Letter from Chassidishe Rabbonim: Don’t Send Bochurim to Learn in Eretz Yisroel


letter-learning-in-eretz-yisroel[Letter below.] A letter has been released, signed by over a dozen chassidishe rabbonim, strongly advising parents of bochurim not to send their sons to Eretz Yisroel to learn. Where there are many outstanding yeshivos in Eretz Hakodesh, the letter states, the danger inherent in sending boys far away from their parents is reason enough to put a halt to the practice.

In light of what they call a spiritual sakanah, the rabbonim, in the letter, instruct people to stop sending their sons overseas to Eretz Yisroel to learn, if possible. Those who, for whatever reason, feel they must send their sons to learn in Eretz Yisroel, the letter states, should make sure to send them to yeshivos where the dorming facilities are under the supervision of the yeshiva.

The signatories on the letter include: Rav Yisroel Chaim Menashe Friedman, dayan in Khal Yetev Lev-Satmar; Rav Moshe Wolfson, rov of Emunas Yisroel, Boro Park; Rav Tzvi Yissochor Dov Katz, Av Bais Din Dushinsky; Rav Yechiel Michel Steinmetz, Skverer dayan of Boro park; Rav Moshe Halberstam; Rav Yoel Morgenstern, Av Bais Din Sharmash; Rav Yitzchok Eizik Menachem Eichenstein, Av Bais Din Galante; Rav Yeshaya Yaakov Portugal, son of the Skulener Rebbe; Rav Moshe Green, rosh yeshiva of Yeshiva D’Monsey; Rav Getzel Berkowitz, dayan of Satmar, Kiryas Yoel; Rav Shlomo Yehudah Weinberger, Av Bais Din Paya; Rav Dovid Eichenstein, Burshtiner Rebbe; Rav Shmuel Zev Lichter, Av Bais Din Kavonas Halev; Rav Hillel Weinberger, Av Bais Din Serdeheli; Rav Yekusiel Yehudah Philip, dayan on the bais din of Khal Yetev Lev-Satmar; and Rav Yisroel Dovid Harfenes, author of sefer Yisroel Vehazemanim.

Click here to view the letter.

{Shmiel Gellman-Matzav.com Newscenter}


  1. While one cannot argue that 18-19 year boys/girls + away from home on their own+lack of supervision + big open city= trouble! No doubt we have seen bad things on Ben Yehudah on Motzaei Shabbos. However this would be true in any Yeshiva whereever it is located. Further if the only way to assure a Bachur’s good behavior is to keep their nearly adult child under a paretnal thumb begges the question what Yiras Shamyim was taught to these boys both at home and in Yeshiva/dormitories?

    We should encourage parents and mechanchim to be hands on with their talmidim/dos spritual education and growth that the importance of learning to be frum on one’s own be taught and encouraged by example to strive for the inner frumkeit.

  2. 1. Are all the listed rabbonim confirmed to have signed?

    2. Does any similar problem exist in sending bochurim from one city in the US to another to learn?

  3. the headline is misleading
    it just advises parents not to send bochurim to a yeshiva in eretz yisroel if there is no supervised dormitory….

  4. Do wonder if there might be another chesbon?

    Any thoughts about sending 18-19yr olds to Yeshivas old of town, overseas (outside of Israel), etc.?

  5. In a recently published book by BenTzion Miller (no relation) on question’s asked to Horav Avigdor Miller ZT”L by his famous Thursday night Shiurim, he said THE EXACT SAME THING! He said there are many good Yeshivo’s right here in America & there is no need to send your son to Eretz Yisroel. He discouraged it.

  6. Another queestion about the letter is the age of the bochurim it addresses. The great litvishe yeshivos in Eretz Yisroel, Mir and Brisk, do not have supervised dormitories, but the bochurim who go there tend to be 20+.

  7. msp- That is not true, the letter says not to send at all, if possible. If you are going to send it must be to a Yeshiva with a supervised dorm.

  8. Of course bochrim should only be living in dormitories that are supervised by their yeshiva. However, from what I’ve personally seen, a bochur has a lot higher likelihood of Chas V’Shalom leaving the derech by being near the modern day S’dom (ie New York City) than learning at a Yeshiva in Bnei Brak or Yerushalayim. So in my mind, the more learning in Eretz Yisroel, the better.

  9. I don’t see R Chaim Kanyefskeis signature on this so called Takonoh.
    All my sons learned in E.Y. And didn’t fall into the Yam Hamelach B”H.
    The issue is when you send a bochur away from home coming from a cloisterd enviorment so the let loose. Let them stay home and thrive in N.Y.

  10. Now you tell me!
    Great timing.
    My kid left two weeks ago!
    This needed to be published back in April.

    Yes, and he called me last week to discuss a Reb Elchonan in Kovaitz shiurim on Chulin.

    I am real worried. 🙂

  11. Sending a young Bachur to Eretz Yisroel to do the “Israel thing”, is strictly for Shidduchim purposes ONLY! Don’t fool yourselves! If it doesn’t say _____ etc. on his Shidduch resume, he’s toast! Btw, Rav Aaron Schechter Shlita did not allow us to go to Eretz Yisroel even after a few years in Bais Medrash.

  12. i agree about the supervision but to say st like that not to send a boy to Israel depends on how what the boy really wants to accomplish.

  13. From someone on the Yerushalayim and Eretz Yisroel scene, I commend the Rabbonim for stepping out on this pertinent and even urgent matter.

    Parents, get wise and listen. Yeah, you may the lucky parent of a goody goody, and he may takeh be learning, but so many of these guys flow with the tide, and the parents have no inkling. Better be safe than sorry!
    Ksiva v;chasima tova.
    PS ERetz Yisroel is the place to be only if it causes an aliyah in ruchnius. If cholila the oppostie, wherever you are learning and performing mitzvos is your personal Eretz HaKodesh!

  14. Bochurim going to israel for a two year bein hazmanim is a churbon and the people who could have, but failed to open up yeshivos for them in their home countries are ossid liten es hadin.
    There is absolutely no constructive purpose to let teenage boys lose in a foreign land, Absorbing the “yerushalmi” culture and seeing sites or inspiring yidden is not where a yeshiva bochur belongs! Its all dimyon, hefkeirus and atzas hayetzer to keep boys from continuing their aliya in a strong supportive beis medrash environment.
    If anyone can be melamed zechus al pi derech hatorah vehayeshivos, Please speak up!
    I understand that years ago when torah was not established properly in america, there was a need, but now? is there noone who will stand up and be boineh a mokom torah for a bochurim to fill this gaping whole?

  15. First of all, chanoch lena’ar al pi darko.

    Second of all, the achrayos is on the parents (not the mechanchim) to instill the proper middos and hashkofos in their children. In today’s world, there is a significant lack of parental responsibility in guiding their children.

  16. While this is disturbing, the reason would seem to be the demographics of Israel today which has drastically changed. It is not the Israel of even 15 years ago. Since ‘Oslo’, it has been ‘globalized’ and almost unrecognizable in many ways of being the “Jewish” state. The Rabbis are probably very aware of the influence in many ways on these young men. But surely, with proper supervision, there is nothing like Eretz Hakodesh for learning Torah and, of course, its kedusha. #22, commenter, ‘An Eitzah’, has the best suggestion, and we really need the geulah now!

  17. there will be a day when each and every one of your ‘bochurim’ (we are talking about young men, right?) will have to separate from their parents and be ‘men.’ One’s traversing of the path, the derech, if you will, is quite simply meaningless if it is navigated under the constant and watchful (and pressurized) eye of overbearing parents and peers. It is a form of going through the motions…

  18. When a bochur is in his late teens or early twenties he is going to do what he wants anyway. At least let him do it in Eretz Yisroel.

  19. X, if you think that America is your home country and Israel is a foreign landyou are in big trouble. Rav Meir Simcha said that if a Jew thinks that Berlin (or Boro Park) is his Yerushalayim he will be reminded forcefully that it is not.

    ??? ???? ????? ???-?????

  20. My boys arent up to this stage yet, however, Having traveled for vacation in eretz yisroel for a few years during the winter, the scenes that I have witesses are enough to remind myslef that the boys DO NOT belong there!

  21. “x”, You may be right that “bochurim going for a 2 year bein hazemanim is a churban”.

    But that is NOT case with MOST bochurim. you want a limud zechus al pi derech hatorah?? why don’t you ask R’ Nosson Tzvi Finkel shlita, what he thinks!

    I personally know MANY MANY bochurim that had a tremendous aliya in learning ,AND as a person in general,and shteiged in ways that they simply did NOT when they were in America- FACT!!!

  22. Those of you who are mocking this, consider yourselves fortunate!
    This is not addressing the boys from Mir or Brisk or Ponovitz.
    It’s the boys who go to Israel to party, and take it from someone who has walked down the wrong street on a Thursday night in Yerushalayim.
    It’s geferlach!
    So if you don’t know what this is talking about, be lucky (and daven!) that your child is not part of it. If you do know then take heed and realize the rabbonim know exactly what they are saying!

  23. Before sending your child off ask your Rav/Rosh Yeshiva/Rebbe/Morah Derech, or anyone who can give you objective guidance. It is silly to dismiss the idea completely because a lot of people grow and shteig from learing in eretz yisroel and it would be a pitty for them to miss out on it.

  24. everybody is different and needs different things. Many of the boys who fall into traps in eretz yisroel would have done so in America as well-it makes no difference where they are.
    Many people are under the assumption that if you send your kid (who is having troubles already) off to Eretz Yisroel all his problems will be solved. THIS IS WRONG!!
    It is not a magic trick

  25. Commenter Avi, #30, expressed it perfectly. If one makes Boro Park or anywhere in Europe their ‘holy’ place; they eventually learn the hard way. Hashem will remind them. Wherever the Jew is learning is his mikdash katan, but Kedushat E.Y. tops everywhere, no matter when. Our sages tell us that the biggest onesh for the Bnai Yisrael is the ‘galut’. If we forget that, we are usually reminded, c’v, the hard way.