One of our more memorable meetings was with Aja, a professor of Eastern Metaphysics at the local university.

"I think that we must eradicate the ego. Do you guys believe in that?"

In the ensuing discussion, the words of Prof. Aja were clearly reminiscent of chassidism and kabbalah, the foundations of our Chabad education.


Andre wanted to teach us how to surf.

We wanted to teach him Torah.


So we invited Andre the Surfer, who had never experienced Shabbat in his life, to stay with us for the entire Shabbat.

Over the course of the weekend, Andre learned a lot about Judaism, and boy did we learn about the Hawaiian lifestyle and the so-called “surf religion.”

When we accompanied Andre to the surf shop, lo and behold, the store manager was also Jewish, and accepted our offer to put on tefillin!


When we handed a Shabbat candle kit to Karen on Friday, we explained that since Kauai is the one of westernmost Jewish community in the world, she would be one of the last women to welcome the Shabbat. Karen was moved to tears when she learned that her Shabbat candles would be wrapping up the millions of candles and the accompanying prayers of Jewish women worldwide.


Our colleagues who visited Kauai last summer bumped into Rob on the side of the road.

This year, we met him at a local coffee shop. After chatting for a while, we helped him put on tefillin and left him with a stash of Jewish books.


We visited Bob, a doctor who runs the local hospice. He was very happy to see us, since some of his patients are Jewish, and he feels that they need spiritual support. So we put him in touch with the local Chabad rabbi, who will certainly be a fantastic resource in Bob’s growth both as a doctor and a Jew.


"I quit my job as an oceanographer because my fellow scientists didn't believe in G‑d," Ram told us. His strong belief in G‑d is unshakable; admirable. He told us that he is a frequent visitor to Chabad.org, his desire to learn more about his heritage insatiable.


When we visited Tal, a native Israeli, he had just moved into a new house.

"Come in, guys! Let's make a Chanukat HaBayit! (new home dedication)"

Luckily, Meir had brought his guitar and a Kauai style Chanukat HaBayit was soon underway. Tal invited us back for a full-fledged farbrengen (Chassidic gathering) on motzei Shabbat.


"Can I see what a pair of tefillin looks like?"

"Sure, why?"

"Because neither my husband nor my son have ever put them on."

After four hours of deep conversation about life and Judaism, David and Jack both had their unofficial bar mitzvahs, with Elisa kvelling besides them.


“So, what is the Jewish position for meditation?"

"Um, well, you look inside the siddur and move back and forth."

Darci, like many of her fellow Hawaiian Jews, leads a lifestyle emphasizing yoga and Eastern meditations.

She was thrilled to discover how much chassidism has to offer.


Rob is a lawyer, certainly not the average occupation around here.

He has vivid memories of his childhood in Brooklyn, where he lived blocks away from Lubavitch World Headquarters.

Each year, he eagerly anticipates the visit of the roving rabbis, and the chance to revisit his youth.

Goodbye Hawaii

It’s hard to believe that this coming Shabbat will be our last one here on the island. G‑d willing, we will be hosting a crowd of tourists and locals.

We’ve been fortunate to make so many warm connections here, and we look forward to continuing the relationships in the weeks and months to come.

For now, Aloha!