Recently, I received a phone call from RY (a photographer from Chernigov who had a brit, a bar mitzvah and chupa all within the space of just 2 years :)) who has been living in Kiev with his wife for past few years. RY asked me what the plans are for Tuesday, 24 of Tevet, the Yom Hilula of the Alter Rebbe, the first Chabad Rebbe. To be honest, we were thinking of making it a quieter affair, and possibly taking a trip to the ohel (resting place) of the Alter Rebbe with a small farbrengen.
Of course I answered, "I am sure that after our phone call we will be having a farbrengen...." He told me that was about to leave town for a week, but first he needed to make sure that Chernigov would be having a farbrengen, and he was ready to donate 10% from his upcoming salary for the cause!
After such self sacrifice, we immediately organized a big farbrengen. Despite a snow storm, and freezing temperatures of -20 degrees, 30 Jews trekked out to hear about the Alter Rebbe's self sacrifice for Jews to do teshuvah and return to the path of Torah and mitzvos.
The farbrengen was, of course, beautiful and inspiring. The attendees resolved to join a new kollel opening in Chernigov to join a daily Torah class.
One good deed leads to another. The community is already taking initiative and planning the next event, a farbrengen for Yud Shvat, and a women's club meeting in honor of Tu B'shvat.