Today’s Yahrtzeits & History – 1-2 Sivan

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flicker_100391Yahrtzeits, Friday, 1 Sivan

Rav Meir Halevi Horowitz, the Maharam Titkin (1743). Titkin was founded in 1437. In 1522, ten Jews from Grodno, Lithuania, became the first Jews to settle there. At that time, Lithuania was three times the size of Poland, stretching from the Baltic almost to the Black Sea, including areas known today as White Russia and Ukraine. Titkin’s first Rav was Reb Mordechai (1538),

Rav Avraham Menachem Halevi Steinberg, Rav of Broide (Brody; Brod) (1847-1928). He was a Sadigerer chassid, was one of the leading poskim of his day, and wrote the sefer Machzeh Avraham.

Rav Eliezer Dovid Greenwald of Satmar, author of Keren LeDovid (1867-1928). Born in Tcharna, Hungary, to Rav Amram Greenwald, the son of Rav Yosef, Rav of Tchechowitz. The family traced its roots to the Panim Meiros, the Chacham Tzvi, and the Maharal. As a youth, Eliezer Dovid was a disciple of his brother, Rav Moshe, the Rav of Chust and author of Arugas Habosem. He founded a large yeshiva in Satmar, Romania, in 1921.

Rav Mordechai Shapiro of Kaminka-Koritz (1947)

Rav Alexander Sender Linchner (1996), son-in-law of Rav Shraga Feivel Mendlowitz and founder of Kiryat Noar (Boystown), Bayit Vegan, in 1953 for for children who had escaped the Holocaust and other destitute Jewish immigrant children. Previously, he started a trade school for 14 boys from Yemen in 1949. He was succeeded by his son, Rav Moshe Linchner.

Rav Aharon Yechiel Leifer, the Nadvorna Rebbe of Tzefas (1912-2000). After losing his wife in children during World War II, Rav Aharon Yechiel moved to Eretz Yisrael and settled in Tzefas, settinjg up the Nezer Hakodesh shul. In Yisrael, he became a chassid of the Sanz-Klausenberger Rebbe.

Rav Mordechai Don Waldman of Yeshivas Bais Dovid Monsey (2000)

Yahrtzeits, Shabbos, 2 Sivan

Rav Ovadia Bartenura (1445 [or 1450]-1500 [or 1520]). He lived in Italy in the second half of the 15th century and eventually moved to Yerushalayim. He was well known for his role as a Rav in Bartinura, Italy, and for his illuminating Pirush on the Mishnah. He also wrote Omer Nekeh, a supercommentary on Rashi’s peirush on Chumash. Considered one of the wealthiest mean in all of Italy, he settled in Yerushalayim in 1488.

Rav Yisrael Hager of Vizhnitz, the Ahavas Yisrael (1860-1936). The grandson of Rav Menachem Mendel of Vizhnitz (the Tzemach Tzadik), he succeeded his father, Rav Baruch (the Imrei Baruch), as Admor of Vizhnitz after the latter’s petira in 1893. He was Admor for over 40 years, during which time, Vizhnitz grew to several tens of thousands of Chasidim. Rav Yisrael had four sons, Rav Menachem Mendel of Vishav, Rav Chaim Meir (the Imrei Chaim), Rav Eliezer, and Rav Baruch. Rav Yisrael’s remains were moved to Bnai Brak in 1950.

Rav Chaim Elazar Shapira of Munkacz, the Minchas Elazar, (1871-1937). A 5th generation descendent of the founder of Dinov dynasty, Rav Tzvi Elimelech (the Bnei Yisas’char). He learned under his father, Rav Tzvi Hirsch, author of Darkei Teshuvah on Yoreh De’ah. He succeeded his father as Rav of Munkacz in 1914. Munkacz, for centuries the capital of Carpathian Russia, belonged to Hungary before World War I and to Czechoslovakia when that country was created after World War I. He had no children with his first wife, and they decided to divorce. His second wife bore him one daughter, Frimet. From his youth and on, he completed the entire Talmud Bavli and Yerushalmi every two years. He was a prolific author. In addition to Minchas Elazar, he wrote Nimukei Orach Chaim, Os VeShalom on the laws of tefillin and milah, and many other sefarim. In 1930, he fulfilled a lifelong desire and visited Eretz Yisrael. Sadly the Munkatcher died only 3 years after his daughters wedding. Soon after his petira, most of the 15,000 Munkatch Jews perished in the Holocaust. The son-in-law of the Minchas Elazar, Rav Barukh Yehoshua Yerahmiel Rabinowitz, was the son of the the Partzever Rebbe. He made aliyah with his first wife, who fell ill and passed away there. In 1947, he remarried, moved to the United States, and then established a kehilla in Sao Paulo, Brazil, remaining for fifteen years. He then returned to Israel, where he became the Rabbi of Cholon. The Munkatch dynasty was reestablished in Brooklyn and is presently led by two grandsons of the Minchas Elazar, the Munkatcher Rebbe, Rav Moshe Leib Rabinowitz of Boro Park, and his brother, the Dinover Rebbe, Rav Yitzchak Yaakov Rabinowitz of Flatbush.

Rav Mordechai Yechezkiahu ben Shimon (1994)

Rav Yaakov Wehl (1937-2007). He was born in Germany in 1937, and in early 1939, the Wehls left Germany, settling in Boro Park. Yaakov learned at Yeshiva Rabbeinu Yaakov Yosef (RJJ). In 1959, he married Hadassah Galinsky. Rabbi Wehl began learning in the kollel of Yeshiva Ohr HaTorah, under Rav Chaim Pinchas Scheinberg, in Bensonhurst. At the time, he attended law school at night but eventually decided to leave law school and go into chinuch, spending his years at Allentown, Pennsylvania; Monsey; Hebrew Academy of Nassau County for 27 years; and Bais Yaakov of Boro Park Elementary School, where he served as principal for 12 years. Rabbi Wehl authored the very popular Haggadah “Ki Yeshalcha Bincha” in lashon kodesh, which was later translated into English and published by ArtScroll as “The Haggadah with Answers.” He was Daf Yomi maggid shiur for many years. He authored seforim on various mesechtos, include Shekolim, Moed Katan, Chagiga, Horios, Me’ilah and Kerisus. He also wrote a weekly Daf Yomi column in the Yated on Seder Nashim. In 1987, Rabbi and Mrs. Wehl authored the book “House Calls to Eternity” about the life story of their mother, Dr. Selma Wehl, who was a pediatrician in Boro Park for over sixty years, helping people until she was in her nineties. In 2001, Rabbi and Mrs. Wehl moved to Lakewood, enabling themto be near their children. A shul was founded at the home of his son, Rabbi Moshe Wehl, on Sharon Court, and named for his father, R’ Aharon Wehl — Bais Medrash Ohel.

Today in History – 1 Sivan

· Crusaders reached Cologne and found the gate to the city closed by order of the bishop. Of all the Jewish communities in the path of the Crusaders, Cologne’s Jews were the only ones to escape total destruction.
· Massacre of the Jews of Worms, 1096, commemorated in the Kinah “Mi Yitein Roshi Mayim” by Rav Kalonymus ben Yehuda.
· Crusaders dragged Rabbeinu Tam from his home in Ramerupt, France, and left him critically wounded in a field, 1147.
· Jews of Sicily were forbidden to display any funeral decorations in public, 1393.
· A great number of Jews of Styria, Austria, were burned and the rest were expelled from the country, 1421.
· Marranos of Segovia, Spain, were massacred, 1474.
· Jews barred from living in Riga and Livonia, 1593.
· Rabbi Abraham b. Isaac and six other Jews were martyred in Cracow, 1637.
· Israel, Egypt, and Syria accepted the cease-fire ordered by the Security Council, 1967.
· Knesset approves Gaza-Jericho Agreement by a vote of 52-0. In a speech in a mosque in Johannesburg, Arafat calls for a jihad to liberate Yerushalayim; compares Gaza-Jericho Agreement to a temporary agreement made by Mohammed with the tribe of Kuraish. After Israel protests, Yasser Arafat says he had referred to a religious jihad, which has no military significance.

Today in History – 2 Sivan

· Over 500 Jews were forcibly baptized in Clermont-Ferrand, France, 576.
· Massacre of the Jews of Neuss in Prussia, 1096.
· 60 Jews were murdered in Breslau, Silesia riots following a disastrous fire which destroyed part of the city, 1349.
· Israelcaptured Queneitra, Syria, and smashed the well-fortified Syrian positions in the mountains facing the Galil, 1967. IDF completes deployment in the Golan Heights. USSR and other East European nations, except Romania, sever diplomatic ties with Israel.
· End of Six Day War, as Syria and Israel agree to a UN-mandated cease-fire, 1967.

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