Rabbi Aryeh Leib HaCohen Heller, author of Ketzos Hachoshen, Avnei Miluim, and Shev Shmaatsa (1813)
Avraham Shmuel Binyamin Sofer, the Kesav Sofer (1815-1872). Born and died in Pressburg, Hungary, oldest son of the Chasam Sofer and grandson of Rabbi Akiva Eiger via his mother, Rebetzen Sorel. After his father’s death in 1839, the Ksav Sofer succeeded him as Rav and Rosh Yeshiva in Pressburg, at the unusually young age of 24. He served Pressburg for 33 years, the exact number of years his father had served before him.
Rabbi Menachem Mendel Zaks, son-in-law of the Chafetz Chaim
Rabbeinu Moshe ben Maimon, the Rambam (1135-1204). Born at Cordova, Spain, the Rambam received his rabbinical instruction at the hands of his father, Maimon. Moshe was only thirteen years old when Cordova fell into the hands of the fanatical Almohades, and Rabbi Maimon and the other Jews were compelled to choose between Islam and exile. Rabbi Maimon and his family chose the latter course, and for twelve years led a nomadic life, wandering throughout Spain. In 1160 they settled at Fez, Morocco. In 1165 they went to Acre, to Jerusalem, and then to Fostat (Cairo), where they settled. After the death of Maimon, Moses' brother David supported the family by trading in precious stones. David perished at sea, and with him was lost not only his own fortune, but large sums that had been entrusted to him by other traders. These events affected Maimonides' health, and he went through a long sickness. After several years of practice, the Rambam’s authority in medical matters was firmly established, and he was appointed private physician to Saladin's vizier, who recommended him to the royal family. Between the years 1158 and 1190 Maimonides produced a commentary on the Mishnah, the Mishneh Torah, and the philosophical work "Moreh Nevuchim.”
Rabbi Yaakov Abuchatzera (1880), grandson of the founder of the Abuchatzera family, Rabbi Shmuel (Elbaz), and son of Rabbi Masoud, who was Rav of Tafelaletch (Tafilalt), Morocco. He took his father’s position upon the latter’s petira and built the yeshiva there, which produced thousands of students. He wrote many sefarim on all aspects of Torah, including Abir Yaakov. His grandson is Rabbi Yisrael, the Baba Sali, and his great-grandson is Rabbi Meir Abuchatzeira. In 1880, he attempted to move to Eretz Yisrael, but was nifter in Damanhur, Egypt, where he is buried.
Rabbi Simcha Yissacher Dov of Chechenov (1914)
Rabbi Yisrael Reich of Budapest (1933)
Rabbi Raphael Eliyahu Eliezer Mishkovski (1917-1981). Rabbi of the town of Rechasim and Rosh Yeshiva of Yeshivas Knesses Chizkiyahu in Kfar Chassidim, both in northern Israel). Author of Mishnas Eliyahu
Rabbi Elimelech (Meilich) Izak (1943-2006). He was named after his mother’s ancestor, the Noam Elimelech. He was born in Yerushalayaim, learned at the Chayei Olam yeshiva, and became a leading chassid of Karin-Stolin. In his later years, he was appointed director of the Karlin Talmud Torah and Yeshiva and gabbai of the Beis Medrash.
Birthdate and Hilula of Shimon ben Yaakov Avinu (1567 BCE)
Rabbi Shlomo, Rav of Vilna at the time of the Vilna Gaon (1791)
Rabbi Eliyahu Eliezer Mishkovsky, Rosh Yeshiva of Keneses Chizkiyahu in Kefar Chasidim, Israel (1981). The yeshiva Knesses Chizkiyahu was founded in 1949 at the behest of the Chazon Ish. It was first located in Zichron Yaakov and was headed by Rabbi Noach Shimanowitz. Six years later, it moved to its permanent residence in Kfar Chassidim, under the guidance of the mashgiach, Rabbi Eliyahu Lopian and the rosh hayeshiva, Rabbi Mishkovsky. Some say the Hilula is 20 Tevet.
Rabbi Yisrael Dov of Vilednik, the She’eiris Yisrael (1789-1849 or 1850). Also known as the Maggid of Vilednik, he was a disciple of Rabbi Mordechai Twersky (1770-1837), the Chernobler Rebbe. During his lifetime, thousands journeyed to the She’eris Yisrael for blessing, inspiration, and consultation. Before he passed away, he told his disciples that whoever would reach out and touch his door seeking help would be aided. Today, even thousands of non-Jews come to pray at his gravesite in their times of need. The She’eiris Yisrael’s reputation continues to endure amongst generations of Gentiles in the area, and many Jews from around the world travel to his kever on his Hilula.
Rabbi Matzliach Mazuz, the Ish Matzliach (1912-1971). The son of Rabbi Raphael and Rachel Mazuz, Matzliach was born on the island city of Djerba. When he was eleven, he was accepted into the yeshivah of the eminent Rabbi Rachamim Chai Chavitah HaKohen. After his marriage in 1930, Rabbi Matzliach moved to Tunis, where he served as a mashgiach ruchani in the Chevras HaTalmud yeshivah for 13 years. He was later appointed to the position of dayan in the beis din of Tunis. 600 couples came to him for divorces between the years 1955-1958, and he managed to make shalom bayis between 75% of them. He founded the Kisei Rachamim yeshivah in Tunis, named after his mentor, Rabbi Rachamim Chai Chavitah. Years later, his sons reestablished this yeshivah in Bnei Brak. In 1971, while Rabbi Matzliach was returning from a pre-dawn minyan, clad in tallis and tefillin, a number of Arabs attacked and killed him. Among Rabbi Matzliach's writings are: Shu"t Ish Matzliach, on the four parts of Shulchan Aruch, three of which have appeared until now; Kuntress HaMaarachot, which discusses the rules of issuing halachic decisions; Matzliach Yeshuah, a collection of chiddushim on the Shas; and Magen u'Tzinah, answers to questions on the Maharsha. The rest of his writings are still in manuscript form. Rabbi Matzliach is survived by his sons: Rabbi Mayer, rosh yeshivah of Kisei Rachamim in Bnei Brak and the leader of the Tunisian community in Eretz Yisrael; Rabbi Yosef Tzemach, the director and mashgiach ruchani of the yeshivah; and Rabbi Rachamim, also a mashgiach ruchani. One of Rabbi Matzliach's daughters is married to Rabbi Yitzchak Barda, author of Yitzchak Yeranen, and another to Rabbi Chanan Kablan, a dayan.
Rabbi Shmuel Heller, Azhenazi Rabbi of Tzefat for 40 years (1884). On the 24th of Tevet in 1837, he was discovered buried up to his neck in stones. He had been standing under the lintel of the Beis Midrash Ari at the moment of the earthquake. His wounds were so severe that he was bedridden for six months, and lost the use of one arm for the rest of his life. Rabbi Shmuel was a disciple of Rabbi Avraham Dov Auerbach of Avritch [1765-1840], who spent ten years as Rabbi in Tzefat. He is buried in Tzefat.
Rabbi Yehuda Leib Eiger (1816-1888). A grandson of Rabbi Akiva Eiger, Rabbi Leibel was born in Warsaw. He learned under Rabbi Yitzchak Meir Alter, the Chiddushei Harim in Warsaw. At 20, he married and moved to Lublin where he davened at the Shul of the Chozeh. There, he befriended Rabbi Yisroel, the Chozeh's son. He then moved to Kotzk. He became a rebbe after the Rebbe of Izbitza passed away in 1854. After his death his son, Rabbi Avraham, printed his sefarim Toras Emes and Imrei Emes.
Rabbi Shalom Moskowitz of Shatz, a Romanian town in the Bukovina district (1878-1958). A direct descendent (fifth generation) of Rabbi Yechiel Michel of Zlotchov and a great-grandson of Rabbi Michel of Premishlan, he was named after his mother's great-grandfather, the Sar Shalom of Belz. After learning at Shatz, he traveled to the famed Maharsham (Rabbi Shalom Schwadron) of Berzhan to study practical halacha and receive semicha. After leading a group of chassidim in Cologne, Germany, Rabbi Shalom arrived in London, in 1927, where he served for thirty years. Among the sefarim, he wrote is a commentary on Perek Shirah. He promised to help anyone who comes to his kever Friday morning and lights 3 candles (a tradition mentioned in Sefer Tikunim). He is buried in Enfield, London England
Rabbi Yehuda Aryeh Leib HaLavi Epstein, known as Reb Leibush of Ople (1837). Orphaned of his father, Rabbi Yechiel Michel Epstein, and his mother at a young age, Reb Leibush and his two younger brothers were supported by a simple Jew of Ostrovsta. He was a chasid of the Yid Hakadosh and the Chozeh of Lublin. He became Rabbi of Ozerov in 1812. His most famous descendent was Rabbi Moshe Yechiel Michel Halevi Epstein, the Aish Daas of Ozerov.
Rabbi Gedalia Hertz (1914-1977). Born in Ujazd, near Tomashov, Poland, he left for Lubavitcher Yeshiva Tomchei Tmimim in Warsaw after his Bar Mitzvah. After some years, he went to Grodno to the yeshiva of Rabbi Shimon Shkop. After marrying in 1935, he moverd to Eretz Yisrael and entered the Yeshivas Sfas Emes in Yerushalayim. The following year, the Gerrer Rebbe, the Imrei Emes, decided to open a branch in Tel Aviv, which was later named Yesahivas Chidushei Harim; Rabbi Gedalia was chosen Rosh Yeshiva while still in his early 20's. After the found of the state of Israel, he was chosen to be the representative of the Vaad of Yeshivos to government officials and was instrumental in getting Ben Gurian to accept a deference for all yeshiva students. In 1955, Rabbbi Gedalia became the Rav of the newly established “yeshiva’ kehilla in Sydney, Australia. In 1963, he returned to Yisrael.
Rabbi Naftali Katz, author of Semichas Chachomim (1660-1719), descendant of the Maharal. Born in Ostracha, Ukraine and died in Istanbul. His father, Yitzchak, a Rabbi in Stefan and a darshan in Prague, died in 1670. Rabbi Naftali married Esther Sheindl, daughter of Shmuel Shmelke Zak of Ostraha, and headed the Yeshiva that his father-in-law built for him. After Rabbi Shmuel died he succeeded him as Rabbi and Av Beis Din. In 1704 he became Rabbi of Frankfurt until 1711, when a fire broke out in his home and spread from there burning down several hundred homes. Rabbi Naftali was jailed and accused of setting the fire. When he was released, he left for Prague and Breslav and stayed with Zvi Ashkenazi (the Chacham Zvi). They both excommunicated Nechemia Chayun who wrote a book in favor of Shabetai Zvi. He had 14 children, 7 sons and 7 daughters. Rabbi Yaakov Emden, the son of the Chacham Zvi, married Rabbi Naftali's daughter Rachel. Some say his hilula is 5 Tishrei, 1645; Others say it is 24th Shevat.
Rabbi Yosef of Yampula, son of the Zlotchiver Maggid (1812).
Rabbi Shneur Zalman of Liadi (1745-1813), Baal Hatanya. He became a talmid of the Magid of Mezritch at the age of 30, studying with him for 12 years, and becoming the leader of Chasidus in Lithuania following the Magid’s petira in 1772. Following his incarceration in St. Petersburg, he moved to Liadi. In addition to Tanya, he also authored the Shulchan Aruch HaRav.
Here is a story from www.Ascentofsafed.com about the Rabbi and his spiritual leadership.
The Judgment and the Advice
Reb Noah was a devoted disciple of Rabbi Schneur Zalman of Liadi, the "Alter Rebbe" of Chabad, who lived in 18th century Russia. Reb Noah's son eventually married the Alter Rebbe's daughter and from that union came the Rebbe who was known as the Tzemach Tzedek. To this day, the memory of Reb Noah is well honoured among Lubavitchers, who tell this story about him.
After Reb Noah died and came before the Heavenly Court, they looked into his case and found that he had been a very good Jew. All his life he had observed the commandments as best he could and never missed any opportunity to perform an additional mitzvah.
Now, as is well known (Avot 4:11), when a Jew fulfills a mitzvah, a holy angel is born from that very act. These angels, it is said, will come to testify on behalf of the soul after death. And the more properly and sincerely he does the mitzvah, the stronger the angels will be. So it happened when Reb Noah stood before the Heavenly Court that thousands upon thousands of luminous mitzvah angels came to his trial, saying, "I was born from such-and-such a good deed performed by Reb Noah when he was alive on earth."
The Heavenly Court was very impressed by the testimony of all these mitzvah angels and was about to decide that Reb Noah should go immediately to Gan Eden ("Paradise"). But suddenly another angel appeared, a dark one. It stood before the Court and said, "I was born from a sin that Reb Noah committed during his life on earth." Then the angel revealed to the Court exactly what the sin had been.
The three judges who sit on the Heavenly Court deliberated thoroughly. On the one hand, Reb Noah was a pious man who had led a basically righteous life, so he deserved to go to Gan Eden. But on the other hand, he had committed the sin. Just as no good deed every goes unrewarded, so does no sin ever go unpunished. Finally, the Court decided to give Reb Noah two choices: he could spend a half-hour in Gehennom ("Purgatory") now, to atone for the sin, and then go straight to Gan Eden. Or, he could avoid the pain of purgatory by reincarnating on earth once again and making up for the sin there.
Reb Noah answered: "With all due respect to this Court, I would like to consult with my Rebbe, Rabbi Schneur Zalman, before I make a decision. All my life I never did anything concerning my spiritual life without first asking the Rebbe's advice. And so I would like permission to ask the Rebbe about this now."
The Court consulted the Heavenly Records and found that it was indeed true. Reb Noah never did anything important without first asking the Alter Rebbe's advice. "Very well," the Court replied. "You may return to earth in the spirit and consult with your Rebbe about your decision."
Back on earth, Rabbi Schneur Zalman was sitting at the table as usual, learning Torah with his chasidim. Then the soul of Reb Noah appeared to him in the spirit and posed the question: "Earth or Gehennnom?" The Rebbe turned to his chasidim and said, "Reb Noah is here right now, and he is asking what judgment he should choose: a half hour in Purgatory or to be reborn in this world another time."
The chasidim said nothing. What could they say? If the Rebbe wasn't prepared to decide, how could they presume to speak for him? So they sat there in silence, waiting to hear what the Rebbe's answer would be.
The Alter Rebbe put his hand on his forehead, then rested his elbow on the table and concentrated very deeply. For a long time he just sat there in silence, turning the question over in his mind, weighing all the consequences. Then came the answer: "Gehennom - to purgatory!"
As soon as the Rebbe had said the word "Gehennom," the chasidim all heard a voice cry out in anguish, "Oy, Rebbe!" At the same moment they saw, burned into the wall by the door, the outline of a human hand!
From this the chasidim understood what a spiritual danger it can be for a soul to be born into this world. Better to spend half an hour in the fires of Purgatory than a whole lifetime on earth once again!
Rabbi Meir Eisenstadt, also known as Meir Ash (Dec. 2, 1861). His responsa were published by his son under the title Imrei Eish. He died at Ungvár.
Rabbi Avraham Dov Berish Flamm (1804-1873). Rabbi Flamm is considered to be the leading disciple of the Dubno Maggid, Rabbi Yaakov Kranz, although, in fact, the two never met. Rabbi Flamm was, however, the leading student of the Maggid's writings, and it was he, together with the Maggid's son, Rabbi Yitzchak Kranz, who edited these and prepared them for publication. Rabbi Flamm was himself a popular maggid, and he held that post in several Polish and Lithuanian cities. Besides publishing the Dubno Maggid's Ohel Yaakov and Sefer Hamiddos, Rabbi Flamm wrote several works of his own. His Yerios Ha'ohel and Sefas Ha'yeriah were printed together with Ohel Yaakov, while his Shemen Ha'mor is a free-standing work.
Rabbi Moshe Yosef Teitelbaum (1842-1897). The son of Rabbi Yekusiel Yehuda Teitelbaum, he was was appointed Rav and Av Beis Din of Stropkov when Rabbi Yechezkel Shraga Halberstam returned to Sienawa in 1880. In 1891, he left the town for a post in Ujhely, Hungary.
Rabbi Shmuel Borenstein, the Shem MiShmuel from Sochatshov (1855-1926). He was born in Kotzk to Rabbi Avraham Borenstein, the Sochatchover Rebbe and mechaber of Avnei Nezer. His grandfathers were Rabbi Nachum Ze’ev of Biala, the Agudas Eizov and Rabbi Menachem Mendel, the Lotzker Rebbe. Rabbi Shmuel considered Rabbi Chanoch Henoch of Alexander to be his Rebbe. After the petira of the Alexander Rebbe in 1870, the Avnei Nezer was made Rebbe, and his son followed him as his Rebbe. He was married in 1873, but his wife died in 1901. He remarried in 1903. Rabbi Shmuel served as maggid shiur in his father’s yeshiva in Sochatchov and helped him write Eglei Tal on the 30 malachos of Shabbos, as well as Avnei Nezer. After his father was niftar in 1910, the Chassidim crowned Rabbi Shmuel their Rebbe. His sefer contains the thoughts of his famous father.
Rabbi Avraham Shmuel Binyomin Sofer, the Divrei Sofer (1948). Avraham Shmuel Binyomin Sofer was the oldest son of the Chasam Sofer and Sorel, daughter of Rabbi Akiva Eger, and was known as the Ksav Sofer (1815-1871).
Rabbi Eliyahu Eliezer Dessler (1892-1953). His father, Rabbi Reuven Dov Dessler, was a talmid muvhak of Rabbi Simcha Zissel of Kelm,and his mother was a grand-daughter of Rabbi Yisrael Salanter and a niece of Rabbi Chaim Ozer Grodzinski. After learning at Kelm, he married a grand-daughter of Rabbi Simcha Zissel. During the Bolshevik revolution, he moved to London in 1927. In 1941, he founded the Gateshead Yeshiva and kollel. In 1948, he was asked by Rav Yosef Kahaneman to join the Ponevezh Yeshiva in Bnai Brak. Many of his thoughts and discourses are collected in Michtav M'Eliyahu. Some say his Hilula is 25 Tevet.
Rabbi Moshe Mordechai Biederman, the Lelover Rebbe (1904-1987). Son of Rabbi Shimon Nosson Nota Biederman, Moshe Mordechai was born in Yeryshalayim. When he was just 10 years old, his mother passed away and his father moved to Krakow, Poland, leaving him to the care of his grandfather, Rabbi David. Five years later, after the petirah of his grandfather, he traveled to Europe and established his place of learning at the Radomsker shtiebel in Krakow. He became very close to the Stoliner Rebbe, the Yenuka. When his father was niftar 1930, the Chassidim looked to Moshe Mordechai to become their new Rebbe. He stayed in Poland until right before the onset of the War, settling in Tel Aviv in 1944. He is buried on haf Hatzetim Jerusalem, Israel.
Rabbi Mordechai Gifter (1915-2001). Born in Richmond, Virginia, he moved to Baltimore with his family, when his father noted the difficulty in teaching his son in a city not noted for its strong Torah resources. As a youth, he studied in the Rabbi Yitzchak Elchonon Yeshiva of New York City under his rabbi, Rabbi Moshe Halevi Soloveitchik. HaRav Gifter studied together with Rabbi Nosson Wachtfogel, zt"l, former mashgiach of Lakewood and Rabbi Avigdor Miller of Flatbush in the Rabbi Yitzchak Elchonon Yeshiva. On the advice o his uncle, Rabbi Yehuda Leib Zer, one of the directors of the Rav Yitzchak Elchonon Yeshiva, Rabbi Gifter went to study in the Telz yeshiva of Lithuania in the winter of 1932. He became very close to the rosh yeshiva, Rabbi Avraham Yitzchak Bloch. In the summer of 1939, Rav Gifter became engaged to the daughter of Rav Zalman Bloch. The wedding date was set for a year later. The couple married in the United States. With the expansion of the Ner Yisrael yeshiva in Baltimore by Rabbi Yaakov Yitzchak Ruderman, Rabbi Gifter was asked to deliver chaburos to the students. In 1943, Rabbi Gifter became rav of the chareidi community in Connecticut, and one year later, his uncles, Rabbi Eliyahu Meir Bloch and Rabbi Chaim Mordechai Katz founded the Telz yeshiva in Cleveland. They asked him to join them as ram and mashgiach. He moved to Eretz Yisrael in 1976, founding the Telz yeshiva in Kiryat Telz-Stone near Yerushalayim. However, three years later, the rosh yeshiva of Telz in Cleveland, Rabbi Baruch Sorotzkin, was nifter, and Rabbi Gifter returned to Cleveland to succeed him. And there he remained until his own petira. Some say his Hilula is 23 Teves.
Rabbi Moshe Akiva Tikochinsky (1988). Mashgiach of Slabodka Yeshiva.
Rabbi Yechiel Michel Tukatchinsky [Tikochinsky], mashgiach of Slabodka in Bnai Brak, and founder of Yeshivas Mekor Chaim in Yerushalayim. In 1925, he published a sefer called Tekufas Hachamoh Uvirchosoh, in preparation for the bracha made when the sun returns to the point at which it began upon Creation. He wrote a sefer called Bein Hashmoshos, published in 1929, which dealt with the International Date Line. In 1941, he changed his mind altogether, as documented in his sefer, Hayomam Bekadur Haaretz.
Rabbeinu Avraham bar Dovid miPosquires (Ra’avad), author of Hasagos on the Rambam and the Rif.
Rabbi Avraham Chaim of Zlotchov, author of Orach LeChaim and P’ri Chaim (1816). There have been many Seforim written with the title Pri Chaim. See [Note: Rav Chaim Leib Epsztein was Rav and Av Beis Din at Czyzewo from 1729, then at Czyzewo, and finally at Kolszyn. He was mechaber of a sefer called Pri Chaim. There was also a Rav in Sokolow named Rav Chaim Leib from Kaluszyn author of Pri Chaim.]
Rabbi Shimshon Raphael Hirsch, Frankfurt am Main, Germany (1808-1888). His father, Rabbi Raphael Aryeh (1777-1857), who changed the family name to Hirsch, was the son of Ravbbi Menachem Mendel Frankfurter of Altuna (1742-1823). Rabbi Menachem Mendel was a talmid of Rabbi Yonasan Eibeshitz and was the Rav of three communities of Altuna, Hamburg, and Wandsbeck (“AHU”). At the age of 18, Rav Shimshon Raphael went to Mannheim to learn at the yeshiva of Rabbi Yaakov Ettlinger, author of Aruch La’ner. Rabbi Hirsch received smicha from Rabbi Ettlinger after learning there for a year. Thereafter, he attended the University of Bonn. That education would serve him well later in life as he combated the forces of Reform with eloquence. When he was 21, he was appointed Chief Rabbi of the Grand Duchy of Oldenburg. There, he married Chana Judel. He also authored Iggros Hatzafon (The 19th Letters), under the pen name Ben Uziel. One year later, he published Chorev. In 1847, he became Chief Rabbi of Moravia, a region of 50,000 Jews in 52 communities, and which is now the Czech Republic. In 1851, he became the Rav of Frankfurt am Main, which he transformed into a Torah bastion. His best known works are the classic six-volume Commentary on Chumash.
,Rabbi Shmuel Hillel Shenker (1956). His father, Rabbi Avraham Shenker, was one of Rabbi Yisrael's Salanter’s greatest disciples. Rabbi Shmuel spent his early years in Slobodka, but he was orphaned of his father at an early age. He thus traveled to the Talmud Torah in Kelm to absorb the Torah and mussar of the Alter, Rebbe Simcha Zissel of Kelm. After a number of years, he traveled to Eretz Yisrael with his relative, Rabbi Tzvi Pesach Frank, who later became chief rabbi of Yerushalaim. In 1895, Rabbib Shmuel Hillel married Laya Genendle, the oldest daughter of Rabbi Yosef Chaim Sonnenfeld. On 9 Iyar 1944, his beloved son Rabbi Mendel Shenker passed away when he was only forty-six. Another year passed and another son was taken from him. Rabbi Yisrael, his you gest and most beloved son, passed away in the prime of his life on 27 Tevet 1945.
Rabbi Kalman Avraham Goldberg (1895-1968). A devoted disciple of the Alter of Novardok, he became Rav in Vasilkov. He moved to America in 1926. In 1928, he was hired to head the beis din for Adas Yisrael, under Rabbi Velvel Margulies. After Rabbi Velvel’s petira, he became Rav.
Rabbi Menashe Yitzchak Meir Eichenstein of Ziditchov -Petach Tikvah (1971)
Rabbi Avraham Simcha HaKohen Kaplan (1990). Chief Rabbi of Tzefat.
Rabbi Pinchas Hirschprung, Chief Rabbi of Montreal (1915-1998). At the age 15, he published a Torah journal, Ohel Torah, along with his friend, Rabbi Yeshaya Yosef Margolin, in Galicia. He then joined Yeshivas Chachmei Lublin, learning under Rabbi Meir Shapiro. At the outbreak of World War 2, Rabbi Pinchas fled to Vilna, which was still neutral territory. In 1942, he acquired a visa to travel to Canada with a group of students from Mir and Lubavitch. When he arrived in Montreal, he was offered the position of Rabbi Kehillas Adas Yisrael. When Yeshiva Merkaz Hatorah was established, Rabbi Pinchas was made its Rosh Yeshiva. Eventually, he was Rav Ha’Ir of Montreal.
Rabbi Shmuel Berenbaum (1920-2008). Rabbi Berenbaum was born in Poland and studied in Mir before World War II. As the Nazis rolled across Eastern Europe, he – along with many other yeshiva students - fled across the Soviet Union and resettled in Shanghai. From there, they eventually emigrated to the United States. He became the Rosh Yeshiva of the Mir Yeshiva in Brooklyn for more than 50 years.
This is erev Rosh Chodesh. Many people choose to do a day light fast in order to make Tikune.
Rabbi Yehoshua Leib Diskin (1818-1898), the Rav of Brisk, Yerushalayim leader, son of Rabbi Binyamin Diskin, rav of Volkovisk. He was born in Horodno. Rabbi Yehoshua Leib was engaged before his bar mitzva and at the age of fourteen he married the daughter of HaRav Brode and lived with his father-in-law in Wolkowitz. He became rov in various cities such as Lomza, Mezritch, Kovno, Shklov, and finally in Brisk. Moved to Eretz Yisrael after Yom Kippur in 1876.
Rabbi Yerachmiel Yisrael Yitzchak of Alexander, the Yismach Yisrael (1853-1910). At an early age, his father, Rabbi Yechiel of Alexander, took him to Rabbi Menachem Mendel of Vorka, then Rabbi Beirush of Biala. After the latter’s passing, he became of a chasid of his father. After his father’s passing in 1894, he became the Alexander Rebbe.
Rabbi Marcus (Nosson) Adler, author of Nesina L'ger (1803-1890). He was Rabbi of Oldenburg, 1829-1830, and Hanover, 1830-1844, and Chief Rabbi of the British Empire, 1844-1890.
Rabbi Meir Chodosh, mashgiach of Yeshivas Chevron, Ateres Yisrael, and Ohr Elchanan (1898-1989). Born in Patrich, Lithuania, he was a talmid muvhak of the Alter of Slabodka, Rabbi Nosson Tzvi Finkel. He lived through the Arab massacre of Chevron's Jews on Shabbos morning, 16 Av, 1929.
Rabbi Daniel Levy (1935-2004). Born the youngest of nine children in Petersfield, England, he learned at Gateshead Yeshiva and Kollel before and for 12 years after his marriage. Following a trip to America, where he learned from Rav Moshe Feinstein and Rabbi Yaakov Kamenetsky, he was chosen as Rav of the Khal Adas Yeshurun of Zurich.
Rabbi Chaim Shamshon Swiatyckid (1914-2004), nephew of the Chazon Ish and scion of the Karelitz dynasty, whose patriarch and matriarch Rabbi Shemaryahu Yosef and Rasha Leah, had 15 children. Her third child, Henya Chaya, married Rabbi Abba Swiatycki, who became Rabbi of Kosova, after the petira of Rabbi Shemaryahu Yosef during WW I. Their only child was Rabbi Chaim. Rabbi Chaim’s mentor was his uncle, Rabbi Yitzchak Zundel Karelitz, brother of the Chazon Ish. At the age of 14, he left for Mir, then learned with Rabbi Baruch Ber Lebovitz in Kaminetz, where he stayed for six years. In 1934, he followed his uncle to Eretz Yisrael to escape conscription. He learned at Yeshiva Chevron in Yerushalayim and Yeshivas Volozhin in Tel Aviv. He then moved to America in 1938 where he joined the faculty at Mesivta Tiferes Yerushalayim.
Rabbi Yitzchak Kaduri (1901-2006). Born to to Rabbi Zeev Diva in Baghdad. Upon his second visit to Eretz Yisrael in 1923, he changed his last name from Diva to Kadouri and fixed his place of study at Yeshivat Porat Yosef in the Old City. He studied Kabbalah under the tutelage of Rabbi Ephraim Cohen and Rabbi Salman Eliyahu (father of former Sephardic Chief Rabbi Mordechai Eliyahu). After marrying his first wife, Sarah, HaRav Kadouri lived in Shechunat Habucharim, one of Jerusalem's first neighborhoods built outside the Old City walls. He would stay at the yeshiva all week, coming home shortly before Shabbos. Following the petira of Rav Ephraim Hakohen, head of Jerusalem's mekubalim, toward the end of 1949, Rav Kadouri was selected to head the group. He found a new institution called Yeshivat Nachalat Yitzchak. Graced with a phenomenal memory, he was said to have known the entire Babylonian Talmud by heart. His closer students say that the blessing of the Ben Ish Chai and that of the Lubavitcher Rebbe - both of whom blessed him that he might live to see the Final Redeemer - came true. The students say that Rabbi Kaduri told them he met the Messiah on Cheshvan 9, 5764 (Nov. 4, 2003). He reportedly said that the Messiah is not promoting himself, and that a study of his [Rabbi Kaduri's] words in recent months would provide hints of his identity.
Rabbi Shmuel Berenbaum, Rosh Yeshiva of Mir in Brooklyn (1921-2008). Born in the small Polish-Lithuanian town of Kinishen, Reb Shmuel began his formal learning at Yeshiva Ohel Torah of Baranovitch in 1935 under the leadership of Rabbi Elchonon Wasserman. During his years in the Mirrer Yeshiva, he became very close with the famed Mashgiach of the Mir, Rabbi Yechezkel Levenstein. Rabbi Shmuel escaped from Europe together with the Mirrer Yeshiva and spent six years with the yeshiva in exile in Shanghai. He arrived in the United States with the yeshiva led by the mashgiach, Rabbi Chatzkel, in 1947, and continued to learn in the yeshiva. In the early 1950s, Rabbi Avraham Kalmanowitz zt”l, who had sustained and saved the yeshiva in Shanghai and rebuilt it in America , took Rabbi Shmuel as a son-in-law. After his marriage, Rav Shmuel joined the kollel of the Mirrer Yeshiva. In 1964, with the passing of Rabbi Kalmanowitz, Rabbi Shraga Moshe Kalmanowitz, oldest son of Rabbi Avraham, together with Rabbi Shmuel, became roshei yeshiva of the Mirrer Yeshiva.
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