As we approach the fifth yahrzeit of Levi Yitzchak Wolowik, z’l, on the fourth of Adar, it is remarkable to note the numerous ways his spirit has been kept alive. The Levi Yitzchak Library has become a cornerstone of Cedarhurst, successfully promoting Jewish literacy and the observance of good deeds in Levi’s memory in a fun, warm atmosphere. Recently, to commemorate what would have been Levi’s bar mitzvah, a teen minyan was established at Chabad of the Five Towns, where Levi’s parents, Rabbi Zalman and Rebbetzin Chanie Wolowik, have served as shluchim for almost two decades.
The idea to form this minyan came mostly from Mendel Geisinsky, Levi’s close friend and son of Chabad of the Five Towns Youth Directors Rabbi Meir and Rebbetzin Hadassah Geisinsky. As Mendel turned bar mitzvah last April, Levi remained close by in his thoughts and heart. Mendel visualized this as a way to perpetuate Levi’s memory—a minyan created by and for teens, which Levi would have been a part of.
From start to finish, this project has always been about the teens. On Fridays, Mendel Geisinsky, Mordechai Rosenzweig, Avroham Yehudah Ross, and Binyomin Wolowik (Levi’s younger brother) set up the shul. Rabbi Meir Geisinsky notes, “It’s very uplifting to see how, at such a young age, the boys do everything required to set up the minyan on Friday afternoon—from cleaning up, to setting up tables and chairs, to making sure the bal k’riah is prepared—even the Kiddush is prepared by them.”
Thirteen-year-old Dubi Fishman sponsored the aron kodesh and bima. Mrs. Sorah Yaffah Ross has volunteered to do the sewing needed for the curtains and bima covers. Teens rotate being chazzan and reading the haftarah. Josh Plaut and Dubi Fishman have leined. Volunteers Dovid Kanarfogel, Rabbi Eliezer Cohen, and Jonathan Nelson also help with reading of the Torah. Some 15 teens are in the minyan, but it is expected to grow.
May Levi’s name continue to be remembered for a blessing. v