Mikvah Built With Guest Room
The Mikvah in Spokane, Washington, is being built with a living space for those who need to come in from miles away.
Jewish tradition teaches that observance of family purity laws is as old as the Torah itself. When a Jewish community has limited funds, that community is obligated to build a Mikvah – a ritual bath – even before it acquires a Torah scroll or builds a synagogue.
"The community and synagogue have key roles in Jewish observance, but the real foundation of our faith centers on the home and family," says Rabbi Yisroel Hahn, leader of Chabad of Spokane County in Washington.
Jewish families in his city have found it very challenging to perform the mitzvah, as the closest Mikvah is in Bellevue – around 275 miles away. But that's all about to change.
Construction of a Mikvah at the Chabad Center on Spokane's South Hill began last August, and the project is scheduled to be completed in April.
The addition to the existing Chabad Center houses the immersion pool, but the architect-designed structure is more like a spa, with works of art, a waterfall, and a Jacuzzi.
There is even a living space, complete with kitchen, designed to accommodate patrons from out of the immediate area who need a place to stay for the night before returning home the next day.
Rabbi Hahn says he expects 15 to 20 families to immediately make regular use of the facility as soon as construction is complete, and that over time more and more families will make use of the community resource.
The cost is in the area of $250,000 was covered in part by Mikvah USA, an organization based in Brooklyn, NY dedicated to supporting the construction of Mikvahs throughout the country.
But the rest of the funding is urgently need to complete and inaugurate the Mikvah. More information about dedications can be found at jewishspokane.com