Chabad of Bendery is part of the global Chabad-Lubavitch movement and one of the branches of Chabad of Moldova. Our doors are open to all Jewish people, regardless of affiliation or level of knowledge. Our mission is to provide a welcoming environment for everyone to explore and experience their heritage in a non-judgmental and inviting atmosphere.
We offer a range of opportunities for the community to participate in Jewish life, from Shabbat meals to holidays, adult education, and Bar and Bat Mitzvahs. Our goal is to allow all Jews to celebrate and learn about being Jewish.
Rabbi Mendel and Leah Gotzel lead the Chabad Moldova team in Bendery. Mendel was born into a family of Chabad emissaries in Kfar Chabad, Israel, and earned his rabbinical ordination while studying in Chisinau. Leah, who was born in Oak Park, MI, and grew up in Chabad of Oak Park, MI, always wanted to use her knowledge of the Russian language to teach Torah to Jews in a Russian-speaking country.
After getting married and moving to Chisinau, Mendel and Leah spent every Jewish holiday in Bendery. Over the past year, they started spending every Shabbat and holiday in Bendery with their two young children. After spending time with the community, they felt compelled to move there full-time to devote themselves to building the community and making Jewish life more accessible for all.