Rav Avrohom Steiner’s Miraculous Story of Being Saved By Silence


Recently, a story was told of Rav Avrohom Steiner of Bnei Brak who survived Nazi persecution by holding fast to his principle of never speaking against another Jew his whole life. His daughter, Shoshanah Shavkes of Bnei Brak, told the Israeli Yated the details of the incident as heard from her father who died nine years ago at the age of 96.

“When he was in the camp, an S.S. officer read the names of three or four prisoners every few days,” she said. “His ‘hobby’ was to murder those whose names were called.”

On one of these occasions he called four names and only three people responded. The fourth Jew, Rosenberg (a fictitious name) kept silent.

“Rosenberg, panicking with fear, remained in his place,” she went on. “He then pointed to my father and told the officer in a trembling voice, ‘This is Rosenberg.’ My father got up and went with the three others to the hut where selected prisoners had been killed for the past few weeks after subjection to terrible tortures.”

The four waited there for hours but nothing happened to them. Instead, they heard terrible screaming and shooting from the direction of the assembly ground. On that particular day, the Nazis had decided to kill the crowd instead of the few in the hut.

“He used to tell us, ‘Nothing is lost by keeping silent. By keeping silent one only gains,'” Mrs. Shavkes concluded. “‘Someone who keeps quiet is master of his words. Once he says them, they become master of him.'”

{Matzav.com Israel News Bureau}


  1. Wonder if his arichus yomin til 96 was associated with his taking a long time to use up the lifetime of word usage allotted to him.


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