Rov of Kfar Chabad Meets With Lakewood Rosh Yeshiva


rav-mordechai-shmuel-ashkenaziA meeting was recently held in Lakewood, New Jersey, between Rav Mordechai Shmuel Ashkenazi, rov of Kfar Chabad in Eretz Yisroel, and Rav Malkiel Kotler, rosh yeshiva of Beth Medrash Govoha in Lakewood, and his family.

Rav Malkiel Kotler
Rav Malkiel Kotler

The meeting between a leading Chabad rov and the rosh yeshiva of the largest yeshiva in the Diaspora was arranged, according to sources in the Israeli media, thanks to a connection that goes back decades.

Rav Ashkenazi is a grandson of Rav Meir Ashkenazi, rov of Shanghai, China, known as “the Shanghaier Rov.” Rebbetzin Rischel Kotler, wife of Rav Shneur Kotler zt”l and mother of Rav Malkiel Kotler, was in Shanghai during World War II. Rebbetzin Kotler is a daughter of Rav Aryeh Malkiel Friedman zt”l.

The shidduch between Rav Shneur and his Rebbetzin, the sources state, came about following a bracha from Rav Yosef Yitzchok Shneerson of Lubavitch and thanks to the intervention of Rav Meir Ashkenazi, who did all he could to bring the shidduch to fruition.

In addition, Rebbetzin Kotler’s son, R’ Shrage, is married to a great-granddaughter of Rav Ashkenazi, the former Miriam Cohen.

Rav Shneur Kotler zt"l
Rav Shneur Kotler zt"l

During the recent meeting in Lakewood, memories and stories were shared of the times spent in Shanghai and the Herculean efforts of the rabbonim and Yidden of that period to preserve Yiddishkeit and persevere despite the daunting challenges that were ever-present.

{Noam Newscenter}


  1. Sorry to burst the balloon of fiction but Rav Shneur and his Rebbetzin were engaged before the war. Yes, it is true that the Rebbetzin escaped via Shanghai (while Rav Shneur made it to Eretz Yisroel) but the relationship with Rav Ashkenazi first began at that point with the young Kalah playing an active role in helping the refugees of Shanghai and was known as a source of chizuk to many.

  2. yafeh meod.
    Anyone who knows Mishpachas Kotler can attest to what a wonderful choshvuve family they are. The Rebbetzin, who I have met, is a regal isha chashuvah, a special special woman. May she continue to have strength and nachas and continue to be an inspiration to all of us.

  3. The shidduch between Rav Shneur and his Rebbetzin was made by Reb Elchanon Wasserman Z”L before the war. They had their t’naim in Kovno.