The Chabad.org Blog

On the Pittsburgh Massacre

October 31, 2018 11:09 AM

On Shabbat morning, Pittsburgh’s peaceful Jewish enclave of Squirrel Hill was shattered by gunshots as a crazed anti-Semite attacked worshippers at the Tree of Life congregation. Reeling from the pain, Pittsburghers struggled to make sense of the tragedy that had befallen their city, and people around the world responded with an outpouring of love, support, mitzvahs, and faith.

We at Chabad.org have been working nonstop, helping our colleagues in Pittsburgh to organize a memorial campaign (click here to send condolences or register your mitzvah), covering the news and sharing touching responses to the tragedy.

To the people of Pittsburgh, be strong; we are with you. To the people of the world, we are strong and are grateful for your support.

May G‑d protect His children everywhere!

The Chabad.org Team

P.S.: This weekend is the International Conference of Chabad Lubavitch Emissaries in Brooklyn, a wonderful expression of Jewish pride and unity. Tune in on Sunday to join the live broadcast.

In Solidarity with the Pittsburgh Jewish Community

October 28, 2018 12:24 AM

Dear Friend,

Our hearts are shattered by the heinous and horrific attack on our brothers and sisters in Pittsburgh. We mourn the 11 holy souls who were so cruelly torn from our midst, and pray to G‑d to provide strength and comfort to their shocked and grieving families. Their unfathomable pain is shared by the entire Jewish people and all people worldwide.

We further pray for the complete and speedy healing of the injured, of the survivors and of the entire Pittsburgh community.

No words can possibly describe this pure evil. Jews who gathered to pray and celebrate Shabbat were killed for no reason other than the fact that they were Jewish. Again: While praying! On Shabbat! The killer’s bullets were aimed at us all. “All Jews must die,” he yelled while opening fire.

What is the remedy to such senseless hatred?! What can we possibly do to eradicate it??

The Lubavitcher Rebbe of righteous memory answered this a number of times, with clarity and conviction:

Boundless love.

Cold-blooded, fanatical, baseless, relentless hatred can be uprooted from its core only by saturating our world with pure, undiscriminating, uninhibited, unyielding love and acts of kindness.

Today more than ever, we need to spread love and unity; positivity and light.

We must continue to walk to our synagogues proudly. And, even as we grieve and mourn, we must increase exponentially our acts of goodness and kindness.

Some of the injured were law enforcement heroes who willingly chose to put their own lives in danger to help others. We stand in awe of their courage and dedication. And we are grateful to live in a country that protects our right to live openly and proudly as Jews. We value immensely the friendship and outpouring of support from so many of our fellow Americans.

* * *

To help illuminate this thick darkness and eradicate evil, please consider one or more of the suggestions below. Our brothers and sisters in Pittsburgh — and the entire world! — need our prayers and mitzvot (good deeds) now more than ever!

  • Increase in unity. The attacker harbored senseless hatred toward the Jewish people. We must increase our love toward each and every one of them. We are all one family! This is definitely the right time for each of us to reach out to someone we’ve disagreed with and grown apart from.
  • Show Jewish pride. Especially now — let's affix mezuzahs on our doorposts; wear our kippahs proudly. We must show that we are proud of our Jewish identity!
  • Add a mitzvah in memory of the victims. Whether wrapping tefillin, lighting Shabbat candles or another mitzvah, let’s each add one more act to our routine and dedicate it to the memory of those ruthlessly killed.
  • Come to synagogue. Even if we haven't done so regularly, let’s attend synagogue together and show the world that our synagogues are filled with vibrancy, love and life. Let’s fill every synagogue to capacity!

Let us beseech G‑d to send healing and comfort to the grieving families, and pray that He quickly eradicate all evil and hatred and usher in the coming of Moshiach, speedily in our days.

Let us pray fervently for the complete and speedy recovery of the injured!

In the merit of our collective mitzvot and prayers, may each of us — and all of us as one! — be comforted at this extraordinarily challenging time.

Join the campaign!

Stand united with Pittsburgh

How to Get Our WhatsApp Content

October 9, 2018 9:07 AM
''WhatsApp logo'' by Source
"WhatsApp logo" by Source

Fun fact: More than a billion people in over 180 countries use WhatsApp to stay in touch with friends and family. Some of them are lucky enough to get Jewish content from Chabad.org.

Here’s what you need to know to get into the game: Our WhatsApp number is +1 (570) 543-2125. You need to save that number in order to receive our messages. Then, WhatsApp message us with the word “CHABAD,” and we’ll add you to our list.

This is what you can then expect:

#StorySunday: a beautiful Jewish story to start your week right
#TorahTuesday: a video with a lesson on the Torah portion of the week
#WonderingWednesday: an intriguing Q&A from our Ask the Rabbi Team
#ThoughtfulThursday: a thought-provoking message by Rabbi Tzvi Freeman

We look forward to seeing you on WhatsApp!

The Chabad.org WhatsApp Team

P.S.: If you send a message to us with the word “LETTERS,” you will get enlightening letters written by the Rebbe.

Chabad.org Music Radio App Launched

September 17, 2018 5:00 PM

“If words are the pen of the heart,” taught Rabbi Schneur Zalman of Liadi, “then song is the pen of the soul.”

Music has always been at the heart of the Chassidic movement, serving as a powerful tool in prayer, meditation and celebratory gatherings.

Chabad.org is proud to announce our new Chabad.org Music Radio app.

Available on desktop and mobile, the app streams Jewish and Chassidic music to users 24/6.

“When we launched our Chabad.org Radio app, our Torah class app that streams classes 24/6, we added Jewish tunes to fill the time between classes,” says Rabbi Mendy Kaminker. “We were asked, ‘I love the classes, but where can I get more of the music as well?’ ”

The Chabad.org Music Radio app was born and has already garnered tremendous interest. Since its launch, it has logged over 170,000 streams.

The app plays an eclectic mix of classic Jewish and Chassidic tunes, and also features an alarm clock, sleep timer and more.

It can be downloaded on both Android and iOS.

"Alexa, Give Tzedakah"

Now you can give charity with a voice command

September 6, 2018 11:20 PM

During our High Holiday prayers, we declare that “repentance, prayer and tzedakah avert the severity of the decree”—that through acts of righteous charity, of giving to help others, we can draw down blessings for the entire year.

To make the mitzvah of tzedakah ever more accessible, Chabad.org has leveraged Amazon Alexa to allow users to donate directly through the virtual assistant using their voice.

Chabad.org is one of a select group of charities chosen by Amazon to take part in an early launch of this new Alexa feature.

By saying “Alexa, make a donation to Chabad.org,” Alexa Donations, powered by Amazon Pay, will execute the donation. This new feature enables users to give tzedakah at any time, and especially at auspicious times, such as before prayers or before lighting the Shabbat candles at the start of Shabbat (but not on Shabbat and Jewish festivals).

According to Amazon, more than a million people have used Amazon Pay to donate to charities even before Alexa Donations was launched.

This feature is part of a suite of new virtual assistant applications that Chabad.org is in the process of developing for Amazon Alexa and Google Home.

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