About Chabad at WVU
Welcome to the Chabad Jewish Center!
Established in August, 2007, we are a new organization in town, but bring with it some of the oldest and richest Jewish traditions. Our aim is to give meaning, share joy and add spirituality to the every day. Our dream is to teach these values in a warm and nurturing environment where people can grow together, enjoying life and Judaism simultaneously.
Chabad recognizes all Jews, regardless of affiliation, background or levels of observances.
We invite you to explore our site and join in our many programs, celebrations, and events. You will find a calendar packed with something for everyone - undergraduates, graduates, children, youth and adults.
Campus Vision and Values
The Chabad Jewish Center at WVU is one of over 110 on-site Chabad on Campus centers across America. We offer the anchor and embrace of 'family' for Jewish students regardless of background, observance or affiliation. Consider our address one you can turn to for any reason at all 24 hours a day.
Students come to Chabad for many different reasons:
Some come on a Friday night for a bowl of homemade chicken soup, fresh baked challah and camaraderie;
Some come simply to socialize - to relax and enjoy themselves with Jewish activities such as Challah or Hamantashen baking, shofar making, or outdoor trips; or activities with other Jewish students including kosher cooking, spa nights, concerts, Movie nights, paintball, hikes, and more;
Some come to register and join a 'birthright' or other organized trip to Israel;
Some come during a moment of personal crisis knowing they will always get a discreet, sympathetic ear, a warm open heart, and appropriate advice or referrals;
Some come for one of the myriad classes offered - from beginner's Hebrew to Parsha, Mysticism and advanced Talmud - or simply to ask serious questions about Judaism;
Some come to attend Shabbat or holiday services.
Chabad activity on campus is not limited to what goes on at the Chabad Center. Chabad is inherently extroverted, and an active and highly visible presence throughout campus, reaching out to Jewish students through tabling, holiday celebrations, at the Union and at dorms and Greek Houses.
Leadership: At our affiliated student groups, students are invited to take leadership roles on campus, helping foster the creation of the next generation of empowered Jewish leadership.
Tradition: At Chabad, students have the ability to discover the warmth and beauty of their heritage, and learn to apply the timeless Jewish principle of Ahavat Israel.
Community: We believe that family and community are vital keys to character building. That's why we open our home to students, helping inspire them with a respect for family values and a deep meaningful concern for the land of Israel.
Future: We believe that Jewish education and meaningful experiences are the grass-roots method to fighting indifference, apathy and assimilation that face our community today. For there to be a Jewish tomorrow, our students need to have a Jewish today!
What is Chabad?
Chabad Chassidism is a system of religious philosophy that teaches understanding and recognition of the Creator through the application of the three intellectual qualities of Chochmah (wisdom), Binah (understanding) and Daat (knowledge). The initials of these three Hebrew words form the word "Chabad".
While faith and belief in G-d form the foundation of our religion, Chabad insists on intellectual study and understanding of religious truth by everone according to his intellectual level, in order to come closer to the service of G-d in both mind and heart.
Though Chabad Chassidism is a system that reaches into the deepest mysteries of the creation, it makes ample use of illustrations and examples from experience, so that it becomes underdstandable even to those who are little gifted with the power of theoretical or abstract thinking.
The virtue of this Chassidic philosophy is that it does not stop at theoretical teachings. It motivates and induces those who study it to translate their intellectual knowledge into actual deeds and put them on a higher level of feeling and practice, inspired by the knowledge and intellectual appreciation of the basic truths, which Chabad expounds.
Chabad Chassidism is a practical guide to all Jews in all walks of life, showing them how to enrich their Jewish experience by developing the attributes of both mind and heart through a concerted effort that come from their perfect harmony.
The origin of today's Chabad-Lubavitch organisation can be traced to the early 1940s when the sixth Lubavitcher Rebbe, Rabbi Yosef Yitzchak Schneerson (1880-1950), appointed his son-in-law and later successor, Rabbi Menachem Mendel, to head the newly-founded educational and social service arms of the movement.
Motivated by his profound love for every Jew and spurred by his boundless optimism and self sacrifice, the Rebbe set into motion a dazzling array of programs, services and institutions to serve every Jew.
Today 4,000 full-time emissary families apply 250 year-old principles and philosophy, to direct more than 2,700 institutions in over 70 countries, dedicated to the welfare of the Jewish people worldwide.
Frequently Asked Questions about Chabad.
Q: What is Chabad?
A: Chabad is a worldwide movement that spreads Jewish awareness to all Jews, men and women, old and young. Its roots are in White Russia in a small town by the name of Lubavitch. The word Chabad is an acronym for Chachmah, Binah, Daas, which means wisdom, understanding, and knowledge. The idea is to turn intellect to action. Simply put, Chabad's message is "don't just think it, do it". This is exactly what Chabad does. Chabad Houses can be found in every part of the world, such as, Tasmania, Russia , Hawaii, and Bangkok and in each one of those places Chabad is doing everything it can to help Jews lead a more meaningful Jewish life. Today, there are over 2700 Chabad centers in 44 states and 60 countries.
Q: What does Chabad do on campus?
A: Chabad helps provide Jewish students with their social, cultural and educational spiritual needs. Chabad provides kosher Shabbat and holiday meals free of charge to students that are legendary. Chabad's Rabbi Zalman Gurevitz has incredible knowledge in many areas of Judaism, is ready to listen to your concerns and answer your questions. Most importantly, Chabad is your home away from home.
Q: What happens if I don't know what to do?
A: Don't worry, everyone is learning and one has to start sometime, and what better place than at Chabad? There is always someone willing to help you.
Q: All this is great, but how do I join?
A: We're open to every Jewish student that moves! Email us at Rabbi@jewishwv.org if you want to be added to our email list and find out about all the resources we have available for you.
Q: But wait! How much does it cost?
A: Usually nothing! Just bring yourself and lots of friends! Of course, student leaders can expect to be more active. Email us if you are interested in applying to be a student leader.
Q: So how much time do I have to dedicate to Chabad activities?
A: College students have very busy lives and this is completely understood. Some students come to dinner and stay for a few minutes while others stay for a few hours. Everyone is welcome.