Chabad Jewish Center opens doors in Troy

By: Terry Oparka | Troy Times | Published September 25, 2019

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TROY — Embracing the belief that “every single Jew is important,” Rabbi Menachem Caytak and his wife, Chana Caytak, opened the doors to the Chabad Jewish Center in Troy last week.

Rabbi Caytak said they have met and talked with close to 200 Jewish families, many of whom had no connection to any Jewish organization or synagogue.

He explained that there are 5,000 Chabad centers around the world, and locally, there are ones located in Commerce Township, West Bloomfield and Lansing.

The Chabad centers are based on Chabad-Lubavitch, a movement founded by the late Rabbi Menachem Mendel Schneerson. According to the Chabad Jewish Center of Walled Lake/Commerce Township’s website, “Chabad-Lubavitch promotes the mystical, traditional, legal and social principles of the Torah while using the most modern methods and advanced technologies for education, community outreach, Jewish awareness, crisis intervention, children’s and adults’ programs, summer camps, and community activities.”

“Our aim is to engage every single Jew,” Caytak said, noting that according to data from the Jewish Federation of Metropolitan Detroit, there are 800 Jewish families in Troy and the surrounding areas.

“Our goal is to meet every single one of those Jews,” Caytak said. “Our first public event will be on Rosh Hashanah,” the Jewish New Year.

“We hope to engage the Jewish population, all ages, in any way,” said Chana Caytak. “Rosh Hashanah (Sept. 29-Oct. 1) is a great time for Jewish people to come together and celebrate their heritage.”

She said her parents, Bassie and Rabbi Levi Shemtov, founded the Friendship Circle in West Bloomfield. According to its website, the Friendship Circle is a nonprofit organization affiliated with Lubavitch of Michigan whose goal “is to provide every individual with special needs the support, friendship and inclusion that they deserve.”

“Friendship Circle provides assistance and support to 3,000 individuals with special needs and their families by providing recreational, social, educational and vocational programming. In addition to helping those in need, the Friendship Circle enriches its vast network of volunteers by enabling them to reap the rewards of selfless giving.

“Friendship Circle also provides support to individuals and families struggling with isolation, addiction and other family-related crises.”

For more information about the Chabad Jewish Center or the Rosh Hashanah event, email