Presented below is a correspondence between the Rebbe, Rabbi Menachem M. Schneerson, of righteous memory, and Harvard cardiologist Dr. Bernard Lown, pioneer of the direct-current defibrillator and the cardioverter, among other landmark medical innovations, who also accepted the 1985 Nobel Peace Prize on behalf of the anti-nuclear war organization he co-founded. Dr. Lown was one of the doctors who assisted in caring for the Rebbe following the latter’s 1977 heart attack. Click here to read more about the Rebbe’s relationship with Dr. Lown.

Harvard University

School of Public Health

February 5, 1980

Rabbi Menachem M. Schneerson
Lubavitch Headquarters
770 Eastern Parkway
Brooklyn, NY 11213

Dear Rabbi,

I have just learned that a noteworthy milestone had been reached: the 30th year of your leadership of the Lubavitch movement. Though an infrequent visitor to your headquarters, and then only for medical reasons, the ambience of serious pursuit and commitment to Jewish religious life has never failed to make a deep impression.

Please accept my felicitations and heartfelt wishes for your long continued creative leadership in health and physical well being.

Sincerely yours,

Bernard Lown, M.D.

Professor of Cardiology

By the Grace of G‑d
20th of Shevat, 5740 [Feb. 7, 1980]
Brooklyn, N.Y.

Prof. B. Lown, M.D.
Harvard University School of
Public Health
665 Huntington Ave.
Boston, Mass. 02115

Greeting and Blessing:

Many thanks for your letter and good wishes of Feb. 5th on the occasion of our Thirtieth Anniversary.

In accordance with the assurance of our Sages that “one who blesses others is blessed by G‑d Himself,” may you and yours be blessed “from His full, open, holy and ample Hand,” in a generous measure, materially and spiritually.

I take this opportunity to convey to you once again my heartfelt appreciation for helping me reach this “noteworthy milestone,” to quote your letter. And while the blessing of health, like all blessings, come from “the Healer of all flesh Who works wondrously,” G‑d chooses His special agents in each case, and as our Sages express it, “G‑d chooses a worthy agent for a worthy cause.”

May G‑d grant that you should always be able to bring healing to all who turn to you for your professional help.

With esteem and blessing,