By COLlive reporter
Rabbi Sholom Jacobson, a Lubavitcher chossid and scholar who spent his life publishing and printing Chassidus, passed away on Tuesday, 18 Menachem Av 5781.
He was 74 and has been ill in recent years.
He was born on 7 Adar 5707 (1947) in Poking Pine City, the second largest displaced persons (DP) camp in Germany following the Second World War.
His father was Rabbi Simon Yaakovshvilli, one of the chassidim who gave an oath to the Frierdiker Rebbe to sacrifice his life for Judaism despite Communist oppression in 1933. His mother was Freida Chodosh, grand granddaughter of the chossid R’ Gershon Ber Paharer.
When his father was arrested by the KGB for sustaining Jewish institutions and exiled to Siberia, Sholom remained with his mother and older brothers Gershon Ber Jacobson and Betzalel Jacobson. In the 50s, the family immigrated to Toronto, Canada.
After his mother’s passing in 1955, he moved to Crown Heights and remained attached and dedicated to the Rebbe ever since. The famous chossid R’ Benzion Shemtov, passionate about publishing the Rebbe’s sichos, asked him to assist him in the holy work.
The institute that was created was Vaad L’Hafotzas Sichos where Rabbi Jacobson worked for almost four decades, using his phenomenal memory, dedication and scholarship to bring the Rebbe’s Likkutei Sichos to the Lubavitch world and wider Jewish community.
During a farbrengen on the Shabbos before his wedding in Kislev 5733, the Rebbe called him over. The wedding of Rabbi Jacobson with Faigl Shpriger of Kfar Chabad was going to take place in Israel and the Rebbe gave him a bottle of mashke to bring it to Israeli President Zalman Shazar on his birthday.
“You are indeed a chosson, and a chosson is similar to a king, yet you will of course agree to fulfil this mission,” the Rebbe commented and Rabbi Jacobson immediately agreed.
In a phone conversation on 24 Cheshvan 5733, the Rebbe’s mazkir Rabbi Mordechai Aizik Hodakov passed along an instruction from the Rebbe to Rabbi Ephraim Wolff, who oversaw Chabad-Lubavitch’s operations in Israel.
“About the wedding of Sholom Jacobson,” the message said. “He is a person of self-sacrifice for the distribution of the sichos and this is his main interest and he is invested in it.”
The message then instructed to arrange a Sheva Brachos meal in his honor and it should be organized as a surprise by the ones who deal with distributing the sichos in Israel.
Rabbi Jacobson lectured on Chassidic topics in various forums, nationally and internationally. He taught in many institutions such as Yeshiva Oholei Torah, Machon Chana and in recent years was the Mashpia of the Ahavas Moshe shul in Crown Heights.
He spoke at many Chabad centers and events with an emphasizes on the topic of Moshiach and Geula and would publish a weekly “Leben Mit Moshiach,” first as a fax and then as a printed pamphlet and an email.
He also oversaw the world-wide Tanya printing project which has the Alter Rebbe‘s foundational book of Chabad Chassidus printed in cities and towns all over the world to being holiness to each location.
He is survived by his wife Faigl, their children Rabbi Levi Jacobson – Toronto, Canada; Mrs. Frida Schusterman – Indianapolis, Indiana; Rabbi Simon Jacobson – Punta Gorda, Florida; Mrs. Doba Webb – New York City; Mrs. Chana Steinmetz – Crown Heights; Chaim Moshe Jacobson – Crown Heights, Rabbi Mendel Jacobson – Atlanta Georgia, Shmuel Jacobson; and grandchildren.
The levaya will be held on Wednesday – 10:00 AM at Shomrei Hadas and 11:00 AM at 770 Eastern Parkway.
Baruch Dayan Haemes: Sholom ben Simon