Dei'ah veDibur - Information & Insight

A Window into the Chareidi World

20 Sivan 5764 - June 9, 2004 | Mordecai Plaut, director Published Weekly









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Shema Yisrael Torah Network











HaRav Nissim Rebibo, zt"l
By Betzalel Kahn

HaRav Nissim Rebibo zt"l a dayan and rosh avos beis din in France, passed away unexpectedly at the age of 58 last week.

HaRav Rebibo was born in Morocco and left home for Sunderland, England at a young age to study at the yeshiva of HaRav Shamai Zahn and, ylct"a, HaRav Chanoch Ehrentreu. He soon stood out for his tremendous shekidoh in Torah learning and his elevated middos, which marked him for greatness.

Later he transferred to Lakewood Yeshiva, where he learned under Maran HaRav Aharon Kotler zt"l. Over the years he grew very close to the rosh yeshiva, HaRav Schneur Kotler. Here, too, he gained prominence for his broad Torah knowledge. Eventually he was appointed rosh kollel of Kollel Lakewood, giving a daily shiur to hundreds of avreichim. Years later, after he had served as a dayan in Paris, he was chosen among Lakewood's thousands of graduates as the guest of honor at the yeshiva's 50th anniversary dinner.

When HaRav Yosef Chaim Sitruk was appointed Chief Rabbi of France he made HaRav Rebibo av beis din and within a short period of time he became a central rabbinical figures in France accepted by all Jewish communities around the country.

Throughout his lifetime HaRav Rebibo detached himself from This World, devoting all his energies to Torah study. Most of his day was spent learning and he would take advantage of every spare moment to study Torah. One year ago he was asked to serve as a dayan in London, but he chose to remain at his post in France.

HaRav Rebibo was a man of great humility, always fleeing from honor, which drew him even more admirers. He received everybody with a smile but was always forceful when it came to halachic matters. Even when he heard complex cases, all of the litigants would leave his chamber with a good feeling, even if they lost.

He would bring many of his halachic questions to Jerusalem, to the home of Maran HaRav Yosef Sholom Eliashiv, shlita. HaRav Rebibo was known to be highly versed in halochoh and the customs of every community. He always knew how to extract the salient points from both sides and penetrate the essence of halachic questions brought before him. As a member of the Conference of European Rabbis his opinion was highly valued and was often decisive in various matters.

He was hospitalized two weeks ago after suffering leg pains, which turned out to be from a necrosis. The dead tissue led to an infection that spread throughout his body until he passed away. The large levaya, held in Jerusalem, was attended by rabbonim from both France and Eretz Yisroel, as well as many of his talmidim.


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