Grand opening of new Jewish-military partnership

cclick@thestate.comMarch 11, 2013 

Members of Columbia’s Jewish and military community, along with local dignitaries, will gather Tuesday night for the official opening of the Chabad-Aleph House on Decker Boulevard.

The 6:30 p.m. ribbon cutting and grand opening marks a first-ever partnership in the United States between the Orthodox Chabad, Fort Jackson and the Florida-based Aleph Institute, which serves the religious needs of service men and women.

Rabbi Hesh Epstein, who along with his wife, Chavi, founded Chabad of SC in 1987, said the opportunity to expand outreach to the military came with the re-location of the US. Army Chaplain Center to Fort Jackson, which brought more Jewish chaplain candidates to the Midlands. He and Rabbi Aaron Lipskar of the Aleph Institute collaborated on the organization and fund-raising effort.

The new Chabad-Aleph House is at 2509 Decker Blvd., in a renovated building that once housed a Blockbuster video store.

The public is invited to the grand opening.

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