Kehillas Derech Chaim celebrated their long-awaited groundbreaking this Sunday, June 18th, at their future home, 6603 & 6605 Pimlico Road. Hundreds of men, women and children gathered in the warm presence of the local Rabbanim, Roshei Yeshiva, and Roshei Ha’ir. Along with “I helped build Derech Chaim” balloons, bulldozer mementos and tasty refreshments, a meaningful groundbreaking unfolded.
Beginning with Tehillim led by Dr. Ron Samet, the program commenced with the Rosh Yeshiva, Rav Aharon Feldman, shlita, who shared words of chizuk, expounding on the power of a shul and Rabbi Gross’ high standards of Torah and Avodah. Next, Rabbi Hopfer, the Rosh Ha’ir, highlighted the chizuk and inspiration generated from building a distinctive corner amidst this galus and seeing the geulah in the near future, led by a Rav who, in the words of Rabbi Hopfer, “is going to be recognized as not only a gadol in Baltimore, but also in the entire country…”.
Mr. Dovid Zweig represented many hard-working congregants who put countless hours into the many aspects of the building of the shul. He highlighted how unique and special the kehilla is and how gently and wisely the Rav guides each member to grow in Torah and Yiras Shamayim. The Rav, Rabbi Gross, shlita, ended with words of thanks and chizuk, appreciating every single member as a contributor to the greatness of the kehilla, adding something special and unique to the klal. He also stressed how the new building will help enhance the foundations on which the shul was built, the centrality of Torah learning as the foundation of the home. Additionally, the Rav stressed that the shul creates a kehilla, a family, in which each member cares about the other member, and how the shul is a source of spirituality and life every member of the family – men, women and children.
In closing, Rabbi Gross pointed out that just as a crown is more beautiful the more jewels adorn it, (the crown of Hashem),the city of Baltimore is decorated with many jewels, many shuls. The Rav’s hope is that, with the new building, Derech Chaim will add another jewel to the beautiful crown of the Baltimore community and increase kavod Shamayim.
The event concluded with members and guests- including Baltimore City Councilman Yitzy Schleifer and Baltimore County Councilman Izzy Patoka – donning hard hats and grabbing shovels, seizing the opportunity to dig into the ground that, with the help of Hashem, will bring another beautiful shul building to the strong and unified Baltimore community in the near future.