Emuna Outreach has grown tremendously, so much so that Rabbi Lazer Brody could no longer handle the entire organization on his own. As such, he was forced to temporarily discontinue operations since last July, and as a result, was not accepting donations. But, as they say in Hebrew, the bitter has yielded the sweet. Emuna Outreach is now an integral part of Breslev Israel and the Chut Shel Chesed Institutions, under the auspices of Rabbi Shalom Arush shlit'a. Scroll down to read the whole story:
Above image: Emuna Outreach mascot, designed by Yaacov Kirschen of "Dry Bones" fame
do the US troops in Afghanistan have in common with the First Nations of northern Ontario and the Noahides of Singapore? They're all learning about emuna...
In 2004, an American talk-show host interviewed Rabbi Lazer Brody. He thought that it was rather novel to host a Chassidic rabbi on his show who was also a special-ops combat veteran of Israel's Defense Forces. The interviewer asked, "Rabbi Brody, what's your dream
"I want to make the word emuna even more internationally well-known than Coca Cola." That same year, Rabbi Lazer Brody took the first step in realizing his dream
goal by founding Emuna Outreach.
For nine years, from August of 2004 until July of 2013, Emuna Outreach was virtually a one-man operation. With the help of dedicated volunteers and supporters around the globe, Rabbi Brody did his utmost in spreading the concept of emuna - pure and simple
faith in The Almighty - in places where it was needed most: in combat zones, in prisons and in hospitals.
Tirelessly, Rabbi Brody personally spent extensive time with soldiers of the IDF
on all of Israel's borders, teaching them how emuna enables them to function better under extreme stress. He regularly visited the wounded in rehabilitation centers and prison inmates in the process of rebuilding their lives. To places where he couldn't be personally, such as among the US Forces in Iraq and in Afghanistan, he'd send care packages of emuna books and CDs. Emuna Outreach has also worked extensively with the Aleph Institute, spreading emuna both in the American military and in the US prison system.
If that's not enough, Emuna Outreach sponsored emuna-awareness programs for as varied segments of the population as senior-citizens, toddlers
and members of the International Noahide community, reaching as varied places as the Noahide community in Singapore and the native Americans of Texas, Tennessee and northern Canada.
But the job just became too prodigious for one individual to handle. So, in July of 2013, Rabbi Brody turned to the Minister of Emuna himself, his beloved teacher and spiritual guide Rabbi Shalom Arush, and asked for help so that the spread of emuna would not stop, Heaven forbid! As a result, Breslev Israel and the Chut Shel Chesed Institutions, both under the auspices of Rabbi Arush, have now taken Emuna Outreach
under their wing. No longer a one-man organization, Emuna Outreach hopes to spread emuna on an even greater scale.
Rabbi Brody today is exclusively employed by Breslev Israel and his work in Emuna
Outreach is completely under the auspices of Rav Arush, Breslev Israel and the
Chut Shel Chesed Institutions.
Your generous support of Emuna Outreach is IRS-recognized and tax deductible. Have a look at our scrapbook to see what happens to the money you so generously donate:
IDF troops on the Gaza Border
soldiers of US Army helicopter crew in Taji, Iraq (2006)
Outreach with injured IDF soldier after Cast-Lead Operation in Gaza,
note from Aleph Institute to Emuna Outreach
5. Distributing Emuna books and CDs to IDF soldiers on Jordan border
6. Emuna Outreach with senior citizens
7. Emuna Oureach with youth
You can become a partner in helping Breslev Israel spread
emuna the world over by clicking on the "Support Emunah Outreach" donation button on the top right-hand toolbar of this site. As Rav Shalom Arush says, there is no greater
The following letter is especially relevant to many people, so we decided to share it with you:
Dear Rabbi Brody,
A young woman was sitting in the waiting room of the mikva where I am balanit (attendant - LB) last week, and she had a MP3 player. When her turn came, I called her in, and we struck up a conversation (this was a new face to the mikva, and I do my best to make everyone feel comfortable). I asked her what she was listening to, and she said that she was listening to a lesson from an English-speaking rabbi in Israel about shalom bayit (peace in the home, or marital bliss - LB). I asked her then if there's anything new, or just the same old cliches that so many other people are tossing around. She then pulled the original CD out of her purse, and told me to take it, since she already had it copied onto her MP3. "See for yourself," she said. "Ever since my husband started listening to these CDs, he's been treating me like a princess, lavishing me with love, respect, and consideration..."
Rabbi, I took your CD home and listened to it. What you say in Respecting Your Wife is revolutionary. You could be saving thousands of broken marriages. Let me explain...
I'm the Wailing Wall for most of the women that come to the mikva. Many of them pour their hearts out to me, because they know that halacha (religious law) requires a balanit (mikva attendant - LB) to be ultra-discreet. Thank G-d, I also have a reputation for being very tight-lipped, so I enjoy the trust of the women in our community (and the trust of those that come here from outside the community, and there are many of them - because our mikva looks like a tropical garden with soft music, etc., so women love to come here). Without further digression, you should know that at least 50% of the women that speak to me are not satisfied with their marriages. They have melancholy eyes, and are not looking forward to going home from the mikva. It's a tragedy. I would venture to speculate that the percentage of unhappy wives among those that don't go to mikva is so much higher.
At any rate, I feel an obligation to pass the word about your teachings. I love the way that you keep them real and down to earth, practical and not pie in the sky theory. To be honest, there are no chassidim (except for the local Chabad house) in our area, and chassidic thought isn't exactly what you'd call popular around here. Breslev especially has a bad reputation for weirdos; yet, if the Breslev wives have husbands that live according to your audio teachings, then they can be laughing at the rest of us. I must confess that we have been shortchanging Rebbe Nachman for a long time. I also confess that I have frequently criticized the Breslevers for leaving their wives on Rosh Hashanna. Many of us have husbands who are physically at home, but their minds are millions of miles away. I guess that Uman for a few days a year is a better deal, especially if your husband is with you in heart and body for the rest of the year.
At any rate, when I heard your CD, I almost fainted. The label told me that you're a Breslever, associated with the Chut Shel Chesed Yeshiva and with the Breslev Israel website. I was so embarrassed. Even though I'm considered "tight-lipped" as I said, on numerous occasions in the past, I have been guilty of saying less than complimentary remarks about Rebbe Nachman and his followers. This has been total ignorance on my part.
I called a leading Breslever USA Rabbi on the phone, and asked him how I can repent for turning people off to Rebbe Nachman in the past. He said, "Simple - just turn them on to Rebbe Nachman's teachings in the future!" He was so nice and unjudgmental. When I read the articles on your website, I get the same impression from you too. Maybe that's why the Breslevers' wives are happy - their husbands are nice guys and unjudgmental.
Rabbi Brody, I can imagine how busy you are and I know I've run off at the keyboard. Yet, I feel that there's a message here for everybody - don't prejudge.
Please tell me if you can cut me a deal on my first 100 Arush-Brody CDs. I would be honored to distribute them in our area, because as far as I know, you don't yet have a distributor here. With sincere thanks, DB from the Midwest USA
* * *
100 CDs are already in the air and on their way to DB. I arranged for her to get them at a wholesale price. Not only will she be joining our Outreach team, but she'll be making a few extra dollars on the side too. If she helps just one couple have a happier marriage, then her rewards are unfathomable, in this world and in the next. And, if she helps save just one marriage, then it's as if she has saved an entire world.
No mitzva in the Torah brings dividends like the mitzva of Outreach. When you put a CD in someone's hands, you're task is just as important as my saying the lesson. You become a first-string player on our team, and bask in the glory of every victory, namely, bringing another soul closer to Hashem.
Quite a few people have invested maaser (tithe) money in Emuna Outreach books and CDs, and have seen tremendous blessings by distributing them in their neck of the woods. You can too!
Here is an amazing 3-minute clip where Rabbi Glazerson shows how Uman, Chasidut Breslev, and Rav Arush's worldwide efforts of spreading emuna appear in the Torah Codes. I thank Hashem every moment for granting me the privilege of being Rav Arush's mouthpiece in English. Check this out, it's amazing:
There's a lot that the media doesn't tell you. Emuna is spreading like wildfire in the IDF. The combat units are full of religious soldiers who believe in our Torah and in our Holy Land. The number of religious junior officers is two and a half times greater than the percentage of the religious population. Soldiers in combat units are coming close to Hashem big time. This is all despite the fact that the top brass doesn't make life easy for religious soldiers.
Here's a 3-minute clip of our recent visit with an IDF infantry unit on the Gaza border. Have a great Shabbat Emor and G-d bless.
Today was another gift from Hashem and a very moving day - I had the privilege of visiting and spending time with one of the IDF's best units on the Gaza border. We spoke about celebrating Rosh Hashana while being on maximum alert. We also had a lengthy question-and-answer session that was really inspiring. For example:
Sergeant R: Rabbi, the guys expect me to be the Chazan on Rosh Hashana. Halacha says that the chazan must be a tzaddik. How can I be Chazan when I'm far from being a tzaddik?
LB: The fact that you think you're unworthy, R, shows that you really are humble and very worthy. Besides, you put your life on the line 24/7 down here for the Jewish people; what other Chazan in the world can say that?
Corporal T: Rabbi, will Hashem really hear our prayers? We have to rush through them because down here, we must be prepared to be mounted and combat ready in a few short minutes. Also, we have to pray in shifts to switch off our buddies in their duty stations; it's not like praying at home...
LB: T, there's no angel in the sky who'd dare interfere with an infantryman's prayers ascending from the Gaza border. You guys are pure dedication. If I weren't going to Uman, I'd be proud and privileged to pray with you right here.
After my visit, I met with the platoon and company commanders who told me that this particular platoon's morale, performance and unity are the best in their brigade. That's what emuna does for soldiers. By the way, this particular platoon has 15 Baalei Teshuvas now - no wonder their motivation and morale are so high, they fully believe in what they're doing.
These guys are ready. We need to spread more emuna among the IDF's fighting men, and that's exactly what we're trying to do.
Here are a few wonderful shots from David Bader's superb camera:
1. LB checking out combat readiness
2. Questions and answers
3. Choose your weapon
4. A blessing for Rosh Hashana
We all owe the courageous young man of the IDF a ton of gratitude - the least we can do is to pray for their safety and well-being. May Hashem protect them always, amen.