Condolences: We Mourn Together With Chabad

Condolences: We Mourn Together With Chabad

November 30, 2008

Letters of condolence continue to fill the inbox.


The White House


December 1, 2008

Laura and I send our condolences to the Chabad-Lubavitch family and all those honoring the lives lost in this tragedy.

The compassionate individuals of the Chabad-Lubavitch movement dedicate their lives to sharing G-d’s teachings with people throughout the world, offering strength, hope and guidance in the unique spirit of the Lubavitcher Rebbe, Rabbi Menachem Mendel Schneerson, of blessed memory. Through countless acts of love and kindness, the lost members of the Chabad-Lubavitch community in Mumbai represented the best of the human spirit, and their memories will live on in the hearts and souls of those they touched.

It is impossible for us to make sense of the violence of the Mumbai terrorist attack, yet we offer our deepest sympathy to the Chabad-Lubavitch community during this difficult time. We pray that you will be comforted by your fond memories of those lost, encouraged by their noble legacy, sustained by your faith, and lifted by the support of your loved ones.

May G-d bless you and all those affected by these horrific attacks.

George W Bush


Rabbi Yehuda Krinsky

Lubavitch World Headquarters

The Indian Jewish Congregation of USA family mourns the loss of Rabbi Gavriel Noach Holtzberg, and his wife, Rivkah.

I know of the good work these two beautiful souls were doing in Mumbai.

The people in Mumbai are caring, loving people who share in the loss of those who lost their lives to sadists whose only motive was to bring death and destruction to innocent giving souls. The tragedy is more so because people from different faiths with common forefathers reinvent the Holy Book and transform the values written, for evil purposes. These are horrors perpetrated by savages in the guise of human beings.

Rabbi Holtzberg and his wife Rivka have not died in vain. Their Mitzvot will live for eternity as they made the sacrifice for Judaism and its people.

May the Almighty grant them eternal peace.

 Romiel Daniel


Indian Jewish Congregation of USA

From The Office of the Chief Rabbi of The United Kingdom

The United Synagogue family shares the world's revulsion at the horrific events that took place last week in Mumbai. We mourn the tragic loss of the young Rabbi Holtzberg, his wife and all those who perished. The attacks in Mumbai have shocked us all. The Nuriman Centre is a Jewish meeting place, just like our own centres, and the attack there resonates particularly deeply with us. The horrors that took place across Mumbai have affected so many people and we share their tragedy. The Chief Rabbi together with our President and the Trustees offer the traditional words of comfort at this desperate time to the families of all the victims: May the Almighty comfort you all among the other mourners of Zion and Jerusalem.

From Wayne L. Firestone, President Hillel: The Foundation for Jewish Campus Life

The students, professionals and lay leaders of the Hillel movement around the world exparess our profound condolences to the family of Rabbi Gavriel and Rivka Holtzberg and to the Chabad Lubavich organization on the murder of these Jewish leaders who died al kiddush Hashem, for the sanctification of God's name, while serving as emissaries in Mumbai.

The Holtzbergs gave up the comforts of life in the West to share their love of Yiddishkeit and the warmth of their family with people of all backgrounds in India. They made the ultimate sacrifice for their faith and their people. They lived and died as exemplars of the Jewish people. May their souls be bound up in the eternal bonds of life and may their family be comforted among the mourners of Zion.

Hillel encourages our local professionals and students to express their condolences in personal visits to our Chabad counterparts on campuses and in communities around the world.

Nothing can mitigate the horror of this savage terrorist attack which has claimed the lives of over 100 innocent people across Mumbai. Hillel stands in solidarity with the people of India as they heal their wounds and comfort those in grief. 

The following letter was sent by the Rabbi of Bnei David Judea in LA, to his community:

Dear friends,            

As you may know by now, Chabad has confirmed the deaths of Rabbi Gavriel and Rivka Holtzberg, the beloved directors of Chabad-Lubavitch of Mumbai, along with others in the Chabad building there. Those in the Chabad building were of course themselves among dozens and dozens of other victims around the city. This morning I spoke with Rabbi and Mrs. Lisbon, our closest Chabad neighbors, right across the parking lot from us, at Bais Bezalel. I expressed our shared grief, and offered our support in whatever way it might be needed in the weeks ahead. They were extremely appreciative of our expression of solidarity and support, and we agreed that we will stay in close touch as things unfold.

May we still somehow have  a Chodesh Tov.

Rav Yosef

B'nai B'rith Antwerp

To Rabbi Yehuda Krinsky:

Aus  shabbes, saturday  evening.

The president, Dr.René Trau, & Leo Schumer mentor of B'nai B'rith Antwerp, lodge Mala Zimetbaum, strongly condemns the terrorist attacks in Mumbai, India, that murdered Rabbi Gavriel & Rivkah Holtzberg from the Chabad House, 3 Israëlis people, dozens of innocent people while injuring many more. We extend our most sincere condolences to the bereaved families Holtzberg, to the relatives of Rivkah and Rabbi Gavriel .

May their souls lay in rest  in the Gan Eden.

Leo Schumer                                                   Dr.René Trau

mentor B'nai B'rith Antwerp                         président of B'nai B'rith Antwerp

From Rosalie Boyle in Tulsa, Oklahoma:

Please accept my deep condolences for the loss of the young Rabbi and his beautiful wife who were brutally killed by very evil people.  I am a Christian woman who grieves when Jewish people are attacked or wronged.  I believe that God has his hands on His Chosen and that their lives will not have been in vain.

This savagery connected to this so-called "Religion of Peace" will destroy us if we continue with this Political Correctness towards them.  Evil is Evil and must be dealt with as being EVIL.

We pray for our Jewish brothers and sisters in New York for the loss of this dearly beloved man and his beautiful wife.

God Bless you all.

The loss of Rabbi Gavriel Noach Holtzberg, and his wife, Rivkah

Posted by: Rita Hawkins , Hollister, FL on Nov 28, 2008

The world mourns the loss of these two giving souls. May the hatred which cost their lives open the eyes of those who fail to understand. May their son be blessed with peace and love. May G-d comfort and grace your community.

Bombay Experience with Rabbi Holtzberg

Posted by: Anonymous , Los Angeles, CA on Nov 28, 2008

I share your loss of your blessed members of the Lubavitch community.

Because of your Jewish influence on my life, I visited the Mumbai Chabad about 1 1/2 years ago and shared a Shabbat dinner with the Rabbi and his wife.

As I frequently visit Chabads on Shabbat while I travel, I called Rabbi Holtzberg and asked if he had a Shabbat dinner that Friday night. I was staying at the ill-fated Taj Mahal Palace hotel.

He asked me to wait by the main door at a specific time as he would be making his rounds of the big Mumbai hotels to collect Jews that wanted to share Shabbat. He met me on time and we raced through the congested city and gathered a few other Jews at different hotels for his Shabbat.


Posted by: Pamela Singer , Bainbridge Island, Washington on Nov 28, 2008

My heart goes out to all of Chabad.

We do need to band together, country by country, in dialogue again and then again, to make it impossible for terrorists to get away with anything.

Condolences re: Rabbi Gavriel Noach and Rivkah Holtzberg

Posted by: Don Lord , Yukon, OK on Nov 28, 2008

I am so heartsick to hear of Rabbi Gavriel Noach and his wife's death. Will there be no end to hatred and violence? Oh, I look toward the day when peace, gentleness, and justice reign everywhere.

It was a blessing from G-d Almighty that their toddler son, Moshe’le was spared. I will pray for the Lubavitch community and to all those who desire peace.


Posted by: sharon , oslo, Norway on Nov 29, 2008

Please accept our deepest condolences.

Your people are beautiful and doing such a tremendous work with the whole community, but Jews are and were a target, for many years.

Our feelings and sympathies go to you and the families.

Rabbi Gavriel Noach and Rivkah Holtzberg,

Posted by: Henry Barnett , France on Nov 29, 2008

My heart-felt condolonces. MAy they rest in peace.


Posted by: Alex Simonelis , Montreal, Cnada on Nov 29, 2008

May God bless all the victims including the Rabbi, Rivka, their son and the rest of their family.

Rabbi Gabriel Noah and Rivkah Holtzberg

Posted by: sylvia beck , Ra'anana, Israel on Nov 29, 2008

we feel heartbreak from the news : our depest condolences to their parents and all the Chabad community

May they rest in peace

Christians In Unity With Jews In Mourning Heroic Chabad Couple

Posted by: David S. McCalmont , Santa Barbara, CA on Nov 29, 2008

I lived in Mumbai, India for over two years and I'm familiar with all the sites targeted for mayhem by the hateful sponsors of this monstrous act of terrorism. I had visited the Nariman House long before it became a center of outreach and charity for the Chabad Lubavitch Movement. Devout and practicing adherents of all religions are deeply saddened by this chaotic, senseless assault on human dignity and goodness. And we shed tears of angst trying to understand how any cause is furthered through such acts of violence. As a convert to the Russian Orthodox (Christian) Church, I've become aware of the vile and checkered history between the Church and the Jewish People. But until we part ways with this anger and hostility and allow the Jewish People to live in peace and security anywhere in the world - even in southwest Asia - there will be no peace and lasting security for anybody. May the memory of this young religious couple be remembered forever, and their lives not be in vain.

Deepest Sympathies

Posted by: Anonymous , atlanta, ga on Nov 29, 2008

Deepest sympathies from a christian in the US. This young couple was doing God's work and serving their faith, following a call. They did not deserve such a fate (nor did any of the other victims).

Prayers for the couple and the child that they loved, may God's blessings carry him through life.


Posted by: AMSELLEM , Paris, FRANCE on Nov 29, 2008

Un chaliah du rabbi

Un chaliah'h d'achem

Apres cette tragédie, Nous les juifs nous sommes aujourd'hui tous loubavitch car nous partageons cette peine

Qu'akadoch barou'h hou benisse et protège leur enfant survivant

Barou'h dayan aémet

Plus que jamais, nous attendons machia'h et nous le voulons MAINTENANT

Frida et Benoit AMSELLEM

Mumbai events

Posted by: Morton Roodman on Nov 29, 2008

Osse shalom b'imromav : these are the words joyously sung in the concluding section of the post meal, Birkat Hamazon. At the Mourner's Kaddish, the same words are recited - without joy.

The horrible destruction wrought by these murderous enemies of all civilization should demonstrate to all that freedom, life and the privilege to worship our common Creator is something we should never take for granted. Civilized man/woman are in a struggle with a small minority of dark, twisted individuals who may physically resemble humans but whose tactics even the most savage members of the animal world never stoop to.

The Rev and Rebbetzin and all those who fell victim in Mumbai - Osse Shalom B'Imromav.

Morton Roodman

Condolences to the Families

Posted by: Pamela Hackner , Essex, united Kingdom on Nov 30, 2008

May their Pure Souls rest in Peace

Pamela Hackner

Please pass this message to the Parents of Gavriel and Rivka Holtzberg

Posted by: Tim Simon , London, UK on Nov 30, 2008

Dear Parents of Rivka and Gavriel

In 2006 I had the honour and pleasure of having shabbat supper with your children. They did not know me or my friends but they kept open house for all Jews in Mumbai who wished to celebrate with them.

They were a true delight to be with. They welcomed us all secular and observant alike. They were hospitable to an amazing degree, welcoming us, complete strangers into their home and made us feel at ease. They plied us with all manner of good food, with warmth and with friendsip.

It was a true privilege to have met and known them albeit for such a brief moment. I grieve with you and your families at heir abhorrent and brutal murder. One can only think that they were too good for this world.

May their memory last for a blessing and give you comfort at this terrible time. May my thoughts and those of all rightous people of whatever faith and none comfort you.

My heartfelt sympathies

Posted by: Charnie Feldman , Forest Hills, NY on Nov 30, 2008

Rabbi & Rebbetzin Holtzberg death was Kiddush Hashem. Some people live long lives, but don't accomplish much. This young couple may not have had many years in this world, but they maximized their lives in the fullest.

May the world come together with unity from this tragic loss.

mumbai tragedy

Posted by: Anonymous , new york on Nov 28, 2008

I was a guest of the Holtzberg's just Shabbat before last in Mumbai, we are in deep shock and mourning over the tragic events.

I heard Rav Paltiel this morning on CNN, and though I know he has other things on his mind right now I was disturbed that he spoke about celebrating Moishie's birthday without once mentioning or thanking the Indian nanny who saved him and enabled this birthday to happen. Hakarat hatov is in order - CNN broadcast was a lost opportunity to show the world that we know how.


Posted by: Anonymous , Wroclaw, Poland on Nov 28, 2008

From the heart-felt want to send my condolence to victims families and Lubavich community. I wish you all strength in this hard days.


Posted by: Eric Raphael , monroe, ny on Nov 29, 2008

Today we must stand and grieve. Not just because members of our community have died. Rather that humanity has lost its heart, its sole, its inspiration to bless life. I pray that the people of India find faith in G-d, and that from the pain of death we find life in Hashem’s name.

To all who have died in India, may they be a blessed memory.

Prayers for the Holtzbergs

Posted by: Anonymous , Halifax, Nova Scotia, CANADA on Nov 28, 2008

I and my family pray for the souls of Rabbi and Rebbetzin Holtzberg and their children. May the Almighty welcome them into His Kingdom! As well, our prayers are with the Jewish people and all the victims of terrorism in Mumbai.

Shame in India

Posted by: Pam , Riverside, CA on Nov 28, 2008

I'm so sorry to read about the deaths of the innocents in India.  I pray for strength for the Jews as they are targeted once again. May God be near the families of the victims. The bible says, "God is a very present help in the time of trouble". My prayers are with them.

So sad to hear.

Posted by: girish patel , Atlanta, ga on Nov 28, 2008

To all of our jewish brothers. So sorry to hear the sad news. My prayers are with all the family and friends of Rabbi Gavriel and Rivka Holtzberg. Its shame that our peace loving and beloved guests were massacared by uninvited visitors from neighbouring country.

Love and prayers for the Young One.


Massacre in Mumbai

Posted by: Ilene J Lazar , Budd Lake, NJ on Nov 29, 2008

I am sickened and saddened by the events of the last few days. The only way to beat these thugs is to regroup and rebuild. They are trying to divide with their evil acts. The international community must unite and show them that they cannot defeat peace.

My heart goes out to all the innocents killed or mamed. You must rebuild the Lubavitch Center and show them that they have not gotten away with murder.

I hope the families of the affected can be strong...

Sad to hear the news..

Posted by: Anonymous , Raleigh, NC on Dec 01, 2008

I am appalled at this carnage and shocking turn of events, and as an Indian, am ashamed that such a turn of events has been allowed to occur in my country.

That people who come to our country for such a noble cause, should befall this atrocity is unforgivable. How can such absolute evil permeate the minds of the terrorists! It is particularly sad for Moshe, I wish him all the strength in the world and may God give his parents peace..

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