|Chabad-Lubavitch rabbis from throughout Australia at their convention. (Photo: Henry Benjamin)|
More than 70 Chabad-Lubavitch rabbis from across Australia gathered at the Chabad Centre on Sydney's North Shore for the first Australia-wide conference of shluchim (emissaries) in more than a decade.
The two-day gathering, which began Sunday and ended Monday, covered a range of topics delivered by rabbis and lay leaders from Melbourne, Sydney, Canberra and Tasmania.
Conference host Rabbi Nochum Schapiro of Chabad North Shore said the results exceeded all expectations: “We all have such varied congregations and use such a wide variety of programs, there is no measuring the value of sharing experiences. Our goal is to reach and positively inspire every Jew in Australia and show them the beauty of Yiddishkeit."
Over the two days, the rabbis participated workshops and general sessions. New projects and initiatives were discussed, culminating in the establishment of a Vaad (committee) to move those projects forward. A key focus of the conference was developing opportunities to engage Jews in Australia and impact the wider Australian community with initiatives of goodness and kindness.
The spirited evening farbrengen lasted until the early hours of the morning.
The conference was coordinated in consultation with the head Chabad representatives in the states and territories of Australia: Rabbi Pinchus Feldman, Rabbi Chaim Tzvi Groner, Rabbi Yossel Gutnick and Rabbi Aron Serebryanski. The conference organizing committee was spearheaded by Rabbi Nochum Schapiro and Rabbi Meir Sholomo Kluwgant, and included Rabbi Eli Cohen, Rabbi Menachem Stern, Rabbi Reuvi Cooper, Rabbi Eli Feldman and Rabbi Alon Hazi.
They all thanked yeshivah students from Chabad of the North Shore, Lavi Klein, Shmulik Fogelman, Mayer Goldman and Ari Kapeluschnik, who oversaw the food and accommodations.
The formal program concluded with a spontaneous outbreak of dancing and celebration, and organizers say that discussions are already underway for the next conference.