Oct 15, 2015
Rabbi Aaron Lazer Ceitlin, 62, OBM

Rabbi Aaron Eliezer Ceitlin, a beloved Shliach and Mashpia who inspired Jews around the world, passed away.

By COLlive reporter

Rabbi Aaron Eliezer Ceitlin, one of the Shluchim handpicked by the Rebbe to serve in Israel and who traveled around the world inspiring many Jews, passed away on Thursday, 2 Cheshvan 5776.

He was 62 and was battling a rare type of malignant growth.

Born in Montreal on 8 Tishrei 5714, his father was Rabbi Heshel Ceitlin, a known Mashpia and Mohel, and his mother Rivka. He was named after his known grandfather, R' Aaron Eliezer Ceitlin who fought for Judaism in Communist Russia.

In his youth, Aaron Eliezer learned in Yeshiva Tomchei Tmimim Lubavitch of Montreal and was particularly influenced by the famed Kabbalist and Mashpia Rabbi Volf Greenglass OBM.

A letter sent by him on Adar 5731 (1971) to the Rebbe's secretariat places him in Montreal, where he was leading the "Committee of Operation Shmura Matzah." Along with Rabbi Isaac Schwei and Shmuel Glick, Rabbi Ceitlin oversaw the distribution of 390 pounds of Matzah to Jewish residents.

The following year, 5732 (1972), Rabbi Ceitlin was chosen by the Lubavitch community to receive Shmura Matzah on their behalf from the Rebbe's hands to be used at their Seder table on the first night of Pesach. Still a Yeshiva student, he represented some 80 Chabad families in this visit.

He spent the years of 1973-1975 in Australia as part of the 4th group of Talmidim Shluchim sent by the Rebbe to strengthen the Jewish community in Melbourne. While there, they also visited other cities such as Auckland, New Zealand, to evaluate the local Jewish needs.

Australian Lubavitchers --among them the families New, Gutnick and Feiglin-- were instrumental to Rabbi Ceitlin's success years later when he founded the network of Chabad Kindergartens and daycare centers around the holy city of Tzfas.

A few of the fellow student shluchim he went with to Australia continued with him for a summer mission in Los Angeles, where they learned and did outreach work out of the Chabad Russian Immigrant Program & Synagogue led by Rabbi Naftali Estulin.

During that summer they distributed large amounts of Mezuzos, Shabbos candles, charity boxes and gave shiurim at the Yeshiva Ohr Elchanan which would later be transferred to Chabad. A highlight they reported about to the Rebbe was convincing a young Jewish woman not to convert to Christianity.

He would regularly report to the Rebbe about his activities and was instructed to do so every Rosh Chodesh. Those reports were painstakingly written with deep concentration and sincerity as a chossid to his Rebbe. He once debated for 30 minutes whether he was permitted to extend a blessing to the Rebbe.

Between the years 5736-5738, Rabbi Ceitlin was one of the unique group of people who were handpicked by the Rebbe's as his personal Shluchim to the Holy Land. "The Rebbe said that our mission is to build the land materially and spiritually," Ceitlin later recalled.

Still a bochur at the time, he and the group were accompanied by 770 Rosh Yeshiva Rabbi Mordechai Mentlick. Upon arriving, they met with then-Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin to present him 10,000 Israeli lira from the Rebbe as "symbolic participation in building the land."

In Tzfas, Rabbi Ceitlin founded and directed the Chabad Kindergarten Network with 34 branches educating some 1,500 children.

Not forgetting children enrolled in other kindergartens around Tzfas (half in the city were run by him), he would invite them to the annual pre Shavuos rally at the central Chabad shul for a memorable event that included prayer, prizes for Mitzvos and kissing the Torah.

Even after founding and managing 34 kindergartens, Rabbi Ceitlin would enthusiastically quote what the Rebbe's Chief of Staff Rabbi Mordechai Hadakov would tell veteran Shluchim, "the big buildings are only to serve the core purpose of helping another Jew do a Mitzvah."

Rabbi Ceitlin has brought scores of people from Tzfas to connect with the Rebbe in New York. For 23 years, he led an organized trip for hundreds of high school and seminary girls to New York for Chof Beis Shvat, the yartzeit of Rebbetzin Chaya Mushka Schneerson, wife of the Rebbe, and the annual convention of Chabad girls.

During those impactful trips, the young women would be privileged to speak to the Rebbe's secretaries and known chassidic scholars and strengthen their identity as chassidim.

Rabbi Ceitlin has been traveling around the world and motivating young and old in Chassidic farbrengen gatherings and personal discussions. He was a featured speaker at the International Convention of Chabad Shluchim in New York, the Convention of Directors of Chabad Centers in Israel, Conference of Chabad Educators in Israel, Evening of Chabad Activists in Israel and at many communities, Yeshivos and educational institutions.

The words of Rabbi Ceitlin, following the terror Mumbai attacks, "We don't understand G-d, we can't answer G-d. We are 100 percent sure that every pain that G-d does is only a preparation for much greater goodness that will be revealed very soon. We have to go on stronger and stronger, add in light and spreading the Torah," gave many strength in face of challenges.

He is survived by his wife Mrs. Ruti Ceitlin, their children Rabbi Levi Ceitlin - Krayot, Israel; Chanie Ceitlin - Tzfas; Rabbi Mendy Ceitlin - Tzfas; Devorah Leah Edelkopf - US; Sterna Edelkopf - Crown Heights; Chaya Wolosow - Tzfas; Heshy Ceitlin; and grandchildren.

He is also surived by his mother Mrs. Riva Ceitlin - Montreal, Canada; siblings, Mrs. Sterna Kalmenson - Ohio; Bracha Teitelbaum - Crown Heights; Zelda Yarmush - Montreal, Esti Benshimon - Montreal; Rabbi Yosef Yitzchok Ceitlin - Toronto, Canada, Devora Leah Mishulovin - Los Angeles.

The levaya will take place today, Thursday, leaving Shomrei Hadas in Boro Park at 3:00 pm and passing by 770 at 3:45 pm.

The family will be sitting Shiva at 1402 Carroll Street, Brooklyn, between the hours 12:00 pm -10:00 pm.

Davening times on Friday:
Shachris 9:00 am and 2 minyanim at 10:00 am
3 minyanim for Mincha at 3:00 pm

Rest of week: Shachris -3 minyanim, 8, 9, 10
Mincha and Maariv bizmano

The family requests no visitors should come between the hours of 2-3pm, or after 10pm.

Baruch Dayan Haemes.

+ Rabbi Ceitlin: Life in Photos
+ Hundreds Farewell Beloved Shliach
+ Baby Named After Rabbi Ceitlin

Most Read Most Comments

Opinions and Comments
Sorely Missed
A Chad Bdara

What a Holy Firey Chossid
(10/15/2015 11:25:08 AM)
Baruch Dayan Haemes
Heartbroken. He was such a special person, devoted Shliach. NO words...
(10/15/2015 11:27:03 AM)
so painful
The best have been taken..it's our obligation to fill their place as much as possible..
What a giant of a man..mekusher to the rebbe in every way
(10/15/2015 11:30:58 AM)
Bdh. Oy vey!
Wow. Not to be believed.
(10/15/2015 11:31:20 AM)
Isroel Kapeluschnik, Argentina
Boruch Dayan Hoemes
(10/15/2015 11:32:15 AM)
I remember him from his Shlichus in Australia.
Definitely one of a kind!
Ah Varemeh Yid Ah Feierdike Chosid!
Boruch Dayan Haemes.
Hashem should bring Nechomo to his Mishpocho
(10/15/2015 11:32:53 AM)
He turned 62 ח תשרי
(10/15/2015 11:33:29 AM)
so so sad
(10/15/2015 11:33:42 AM)
Please post what we can do to support his family
They need our support. They should never experience any more pain or hardships and soon be reunited with their loved one. He was an exemplary chossid and is an example to all of us what it means to dedicate oneself to furtherance of the Rebbes goals.
(10/15/2015 11:36:00 AM)
Ad Matay!!!!!!!!!!
(10/15/2015 11:39:54 AM)
what an amazing person!!
(10/15/2015 11:46:50 AM)
Moshiach now!
May the family be comforted with the coming of Moshiach now!
(10/15/2015 11:47:22 AM)
Oy Hashem!!!
Ad Masai!??!!??!!
(10/15/2015 11:50:23 AM)
Shimon L
Ad mosai!!! What a Tzaddik. He suffered so much! Oy his wife and family. Hashem send Moshiach already when this will be no more. May his family and all find Nechoma. Only Simchos and Besuros Tovos. Moshiach NOW!!!
(10/15/2015 11:50:45 AM)
Night Tzoo Gloiben!
(10/15/2015 11:55:09 AM)
Giant among giants
As a boy growing up in Montreal even with all the chassidishe yidden that lived there,when ר׳ אהרן לייזר would come to visit you could feel the energy in the air
אז אט גייט דער רבי׳ס א סאלדאט
(10/15/2015 11:55:36 AM)
I don't know if some one can replace his shlichut
I don't believe it. I just want to cry
(10/15/2015 11:58:31 AM)
....the loss of an incredible chossid.ומי יתן לנו תמורתו
In so much pain
An admirer.
(10/15/2015 12:11:07 PM)
A real chosid
I heard him speak several times. He was so inspirational. Can't believe it. Baruch Dayan Emes.........
(10/15/2015 12:21:46 PM)
BDE :(
Rabbi Ceitlin was a real mench, chossid and special person!!!
Help, teach, bring more close to the Rebe alot of people from around the word!!!
A big lost in our generation!
Moshiach NOW!!!!
(10/15/2015 12:24:10 PM)
Baruch Dayan haemes
Mashiach now
(10/15/2015 12:25:06 PM)
I remember he would translate and explain the Rebbe's sichas for neshei Chabad, Tzefat. He made the Rebbe's words alive and intelligible for countless people, and his energy, warmth and love of chassidis lit a fire in everyone's heart. What a loss. May Hashem comfort his family and community.
(10/15/2015 12:32:08 PM)
Oy Vei
This is one of the biggest losses for the entire Chabad movement since a Gimmel Tamuz
(10/15/2015 12:34:43 PM)
Sorry, that description didn't even touch the tips of how great Rabbi Ceitlin was.

I'm not even related and I'm crying so much.

(10/15/2015 12:42:26 PM)
An inspiring teacher. Helped me and my friends grow in our path of yiddishkeit.
(10/15/2015 12:43:55 PM)
A real chosid
(10/15/2015 12:44:14 PM)
:( No words
(10/15/2015 1:02:53 PM)
He was a living example to me of what a chossid is and should be.
He inspired me to DO not just talk and plan...
Why are the best being taken?
(10/15/2015 1:03:15 PM)
dini family relative
so SORRY only revealed good
(10/15/2015 1:06:41 PM)
Great chossid
Rabbi Ceitlin was also a wonderful Tanya teacher in tzfat seminary, where I learned about 17 years ago.He inspired many students with his teaching, stories and beautiful farbrengens! He was a caring teacher, kind man and wonderful chossid! Hashem should send comfort to the family!
(10/15/2015 1:07:12 PM)
A Chassid from the start
I grew up with Rabbi Ceitlin in Montreal.He was a 'Heiser Chassid' from the very beginning. May he storm the gates of Shamayim and enter the Heichal of the Rebbe, and rightfully demand the Geulah Now!
A dear friend and admirer from Montreal Canada.
(10/15/2015 1:16:30 PM)
Very Sad!!!
Still has non married children living at home.
(10/15/2015 1:20:33 PM)
a lion, a fiery Chossid
ad mosai?????????????????????????????????????????????
moshiach now
(10/15/2015 1:24:18 PM)
Hashem please help your children
Oh Rebbe, we need you!!!!!!
(10/15/2015 1:39:37 PM)
Boruch dayan Haemes
So sad to hear! We need Moshiach now!
(10/15/2015 2:05:44 PM)
Boruch Dayan Haemes
Boruch Dayan Haemes
(10/15/2015 2:11:02 PM)
Can't stop crying
My most inspirational teacher. Overflowing with love and hiskashrus to the rebbe. With mesirus nefesh and passion.... Hundreds and thousands were deeply impacted by his example ....bDE
(10/15/2015 2:14:53 PM)

an outstanding chossid

the best of the best!

(10/15/2015 2:21:17 PM)
AD MOSAI???????????????????????
We need to end this Galus Now!!
(10/15/2015 2:41:23 PM)
just me
horrific news!
(10/15/2015 2:46:04 PM)
NO WORDS.................................JUST PAIN!!!!!!
If Rabbi Ceitlin goes to Kisei hakovod & demands that Moshiach be revealed Hashem will havto listen cuz if not Rabbi Ceitlin then who????? Who??????
(10/15/2015 2:51:48 PM)
BDE May we see the geulah shleima now !!
The Rebbe & Rabbi Ceitlin come back right now !!together!!!
(10/15/2015 3:04:35 PM)
Baruch Dayan emes
From one end of the earth to the other, he traveled and spread warmth and emese chassidishkeit. He was so warm to each person and went lifnim meshuras hadin to farbreng with every group, no matter if inconvenient. What a tower what a giant
(10/15/2015 3:18:30 PM)
Such tragic news
We were davenning so hard for him:/
Hashem wanted him back though; May he storm the gates of Heaven, surely Hashem will listen and hear him
Moshiach now, we're totally broken here, everywhere, everyone
(10/15/2015 3:18:35 PM)
Rabbi ceitlin came to parksville this summer and although visibly very weak he still fabrenged with a chayus even
(10/15/2015 3:27:57 PM)
This is too devastating!!!
R Cietlin was the epitomy of a chossid - Such Ahavas Yisroel, real Pnimiyusdikeh hiskashrus - an unbelivable shliach - he would farbreng for hours with amazing stories and powerful lessons that will not be forgotten.... He would tell us about the mesirus nefesh in Russia and the mesirus nefesh of nowadays; he would often react for us the scenes of 770 of the Rebbe to give us a taste of what it was like. With his witty humour and sharp catch phrases he would keep everyone on the ball whilst instilling strong Yiras Shomayim and Hiskashrus to the listeners. I have many notes of his shiurim and farbrengens and reread them once in a while even many years down the line.
May he storm the gates of shomayim and demand Moshiach now in true R Ceitlin style...
(10/15/2015 3:59:52 PM)
ברוך דיין האמת...
אבד חסיד מן הארץ...
(10/15/2015 4:20:26 PM)
Baruch Dayan Haemes
un tres grand chaliah et hassid nous quite והקיצו ורננו שוכני עפר והוא בתוכם
(10/15/2015 4:40:14 PM)
In Michigan
Our girls remember Rabbi Ceitlin from his years in the summers in Kalkaska and are very sorry to hear.
(10/15/2015 4:54:22 PM)
אין מילים לתאר את השבר הנורא!!
ר׳ צייטלין תרעיד את השמיים ותגיע עד הכיסא הכבוד תגיד כבר דייי לקב״ה שיביא את משיח עכשיו אין לנו סבלנות לחכות יותר !!!!!!
חסיד אמיתי ומקושר לרעבע בלב ונפש!!
בטוח שתפעל שם מהר לא תנוח עד שיבוא משיח
(10/15/2015 5:08:32 PM)
Can't stop the flow of tears..
He was an amazing man who accomplished what people now can't do, he was a true chossid, a great great man, where is Moshiach???
(10/15/2015 5:16:09 PM)
May his neshama have an aliyah
The world has lost a great tzaddik, may his holy neshama have an aliyah in shamayim and may moshiach come soon to unite all in this world and the world to come
(10/15/2015 5:23:38 PM)
Rabbi Ceitlin was an exemplary Chosid of the Rebbe. We should all learn from him how to behave as a true Chosid and to be mekusher to the Rebbe.
(10/15/2015 6:37:00 PM)
Pinchos Woolstone
A chosid of greatness,holy and true.
(10/15/2015 7:06:20 PM)
A real example of a Chossid.
I remember how excited he was by doing something that would make another Yid happy.

What energy. What warmth. He didnt just talk the talk, he walked the walk.

He was the real deal.

What a loss. Condolences to his family.
(10/15/2015 8:33:15 PM)
this is insane!!!!!!!!!!
no words to describe this guab=nt chossid i feel blessed to have gained so much....
this picture encapsulates his essence
(10/15/2015 8:38:44 PM)
Ein shureh ne'enter tzum Rebbe'n
Boruch Dayan Emes and since tzaaras rabim chatzi nechomo, his family should know that anyone who has ever met him feels the loss.

The Rebbe once went to a shiva during the Yuds (printed in Toras Menachem) and said that by chasidim we know that passing on is just going from a bayis (poshete ground floor) to a (light and bright) alya, top floor, but that the same person remains.

Reb Aaron Lazer Ceitlin's warmth and understanding was unparalleled and was infectious. When he'd visit Montreal he'd farbreng for the bochurim and was uniquely inspiring in a way that you could live with his words and the truth with which he said them throughout one's life.

One time he said was that when Moshiach comes and he teaches Torah to the entire world, there'll be rows (as was always the case when Sages taught).

With every deed that we do that is proper, we'll be seated one row closer (and, G-d forbid, certain things can make someone one row farther). And while all people will reach new heights everyday, forever, the rows themselves (and the level of perception, feeling, understanding) won't change.

Therefore, we must always ask ourselves, with this thing that I'm about to say or act upon, will I be one row closer - ein shureh nehnter tzum Rebben. Reb Aaron Leizer will certainly be in the first row.
(10/15/2015 8:57:00 PM)
Dovid Deitz
I was 17 and Aaron Laiser put tefilin on me for the first time in my life
(10/15/2015 8:58:31 PM)
devastating loss
a most wonderful man and chossid i have the most amazing memories of his shiurim in the ezras nashim early in the morning in 770 in the old days. Rabbi Ceitlin i am sure the gates of gan eden were wide open and malachim singing and dancing to greet you to the place you earned under HASHEMS throne baruch dayan haemes
(10/15/2015 9:09:23 PM)
a true chosid
we lost today
(10/15/2015 9:54:06 PM)
Menashe from Melbourne Australia
Sincere condolences to the whole family
HaMakom Yenachem Eschem beTok Avlei Tziyon Ve Yerushalim

I have very warm memories of R Aron Lazar ZL teaching us Shuirim at Yeshivah Gedolah (YG) Melbourne here in Australia when were pre Bar Mitzvah. Other Melbournians remember R Aron Leizer ZL from their time learning in Tzefas
(10/15/2015 10:01:09 PM)
Menashe from Melbourne Australia
Sincere condolences to the whole family
HaMakom Yenachem Eschem beTok Avlei Tziyon Ve Yerushalim

I have very warm memories of R Aron Lazar ZL teaching us Shuirim at Yeshivah Gedolah (YG) Melbourne here in Australia when were pre Bar Mitzvah. Other Melbournians remember R Aron Leizer ZL from their time learning in Tzefas
(10/15/2015 10:49:15 PM)
Rabbi Tzietlins brochas came true
Rabbi Tzeitlin would visit us every year in Sydney australia, and had spent a long time with us at dinnertime farbrenging and asking the kids what they learnt in school etc. Every year my kids would wait to see him and spend time in his holy presence and atmosphere. Every year he would give us brochos that were tailor made to each one of us in the family. he gave us many beautiful brochos and always a brocha that nest time would be naother child, BH, to grow our family etc, and when we went to tzfas he spent an awesome day with us taking us around the chabad mosdos. we are so saddened by this loss. my kids are devastated too,and we wish the family much nechama and may we all be reunited with moshiach speedily. Reb Aron leizer will definitley be in the forefront lines with the Rebbe leading the way out of galus. family althaus
(10/15/2015 11:13:22 PM)
may hashem bless his family..
(10/15/2015 11:29:40 PM)
ידיד מטאראנטא
המקום ינחם את משפחתו ואת כל אנשי שלומינו -שכולם הם משפחתו- בתוך כלל ישראל , שנזכה ל"הקיצו וירננו שוכני עפר " תיכף ומיד ממש
(10/16/2015 12:31:09 AM)
Baruch Dayan Haemes
Rabbi Tsetlin was an incredible teacher and shliach. When he farbrenged and taught us in seminary, I was able to feel his emes and love for the Rebbe and Chassidus shine through. He was truly a giant of a man! He lived his life on another plane. He was constantly on fire, passionate and on the go and one the kindest people too. He accomplished an innumerable amount and inspired so many with his shlichus in Tzfas as well as all the thousands of lives he taught and inspired in the seminaries in Israel, Gan Yisroel Detroit, the trips he took to Russia with the Shana Bet girls, the trips to Crown Heights with the Israel girls. Those are just the few capacities that I knew him from. And there was lots more. I am extremely devastated that this great person, whose effect on me I really can not describe in words was taken from us. How can this be, that a man who had such a tremendous impact on so many and accomplished countless things and lived life above is taken from us and his amazing family? It feels unfair to limit him to these few comments because he was so much more, but I am just one person whose life he touched in a big way and I hope the family will be comforted to know that we are mourning with them.
(10/16/2015 12:42:56 AM)
shlucha CT
I was visiting my boys in CGI NY and Rabbi Cietlin was there with his devoted wife. I was in awe when I saw him, such a big, great man but so sick. His wife was helping him eat healthy foods in the dining room of camp. I was so shy but I wanted to tell him how much inspiration he gave me through my year in Seminary, Tzfat. Rabbi Cietlin farbrenged many times for us. I'm so glad I found the courage to speak with him and let him know that. It was heartbreaking to see him that way. I'm so sorry for the loss. The world lost a GREAT man.
(10/16/2015 8:53:51 AM)
Rabbi Ceitlin!!!
A real true Chosid and Shliach!
(10/17/2015 11:16:05 PM)
he was dedicated to the rebbe like none
(10/20/2015 4:53:23 PM)
Will miss him
(10/20/2015 10:01:14 PM)
He was my good friend for 43 years
I met him in the Beth Hamidrash in Montreal when he was
A bocher he was always learning and teaching he showed
Me great kindness I was always welcomed with him to his
Parents Shabbat table. A very special person gone but never forgotten. Chaim
(12/6/2015 5:03:18 PM)
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