The months of Adar and Nissan are packed with Jewish holidays and history. At Chabad
we strive to ensure that every member of the Jewish community has an opportunity to
participate and feel welcome experiencing our sacred heritage. We look forward to inviting you to our Purim and Passover celebrations.
On Purim we commemorate the overturning of the plot by the wicked King Ahasuerus and his viceroy Hamman to annihilate us. We celebrate by reading Esther’s Megillah, hosting a festive dinner, sharing gifts of food with friends and giving charity to the poor. This year we invite you to join us for a “Purim in the Shtetl ‘’ themed celebration, featuring our own Klezmer band.
And just four weeks later we will be celebrating Passover. In Jewish homes across the country and around the world, families and friends will gather around the Seder table, the same way we have been doing it for more than 3,500 years since our Exodus from Egypt. It was at that very moment when we became an essentially and completely free people, with our only subservience being to G-d Himself. Today in America, we are free citizens, able to live as proud Jews. But perhaps we may be confined by our personal Egypts, those barriers, often artificial, that stand between us and our indulging in Jewish experiences. What better way to celebrate this Passover, than by experiencing true Jewish
freedom and committing to do another good mitzvah deed, strengthening the link in our chain of Jewish tradition and ensuring its continuity for future generations.
The work that we do in South Dakota mirrors what Chabad does in thousands of other centers across America and in another 100+ countries. Just a few weeks ago, world Jewry marked 70 years since the Rebbe, Rabbi Menachem M. Schneerson assumed to the leadership of the Chabad movement on the 10th of Shevat, 1950.
At the core of his teachings, is the idea that this world is truly G-ds home, and each human being here on earth is personally tasked with making it feel so. In the ensuing seven decades, the Rebbe’s one time radical and urgent message of meaning and moral purpose has become increasingly mainstream.
Today there is not a Jewish community in the world that has not been positively impacted by the Rebbe’s teachings. Even now during the Coronavirus, the only Rabbi still in China, faithfully serving the needs of the local community, Rabbi Sholom Greenberg who together with his wife and children run Chabad in Shanghai.
So as we sit at our Seder tables this year and read the passage of Rabbi Elazar Ben Azarya “I am like 70 years old” let us infuse our life and Jewish observance with the vibrance and meaning the Rebbe began teaching us seventy years ago, allowing us each to fully live our own personal Exodus and even experience a taste of the future redemption.
Rabbi Mendel Alperowitz
Serving the spiritual needs of the South Dakota Jewish community. Based in Sioux Falls and travels the state.