One of our first objectives now, was to ensure that Avrohom would travel to and settle in Brooklyn in order to study at the Yeshiva in 770.

Avrohom had been a pupil at the Manchester Yeshiva for many years, attending evening classes after school hours. As he was still at college, it was not possible for him to be at the Yeshiva “kol hayom” (all day). There were no evening classes for his age group (18); therefore, I had to provide him with private tutors. I was fortunate to obtain the services of rabbonim: Dubov, Margulies and Rapaport. In a few months‘ time, when he would have completed his school curriculum, he would have concentrated tuition most of each day.

I contacted the Rebbe to discover the most appropriate time for Avrohom‘s departure from Manchester.

I then received a letter from he Rebbe, dated the 10th of Iyar, 5719 (May 18, 1959), which contained this paragraph:

With regard to your son Abraham Joseph, I suggest that you should get in touch with Rabbi Dubov, or other members of the faculty of the Manchester Yeshiva, that they should give an informal examination, so as to ascertain his status in learning, and then they should write about it to the Yeshiva Administration here, in order to make sure that there would be a suitable class for him, etc.

The next correspondence on this matter came from the Yeshiva administration at 770. This stated that they had received the reports from Manchester. They suggested that Avrohom should postpone his departure for two years and during that period he should study at the Manchester Yeshiva “kol hayom”.

Well, this did really upset me. I was furious. I was blazing and raging with indignation. I wrote at once to the Rebbe. I explained that we at Lubavitch went out of our way to encourage and prevail upon boys to attend yeshivos, in particular to go to a Lubavitcher one and, in preference, to 770.  I personally had put great effort, endeavor and much money into this sphere in order to propagate this idea. Yet, when I wished my own son to take advantage of this scheme, I was told quite bluntly that he could not be accepted. Did one have to be a baal teshuva (one who had returned to Judaism) or belong to a non-orthodox family before one could be eligible to be accepted by a Lubavitch Yeshiva?

On Tammuz 25, 5759 (July 31, 1959) the Rebbe replied as follows:

I received your letter of July 24th, and I am sorry that you seem to be upset about the fact that the Yeshiva Administration decided to postpone your son‘s admission to the Yeshiva here. Needless to say, they had the interest of your son at heart, as they explained to you the difficulties and problems involved.

On the other hand, if you think that these apprehensions are exaggerated, and that despite all that they have written to you, you still feel that you would like your son to be admitted to the Yeshiva here, do not hesitate to write to me and I will be glad to persuade the Yeshiva Administration to accept your son as a student. In this event, I think that the best time for your son to come would not be now, when most of the students are dispersed on various missions of the Merkos L‘Inyonei Chinuch, and the whole Yeshiva program is greatly curtailed, etc. The best time for him would be to come closer to Rosh Hashonah, when the Yeshiva program begins again on a normal keel, and all the students will be present then, including those from England, who might be of help to your son in getting adjusted here.

May G‑d grant that the period of ohrmnv ihc [“between the straits” - the three weeks] will soon be turned into a time of gladness and joy and a ohrmn hkc vkjb. [Inheritance without limits.]

I thanked the Rebbe very much indeed for his intervention and help in this matter. I was now awaiting the requisite documents from the Yeshiva to enable Avrohom to acquire a temporary immigration certificate from the US authorities.

Weeks went by and we had heard nothing from 770, except on the 15th of Menachem Av, 5719 (August 19, 1959). A paragraph in the Rebbe‘s letter, stated:

With regard to the necessary documents for your son, the whole matter was turned over to the Yeshiva Administration, and no doubt they will take care of the formalities.

But, of the documents there was no sign!

Rabbi Shemtov wanted Avrohom to accompany him to Brooklyn for Rosh Hashonah 5720 (1959) and then remain in New York for a few months. He promised to look after him. I knew he would, but we did require legal permission for Avrohom to stay a year or more in the USA to study at a “college”. Then, typically, the documents arrived just in time, at the very last moment.

Rabbi Shemtov obtained the air tickets. I was a little perturbed when I discovered that he had also purchased a return ticket for Avrohom. I expressed my apprehension and concern. If Avrohom suddenly felt homesick or the urge to return home, he could get on the next plane to England. It was that easy and so simple. I would rather that if he met some difficulties and obstacles, he would have extra time to reconsider the situation and make further efforts to remain at the Yeshiva.

However, events turned out very much better than I had ever expected.

I received a lovely letter from Avrohom within a week or two, wherein he expressed his great satisfaction and delight in being at 770, the “hub of the world.” He stated that I could never appreciate or understand what a wonderful thing I had done for him in sending him to Yeshiva. He had acquired and gained a new outlook, a new perspective of life, of Judaism and of Lubavitch.

He had settled down very nicely.

Faivish Vogel was assisting him in his learning. Three months soon passed and, before we realized it, Avrohom had been at Yeshiva for twelve months. He was prepared, even anxious, to continue his studies for another year. When this period had come to a close, the Rebbe recommended that he begin to study for his s‘micha (ordination).

I have in my possession many beautiful letters from the Rebbe expressing his pleasure and satisfaction with the way Avrohom was studying, the good impression he was creating and with the work he was accomplishing for Lubavitch in general.