Fundraising from “Baalei Batim” of other Shluchim
I’m a Shliach. I happen to be friendly with a handful of generous Yidden around the world, and I occasionally ask for their financial support of the Chabad house. The thing is, these Yidden are the “Baalei Batim” of Shluchim where they live. I never saw an issue with doing this, since I felt that a person can, and does, give Tzedakah to wherever he wishes, and is not “bound” to giving only to his local Shliach.
Recently, a friend of mine said this isn’t right and I should rethink it. What does Halacha say about what I should/shouldn’t be doing?
It is self-understood that the concept of ‘Baalei Batim’ belonging to any individual or Mossad, is an incorrect logic. The same holds true with offering a Yid to put on Tefillin (in case Ch”v he did not put on that day) or suggesting to a Woman to light Shabbos candles in a town where there is a Shliach or a Rav of the Community. No one can come with a Taana (claim), “why did you take away my Baal Habos? He should only put on Tefillin with me, the Shliach!” Or “I am His Rabbi!”.
The same would hold true with Mivtza Tzedakah. If your taking of the donation is in no way minimizing their donation to the local Shliach or to any local organization, in such case there is no reason to refrain from being Mezake another Yid with Mivtza Tzedakah.
And Aderabe (on the contrary)– you might even inadvertently assist that local Shliach, as it is common sense that the more a Gevir donates the more Tzedakah it leads him to giving!
On the other hand – If this donation will cause direct damage to the Shliach or any local organization, then it is unacceptable. The Rebbe very much desired that Shluchim should not “step on the toes” of others, especially other Shluchim and that all activities be done in an achdus manner. At times, it could also be an issue of Hasogas Gevul!
Therefore, it really depends on the situation, the donor’s intention and so on.
These nuances should be evaluated beforehand. In general, it’s always a good idea to discuss the issues with the local Shluchim and coordinate activities. There are many letters of the Rebbe along these lines.
Certainly, if the donation is given specifically because you are ‘Chabad’ and due to this their donation to the Shliach will be less, or if the donor is unable to give more than he gave you, (since he gave you a Chomesh etc.), in these (and in similar) cases, you must first discuss it with the local Shliach.
ראה אג”ק חט”ז ע’ שי”ג (אגרת ו’פ”ז). אג”ק חי”ז ע’ צ”ז (אגרת ו’רמ”ה). אג”ק ח”ד ע’ תי”ד (אגרת א’קל”ד). אג”ק חי”ב ע’ רע”ו (אגרת ד’צ”ה סעי’ ד). וראה גם באג”ק חל”א ע’ קל”ב (אגרת יא’תשס”ח). נלכה באורחותיו ריש ע’ 93, אגרת קודש מו’ שבט תשי”ג. וראה עוד הנלקט בספר שליחות כהלכתה.
ועי’ בשו”ת מהרא”פ (פריעד) יו”ד בסוף סי’ כ”ג בענין דומה: “קיימ”ל דכופין על מדת סדום דזה נהנה וזה לא חסר”. שו”ת מהרש”ם (שבדרון מברז’אן) ח”ו יו”ד סי’ ק”ה, וראה שם בסופו: “שבהשתדלותו גורם להרבות עוד נדבות לשאר כוללים”. שו”ת משנה הלכות (קליין) חי”ג סוף סי’ קע”ג, ע’ רט”ו.