The Alter Rebbe and the Rebbeim who succeeded him were granted a G-d-given gift -- the ability to sacrifice themselves for studying Torah with an awe of heaven and for loving a fellow Jew. (I spoke earlier of how the Rebbeim over the generations implanted in their respective chassidim a love for the Torah and for its mitzvos
and for every fellow Jew -- surely an immeasurable attainment.) This self-sacrifice is the foundation of the Tomchei Temimim Lubavitcher Yeshivah.
In order to communicate this self-sacrificing love of Torah study and of mitzvos, accompanied by the "service of the heart" and the love of fellow Jews, to a broader spectrum of people, my revered father founded the Tomchei Temimim Yeshivah in Lubavitch. From that institution light has been diffused to the Jewish people wherever they live, by means of the self-sacrifice of its students and alumni, the temimim.
Jewry at large ought to thank G-d for the foundation of that Yeshivah, whose hundreds of students heroically saved an entire country from Jewish and religious annihilation. In time to come, when Jews one day read the history of how with superhuman determination these students courageously flung themselves into the battle for the rescue of Torah and mitzvos, they will be astounded. Only then will people understand what the education imbibed at Tomchei Temimim means for the survival of the Jewish people around the world.
In this country, too, the Central Tomchei Temimim Lubavitch Yeshivos have scored numerous successes in this arena. Indeed, observant Jews of all circles sing their praises, though unfortunately those songs of praise comprise more words than deeds
American Jewry is slow in paying its debt to these Yeshivos, not only for what their students have accomplished in other lands, as described above, but even for what their students are doing for the cause of genuine Torah study here in this country.
American Jews! Support these Yeshivos more generously and thereby free yourselves from the shame of not paying the rightful dues which the Torah expects a Jew to honor.
With trust in G-d's mercies and in the merit of our holy forebears, I am certain that the necessary funds will be forthcoming. However, it pains me that those who stand aside are losing the rich merit which they could have earned by supporting the Tomchei Temimim Yeshivos, for with G-d's help these Yeshivos will light up America and will restore Jewish self-respect to American Jewry.
Happy is the man who will lend a shoulder to the work of cleaning up the ignorance and the spiritual grossness with which disbelievers have filled the homes of Jewish families and defiled the minds of Jewish children. On the ruins of the damage wrought by treife
schooling, the Tomchei Temimim Lubavitch Yeshivos will establish kosher schooling on a generous scale. Happy is the man who will help us accomplish this!
This is my heartfelt and brotherly request to all the Jewish men and women of America and Canada: Become involved in helping to build up these Yeshivos throughout the land! Bring your sons and grandsons to these Yeshivos, and your daughters and granddaughters to the Beth Rivkah and Beth Sarah Schools which are being founded by the Merkos L'Inyonei Chinuch! Help me and those who work with me in our task, and G-d will bless you and your families with good health and an ample livelihood.
Three or five people could have built the Tabernacle in the wilderness. Nevertheless, G-d told Moshe Rabbeinu to tell all the men and women of the time to bring their offerings of building materials, so that all of Israel would have a share in the construction of G-d's Mishkan. Now likewise, every man and woman should take a part in enabling us to extend and expand our educational activity.
At the same time, regardless of any financial hardships, it is my ironclad resolve -- with the help of G-d and of my co-workers -- to place my Torah and educational activities on a firm footing. I trust that G-d will bless our endeavors with success, and that the homes of all the Children of Israel will be lit up by the light of the Torah and the mitzvos, and that our hearts will be gladdened by the ultimate Redemption in the very near future.
Service of the heart:
In the original, avodah shebalev (Tractate Taanis 2a); i.e., the spiritual labors undertaken during prayer.
An entire country: I.e., Russia.
Happy is the man: Cf. Ps. 1:1.
Beth Rivkah Schools: Named for the author's grandmother, Rebbitzin Rivkah, wife of the Rebbe Maharash.
Beth Sarah Schools: Named for the author's mother, Rebbitzin Sterna Sarah, wife of the Rebbe Rashab.