in the factory.

At the heart of the Diaspora Minister’s visit was the visit to “770” house – a replica of the Lubavitcher Rebbe’s house in Brooklyn. The minister donned tefillin and offered a prayer. Rabbi Nachum Erntroy – Chief Rabbi of Zaparozehe, sounded the shofar.

The visit concluded with the awarding of a “Token of Salvation” to the Minister of the Diaspora, which was warmly presented by FJC Rabbi Shlomo Chaim Peles – who manages the emergency and rescue efforts of Chabad and FJC in Ukraine, together with the rabbis and their communities in Ukraine. The rabbis thanked Mr. Shai for his efforts and ongoing activity for the benefit of the Jewish communities.

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