Miracles In Chadera
By Chaim Silberstein

Summer 5760. It was registration time for the Chabad nursery school of Chadera. In another few weeks, at the end of the summer, twenty tiny tots would finish the year at the Chabad nursery (not obligatory by the government) and move on to another school.

During the registration drive, which involved quite a bit of effort, there was a meeting of Chabad House activists, led by Rabbi Yochanan Butman. It was decided to make additional efforts to register children, for the purpose of significantly increasing enrollment for the new school year.

An idea to open another class for gan chova (mandatory by the government) was proposed. They knew the idea was a daring one, as they were struggling to fill registration for the existing class, but perhaps they could convince parents to send their children based on the school’s great reputation.

There was some discussion as to the merit of the idea, with some questioning whether they should put their efforts into the existing class or open an additional class, when Rabbi Butman, director of the Chabad House, declared, "We already have a non-mandatory class. Now we will open a mandatory class. Now let’s see whether we can open a third class for two- and three-year-olds!"

His staff looked at him as though he were off his rocker. They were all familiar with the situation: they had no place, no staff, no money, and hardly any children. They didn’t have much time to work with either.

Rabbi Butman maintained, "We are in the fiftieth year of the Rebbe’s leadership, and we have the kochos of the fiftieth year. We have to undertake a massive publicity campaign, and with the Rebbe’s bracha we will realize our dream of having three nursery classes!"

Rabbi Butman went to 770 for Gimmel Tammuz in order to derive new strength and to ask for the Rebbe’s bracha that their plans work out successfully.

He knew what he would have to contend with: a building, equipment, a new staff, registration, etc. The first thing on the list was a location, for without a building he couldn’t register any children. By Divine providence he found a private building with a large yard, just a few hundred yards away from the existing class. He felt that his dream was beginning to come true.

In a meeting with the landlords, Rabbi Butman spoke about the importance of a Jewish education and asked them to be his partners in this worthy endeavor. The owners agreed to lower the rent from $600 a month to only $350! If that weren’t enough, they signed a monthly direct withdrawal donation to the Chabad house of hundreds of shekel a month!

Now they could register children for the new class. They got lists of names and began making house calls, home after home. They explained the importance of giving a Jewish-Chassidic education to children, and described the personal attention and the other wonderful features of a Chabad school. Registration increased.

Rabbi Butman began expanding and renovating his classrooms. He checked his lists and saw that he was going to have a sizable group of children and that he needed to make sure the classrooms were spacious enough. He realized that he would have to enlarge the original classroom by closing the porch and breaking down the wall between two rooms.

In between running around taking care of everything that needed doing, Rabbi Butman also approached philanthropists for donations towards his Chabad house. He met with Mr. Chaim Yaakovi, a well known contractor in Chadera.

The contractor said, "It isn’t right that an emissary of the Lubavitcher Rebbe should have to go around asking for favors; people should approach the shliach to offer him money! What do you need from me?"

"We are opening additional classes and our costs are high, especially the cost of building and renovation," said Rabbi Butman.

Mr. Yaakovi responded, "Forget about the building. I’ll take care of that." Mr. Yaakovi provided financial assistance and personally oversaw the building and renovating of the school, in addition to expanding another floor of the Chabad house.

Rabbi Butman told Beis Moshiach, "With our own eyes we saw the ko’ach of 50 years of the Rebbe’s leadership. All the problems which seemed insurmountable were solved one by one, in the best possible way."

At eight o’clock in the morning on the first day of school, about a hundred children and their parents made their way to the Chabad school. Mr. Yaakovi summed it up, "You know how you got all this? Because the Rebbe is with you and accompanies you along the way."


"With our own eyes we saw the ko’ach of 50 years of the Rebbe’s leadership. All the problems which seemed insurmountable were solved one by one, in the best possible way."


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