Chabad rabbis are not usually mentioned in the same sentence as museum curators.
So when I saw this story that hasn’t gotten that much press, namely, that a Chabad rabbi recently opened a museum in Alaska. I was intrigued.
Why is this strange?
Museums are nice to have. They document and display what life was like a long time ago, and they do it so well, they have become one of the favorite forms of educational instruction. What better way to learn about something than to “go see it” in the museum.
Many Chabad rabbis dealing with Jewish life today, focus more on Jewish engagement and less on Jewish history. As one Chabad rabbi told me “for better or worse, my role is to teach people about how to live a Jewish life, not how to study it”.
But in this case, a Chabad rabbi, with the support of his community, was able to achieve a remarkable feat. The Jewish community of Alaska now have a center where their history is being preserved for future generations to learn from their past… and to live by those lessons.
Check out the museum story at Lubavitch.com.