Rabbi Fishel's Blog

Dear Partners of Chabad Naples

Dear Partners of Chabad  Naples

Yes, it's Thanksgiving and we are enumerating all of the things for which we are so very grateful.  However, at Chabad Naples there is a difference:  when it comes to our generous partners, we endeavor to express our gratitude more often than once a year. A simple "thank you" seems so inadequate, and yet sometimes simplicity fulfills the need. 

Just as Chabad Naples has its welcoming arms and doors open for everyone, every day of the year, you, our dear partners, realize our daily requirements and never hesitate to step up when a call goes out. 

Our wish for you today and each day of the year, is for continued blessings and naches for your outstanding generosity. May this simple thank you express our heartfelt appreciation for all that you do.

With love and blessings.

Rabbi Fishel & Ettie Zaklos
Arthur Seigel, M.D., President



Contemplation, Inspiration, Celebration

Contemplation, Inspiration, Celebration 

After spending last weekend at the Annual International Conference of Chabad Rabbis, surrounded by my colleagues and dearest friends from all over the world, needless to say I was and am still caught up in a medley of emotions and thoughts and ideas.  Contemplation.  

Touching base with dearest friends from Hanoi, Vietnam, Malmo, Sweden, Boulder, Colorado, Jerusalem, Israel and Turkey -- the off-schedule moments, the hallway conversations and reunions simply blow me away. I felt a different energy; an open honesty about the challenges, successes and (perceived) failures of Shlichus, an intimate appreciation for the real life blessings and the hopes to make tomorrow even brighter. With the conference preceding Thanksgiving, it makes us even more thankful for being able to give. I realize that we are far more blessed in the opportunities to give than in our opportunities to take: giving means we make a difference and everyone can apply this to his or her life --  it doesn’t matter how knowledgeable or how experienced you are, you are capable of giving, by adding just one mitzvah to your daily life. Inspiration. 

When I meet people I tell them I deal in diamonds, precious and priceless gems -- that’s what my teacher the Rebbe OBM taught me:  we are one family and every human being is precious.  

As we celebrate this Shabbat, let us dedicate to ourselves and our families the great gift of family.  Special memories are the greatest gift we can give each other and our children. Celebration. 

Hopefully you're enjoying the long weekend ... perhaps you can come by for Shabbat celebration tomorrow. 

Have a wonderful Shabbat!
Rabbi Fishel & Ettie

there are no words

Dear Friends,

There are times when there are no words, they simply fail us; and last Tuesday was such a day.  When I heard the news of the attack and murder of our brothers in the synagogue in Israel, words failed me -- my heart ached.  I cried, I prayed for the precious souls who died and for their dear families.  I just davened. 

This weekend I join with thousands of Chabad rabbis and lay leaders from all over the world in an energizing and uplifting convention.  One of the first friends I reconnected with was Menachem Traxler who lives in Jerusalem.  I simply gave him a big hug and said, "We are with you."  

I studied in Jerusalem one summer while he ended up going there to live and do amazing work running a soup kitchen, counseling widows and orphans. He confessed things are really tough now, but when he asked when I was coming to Israel to show support,  it made me stop and think.  The idea is very appealing but only if I go with my extended family, the precious Naples community.  We are needed to show support -- so how about it!  

I know March 2016 is far out, but a special trip like this requires some planning. Chabad Naples is known for doing things in a first-class way, and we would strive to create a unique five-star trip with unique access to all points of geographical and political interest in Israel. Here is a chance to see Israel as you have never seen it before. So, are you with us? Are you ready to help show support?  Please let me know!  Send me an e-mail or tell me if you would be interested in a trip. like this.

This will be a special Shabbat as I Farbreng with my Chabad friends from Turkey, Oslo, Finland, Malmo/Sweden, and many others. At the same time, I know at Chabad of Naples my Naples family will also be devoting time in their prayers together at the beautiful Shabbat service to remember the souls of those whose lives were so senselessly taken in Jerusalem.    

This week as we prayed for the dear families of the terrorist attack we felt the unity of how we are responsible and our lives are intertwined. As the Guest Speaker of the Gala Banquet, Yuli-Yoel Edelstein, Speaker of the Israeli Knesset pays tribute to the victims, our usually buoyant spirit will not ignore the pain and tragedy of what we as a family and a nation have endured over the last few weeks.  

Wishing a Shabbat of comfort to the families in Har Nof, Yanuh Jat, and to all of us.


Where would we be without women?

Dear Friends,

Each Shabbat when we chant Eishet Chayil, we expound on and rejoice in the qualities of strong, virtuous women in Judaism, not only in our history but also in our current lives.  Mothers, grandmothers, sisters, daughters, nieces --  we all have sterling examples and role models for younger women to emulate. Where would we be without women?  Simply answered:  we would not be.

At Chabad, we have always  celebrated and been grateful for  the bat mitzvot and with this in mind,  this week  we joyfully anticipate the bat mitzvah of Casey Feins.  As a community, we are so proud of her accomplishments.  A celebration of this event will  include a beautiful family Havdalah service to mark the special occasion.

This week's reading tells how Abraham and Sarah were a team, bringing light, warmth, and community together.  A team works together as a unit -- not separately as single entities.  Without Sarah at his side, his woman of valor who set the tone for love, spirituality and personal growth for all those around her, Abraham's team could not have been as successful.

Treasure your personal Eishet Chayil daily, but honor her in song every Shabbat.

On behalf of my wife, Ettie, and the entire Chabad of Naples community, I would like to express heartfelt wishes of Mazel Tov to our Bat Mitzvah girl, Casey Feins; to her wonderful parents, Jeff & Linda ; to her grandparents Mickey & Marty Feins and Joanne Manheimer; and to all of the family and friends on this auspicious “Bat Mitzvah” Celebration.

Good Shabbas

Looking for older posts? See the sidebar for the Archive.