Thanks for the article on Jewish life in Hudson County. However you left out the hardest-working Jewish organization in Hudson County, Chabad of Hoboken. Rabbi Moshe Schapiro and his wife Shaindel are unbelievable in everything they do.
On any given Shabbat you’ll find dozens of Jews, young and old, at their beautiful home. Hundreds of people turn out for their holiday events. You come home on Friday afternoon and find Shaindel’s home challah at your front door.
My wife and I moved to Hoboken two years ago from the Upper East Side. We almost didn’t. Would there be enough Yiddishkeit? Would there be other young Jewish professionals to spend Shabbat and Yom Tov? When we learned about Chabad of Hoboken, we decided to go for it – and it was the best decision we ever made.
Not only did the rabbi have us over for our first Shabbat in Hoboken but he packed his home that night with other young Jewish couples for us to meet. Those people are now our nearest and dearest friends.
Speaking of near and dear: When my beloved great-aunt passed away, Rabbi Schapiro saw to it that she had a 100 percent kosher funeral.
When our baby girl was born, the rabbi organized a beautiful baby-naming and kiddush. In both cases, he never asked for a penny.
My wife and I gave ourselves two years in Hoboken before we moved to greener Jewish pastures. But because of Chabad of Hoboken, we think we’re here to stay.
Don’t get me wrong, I love the Conservative rabbi in town, and if I were 10 years younger, I would be at Moishe House all the time.
But there’s nothing like Chabad and there’s nobody like Rabbi Moshe and Shaindel Schapiro.
Maybe Chabad was inadvertently left out because we don’t have a traditional shul. The truth is, all of Hudson County is Rabbi Schapiro’s shul. The guy is all over of the place. Most rabbis make house calls now and then. Rabbi Schapiro does it every single day.
For instance, every Tuesday night, the rabbi comes to my home to teach a weekly Torah class. When the class is over, no one leaves. He answers question after question, counsels us, or just shoots the breeze.
Here’s how I see it: At most synagogues, you pay dues and go to shul. At Chabad of Hoboken, you don’t have to pay anything and the shul comes to you. Rabbi Schapiro shows up on your front door with his wife’s challah in hand. How awesome is that!