In their tolerance of modernity (uncharacteristic of harediJews in general) and their ability to negotiate with it, Lubavitcher hasidim have created institutions, from Chabad Houses on university campuses and in farflung places around the world to such unabashed displays of Jewishness as the “mitzvah mobile” and the outsized Hanukkah menorah in the public square, that can attract and raise the consciousness of Jews who might otherwise have found their way to the precincts (or at least the outskirts) of Modern Orthodoxy. Most supporters and fellow travelers of Lubavitch are neither Orthodox nor hasidic, nor likely to become so. And yet Chabad, and the driven young couples who run its outposts, create a uniquely welcoming environment for these Jews: a kind of flexible Orthodoxy-lite.
Paradoxically, it is these same Chabad shluhim who also provide a safe harbor for Modern Orthodox Jews, the cosmopolitans of the Orthodox world, wherever they may find themselves: a needed minyan, a kosher meal, a place to spend Shabbat far from home, a nursery school or some other Orthodox-like institution, often for free or at cost. They do this because, in addition to the desire to spread their ideas of messianism, Lubavitchers aim ultimately to make their way the new standard of observant Judaism: Orthodox and yet at home in the modern world. This unspoken but unmistakable goal means that Lubavitchers are, for Modern Orthodox Jews, the competition that never quits.
Samuel Heilman, “Modern Orthodoxy, and Orthodoxy”, Mosaic (August 2014) [http://mosaicmagazine.com/supplemental/2014/08/modern-orthodoxy-and-orthodoxy/]