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The Building That Almost Didn't Happen

By now you probably received the invitation to the Grand Opening of the new Chabad House on June 11. It will be a fun afternoon for everyone and Chanie and I hope you can make it.

Looking back at the last year and a half—the purchase of the property, the matching campaign and then the construction—I can’t help but be overcome with emotion and gratitude. So many people to thank and so much to be thankful for.

There were times when doubts crept in to our minds about this project, and there were also times when it seemed like it wasn’t going to happen. But as it turned out, at every step of the way, immediately following any of these feelings of uncertainty, something else would happen that would bolster our resolve to see the project through.

It’s almost like we needed to take a step back, so to speak, in order to be able to project forward. And thank G-d for that, as the beautiful new building can attest.

This thought came to me as I was researching Lag B’omer, which is celebrated around the world this Sunday. One of the traditions associated with this holiday is archery demonstrations. Children are given play bow and arrow sets, and communities visit fields and parks to enjoy the great outdoors.

One of the reasons for the archery is that it epitomizes the above point, that quite often in order to succeed one needs to first step back. When shooting an arrow from a bow, the arrow is first pulled back before it can propel forward. There are many other examples that make this point, such as bending your knees before jumping, or pulling your arm back before throwing an object.

Without the step back, even if you do end up moving forward, it will not be nearly as powerful. And that’s what we should always keep in mind when feeling down; just think of how great things will be on the other side.

And now we have a beautiful Chabad House to prove it.

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