Hundreds of men, women, and children attended a Farbrengen event in honor of the 5th Yahrtzeit of the Shliach to Simcha Monica, California, Rabbi Avrohom HaLevi Levitansky obm on Wednesday evening 10 Sivan, May 31st .
Held in his Chabad House, the evening started with calls for "did you put on Tefillin yet?" as Rabbi Levitansky's children hurried to put Tefillin on all the men who had not yet done the Mitzva.
As people entered the Shul, they washed and sat down at the tables to enjoy a full dinner, and spend some time "Farbrenging" with their table mates, recounting their experiences with Rabbi Levitansky, or "Avremel" as he was fondly known.
Rabbi Sholom Heidingsfeld, Director of adult education in Chabad of Simcha Monica, emceed the event which began with the 12 Pesukim recited by the children. He then called on Shliach of the Rebbe to Beverly Hills, and Rav of Anash, Rabbi Yosef Shusterman, who welcomed the crowd, and spoke of his dear friend and colleague, whose Yahrtzeit was being commemorated.
The Guest Speaker of the evening, Rabbi Shlomo Yaffe, Scholar-in-Residence to Chabad at Harvard then addressed the theme of the evening, "The lifelong dedication to the spreading of Chassidus".
Learning lessons from the life of Rabbi Levitansky, who at the young age of 12 had already written to the Rebbe about his (what would later be called) Mivtzoim of inviting his friends to shake Lulav and eat in the Sukkah, and his dedication to being a Shliach and a Rav together, teaching the Halachos of Toras Emes with sensitivity and caring, he called upon everyone to take these lessons to heart, and add in observance of practical Mitzvos, and to help others to do so as well.
Following in the tradition of his father, Zev Mayer Levitansky, made a Siyum on Maseches Sota. He then made a Hadran, connecting the last line of the Masechta which discusses humility with a number of lesser-known stories of his father which illustrated his character trait of humility.
Rabbi Isaac Levitansky, Sliach of Chabad of Simcha Monica, shared the Rambam for the day with the gathered. He connected the Halochos of the Rambam with the many questions which his father would deal with daily.
The official part of the evening ended with Benching and Maariv, after which the tables were rearranged to Farbrengen style, where the Farbrengen continued until the wee hours of the morning. A Teshura was distributed which included letters of the Rebbe and some of Rabbi Levitansky's stories.
Amongst those who Farbrenged was Rabbi Shimon Raichik, Rabbi of Congregation Levi Yitzchak, and Rav of Anash. He related many stories of the Rebbe, as well as many memories which he shared with Rabbi Levitansky.
Participants were asked to donate to the Camp Fund, one of Rabbi Levitansky's primary projects, to ensure that every Jewish child has a Torah true summer; something which the Rebbe spoke about many times.