On the eve of Nissan 28, 5751 (April 11, 1991), the Lubavitcher Rebbe issued an emotional call to his followers, and to the world Jewish community, to increase their efforts to bring Moshiach and the ultimate redemption.
Spoken in an anguished voice and couched in uncharacteristically personal terms, the Rebbe’s words deeply shocked the Chassidim present in the Rebbe’s synagogue and reverberated worldwide.
“How is it that the Redemption has not yet been attained?” the Rebbe cried.
“That despite all that has transpired and all that has been done, Moshiach has still not come? What more can I do? I have done all I can to bring the world to truly demand and clamor for the Redemption…The only thing that remains for me to do is to give over the matter to you.
“Do all that is in your power to achieve this thing–a most sublime and transcendent light that needs to be brought down into our world with pragmatic tools… I have done all I can. I give it over to you. Do all that you can to bring the righteous redeemer, immediately! I have done my part.
“From this point on, all is in your hands…”
No abatement was seen in the Rebbe’s activities following this talk. On the contrary: although approaching his 90th birthday, he accelerated. Every Shabbos there was another farbrengen, and sometimes several more during the week. Every Sunday, the Rebbe stood for hours, greeting visitors with blessings and advice–and a dollar to give to charity. His campaign to bring the world to an awareness of the imminence of the Age of Moshiach continued and intensified.
But a suspenseful expectation hung in the air. The Rebbe had implied that the torch that had been passed from leader to leader, from prophet to sage since Abraham–that torch had now been passed by the Rebbe to each and every one of us.
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