I don’t usually write public letters, but I wanted to share something that’s dear to my heart.
Rabbi Yitzi Hurwitz is a well-known and beloved shaliach of the Rebbe in the town of Temecula, CA. He has inspired many Jews there, and has also managed to be a good friend to many, including me. He visited me on several occasions in Hebron, the City of the Patriarchs- the last being a few years back when he had just been diagnosed with ALS.
I met him initially as a healthy and robust man, and our meetings thereafter showed drastic declining health. The last time he was in Hebron, his body was functioning properly but he had lost the ability to speak clearly. As he spoke to our Israeli soldiers, his wife Dina steadily translated his slurred words. He signed and motioned with his hands much of his passionate message which was thanking the soldiers for their strength and dedication in protecting the city of Avraham Avinu.
One and a half years later, I visited Yitzi in Los Angeles. At this point, Yitzi was laid up in bed, and only able to move the pupils of his eyes. He has been in this predicament for the last six years. As a father of 7, it is his righteous wife Dina who cares for Yitzi and the children around the clock.
Yitzi and his family have been receiving support from the Chabad community in California and the Shluchim around the world for many years. Yitzi has always had a passion and been involved in the mivtza of Tefillin.
This week is Yitzi’s birthday. Chabad Yeshivot world wWide initiated a Tefillin Campaign for Yitzi. The positive response from communities around the world is truly mind blowing. By Thursday of this week, 10,000 Jews had already put on Tefilin in honor of Rabbi Yitzi. Today, Chabad Chassidim ALL over the world are participating in this campaign of Tefillin for Yitzi. (I do not exaggerate, I am a member on group chats and pictures are constantly streaming depicting scenes around the globe with men donning Tefilin).
Yitzi was a community rabbi, a devoted Shliach, and a true servant of Hashem. The amazing thing is that even from his sickbed, Yitzi continues to send daily and weekly positive and inspirational messages to the Jewish people. His social media presence is popular and he has many followers.
Thanks to the technology that God has given to the world in the generation of the Redemption, Yitzi succeeds in communication through a revolutionary device that allows the ALS patient to dictate messages to a screen above his bed. By moving his pupils to certain points on the keyboard, he can choose letters and entire sentences.
With pure love for a fellow Jew, you can merit today- on this holy Erev Shabbat- to bring in light and love by asking a fellow Jew if they’d like to be part of Yitzi’s Tefilin campaign. Let’s reach 20,000 men to do this Mitzva! These actions bring him, God, and the Rebbe tremendous joy through these actions of Ahavas Yisrael and Tefillin. Who can refuse such a special request?
I hope and pray that through this great operation of uniting the entire world, Moshiach will come and completely heal the body and soul of all the People of Israel!
In this video clip, you can see Rabbi Yitzi at his computer, transmitting a long message of thanks to all enthusiastic participants of this campaign and encouraging them to be successful with reaching their goal.
With love and prayer for Yitzi’s healing,
Chabad of Hebron