Over 200 descendants of the Alter Rebbe gathered this past Motzoei Shabbos Shmos, in connection with Chof Daled Teves – the yahrzeit of the Alter Rebbe, author of the Tanya and founder of Chabad Lubavitch.
The gathering was addressed by the Harnesteipler Rebbe – Rabbi Mordchai Dov Twerski, a descendant himself, who passionately called upon Chabad Chassidim “who have the remedy of Chassidus” to save the world from intermarriage and assimilation and bring our brethren back to their original fold.
Famed psychologist Rabbi Dr. Ben Tzion Twerski, a descendant as well, spoke of the great psychological and emotional advantage that being a descendent offers. He also emphasized that the privilege indeed comes with a responsibility.
Rabbi Osher Anshil Menachem Ehrenfeld of Matersdorf, a descendant of the Chasam Sofer on his paternal side and a descendant of the Alter Rebbe on his maternal side, emphasized the need to learn from Moshe Rabbeinu how a Jew should conduct himself.
The emcee and organizer of the event was Rabbi Shmuel Butman in his role as the chairman of the “Association of Descendants of the Alter Rebbe.”
In his remarks he shared what the Rebbe said concerning the connection of the Parshas Voeiro, the yahrzeit of the Rambam, (Monday, Chof Teves), and the yzhrzeit of the Alter Rebbe, (Friday, Chof Daled Teves). “They are all connected with the exit of Mitzrayim and the end of Golus.”
Rabbi Leibel Groner, a descendant who served as the Rebbe’s secretary, told a story of the Rebbe and stressed that special attention should be focused on learning Chassidus in preparation to the concealed part of Torah to be taught by Moshiach imminently.
10 niggunim composed by the Alter Rebbe were sung, led by descendants Rabbi Sholom Ber Schneerson, his son Rabbi Mendel Schneerson; Rabbi Mendel Baumgarten and his son, the renowned Chazzan Schneur Zalman Baumgarten.
A special moment was marked when two young “Tzetzoim” (descendents) Avrohom Schneerson and Menachem Mendel Kugel played the Alter Rebbe’s Niggunim on their violins.
They started with Keili Ato and Kol Dodi and concluded with playing the Alter Rebbe’s Niggun.
“To hear the young tzetzoim (descendents) play the niggunim, especially the Daled Bavos, was an extraordinary experience that I will never forget,” said a participant.
Rabbi Butman thanked his son Rabbi Yossi Butman for organizing the event and thanked the descendants for their participation.
Photos by Menachem Kozlovsky for COLlive.com