This letter was sent to R. Yaakov Katz of Chicago, one of the initial supporters of Lubavitch activities in America.

1 Iyar, 5711,
Brooklyn, N.Y.

Greetings and blessings,

Pursuant to our telephone conversation, I am sending you a copy of my letter to Mr. Yosef Robinson and also the 20 [post-dated] checks from Mr. Simon and Mr. Kaplan that were dated consecutively, beginning two days after Robinson’s checks, beginning with the sixteenth check according to the directive that you gave that tzedakah should be given priority.1

In that vein, I would like to emphasize what the Alter Rebbe writes in [Tanya,] Iggeres HaKodesh, Epistle 21, that no matter how great a mitzvah is, the eagerness with which one performs the mitzvah has very great significance. In particular, the Alter Rebbe writes this concerning tzedakah. To quote: “So, too, it is the eagerness of our Patriarch Avraham [to follow G‑d’s command] that stands by us and our children, forever.” And he adds: “In particular, [this applies] to the act of charity which is superior to all [mitzvos]…. It is thus certainly to our benefit, even in this world, to be as prompt as possible in [the giving of charity].”

I will conclude with the wish that the Talmud’s promise:2 “Tithe so that you become wealthy” be fulfilled. And [our Sages taught]3 that the merit of the person who causes the money given to charity to be deposited in the account [of the charitable fund] is greater than that of the one who gives. Your participation in the work that my revered father-in-law, the Rebbe זצוקללה"ה, נבג"ם, זי"ע, established in North Africa will serve as a conduit to draw down apparent and revealed good with regard to your health, that of your wife, and that of the members of your household and bring you much success in your business [efforts] — on both the material and spiritual [planes]. Since one must always ascend in matters of holiness,4 you will also merit to increase your participation in the work of my father-in-law, the Rebbe, and [that participation] will proceed to grow to ever-increasing heights.

I hope to hear good news from you at all times. With great blessings in both material and spiritual matters,