Chabad Porto and students from the city visited Lubavitcher Rebbe in New York

Chabad Porto and students from the city visited Lubavitcher Rebbe in New York

This month Rabbi Haim Chetrit (the Chabad Rabbi in Oporto) and students from the city visited the Lubavitcher Rebbe in New York. Strong bonds were created during this memorable trip. It was another extraordinary achievement for Chabad Portugal, which has been present in the country for exactly thirteen years. "It was a very special moment as for the first time we brought a group of young people from Porto to New York", said Rabbi Chetrit.

Based in Cascais, in one of the most beautiful Chabad Centers in Europe, Chabad Portugal extends its activities throughout the country and runs the student Kadoorie Mekor Simchah synagogue in Oporto in partnership with the local Jewish community.

When Rabbi Eli and Raizel Rosenfeld of Brooklyn with their two small children first arrived in Portugal in 2010, all activities were based out of a rented apartment. There they began hosting small groups for study, as well as visiting families across the country having Torah classes in their homes. In the following years such classes were held, besides for Lisbon, in Porto, Cascais, Ericeira and Algarve.

In 2020, the Rosenfelds built a fantastic Chabad center that is a model for the entire world. The building has a prayer room, mikvah, library, kitchen, restaurant, sukkah and everything needed to practice Judaism. And above all, it honors the Rebbe, Rabbi Menachem Mendel Schneerson, of blessed memory, who influenced generations of young men and women, drawing their attention to the importance of Jewish education and a solid character.

Since 2021, the Rosenfeld couple has been joined by another Chabad couple. Rabbi Haim and Rebetzin Hannah Chettrit are a Sephardic couple who work together with the Jewish community in Oporto.

In June 1941, Rabbi Menachem Mendel Schneerson, the future Lubavitcher Rebbe, and his wife Chaya Mushka boarded a ship from Lisbon’s Rocha da Conde de Óbidos pier that carried them from Nazi-occupied Europe to safety in New York.

“The Rebbe's efforts and legacy continue to inspire the world to never give up on any individual, believing that each and every person can reveal their hidden spark of Judaism to reach a vibrant and burning flame”, said Rabbi Rosenfeld.