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Tuesday, February 27, 2024 - 18 Adar I 5784
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Blessing for the Bride and Groom

“Blessing and success” – with these words the Rebbe would bless the hundreds of people who used to pass before him on Sundays, during his famous distribution of dollars for charity and blessings. Among the fortunate ones to receive this blessing was a David K.*, a middle-aged businessman, who approached the Rebbe in Adar 5750 (March 1990). Jewish Wedding

After receiving his dollar, David was swept along with the human stream and approached the exit. But the Rebbe suddenly turned his head and beckoned David to return to him. The line stopped and David returned to the Rebbe, a bit surprised and excited. The Rebbe handed him a two dollar bills and told him (in English) that he would be the Rebbe’s messenger to transmit these dollars to the bride and groom.

The Rebbe turned to the next person in line and David was left confused and amazed.
He totally did not understand to which bride and groom the Rebbe was referring. A rabbinical student waiting in line behind him, by the name of Schneur Halperin (now Rabbi Schneur Halperin, the Rebbe’s emissary to the Hermon settlements) tried to help David understand the Rebbe’s instructions. “Maybe one of your friends or relatives is about to wed?” he asked.
"No," replied David firmly.
Halperin offered to buy him a video of his encounter with the Rebbe. Perhaps seeing the video would clarify the matter in his mind. David agreed, and Halperin sent him the video. But it did not clear up matters for him at all. The Rebbe had entrusted him with dollars to give to the bride and groom, but David could not understand to whom the Rebbe intended.

Two weeks later, David returned to the Rebbe. He was about to enter into a large-scale project and wanted to receive the Rebbe’s blessing. As he stood in front of the Rebbe, he told him briefly about the deal. To his joy, he received an extra dollar from the Rebbe. Then, suddenly, the Rebbe handed him two more dollars and told him to give them to the bride and groom.
Like the previous time, Halperin was again standing behind him. Halperin recognized David and heard the Rebbe repeat his unusual instructions. He was determined to solve the mystery behind the Rebbe's words. He went to consult with the Rebbe's secretary, Rabbi Yehudah Leib Groner. Rabbi Groner thought for a moment and suggested that David write a letter to the Rebbe, requesting an explanation.

David accepted the suggestion happily. Halperin guided him in how to word his query to the Rebbe, and David sent off his letter by fax.

Halperin submitted the fax to Rabbi Groner, and within several days the Rebbe's answer arrived. It was a few days before Passover, on the 11th of Nissan, the Rebbe's birthday. The Rebbe wrote, "A bride and groom who are getting married (on Lag B'omer) or a few days before Shavuot, and he can give over [the dollars] through the officiating rabbi in his city."

 "Do you know any rabbis in your city?" Halperin asked David, after relaying to him the Rebbe's answer.

It took a while for David to locate his local rabbi, but it turned out that he was not the one the Rebbe had in mind. The rabbi was Reform, and Halperin explained that he needed to look for an Orthodox rabbi.

"There are none in this town," replied David. But Halperin would not give up. "If the Rebbe said this, there must be one!" he declared.

And he was right. There was a small Orthodox community in town run by a rabbi worthy of his name, a modest Orthodox rabbi. David approached him and asked him if he was planning on officiating at any weddings between Lag Baomer and Shavuot. The Rabbi replied in the negative. At the time, five weeks before Shavuot, no one had yet approached him to officiate at any weddings.

Now David was completely confused. What had the Rebbe meant?

 A few days before Lag Baomer, the Rabbi called David, and said that a couple had just approached him to officiate at a chuppah on Lag Baomer.

David quickly told Halperin of this, and Halperin instructed him to return to the Rabbi, give him the four dollars and ask him to give them to the couple on their wedding day.

The day before Lag Baomer, David called Halperin again. "Don't ask," he said. "The groom was in a car accident and broke his leg. The wedding has been postponed."

 It took a few moments for Halperin to digest these words. "Now I understand," he said.

"What do you understand?" David asked.

"Listen carefully," said Halperin. "In the Rebbe's letter, he told you to look for a couple getting married on Lag Baomer, in parentheses, or in the days before Shavuot. The Rebbe was hinting that the wedding was originally scheduled for Lag Baomer, but would be rescheduled for a few days before Shavuot!"

Indeed, the chuppah was held a few days before Shavuot, and the Rabbi gave over the four dollars, a gift from the Lubavitcher Rebbe. All the participants were amazed at the role the Rebbe had played in this wedding celebration--none more so than David, the Rebbe's messenger himself.


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