Agudas Chasidei Chabad
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Agudas Chassidei Chabad (Union of Chabad Chasidim or Association of Chabad Chassidim also known by its initials "Aguch") is the umbrella organization for the worldwide Chabad-Lubavitch movement. It administers the three central Chabad Lubavitch offices: Machneh Israel, Merkos L'Inyonei Chinuch, and the Kehot Publication Society. The chairman of the Executive Committee is Rabbi Abraham Shemtov.
Agudas Chasidei Chabad was established by the sixth Lubavitcher Rebbe, Rabbi Yosef Yitzchok Schneersohn wrote in 1923.
Its initial purpose was to "unify the Chasidim (adherents) of Chabad; to establish ordinances in every Chabad synagogue concerning the communal study of Chasidus... To establish Cheders for children and with God-fearing teachers. To establish Yeshivot for students to learn, from whom Torah may spread forth... and to support the organizations founded by the previous (Chabad) Rebbes."
The organization was incorporated in New York state in July, 1924. From 1940 until his passing in 1950, Rabbi Yosef Yitzchok Schneersohn served as President of Agudas Chassidei Chabad. Since then, Agudas Chassidei Chabad has served as the umbrella organization for the Chabad Lubavitch movement.
Articles of Association
On July 25, 1940, the articles of association were amended as follows: First: The name of the corporation shall be AGUDAS CHASIDEI CHABAD OF UNITED STATES.
Second: "Agudas Chassidei Chabad" consists of the union of pious orthodox Jews whose conception of religion is piety, study, knowledge, mutual helpfulness and charity, all of which are practiced in a spirit of sincerity, cheerfulness, humbleness and modesty; with a full appreciation of and adherence to the spirit of Americanism and Democracy.
The purposes of the corporation was to promote the religious, intellectual, moral and social welfare among its members and their families. and to foster the spirit of Americanism among its members and families inculcating a love of Democracy and the basic principles upon which the American democracy is founded, all without any political affiliation or implication whatever. and to support, maintain and conduct a school for the study of the Holy Law and maintain classes for the teachings of the customs and traditions of the Jewish Orthodox faith. The principal office of said corporation shall be located at 770 Eastern Parkway, in the Borough of Brooklyn, City of New York.
Succession of Menachem Mendel Schneerson
Rabbi Joseph Isaac Schneersohn died in January 1950. One year later, his son-in-law, Rabbi Menachem Mendel Schneerson, succeeded him as Rebbe and president of the Lubavitch organizations.
Library of Agudas Chassidei Chabad
During World War II, Rabbi Yosef Yitzchak was forced to flee from the USSR and went to Poland. He was given permission by the Soviet government to take many of his religious texts from his library with him. In March 1940, Rabbi Yosef Yitzchak managed to escape Europe for the United States, but was unfortunately forced to leave his library behind. In the 1970s, many of the texts were recovered in Poland and were returned to Chabad. Today, the library is headed by Rabbi Shalom Dovber Levine and contains over 250,000 books.
- Row In Rostov. New York's Jewish Week, 14 November 2007.
- Chabad's Model of Outreach Gains Favor Among Fervently Orthodox. Uriel Heilman, JTA.
- Aguch's Chairman meets President Bush. Jewish Press, January 4, 2002.
- Library of Agudas Chassidei Chabad