Hi dear friend. My name is Benny Friedman.
Let me tell you a little about my Shul. It is a lovely little Shul hosting a lively little community.
Now no Shul has everything. Some are missing towels for the Mikveh, some are missing milk for the coffee, some are missing reading material for the sermon, some are missing the forest for the trees.
Marvelously, our lovely Shul, Anshei Lubavitch, is missing none of the above – but it is missing a grip on reality.
Let me explain.
From the day I first stepped into Anshei Lubavitch, I noticed that reality is no big deal to the people of this community, and so they’ve never bothered with it.
It’s noticeable to the perceptive all week long. But it becomes a glaring omission on Shabbos afternoon. One Shabbos at the Kiddush, someone said something about the Shul needing a Mikveh. It was unrealistic. The space wasn’t conducive and the money wasn’t there. Sure enough, one year later, the Mikveh was up and running. Reality is suing for neglect.
Another Shabbos, someone said something about not wanting to be a Shul without a Shiur in three-Perakim Rambam. So someone else said something about starting one at 9:15 am daily, the only time slot available that wouldn’t interfere with another shiur. People murmured, 9:15 am, who can come then, that’s unrealistic. Perfect! The 9:15 am daily Shiur in three-Perakim Rambam is now in its eighth month. Reality is looking for a new home.
And speaking of a new home, at some point, these unrealistic projects became simply too manageable. Something truly impossible needed to be undertaken. And so here we are, in the throes of a $2.5 million campaign to purchase the building next door and expand the Shul to entice even more people into this delightfully delusional community that thinks it can – and does – adjust reality at whim like a child playing with Mr. Potato Head.
And wouldn’t you know it. We have passed the $2.2 million mark and are inviting you to join us in this audacious quest. Leave reality behind and make miracles. Take part in this unreal way of living and giving.
Personally, I would strongly recommend it. This is a special community. The mutual concern for one another’s welfare is remarkable. The devotion of the Rabbi and Rebbetzin is priceless. That great feeling of belonging, sometimes an elusive prize in the Shechuna, is the hallmark of Anshei Lubavitch. Even something as simple as receiving a text in the middle of a multi-day trip out-of-town – “Hey didn’t see you at Shiur for a while, all good?” – signifies a higher value, a sense of family and acts as a stabilizing anchor in the mayhem of daily life. Who doesn’t love that?
I want to finish on a grateful note.
My gratitude goes out to all the colorful personalities who populate this happy place. For your caring, sharing, and daring, for dismissing reality and thinking big – thank you. You’ve enriched my life and the life of my family. You’ve given us good times, great memories, and a big boost in life, physically and especially spiritually. You’ve helped me learn more, live better and be more connected. Above all, you’ve opened up a whole new way of perceiving reality. As Shimon says to Yehuda in Miracle of the Maccabees, “You’ve got me believing your crazy dreams.”