This Week ‘770 Case’ Sees the Courthouse


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    This Week ‘770 Case’ Sees the Courthouse

    After over two and a half years of talks, document exchanges, and preparations, the actual trial over the future of 770 has begun, with Petitioners requesting from the court that Congregation Lubavitch should be evicted from 770 • Full Story

    After over two and a half years of talks, document exchanges, and preparations, the actual trial over the future of 770 has begun, with Petitioners requesting from the court that Congregation Lubavitch should be evicted from 770.

    The current claim comes after numerous previous proceedings that took place in different court houses in New York over the past decade, where the Directors of Agudas Chasidei Chabad and Merkos L’Inyonei Chinuch are trying to use the secular courts in order to wrest control of the Shul from the Gabbaim, who were voted into their positions through elections. Similar claims against the Gabbaim on two prior occasions were dismissed in court.

    The lawyer for the respondents explained that this is not a regular real estate dispute, but rather, since the members of the shul are all members of Agudas Chabad, and one of the purposes for which Agudas Chabad was formed was to provide a Shul to its members, the first question is whether a religious congregation has the legal authority to evict its own membership. Additionally, since the organization was legally established as a religious and Chassidic institute, the legal proceedings need to be done according to the spirit of its founder, the Frierdiker Rebbe (and the Rebbe MH”M after him), and according to the spirit of what is written in official documents of the organization from the 1940’s. Therefore, congruent with the instructions of the Rebbe, the Shul’s management ought to be under the sole direction of the Gabbaim, who are elected by the congregants.

    Furthermore, it is also to be determined whether the State of New York has the legal authority to intervene in such religious matters, where the dispute is in essence over differences of opinion regarding the Rebbe as Moshiach, for instance, regarding the signs on the walls of 770 etc.

    During the discovery portion of the proceedings, the Gabbaim sought to present a compilation of Sichos and letters from the Rebbe which demonstrate how the shul should be run. In response, the petitioners argued that the court should not consider any religious claims, but instead judge it as it were any other legal case, and therefore disregard the Rebbe’s opinion from any consideration (Screenshot attached).

    The lawyer for the Gabbaim, Mr. Rudofsky, presented excerpts from the prior Appellate Court rulings, and from the ruling of Judge Devin Cohen, who presided over the earlier stages of this landlord-tenant case, who wrote about the complexities of the legal issues of the case which merit full discussion (Screenshot attached).

    Currently, the lawyers of the congregants are preparing to present their claims, where they will prove that the shul in “Beis Agudas Chassidei Chabad” was always managed through the elected Gabbaim. The Rebbe’s opinion on the matter is going to be presented as well, including answers and Sichos of the Rebbe and additional documents showing that the Rebbe gave the management of the shul to the hands of the Gabbaim.

    Chassidim worldwide are asked to say Tehillim for the success of this case, that the Rebbe’s will should be fulfilled, and that the shul will continue to be run by the Gabbaim in accordance with the Rabbanim of the shchuna, as it has been since its establishment and iy”h till the coming of Moshiach.

    *  *  *

    Their claim not to take the Rebbe’s opinion into consideration:


    Cong. Lubavitch Respondents Trial Exhibit F


    Lawyer for the Gabbaim, Mr. Rudofsky, presented excerpts:

























    1. What will happen if Crown Heights becomes not Lubavitch?

      Historically, Crown Heights was not an exclusively Chabad community, and it may come to pass in the near future that other (not-Chabad) frum Jews will move back in, as the Rebbe MH”M wanted

      Will they have a right to vote in Gabayim elections?

      Will we require “Proof of Lubavitchness” to vote?

      What “Legal” method is there to keep 770 in it’s current form (and not rebuilt as a modern Orthodox shul with no mention of Chabad and Rebbe)

      What “Legal” method is there to keep 770 davening Nusach Ari?

      While I understand that certain individuals may behave in ways we may not like, may they not be the lesser of the two evils?

    2. have confidence

      Since the Rebbe is on your side, you will win

    3. Boruch N Hoffinger

      The biggest ‘Yechinick’ was The Rebbe, MH”M. There are those that believe that saying ‘Yechi’ will harm ‘Chabad’ but The Rebbe was of a different opinion. Those claiming to be ‘Chabadnicks’ ‘Lubavitchers’ who do no say ‘Yechi’ are not mekushar with the Nassi HaDor (‘Nassi HaDor’ is ‘Moshiach’ be dor’).
      I spoke to a friend of mine in Squirrel HIll, Pittsburgh who doesn’t say ‘Yechi.’ He told me that the rav of the community doesn’t want it said.
      I mentioned the (approx) two years ‘The Rebbe,’ while on the 770 balcony, urged the singing of ‘Yechi.’ Also, recently Rabbi Groner showed in court, publicly, the title of a book in Hebrew were The Rebbe agreed to the title ‘Melech HaMoshiach’ right after his name (Menaḥem Mendel Schneersohn). So ‘The Rebbe’ agreed to proclaim, publicly, that he is ‘Moshaich!’
      My friend, re: ‘the balcony’ said: “One can interpret The Rebbe’s movements in many ways. I responded that: ‘Aren’t you saying The Rebbe’ didn’t know what he was doing…wasn’t aware of the results of his movements?”
      A similar thing happened in a local ‘schul’ about 12 years ago. One well-known Lubavitcher was talking to this friend and said (re: ‘the balcony’): “I don’t think ‘The Rebee’ knew what he was doing.”
      Surprised by this, I kept my silence and walked to ‘770.’ I told an ‘alter chossid’ what I had just heard (no names mentioned) and he responded: “A similar thing happened at the end of ‘The Freidiker Rebbe’s’ life, and to say such a thing, the speaker is ‘Kieelu Chaiv Misa.’
      (My friend never responded to my email.)
      So my fellow ‘Lubavitchers,’ ‘Chabadnicks’ now we see what type of a situation we are in. ‘Yidden’ that talk like this are either:
      A. Ignorant of the true nature of a ‘rebbe’ or weak in understanding of ‘The Rebbe’s Sichos’
      B. Don’t see themselves as leaders…lack self -esteem (perhaps no connection)
      B. Wicked, arrogant, egotistical and self-centered

    4. The Rebbe and His Belongings Belong to the Chassidim

      770 belongs to the chassidim and the Rebbe left us clear directions how 770 shoulc be run. 770 is a lubavitch shul and should continue to be run as such. The rulling that the Rebbe and his belongings belong the the chassidim was rulled by the legal court all those years ago and with the Rebbe Melech Hamoshiach on our side there is no doubt that we will win.

    5. Who said that Gabayim should be elected

      Can someone find a Sicha/Letter/Ksav Yad/ Anything where the Rebbe said that Gabayim should be elected?

      Were there elections before Gimmel Tammuz?

    6. Shmeril

      Of course there were elections before gimel Tamuz. In fact, even Krinsky was elected as a Gabai in the first election. There were elections back 20-30 years before Gmel Tamuz,

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    This Week ‘770 Case’ Sees the Courthouse