Rabbi Leibel Berger
Rabbi Berger is one of the pillars of the New York Breslov
community. Like many American Breslovers of his generation, he was
introduced to Rebbe Nachman's teachings in his pre-teen years, while
studying at the Toras Emes Yeshiva under Rabbi Zvi Aryeh Rosenfeld
z"l. He remained at Rabbi Rosenfeld's right hand throughout for
almost three decades. After completing his studies at the Chaim
Berlin high school, he attended the Mir Yeshiva, where he became a
devoted student of HaRav Shmuel Brundy z"l. This master teacher gave
him both a derech halimud in Shas and a spiritual model
toward which to aspire. Subsequently, he went on to study under the
Gaon HaRav Leizer Yidel Finel z"l in Jerusalem's Mir Yeshiva. There
he became friendly with Rabbi Shmuel Moshe Kramer shlita and
Rabbi Nosson Zvi Kenig z"l, both of whom became key figures in
Israel's Breslov community.
Together with Rabbi Naftoli Reichman z"l, Rabbi Yaakov Dov z"l,
and Rabbi Yaakov Ehrman, he was a founder of the Breslov Synagogue
of Borough Park. The synagogue's original quarters were on 16th Ave.
and 52nd St. Later a building was purchased on 16th Ave. and 55th
St, which remains the home of the Breslov Minyan to this day.
Aside from his efforts on behalf of the synagogue, Reb Leibel has
been a member of the American Breslov-Uman Committee since its
formation in the late 1980's, and works tirelessly to help organize
the annual pilgrimage to Rebbe Nachman's grave site in Uman for the
holiday of Rosh Hashanah (the Jewish New Year). Additionally, he has
sponsered the printing of many editions of Rebbe Nachman's works,
and has created a priceless archive of Breslov manuscripts,
publications, letters and memorabilia.
It must be said that Reb Leibel's wife, Mrs. Brocha Berger, has
also made an important contribution to Breslov in her own way.
Through Rabbi Rosenfeld, she too became a Breslover in her early
youth. A gifted teacher of Breslov Chassidus to women, Mrs. Berger
has led women's groups to Uman and is a uniquely qualified guide to
young women seeking to follow Rebbe Nachman's path.