LIGHTS OF PEACE
Tonight's Chabad "Candles for Peace" initiative to inspire
worldwide Shabbat prayers for Israel.
SHELLI LIEBMAN DORFMAN
iriam Amzalak has Shabbat candles in her house and in her
car. "Everywhere we go, we take candles," said the local direc-
tor of the worldwide Chabad-Lubavitch Shabbat Candles for
Illff Peace program.
"We want to make sure that on Friday, May 30, as many people as possi-
ble light Shabbat candles and do so with prayers for peace in Israel," said
Amzalak, an Oak Park resident and president of the Lubavitch Women's
Organization of Michigan.
If that means bringing Shabbat candles to those who want to light them,
that's what Amzalak and her group will do.
While the Shabbat Candles for Peace project is overseen by the New
York-based Neshek Campaign, Amzalak has a specific goal for Detroiters.
"In addition to getting women who already light Shabbos candles to light
them with thoughts of peace in Israel, we also want to get 1,000 new people
to light them."
Just like the 1,000 Chabad emissaries throughout the world, Detroiters
have developed their own creative promotions to spread the word of the
May 30 group candlelighting.
One method allowed the message to be sent further than others.
"When 150 people at our Lag b'Omer celebration last week released bal-
loons with personal notes written on them, the women were encouraged to
write about lighting candles," said Rabbi Kasriel Shemtov of the Shul-
"Everyone was asked to write a message to God and to other Jews about
good and unity. Most of the women wrote about making a commitment to
lighting Shabbat candles with thoughts of security for Israel."
At several area Chabad synagogues, brochures are being sent to congre-
gants and word of the campaign is being shared through mass e-mails.
"We are telling women if they don't already light candles on Friday
nights, May 30 is a great time to start," Rabbi Shemtov said. "And if they
already light them, they should add a prayer for Israel and should let anoth-
er Jewish woman know about the project."
Members of the Birmingham Bloomfield Chai Center opened their mail-
boxes to kits with candles and candlesticks from Rabbi Yochanan Potter. The
project even was promoted by Rabbi Herschel Finman on his Friday after-
noon radio show on WPON-1460 AM.
Out in the community, students are helping out. "This week, the boys of
Yeshivas Menachem Mendel Lubavitch in Oak Park will distribute brochures
Mussie Greenberg demonstrates the lighting of Shabbat candles.