This Shabbos, Parshas Nitzavim-Vayelech, over 200 of Anash children in Los Angeles will be davening together at Kol Yakov Yehuda – the Rebbe’s Diamond Daveners.
The program which is known as “A Shul for the kids by the kids,” began 16 years ago in a small tent, outside Congregation Levi Yitzchok in Hancock Park, and has been under its auspices since.
Besides for davening together, children participate in the formal atmosphere of a shul, where one of the congregants has a turn to be the ‘Junior Rav’ and gives a ‘Drasha’. Other positions that the congregants have a turn at, are the ‘President’, ‘Vice President’ and ‘Gabbaim’.
The junior congregation now has 6 groups running simultaneously Shabbos in and Shabbos out:
Ezras Anoshim: all boys ready to daven with a full-fledged Minyan
Ezras Noshim: girls grades 3-8
Bainany Minyan: Boys grades 1-2
Bainaniya Girls: Girls grades 1-2
Mini Minyan: Girls age 2-2nd grade, Boys age 2-Pre1A
Gesher Group: Shul for kids of all abilities and special needs
The shul has earned a worldwide reputation as a leading program, empowering Chabad children to become Shluchim and leaders. Since the conception 16 years ago, over half a dozen Chabad communities picked up this formula, including Montreal, Miami Beach, New York and around Southern California.
Kol Yakov Yehudah was founded by activist Rabbi Mendel Duchman and is named after his legendary father in law Rabbi JJ Hecht OBM who was involved in Jewish education for youth throughout his lifetime.
Rabbi Duchman said that this coming year of 5778 promises to be “the best year with upgraded incentive programs as well as other positions to be filled by the junior congregants.”
In addition to Shul on Shabbos, they have ongoing programs during the week. This week Shabbos, there will be a special Kiddush and farbrengen after davening to welcome its members from the summer.
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