The Surprise Maamar

On Shabbos morning, the Rebbe surprised the chassidim when he announced that he would say a maamar in his room. After locking the door, the Rebbe had mercy on the latecomers and recited the maamar unusually loud.

At 8:50 am on Shabbos Parshas Zachor 5718 (1958), the Rebbe suddenly appeared in the zal and said to Reb Dovid Raskin, “Whoever wants to hear Chassidus should come to my room.”

The surprise maamar – the early hour as well as location – caught everyone off guard.

Reb Heishke Gansburg describes the scene in his diary: “The Rebbe sat at his table opposite an empty chair, with a very strained expression, as if he was about to burst into tears.”

After assuring that the door was locked, twice, the Rebbe began the maamar, expounding on the avoda of erasing Amalek. At the conclusion of the discourse, the Rebbe wiped his eyes.

Many latecomers gathered outside, but were not allowed in. “Still,” Reb Gershon Mendel Garelik recalls, “the Rebbe was kind. The Rebbe said the maamar in an unusually loud tone, so that those outside could follow.”

From The Weekly Farbrengen by Merkaz Anash

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