This letter was sent to R. Zalman Posner.

B”H, 28 Tishrei, 5710

Greetings and blessings,

In response to your letter from Isru Chag:I asked Rabbi Shmuel Levitin and he told me that people had already written him regarding the person whose mother remained in the city of Kiev in Russia.

The question is one to be asked a Rebbe and certainly, you will do so.

([To answer from an abstract] halachic perspective that should not [necessarily be applied] in practice: In my humble opinion, he should choose a date — not later than [the time at which it is known that the person passed away]1 — on which to lead the services, light candles, study mishnayos, give charity, and the like. He should not call it a yahrzeit.) Because of the sanctity of the fast-approaching Shabbos, I am forced to answer in brief.

I will conclude with a saying from my revered father-in-law, the Rebbe Shlita:I want to convey an adage from the Rebbeim in the name of the Alter Rebbe which he heard from his Rebbe, the Maggid, in the name of the Baal Shem Tov: “In the beginning, G‑d created....”2 The beginning is Chochmah (wisdom).3 “The beginning of wisdom is the fear of G‑d.”4 The light and the vitality of Chochmah that shines on Shabbos Bereishis is drawn down throughout the entire year, because all the days of the year receive [influence] from Shabbos Bereishis.

With wishes for everlasting good in all matters and success in your holy work,

Rabbi Menachem Schneerson