A few years ago, Lubavitch of London and Manchester jointly embarked on an ambitious program to print the first bilingual Tanya [seminal work of Chabad philosophy] with the original Hebrew text and an English translation on each facing page. This was to be published by the prestigious Soncino Press of London. The Rebbe was extremely pleased with this idea and continuously and consistently inquired about its progress. [In the end, it took five years to finish! See full story in chapter four. –Ed.]

We were now three years into the “printing” of this Tanya and Mr. Bloch, boss of the Soncino Press, promised me faithfully that the first copy of the new Hebrew-English Tanya would be ready for me to take to the Rebbe when we visited New York for this Shavuos.

On Tuesday night, Iyar 27 (May 29), the evening before we left, Mr. Bloch extended me the extraordinary and unusual honor of calling to see me at my daughter’s home in London, where my wife Roselyn and I were staying overnight. As promised, he personally brought to me the very first copy of a beautifully bound, thick volume of this new Tanya.

When I opened it, I discovered that there was one printed page – the rest of the pages were blank – this was real progress! The very first one-page Tanya!

Anyway, at least it was something we could show the Rebbe.