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Wednesday
Nov072018

SHLICHUS WITHOUT DOUBTS

The passion, the excitement, the intensity, the shlichus: 26 years since the Kinus HaShluchim 5753. Beis Moshiach spoke with three shluchim, who carry those moments of eternity with them through every moment on shlichus, and ever since then, in every project and activity, they proudly proclaim the Besuras HaGeula and the identity of the goel. * “Each of us felt that its like the test of the Akeida that Avrohom Avinu experienced, but the bottom line is thatwe have nothing except the words of Ben-Amram.’ The issue took on greater force after the Rebbe came out for the first time ever to the Kinus HaShluchim banquet and strongly encouraged the singing of Yechi Adoneinu.”

Much has been said over the past many years in trying to understand exactly what the Rebbe intended in those groundbreaking sichos in the 90s. Various people, with all sorts of impressive titles, tried to explain and interpret the Rebbes meaning and what he intended when he said, “the sole remaining avodas hashlichus is to greet Moshiach.”

There is a fascinating letter of the Rebbe written to a Chassid which contains an easy and simple tip that shows a shliach or Chassid, who wants to be certain, as far as what avoda the Rebbe wants from him. “One of, and the choicest of, counsels is when his Admor guides him with his finger as to his path and his service.” (Igros Kodesh volume 2, letter 297).

At the Kinus HaShluchim banquet in 5753, thousands of shluchim were able to see with their own eyes this “choicest of counsels” mentioned in this letter, by means of which they could know precisely what should be their primary focus and not be bamboozled by the blandishments of the yetzer: when the Rebbe appeared in order to encourage the singing and proclamation of Yechi, with head and hand motions.

Those thrilling moments of splendor were described in full color in a diary at that time:

“The crowd sang with tremendous enthusiasm and unusual excitement, and the Rebbe looked very malchus’dik. He scanned the crowd of shluchim ‘like a shepherd examines his flock,’ and encouraged the singing with movements of his holy head. Several times, he lifted himself slightly from his seat and looked at those who stood below and nodded encouragingly at them etc. … The shluchim were exceedingly overcome, and some began whistling; the joy was tremendous, like at hakafos.

“Throughout, the Rebbe encouraged this with his head, this way and that, and after four minutes he began to encourage it more strongly and quickly, to all sides, right and left, forward and back, and the singing reached the heavens. This encouragement was continuous, especially during the final minute. Throughout this time, he continued to scan the crowd of shluchim. The entire episode lasted six minutes, at the end of which he motioned with his head to close the curtain.”

***

We spoke with three shluchim who were present at that Kinus and have retained their laser focus on Moshiach and Geula in their shlichus to this day.

Over 25 years have passed since that Kinus HaShluchim. What does that tell you as shluchim of the Rebbe as far as what the avoda of shlichus should be today?

Rabbi Yisroel Hershkowitz, shliach and rav of the Chabad community Ofakim: First, when speaking about the Kinus HaShluchim, we should remember and mention what is the function of the Kinus in our times, as the Rebbe put it in his last sicha about the Kinus.

At the farbrengen for Shabbos Parshas Chayei Sarah 5752 (which I attended and heard for myself), the Rebbe announced that the current role of the shluchim and the “gateway” through which all aspects of shlichus pass, is the new avoda: kabbalas p’nei Moshiach. The goal of the Kinus, said the Rebbe, “is expressed in this point; to discuss together and make good resolutions to actually be carried out, about how to execute the special shlichus of our time: kabbalas p’nei Moshiach Tzidkeinu.”

We have nothing except the words of Ben-Amram. A shliach who has these words of the Rebbe engraved in his mind, won’t look every year for a new theme for the Kinus when the Rebbe made it clear. Since the Rebbe assigned us this task, he has been waiting for his Chassidim and shluchim to complete it.

Of course, we all also enjoy the exciting get-together with our fellow shluchim from around the world, farbrengens, workshops and discussions to help increase our activities and make our shlichus more effective, but we always need to remember the point of it all.

Rabbi Shneur Zalman Liberow, shliach in Flatbush: What this means to us today is that the vigorous encouragement of Yechi is what accompanies us every moment, especially today.

One can say that the Rebbe coming out at that Kinus HaShluchim was a sort of “erasing Amalek.” Because until the Kinus of 5753, there were still people with doubts about how the Rebbe regards the matter of Yechi, at least among the shluchim for whom this was the first time they were in 770 for the singing of Yechi.

However, at that event, you could see on the faces of the shluchim that this is it; that in those moments, the doubt was erased. No more doubts after that. It was clear as could be and everyone danced with tremendous joy over this revelation that the Rebbe was encouraging the proclamation of Yechi.

A Chassid of the Rebbe knows that the Rebbe’s approach is one of constant increasing; no weakening, G-d forbid. On the contrary, [the passage of time] only makes the work a little more urgent and challenging.

Rabbi Menachem Mendel Friedman, shliach in Ohr Yehuda: The shlichus that the Rebbe gave us at the Kinus HaShluchim 5752 is “l’kabel p’nei Moshiach Tzidkeinu b’poel mamash.” This was so the following year too, at the Kinus HaShluchim 5753, that what united all the shluchim and all Chabad Chassidim was this sole remaining shlichus: kabbalas p’nei Moshiach.

Just as it was clear to us in 5752 what the Rebbe wanted of us, so too, after the amazing revelations of 5753, it was clear what the Rebbe wants each of us to do to bring the Geula. Everything happening now, this concealment, is only a preparation for the hisgalus that the Rebbe promised us explicitly.

We need to make a cheshbon ha’nefesh: what have we done, and how much have we done, about this shlichus of kabbalas p’nei Moshiach Tzidkeinu. What more can we do to complete this task and finish the job the Rebbe gave us?

How did you feel when the Rebbe appeared before the shluchim at the banquet in 770 and encouraged the singing of Yechi? And what did you learn from it?

Rabbi Hershkowitz: I will never forget that heart-pounding sight at the banquet of the Kinus HaShluchim 5753, when the Rebbe came out to the shluchim and 770 was in full storm with the frenzied dancing of Yechi, while the Rebbe encouraged the singing with all his might. What we can “take” from it is to see how the Rebbe gives us tremendous kochos to carry out our mission.

I have no doubt that the Rebbe envisioned all the difficulties and tests that we would contend with and everything we would go through over the next 25 years with the avoda that he gave us of kabbalas p’nei Moshiach and especially the inyan of Yechi.

With his encouragement, with the Rebbe himself coming out and revealing his malchus, he not only gave us the kochos to hang on but much more than that! He is personally leading the instilling of the idea of Yechi throughout the world. So obviously we will be able to do it, and very soon will see the entire world proclaim Yechi before the Rebbe. And once again, we will see the Rebbe smiling and encouraging and leading us all to the true and complete Geula.

Rabbi Friedman: Each of us felt that this is like Avrohom Avinu’s test of the Akeida. Each of us is now experiencing the same standing firm in the face of the test of belief in what the Rebbe said, that we are going to greet Mashiach, despite the fact that things look otherwise. However, we have nothing except the words of Ben-Amram. The issue took on greater force as the first time the Rebbe ever came out to the banquet of the shluchim was 5753, when the banquet was in 770. And the Rebbe’s encouragement and simcha sealed the deal that everything the Rebbe said all the years, especially in 5752 and at the Kinus HaShluchim, is now with greater measure and greater force.

Yosef HaTzaddik, before he met his father again, sent wagons (agalos) and then his father knew that Yosef remembered where they had stopped the last time they learned together, the topic of egla arufa. We too will meet the Rebbe again and we will be carrying on the same inyan of kabbalas p’nei Moshiach, in the form of Yechi, that the Rebbe encouraged. Then the Rebbe will see that we are still faithful to that one, main aspect of shlichus, kabbalas p’nei Moshiach.

Rabbi Liberow: I don’t have to describe the excitement because you see it in the video, how everybody danced and how they all accepted it. Although so many years have passed since then, that does not weaken the significance of that lofty event that we were witness to.

We can say that what the Rebbe did here was give the shluchim the ability to carry out what he asked for a year before, as far as going out and proclaiming that the only avoda that remains is kabbalas p’nei Moshiach, as this was kabbalas p’nei Moshiach in a revealed way, and it takes a lot of hard work to overcome the concealment. May we merit what the Rebbe calls the “hisgalus l’ayn kol” [revelation before all eyes] as the Rebbe refers to it in the sicha of Toldos, following the Kinus HaShluchim, and that this should be teikef u’miyad mamash.

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