(lubavitch.com) The 27th annual International Conference of Chabad-Lubavitch Emissaries began Wednesday, November 3, at the movement’s headquarters in Brooklyn’s Crown Heights neighborhood. The event will bring approximately 2,800 rabbis as well as leaders and scholars from the broader Jewish community together.
At the heart of the conference will be a series of nearly 100 workshops and lectures, focusing on a variety of diverse topics from balancing checkbooks and tightening budgets to spiritual concepts about leadership, education, and personal development. Central to the discussions this year will be the conference’s theme of the ‘Jewish home’ on shlichut. As such, the role of the entire family unit in Chabad outreach activities serves as the subtext of the conference’s workshops.
New to this year’s conference is a special mobile site that allows for emissaries to peruse the program guide from their Android, iPhone and other smartphones, create their own schedules and receive updates and alerts before panels they wish to attend.
The annual Gala Banquet will take place this year in the Brooklyn Cruise Terminal at Pier 12 in Red Hook. Come Sunday the 4,000 guests will find the pier transformed into a posh banquet hall - replete with video screens, state-of-the-art lighting and carpeting.
Ukrainian born philanthropist Gennady Bogolubov is slated to deliver the banquet’s keynote address. In recent years, Bogolubov, who serves a president of the Jewish Community of Dnepropetrovsk and chairman of the Ukrainian Jewish Congress, has spearheaded a number of major philanthropic projects. One initiative, the Menorah Center, a 105,000 square foot state-of-the-art Jewish community center - the largest of its kind - is rapidly nearing completion in his Dnepropetrovsk home town. In addition, his Simcha Fund, founded in 2008, has distributed special grants to Chabad-Lubavitch emissaries, most recently a two million dollar gift upon the birth of his daughter was disbursed among the Shluchim this fall.
The banquet can be viewed live here via Internet simulcast with a running Twitter commentary Sunday, November 7.