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I Will Write It In Their Hearts - Volume 1
Letters from the Lubavitcher Rebbe

Efforts to popularize Mivtza Tefillin; outreach efforts among Jewish soldiers

Translated by: Rabbi Eli Touger

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  A detailed explanation of the importance of studying Mishnayos by heartTable of contentsThe significance of the New Year of Trees  

No. 134

This letter was addressed to R. Y. Sheinfeld, a ritual slaughterer in the city of Roxbury, Mass.
B"H, 19 Shvat, 5704
Greetings and blessings,

Your donation of $18 was brought by our distinguished colleague, R. Yehudah Leib Horowitz. I gave the money to the fund established within Machne Israel for the purpose of purchasing tefillin for soldiers. A receipt is enclosed.

The efforts to spread [the observance of the mitzvah of] tefillin among the dispersed members of our people and in particular, among soldiers, is given a prominent position in the work of Machne Israel. With G-d's help, these efforts have been successful and numerous individuals who had not put on tefillin for many years - or perhaps never put on tefillin at all - have begun to observe this mitzvah at present.

In order to reduce the challenge of accepting [the mitzvah of] putting on tefillin for these individuals, Machne Israel gives them tefillin free or for a minimal price, according to what each person desires [to pay]. This is particularly true with regard to soldiers to whom tefillin are sent as presents.

Parenthetically, it will certainly interest you to know that we endeavor to strengthen the spirits and the faith of the soldiers by sending from time to time, without charge, books and pamphlets to all those soldiers whose addresses we know.

As an example, we are enclosing a message to soldiers from my revered father-in-law, the Rebbe shlita, of which thousands of copies have already been distributed, and a letter concerning tefillin. If you would like us [to add] soldiers whom you know to our list, we will also send them these different pamphlets.

While speaking about tefillin, I would like to suggest that since you have merited to become one of the financial supporters of the purchase of tefillin, you should proceed from strength to strength in this [endeavor]. Even though you are busy, you should speak with your acquaintances who have sincere feelings for G-d's word to begin an organized campaign in your city regarding the observance of [the mitzvah of] tefillin. Certainly, your words which will come from the heart will enter the hearts of the listeners.

This will enable you to be among those who bring benefit to the many in a spiritual way - through putting on tefillin - and in a material way - for the observance of the mitzvah [of tefillin] brings protection. [To refer to] the well-known statements of the Rambam (Mishneh Torah, Hilchos Teshuvah 10:1): "Common people, women, and children should be trained to serve [G-d] out of fear until their knowledge increases and they serve [Him] out of love." As [the Rambam continues to explain], his intent in the expression "serv[ing G-d] out of fear" is serving Him with the intent of receiving all the blessings that come in reward for [the observance of] the mitzvah.

With the blessing, "Immediately to teshuvah, immediately to Redemption,"

Rabbi Menachem Schneerson
Chairman of the Executive Committee

  A detailed explanation of the importance of studying Mishnayos by heartTable of contentsThe significance of the New Year of Trees  

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