10 Facts About The Rebbe’s Lag B’Omer




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    10 Facts About The Rebbe’s Lag B’Omer

    The Rebbe at the Lag B’Omer parade, 5736.

    From Beis Moshiach Magazine: In honor of Lag B’Omer. we present 10 facts about the Rebbe’s Lag B’Omer. From the first parade to the seder hayom • Full Article


    The first sicha the Rebbe said to children (at a sort of parade) was in 5713/1953. The event was short and groundbreaking.

    That day, the talmidim in yeshivos and Talmud Torahs in New York gathered in the yard of 770. They all stood in an orderly way and the Rebbe went out on the balcony with members of the hanhala of the yeshiva standing next to him. The Rebbe indicated for them to sing and the children began singing “Ani Maamin.” After that, the Rebbe said a short sicha.

    First Parade, 5713 (1953)


    The main parade outside 770 usually took place when Lag B’Omer was on a Sunday, a day off from public school. In addition, in 5736, which the Rebbe called “Shnas HaChinuch,” there was a parade even though Lag B’Omer was not on Sunday. Likewise, in 5748, there was a parade not on a Sunday but the Rebbe did not attend it. He only passed by the rides area on his way to the Ohel. Even so, in the years without a main parade, the Rebbe called for being involved in the matters of the day of Lag B’Omer.


    In 5735, the Rebbe agitated about engaging in Lag B’Omer activities and even sent a special letter about this. That letter gave quite the push and encouragement for mivtzaim activities and for the tanks which were then at their peak.

    As always, the Rebbe went to the Ohel and when he returned in the evening, he asked R’ Yoel Kahn to check where they were holding at the wedding taking place at that time. Later on, the Rebbe went down for a sudden farbrengen. It seems the Rebbe did not want to disturb the wedding.

    The Parade of Shnas Hachinuch, displaying the 6 Pesukim on 774-778


    In 5736 there was a parade attended by the Rebbe. The Rebbe asked in advance that what he said be transmitted live to Meron.

    This was the first time that the Rebbe divided his sicha into three parts. Afterward, it was discovered that in the middle of his speaking there was a glitch and the transmission was interrupted. That was precisely when the Rebbe stopped speaking and he had Rabbi Hecht translate what he said. When the glitch was fixed, the Rebbe continued to speak. This was without anyone telling the Rebbe that there was a problem.


    At the parade, huge floats on trucks passed in front of the Rebbe. Each float had hundreds of details. Although they passed by the Rebbe relatively quickly, the Rebbe noticed every detail.

    In 5736, for example, a float showed how Jewish children were involved in Torah all day, from when they got up until they went to sleep. Afterward, the Rebbe told R’ Hecht that one of the beds was missing a pillow.

    The 5736 (1976) Parade


    After every parade, thousands of children would go and play in a rides area that was set up for them. The children played and ate. Many of them learned for the first time how to wash their hands and say a bracha before and after eating.

    Aside from participating in the parade, the Rebbe visited the play area and enjoyed watching the children enjoy themselves. One year, the Rebbe wrote afterward, “Especially that I saw for myself the success on Empire Blvd too.”

    A bachur working hard on decorating a float


    In 5748, the Rebbe did not attend the parade but he went afterward to see the children in the play area. R’ Hecht, the organizer of the event, went over to the Rebbe’s car and through the window told the Rebbe how successful the parade had been.

    In the evening he wrote to the Rebbe, “May the Rebbe shlita forgive me for having the chutzpa to open the window of the car and speak without permission to the Rebbe, but I wanted to tell the good news as soon as possible in order to bring some joy to the Rebbe at the earliest opportunity.” (The Rebbe was in mourning that year).

    The Rebbe marked the word “simcha” in the letter and added the word “very.” He also noted, “On the contrary, many thanks. The chutzpa?! And as I saw afterward the faces of the boys and girls and the onlookers as I drove by, they were happy and excited even a while after the end of the parade, etc.”

    The Rebbe talking to Rabbi Yankel Hecht at a Lag B’Omer Parade


    The custom today is to have a parade in every city, neighborhood and moshav in Israel, starting from 5740. That was the first year that the Rebbe said to organize Lag B’Omer parades everywhere.

    Since then, more and more parades have been added.


    At the end of the parade in 5744, before the Rebbe went back to his office, he spoke with R’ Hecht for a few minutes. R’ Hecht asked the Rebbe whether he was satisfied with the parade and the Rebbe said, “very.”

    The Rebbe en route to the park. Lag B’Omer 5744 (1984)

    10 – A BUSY DAY

    There were years that the Rebbe attended the Lag B’Omer parade (which lasted several hours) and the very same day he went to the mikva and the Ohel and after that, even held a farbrengen.

    In 5740, the Rebbe farbrenged three times around Lag B’Omer: on Shabbos which was erev Lag B’Omer, on Lag B’Omer at the parade, and motzoei Lag B’Omer. At the third farbrengen, the Rebbe said that this behavior of his was “a microcosm, a model and a fraction” of the conduct of the Arizal.


    The magazine can be obtained in stores around Crown Heights. To purchase a subscription, please go to: bmoshiach.org


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