Brazil Teens Rediscover Judaism on Skiing Trip

For the fifteenth time, Noach Adventures organized an amazing camp in the middle of the Brazilian summer to spend two weeks of fun filled trips in Canada and New York.  At this once in a lifetime trip, 45 teens went to experience winter sports and chassidishe warmth. For many it was the first time to see snow, or keep a real Shabbos.

Noach Adventures, under the leadership of the Shliach Rabino Noach Gansburg, and the help of four counselors, did not let anyone down packing the program with awesome activities.

The first stop was to The Laurentian Mountains in Quebec to the Chabad house, run by Rabbi Sholom Chriqui, in the city of St Agathe.  There they received with royal treatment, and provided with comfortable accommodations, amenities, and the most delicious meals to enjoy.

The days flew by filled with skiing, sledding, snow tubing, sleigh rides, ice skating, swimming, and many fun winter sports.  The evenings were spent with night activities, stories and discussions.

Shabbos was especially inspirational.  Everything was set up so beautifully, and the day was full of singing, games, workshops and building friendships.  Although it was freezing outside, their holy neshamas were warm with the spirit of shabbos.

The second part of the trip was in New York, with the climax being a visit to the Ohel of the Rebbe, whom they had been hearing many stories about, and then a Shabbos in Crown Heights.  After touring all the sights of Manhattan including Statue of Liberty, Central Park, Madame Taussaud Wax Museum and Times Square, they were ready to come to the Ohel to receive the Rebbe´s blessings.  They started with daavening, and then heard explanations of what a Rebbe is, and why they were at the Ohel.  When they began writing the pan, they literally opened their hearts and filled many pages, which they went to read at the Ohel.  No one wanted to leave, with some commenting on how they felt a holy energy there, and how their prayers there felt different.

Shabbos in Crown Heights was full of joy.  After singing and dancing at Kabbolas Shabbos in 770, we had a magnificent meal at the home of Rabbi Berel and Shani Junik.  There the teens were able to see what a chassidishe shabbos meal is like, full of stories, singing, and Dvar Torahs.  The Shabbos day meal we had at the welcoming home of Rabbi Lehrer and his wife. Rabbi Levi Garelick came by to tell the children personal stories of the Rebbe.

Children from different backgrounds were in the group.  Two brothers, the sons of the Italian Consul that had not even had a bris.  R. Noach went to visit them and arranged for them to have a bris, and join the trip to New York.  There they met other Jewish kids, made friends and learned about their heritage.  Some teens with secular or modern orthodox background were able to see what a chassidish way of life is like.  At the end of the trip, when each boy and girl said what it was that they liked the most, and one girl said, I can tour and ski anytime, but the visit to the Ohel and spending Shabbat in Crown Heights, was the most special.

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