(Chabad.org) Jewish communities in the Israeli cities of Kiryat Arba, Hebron and beyond will celebrate Tuesday when the local Chabad-Lubavitch center dedicates a new building. The occasion, which will include a parade of a new Torah scroll to the three-story structure, will also mark the arrival of Rabbi Refael and Mushka Brod, the newly-appointed emissaries who will run the facility.
The building replaces a bomb shelter that has served as a Chabad House for the soldiers and 8,000 people living in Kiryat Arba, a city on the outskirts of the biblical city of Hebron.
“Many hundreds of soldiers will finally have a Chabad House of their own,” said Rabbi Danny Cohen, director of Chabad-Lubavitch of Hebron. “This is also a message to the people around the world who think our presence here is temporary. Chabad is here to stay; the Jewish people are here to stay.”
Dedicated to the memory of Chaya Mushka Atia, the young daughter of Chabad of Kiryat Arba directors Rabbi Viktor and Devora Atia whose life was tragically cut short six years ago in a fire, the building will include a synagogue, children’s club, library, classrooms, offices and guest quarters.
“Tragedy has to serve as a turning point for something positive,” explained Cohen, who said that the main donor was philanthropist Lev Leviev. “So six years ago, we started the journey of building, obtaining permits, and fundraising in these hard times. We feel privileged to present this gift to the people of Kiryat Arba and the many visitors to the area.”