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Religion News

South Dakota to get a permanent rabbi

  • Rabbi Mendel Alperowitz HOME
South Dakota, with its minuscule Jewish community scattered throughout an expansive area, has had the dubious distinction of being the only state in the US with no rabbi
by ANT KATZ | Nov 28, 2016

That will all change after it was announced at the 4 500-delegate International Conference of Chabad-Lubavitch Emissaries last week, that Rabbi Mendel Alperowitz, pictured, will shortly move from Brooklyn, New York, to Sioux Falls to establish a Chabad centre.

Rabbi Mendel Alperowitz in crowd


RIGHT: Rabbi Mendel Alperowitz' fiery red beard stands out among the crowd


The area boasts a community dating back to the days of the Wild West. The appointment comes as the American Jewish community marks 75 years since the Lubavitcher Rebbe, Rabbi Menachem M Schneerson and his wife, Rebbetzen Chaya Mushka, arrived on US shores from war-torn Europe in 1941.

Chabad-Lubavitch has been serving Jews in South Dakota for more than half a century, since the Rebbe established the Merkos Shlichus (Roving Rabbis) programme, which dispatches pairs of young rabbis to small and isolated communities around the globe.

Although it has been widely accepted that fewer than 400 Jewish people reside in the entire state, Rabbi Alperowitz estimates that it may indeed be home to as many as      1 000 Jews.

He believes that the Jewish population may have been bolstered in recent years by the growing financial and healthcare industries.

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2 Comments

  1. 2 Choni 29 Nov
    Simple question! Would it not be better if these great young Jews went to their own Land  and raise their families there, rather than to some place in the exilic graveyards of the world.
    For every Jew they "bring back" eight will assimilate.
    Don't Chabad realise that the exile is being "eliminated" one way or the other. All they are doing is perpetuating and defending a lost cause. The future of our nation is in Eretz Yisrael. All Chabad  shluchim should do their holy work of kiruv in Israel.
  2. 1 Arnold 29 Nov
    The article should specify that South Dakota was the only state without a Chabad Rabbi. Chabad now has a permanent presence in all 50 states of the US.

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