Written with tears...
By Rabbi Eli & Shani Cohen
In shock, we join
the 3000+ Chabad Centres & World Jewry in mourning the tragic and
senseless loss of our fellow Chabad emissaries in Mumbai, India
Rabbi Gavriel & Mrs. Rivkah Holtzberg who together with other Jewish
hostages were killed by terrorists in the Mumbai Chabad Centre. 'May
Hashem Avenge Their Blood'.
In 2003, shortly
after their marriage, Rabbi Gavriel and Rivkah Holtzberg heeded the
call of the Lubavitcher Rebbe, Rabbi Menachem M. Schneerson, of
blessed memory, and cheerfully gave up all the comforts of home and
family, taking up residence at the other end of the world, to
selflessly help others in need. In a very short time, their home and
center became a thriving hub of goodness and kindness, as they
dispensed their blend of gracious openheartedness to the local
Jewish community and to thousands of tourists and business people
who frequented Mumbai.
toddler son, Moshe’le, who was heroically rescued from the hell by
his nanny, Sandra, marked his second birthday, on Shabbat, November
29. (Our own son Menachem Mendel Cohen celebrated his birthday too
this Shabbat however,) Moishe’le Holtzberg marked his birthday as an
orphan without a mom or dad to lovingly embrace him and celebrate
The world of
Chabad and our emissaries will adopt this beautiful young toddler,
and assure him of the best possible upbringing into adulthood.
We extend our
sympathy to their families as well as to the families of all those
who have died in this vicious attack. We continue to pray for a
speedy and complete recovery for all those who were injured.
Rebbe, taught us that during a time of intense grief, we must turn
our pain into intensified positive action. We will defeat evil and
terrorism through acts of goodness and kindness. Where terrorists
hope to create fear and hatred we will create love and joy.
Let us all resolve
and commit to strengthening our concern and compassion for each
other by increasing our good deeds, our prayer and Torah study.
What can YOU do?
If you don’t already have one, place a Mezuzah on your door, put on
Tefillin, set up a time to learn Torah, visit someone in a local
hospital or check on an elderly neighbour. If you don’t already
light Shabbat Candles resolve to take upon yourself to start
lighting them this upcoming Friday night.
hesitate to call me if you need my help in assisting you in a
I pray that G-d
grant strength to the parents, little Moishele and all of us, his
family. May we merit to witness the final redemption with Moshiach
With blessings and
Rabbi Eli & Shani