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Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Rav Chaim Pinchas Scheinberg zt"l (May the memory of the righteous be a blessing)

Rav Chaim Pinchas Scheinberg passed away on Tuesday night. He was 101 years old.
He was one of the premier leaders of the Lithuanian hareidi religious movement and author of various scholarly works, including Tabaat Hachoshen, a four volume treatise on the seminal halakhic work, Ksot Hachoshen, and the three volume Mishmeret Chayim where the analysis of dilemmas illustrates the Talmudic method of study.

He was especially well-known for wearing more than 36 layers of tzitzit (fringed four-cornered garment) and keeping on his tefillin (phylacteries) all day.

He remained active in the daily affairs of yeshiva life despite his age, including in fundraising for the institution and in responding to Jewish legal questions.

The great Torah sage, born in Ostrov, Poland in 1910, moved to the United States at the age of nine and spent his early years studying in the Rabbi Jacob Joseph Yeshiva (RJJ) on New York's Lower East Side. He continued his Torah studies at Rabbi Yitzchak Elchanan Yeshiva and then at the Mir Yeshiva until moving to Israel.

In 1965, Rabbi Scheinberg, his family and his driver, Rabbi Asa Wittow and family, moved into the newly-developed neighborhood of Mattersdorf from New York, where he had previously established the Torah Ohr Yeshiva in the Bensonhurst neighborhood of Brooklyn.

The rabbi established Israel's Torah Ohr yeshiva that same year, first in Givat Shaul and then eventually moved it in 1971 to its present building in Kiryat Mattersdorf.

At present, nearly 800 rabbinic students attend Yeshiva Torah Ohr in Israel, including more than 500 post-graduate Torah kollel scholars.

Rabbi Scheinberg is survived by four daughters and a son. He will be laid to rest on the cemetery in the Mount of Olives in Jerusalem, where he will be buried next to his late wife.
For those who have read All for the Boss, Rav Scheinberg was the author's brother-in-law.

The picture above is how I will remember Rav Scheinberg. I often prayed with his minyan (service) at sunrise at the Kotel (Western Wall) on the intermediate days of Succoth.

May the memory of the righteous be a blessing.



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