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The famous photo graces thousands of homes and his seforim guide us, but what of all those legends of the Chofetz Chaim, told and retold? In a rare departure from a no-publicity policy, Rav Hillel Zaks, rosh yeshivas Knesses Hagedolah and a son of the Chofetz Chaim’s youngest daughter, provides the little known, rarest of glimpses into this “first family” of Klal Yisrael. Along the way, he reflects on his grandfather’s timeless legacy.
A wedding in the rebbe’s court isn’t just about sending out invitations and booking a p hotographer. It’s a joyous affirmation of the continuity of the court, a veritable Yom Tov for the chassidim who attend in their Shabbos best — chronicled in the memoirs of the chassidus for years to come. With Shavuos heralding the start of the summer wedding season, a look behind the scenes at the dedicated chassidim involved in orchestrating an affair on par with any major stadium event.
Some people are called back to the World of Truth amid great martyrdom and human sacrifice, while others have another mission — to continue living with simchah even within that mesirus nefesh. That was Reb Duvid Werdyger’s destiny. Through his pioneering efforts to bring holy music to a postmodern world, he showed generations that the timeless ideals of the spirit can overcome the darkest horrors.
When Ed Shames and his battalion parachuted into Nazi-occupied Normandy seventy years ago this week, their mission was to prevent heavily fortified German positions from reaching the beaches. While most of the division was lost, Shames and his men fought on, paving the way for the end of the war. But no battle could prepare him for Dachau.
Afrikaners are best known for their unusual tongue and love of a dried beef treat called biltong. But lately, they’re becoming better known to the Jewish community in South Africa, where dozens of Afrikaners have shed their Christianity and found their true spiritual home.