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Shul News

Chabad House Happenings

 Dear Friends,

This Sunday we will mark the 27th yahrtzeit of the Rebbe, z"l who transformed the Jewish world in his lifetime and whose impact continues to grow from year to year.

In honor of this special day, we will have a Farbrengen Kiddush this Shabbos to inspire one another to fulfill his wishes to make the world the best it can be with the coming of Moshiach.

On Sunday morning, Rochel and I will travel to NY to visit his resting place and and for the Rebbe's blessings for our community. If you have specific requests that you would like to convey please contact me and I will include you in my prayers.

With best wishes for a good Shabbos and an inspiring Gimmel Tammuz,

Rabbi Lazer & Rochel Lazaroff 

Chabad House Happenings

Dear Friends,

As the summer rains begin, (which follows the spring, winter and fall rains) we once again bid farewell to our interns who served the community so faithfully throughout the year. 

With the unusual circumstances that we all experienced this year, we are delighted that Mussy Schapiro joined us for a second year to provide comfort, friendship, companionship and joy to Aishel House residents and to the children of Chabad at the Medical Center.

Please join us this week's Shabbos kiddush as we thank her for her two years of service to the community and wish her well on her continued journey where we are certain she will continue to bring light to the world. 

Rabbi Lazer & Rochel Lazaroff 

Chabad House Happenings

Dear Friends,

It has been a difficult few weeks as our brothers and sisters in Eretz Yisrael have been enduring bombardments and pogroms from Gaza and in their own neighborhoods in Lod, Acco and Yerushalayim.

What has been unnerving to many is to see the media turn everything around and portray the Jews are murderous agressors, and the Arabs who are trying to annihilate them as the victims.

In the meantime, Jews are being attacked just for being Jews in New York, Los Angeles, London, Berlin, Montreal and many other cities where Jews one thought this could never happen. 

This week we celebrated the festival of Shavuos, when we experienced the Giving of the Torah and were told in the Torah that "You shall be a kingdom of priest and a holy nation". We are reminded of our special purpose  to make a better and holier world. 

We know that ultimately, "The Guardian of Israel neither sleeps nor slumbers" and He will continue to watch over us as we dedicate ourselves to our task creating more good so that evil will dissipate on its own. 

Am Yisrael Chai and Moshiach Now! 

Rabbi Lazer & Rochel Lazaroff 

Chabad House Happenings

Dear Friends,

What a beautiful Yom Tov it has been! We have had beautiful services every day of Pesach and inaugural Kiddush lunches following services the first days of Yom Tov, sponsored by the Garb and Slonim Families.

The final days of Pesach are upon us and we look forward to a great finale!  Join us for services, kiddush and for the Seudat Moshiach on Sunday evening!

Gut Shabbos and Gut Tom Tov! 

Rabbi Lazer & Rochel Lazaroff 

Chabad House Happenings

Dear Friends,

This is the last week before Pesach and we are all doing our annual Pesach cleanings! This year, we have once again koshered the Aishel House kitchens for Pesach and we are looking forward to restarting Kiddush lunches beginning with the first day of Pesach. If you plan to join us, for Kiddush, kindly let us know so that we can prepare accordingly. [email protected]

As Pesach approaches, it is time to sell our Chometz and buy Shmurah Matzah. Last chance to do both! Chometz forms must be filled out by this Thursday, March 25, 6:00 PM  You can do that by clicking here. 

Gut Shabbos and Gut Tom Tov! 

Rabbi Lazer & Rochel Lazaroff 

Chabad House Happenings

Dear Friends,

A year ago right after Purim, shuls and all places of gathering had to close to protect everyone we love. As time went on, we have been able to gradually reopen with limited capacity, masks, etc.

We are pleased to announce that beginning with the first day of Pesach, we will once again resume having kiddush lunch after services on Shabbos and Yom Tov. It has been a long year without the ability to spend time together as a community and we look forward to enjoying Yom Tov with you!

As Pesach approaches, it is time to sell our Chometz and buy Shmurah Matzah. You can do that by clicking here.

Gut Shabbos and Gut Tom Tov! 

Rabbi Lazer & Rochel Lazaroff 

Chabad House Happenings

Dear Friends,

This is it! The Aishel House Virtual Gala! You can still sign up to be a sponsor at www.aishelhouse.org/gala  and then sit back relax, and prepare to be inspired on Sunday, December 27, 2020 at 7:00 PM. 

If you would like to sponsor with a check, please call the office so we can add you to the list of sponsors on the gala website!

Looking forward to seeing everyone soon!

Rabbi Lazer & Rochel Lazaroff 

Chabad House Happenings

Dear Friends,

What an amazing (and different) Chanukah we had. We had a moving candle lighting ceremony every night of Chanukah with a different Chanukah treat each night.

Next on the horizon: The Aishel House Virtual Gala! You can be a sponsor at www.aishelhouse.org/gala  and then sit back relax, and prepare to be inspired on Sunday, December 27, 2020 at 7:00 PM. 

If you would like to sponsor with a check, please call the office so we can add you to the list of sponsors on the gala website!

Looking forward to seeing everyone soon!

Rabbi Lazer & Rochel Lazaroff 

Chabad House Happenings

Dear Friends,

Chanukah is here! While we are not able to make big parties in honor of Chanukah we have been celebrating with gusto! 

Candle lighting in the front lobby of Aishel House takes place every evening at 5:00 and yesterday, there was a citywide Menorah Parade that travelled through much of Houston and right past Aishel House! 

If you know of anyone who needs a menorah or candles, send them our way and we will get them what they need. 

If you are able to join us in shul for Shabbos Chanukah that would be helpful. With many who are not able to come to shul, it has been a struggle to get a minyan. 

Looking forward to seeing you in Shul!

Gut Shabbos! 

Chabad House Happenings

Dear Friends,

It is that time of year. As the days are at their shortest and the nights at their longest, the month of Kislev is filled with spiritual light to warm all souls and brighten the world. There are many special days of triumph and light in this month, the most well known at the end of the month, Chanukah.

What is not as well known is the celebration of Yud Tes Kislev, the day that the Rabbi Schneur Zalman of Liadi was vindicated for his teaching of the mystical secrets of the Torah and freed from prison where he was being tried for capital crimes in Czarist Russia.

This day was proclaimed by the Chassidic masters of the time as the Rosh Hashana of Chassidus, and indeed this day marks a turning point in revitalizing world Jewry to this day.

To celebrate this momentous day, we will have an outdoor (Sukkah Patio) hot brisket and schnapps kiddush after Shul on Shabbos day. What could be better than warming ourselves spiritually and physically with some Chassidic teachings for the soul and brisket and schnapps for the body?

Looking forward to seeing you in Shul!

Gut Shabbos! 

Chabad House Happenings

Dear Friends,

T.G.I.S., Thank G-d It's Shabbos!

We are so fortunate to have this day when we must turn off our phones, our TV's, radios and computers and have a day of rest and sanity. After this week, we can sure use it.

This Shabbos we will read the portion in the Torah that tells about the sacrifices our forefather, Avraham made for G-d and for Mankind. Tucked into the end of the Torah portion we learn how Avraham planted an "Aishel" in the desert. Our Sages translate "Aishel" as an oasis of comfort, calm and sustenance in the harsh desert environment.

With all the uncertainty and stress, we are fortunate to continue our forefathers' tradition to be the beacon of light and an island of calm for patients and their families. 

Looking forward to seeing you soon!

Gut Shabbos! 

 

Chabad House Happenings

 Dear Friends,

Many have been asking if we are still operating during the pandemic. The answer is a resounding YES!

Aishel House has been housing and supporting patients throughout this time. Meals are sent to the hospitals and to the Aishel House apartments.

We are continuing to have prayers in Shul with masks, hand sanitizer and physical distancing whenever we are able to get a minyan. Many are fearful of gathering indoors because of the virus which has limited our ability to get a minyan. Currently, we have scheduled minyans for Friday night and Shabbos day. When we have enough residents in Aishel House to fill out the minyan we hold services throughout the week as well. 

If you are quarantining in your home and not going to work in an office with others, not going shopping to any stores nor spending any time indoors with others, it would be difficult for your to attend shul.

BUT, if you do spend your days interacting with others at work, in the stores or in other places, I invite you to consider joining the community for prayers. 

Either way, we all pray for an end to this pandemic, so that everyone can feel safe to interact with one another. 

Gut Shabbos!
 

Chabad House Happenings

High Holidays

Preparations are underway for High Holiday services while taking into account medical recommendations. We will have limited spaces available to allow for the social distancing required. 

Attendance will be available by RSVP only. 

 In addition, Shofar blowing will be available outdoors at scheduled times. 

Details will be sent out this week with the option to reserve. 

Chabad House Happenings

 Dear Friends,

I received this thought in my inbox today and thought I would share: 

Imagine it's the year 2033. Covid has changed America forever. People have not gathered in large groups for 13 years. All children go to school online. All parties are on Zoom. It has been this way for 13 years. Now imagine that you're the parent of a bar-mitzvah boy. Your son has been preparing for a year to read the Torah to his friends and family over Zoom. The day arrives, you turn on Zoom, and he does his thing. Everyone is clapping and singing, congratulations are offered. Toasts are made. Your son, the bar mitzvah boy, is beaming. You've never seen him so happy. Nothing takes away from his joy on this day. And why shouldn't he jubilant? He has never known anything else. He was raised in a Covid world, where everything is done online. He's been looking forward to his Zoom bar-mitzvah for years. This is how it's done. He has no memory of the world before Covid. But you, his parent, while proud and celebratory, find yourself hiding in the bathroom on this day, more than once, and quietly weeping for what once was. You cry not only because your son cannot have a 'normal' bar-mitzvah (your normal, not his), but also because your son does not even know that he is missing anything. So far removed is he from that reality, that he acts as if everything is as it should be; only you know that something is very wrong. The tragedy of the day is not that your son cannot have a real bar mitzvah. The tragedy is that he doesn't even know what that is.

Guess what? We are that boy. We were raised in the diaspora; we never had the Temple, the sacrifices, prophecy, the feeling of God's presence, never kept all the laws related to the land of Israel, etc. We go about our business as if this is Judaism, as if this is how it's supposed to be, as if this is how it's always been and how it always will be. But, the truth is, we've been in lockdown for 2000 years. For 2000 years our Judaism and our God has had to wear a mask. For 2000 years we have been socially distanced from Hashem. We are that happy bar-mitzvah boy who celebrates as if this is all there is; but, really, we have no idea what good is. We have no idea what God is.

Of course, I'm exaggerating a bit to make a point. We do know more than that boy in the story. Part of the genius of the Jewish people--and a key to our survival--is our memory. We remember what we never even experienced. We even have memories of the future. (That's right! Through learning the Prophets, the future becomes a memory.) We have never become complacent. We have never forgotten that there is so much more than this. How have we done this? Through education, rituals, mitzvot, and through our prayers, which are filled with references to the Temple, the Redemption, and the yearning for the rebuilding of Jerusalem. Am Yisrael is amazing. We've managed to live our lives in lockdown, but we never let ourselves accept lockdown. We never settled for lockdown. Every day we prayed for more. Every day we prayed for a return to normal. We rejoice. We make lavish bar-mitzvahs. But, always, in the midst of our joy, we remember Jerusalem. We never let ourselves forget that there is more than this. Only Am Yisrael can do this. Only Am Yisrael can dance in prison and still strive to get out of prison. We will do it, b'ezrat Hashem; because we know that this is not the way it's supposed to be.

May Am Yisrael be freed from its 2000-year lockdown soon in our days!

Chabad House Happenings

Dear Friends,

As the Covid cases continue to spread across Houston and Harris County, we have made the difficult, but necessary decision to suspend shul once more in the interest of protecting the vulnerable population at Aishel House and those of our congregation who are over 65. 

We hope you enjoyed the online resources and links that we sent you earlier this week so you can have an uplifting day of Gimmel Tammuz.

Looking forward to the day when the virus is no longer a threat and when can resume our normal activities.

Until then,

Gut Shabbos!

Rabbi Lazer & Rochel Lazaroff 

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