"Our greatest revenge against Hitler and his ideology is to do exactly the reverse of what he tried to accomplish," says Rabbi Yehuda Teichtel. "In the very place where Hitler tried to wipe out Judaism, we're rekindling the flames."

Teichtel and his wife Leah were dispatched last September as emissaries to Berlin by the Lubavitch World Headquarters, with the generous assistance of the Rohr family of Miami and New York. Their outreach center operates under the auspices of the official Jewish community and joins four Lubavitch centers already in the country in Cologne, Frankfurt, Munich and Potsdam.

Berlin is home to about 20,000 Jews, two-thirds of whom are actively registered with the Jewish Community. Both husband and wife come from Yiddish-speaking homes, so picking up German has not been much of a challenge. ("Except for the grammar," Teichtel confesses).

Up to 90 percent of all of Berlin's Jews arrived after 1991 from the former Soviet Union, according to Teichtel, so a large part of the couple's mission here is reaching out to these new arrivals. Both Leah and Yehuda spent time in the former Soviet Union, and their Russian is sufficient to "get by," as Rabbi Teichtel puts it.

Each week, the Teichtels make a point of visiting at least one new Russian family. "Many of them feel very alienated here so far away from their home," Leah Teichtel says. "Often, they're also alienated from their Judaism. We try to show them the beauty of Judaism as well."

Director of the Berlin Jewish community, Mr. Freddie Gross, believes their efforts are important. "When [the Teichtels] go to their homes, and help them to do brit milah (religious circumcision), or place a mezuzah on the door, the immigrants really appreciate that," Gross says.

Since his arrival Rabbi Teichtel has overseen seven brit milahs of Jewish Russian immigrants who, as they become more connected to their Judaism, chose to fully enter the Covenant of Abraham.

"There is a Jewish doctor in the Jewish hospital here, the Judische Krankenhaus, who is also a mohel and he performs the brit," Teichtel relates. "So we're guaranteed that it's done properly, both religiously and medically."

The hospital is one of the few Jewish buildings that Hitler let stand to serve as a reminder of the annihilated Jews. The significance of the brit milahs done in this hospital does not escape Teichtel, who arranges celebrations for each such "victory over the past."

Another group that the Teichtels are reaching out to are university students.

Ariel Aboyov is an industrial engineering student at Berlin's Technical University, and serves as chairman of the German Union of Jewish Students. Some 1,500 students are involved country-wide according to Aboyov. "There has been a lack of Jewish education here," he says. "Rabbi Teichtel is helping us with that. He's very energetic and knows how to talk to young people and how to get them interested."

Aboyov has been attending Teichtel's new beginners' minyan. "It's very important for the people who are not so deeply into the technical aspects of Judaism," he says. "About 30 people come, and more are getting involved all the time."

According to Mr. Gross, Berlin's Jewish community is, for the most part, "not so religious," with perhaps five percent who define themselves as Orthodox. "They are living in the Jewish society, but not in the religious way," he says.

Nevertheless, when the Teichtels invite people to their home for Shabbat dinner, "to breathe a little Jewish air," as Leah Teichtel puts it, they gladly accept.

The Teichtels expect to extend the scope of their outreach once the capital of Germany is moved from Bonn to Berlin and the number of foreign diplomats, many of them Jews, increases.

How does it feel to live in Berlin?

"You know," Leah Teichtel says, "most of the time we're so busy dealing with people, that we don't have the time to sit and think what it means that we're here. But any advancement of Judaism here is clearly an undoing of Hitler and his wicked intention. That's our lot, that's our great responsibility."