Mikvah Photo.jpg Mikvah Chaya Mushka
A Modern Link to an Ageless Tradition

Chabad of Louisiana opens RINGGER Women’s Enrichment Center with gorgeous new MIKVAH!!

Mikvah Chaya Mushka, originally built in New Orleans in 1989, opened its doors in May 2010 at its NEW location, the RINGGER Center. Located on the Chabad Uptown campus, the RINGGER Women’s Enrichment Center, which houses the new mikvah, was conceived by Lee and Steve Rittvo just before Katrina.

In spite of all the challenges which followed, Lee and Steve Rittvo maintained their generous commitment to the NOLA Jewish community. They dedicated the RINGGER Center, honoring the matriarchs of their family, Selma Rittvo, Regina Nadel, Pearl Green, Sonia Geltzer, and Goldie Rittvo.

The center was decorated by local interior designer, Vivian Cahn who donated hundreds of hours to create a restful, spa-like ambiance for the mikva tradition, a cornerstone of Jewish family life. She chose beautiful tiles and fixtures, favoring the work of local artisans which created a serene, private oasis for preparation and immersion in the mikvah. Jerusalem Gold stone walls and floor surround the shimmering spaglass of the mikvah pool. The warm, pristine water is maintained by a specialized filtration and heating system.

Since Hurricane Katrina in 2005, Chabad’s Mikvah Chaya Mushka has been the only mikvah in Louisiana. According to Jewish tradition, building a mikvah takes precedence over building a synagogue or buying a Torah scroll.

The mikvah serves women from New Orleans and surrounding areas as far as Mississippi. When making travel plans, visitors from all over the world contact Chabad to confirm mikvah availability. Tulane University students study mikvah as part of the Sinai Scholars program. Teens from local Sunday schools visit as well. The new reception area, with a lending library, creates a comfortable space for tours, private classes, and bridal celebrations.

The Horowitz family founded the Ruth Cohen Bridal Fund to help provide the floral bouquets, kosher champagne, and gifts for brides and new attendees. The Be'er Miriam Fund in memory of Mrs. Miriam Gordon was founded to promote Mikvah Education and Awareness.

New Orleans can proudly join the growing international list of cities with a modern, elegant mikvah. Of the 400 mikvahs in America, 120 were built in the last ten years with many lovely features.

In addition to the Rittvo contribution, a generous gift was given by an anonymous Israeli couple. Donations made by the Kehaty, Lew, Bistritsky, Baitelman, Nathanson, Munitz and Karp families and by Kristie Holm enabled the mikva to be furnished elegantly. Lazer Granite and Marble of New York, Jonathan Zanger of Walker Zanger- California, and Hurwitz-Mintz of New Orleans all contributed generously.

The Center, initially designed by Seizler Architects, was completed by Pinky Rohm, Stafford Tile and Toca Flooring, guided by international mikva consultant, Rabbi Gershon Grossbaum.

For more information or to schedule your private or group tour, contact Bluma Rivkin, by calling or texting 347-564-6525 or [email protected] For an attendant schedule see www.mcalendar.blogspot.com. Please call your attendant 2 days in advance for an appointment! The volunteer Attendants often have to make special arrangements to leave their homes for an appointment. Thank you for calling ahead!

In addition to the warm caring individual attention for every attendee, a special package is provided to brides and other first time users. BRIDES! Please contact us well in advance of your wedding so that we can make proper arrangements. Mikvah Chaya Mushka also offers pre-marital counseling for brides and occasional educational programs related to Jewish family life.

To learn more about Mikvah and Family Purity, and for a directory of Mikvahs throughout the world, please visit Chabad's Global Mikvah Site.

A sampling of articles about Mikvah and Family Purity from the ChabadNewOrleans.com library

The Mikvah


By Rivkah Slonim
Everything you wanted to know about Mikvah but didn't know to ask

The Monthly Marriage  
By Manis Friedman
Marriages need separations. Sometimes a couple will spend time apart, or get into arguments and be angry at each other. Often the arguing isn't for the sake of arguing, but for the sake of creating a distance so that husband and wife can feel like ...

On the Essence of Ritual Impurity  

By Susan Handelman
We cannot logically understand the Divine laws of Niddah and Family Purity, but we can try to understand them spiritually

Purifying Waters
By Tzvi Freeman
The most important institution of Jewish life, next to the home, is the mikveh and its cycle of union and separation between husband and wife. Because precious things only stay beautiful when you follow the manufacturer's instructions...

Mikvah Time  

by Roni Leob Richter
The year is the same, the days are the same, but the months are different. It is a time quite individual — created by G‑d, especially for me...

Marriage: An anthology  
Compiled by Yanki Tauber
Whom to Marry... Why Do We Fall in Love... The Kabbalah of Marriage... Yes and No... The Mikvah... Waiting... Moses vs. Freud... Adam & Eve... The Loving Friends.. Ring, Round & Roof... and 20 other articles and stories on marriage