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29 Cheshvan 5766 - November 30, 2005 | Mordecai Plaut, director Published Weekly










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Siyum on Chosen Mishpat

by Yated Ne'eman Staff

The Torah community of Yerushalayim witnessed an outstanding kiddush Hashem this past Chol Hamoed. The occasion was a siyum by some of the members of the Jerusalem Institute for Dayanim on the entire Choshen Mishpat. The siyum culminated ten years of meticulous study of Choshen Mishpat by the Kollel. In the course of their study, the members attained a Yodin-Yodin, the semichoh on Choshen Mishpat from some of the leading dayanim in Eretz Yisroel.

In recognition of this outstanding achievement, many Torah leaders joined in the celebration. Some of the gedolim who participated are HaRav Scheinberg, rosh yeshiva of Torah Ohr, HaRav Schlesinger, rosh yeshiva of Kol Torah, HaRav Farbstein, rosh yeshiva of Chevron, and HaRav Ehrenfeld, rosh yeshiva of Be'er Shmuel.

Some of the leading dayanim who participated were the Gavad of the Eida HaChareidis, HaRav Weiss, HaRav Halberstam, a dayan of the Eida HaChareidis, HaRav Rosengarten the av beis din of Belz and HaRav Naftoli Nussbaum, av beis din of Ahavas Sholom.

The keynote addresses were given by HaRav Yisroel Ganz, a ram in Kol Torah, and the famous mashgiach, HaRav Don Segal.

After the opening remarks by the Assistant Rosh Kollel HaRav Asher Flegg, the Rosh Kollel, HaRav Yosef Fleischman, spoke. In his remarks, he paid tribute to the Kollel's founder, the late HaRav Mordechai Cheshin. Rav Cheshin, who is famous for his Sa'ad Haruchani organization, noted the dearth of Torah institutions that train dayanim who are proficient in the entire Choshen Mishpat. He founded the Kollel more than ten years ago with the avowed goal of producing excellent dayanim.

Under HaRav Fleischman's leadership and through the efforts of Rav Flegg, the Kollel has greatly expanded from its original seven members to the present size of more than sixty avreichim while remaining loyal to the institution's original goals.

A major address was delivered by the renowned Rav Yisroel Ganz, a leading rav in the local Mattersdorf community. HaRav Ganz expressed the community's appreciation for having such an eminent institution in its midst.

He retold how one morning while walking with the late HaRav Yechezkel Abramsky, he was asked by the latter for the pshat in the statement, "Talmidei chachomim marbim sholom bo'olom." HaRav Abramsky told him that many of the issues that cause friction amongst ordinary people do not interest talmidei chachomim who realize what is truly important in life.

HaRav Ganz illustrated this with his recent personal experience in which he spent four hours on Erev Yom Kippur settling a dispute concerning a trivial matter.

HaRav Don Segal, who has been closely associated with the Kollel, was the next speaker. HaRav Segal's association with the Kollel began when the Kollel was asked to relocate to a non-religious neighborhood. HaRav Segal, together with HaRav Wachtfogel and the late HaRav Gavriel Ginsberg, selected this Kollel to move there because of its intense Torah atmosphere. Avreichim also contribute scholarly articles to the Kollel's annual publication Umka Dedino.

It is noteworthy that, throughout the year, the Kollel is in session even when many other kollelim are not in session. Its summer vacation is only one week and not the usual three. Every day, the bein hasedorim is forty- five minutes and not the usual two hours or more, and other such additions. During the sedorim many avreichim make a ta'anis dibbur to speak nothing besides Choshen Mishpat. There are also regular examinations that demand serious study.

HaRav Segal noted the importance of every word of Torah learning. He cited the pshat of the Chofetz Chaim on the words, "Yekoroh he mipeninim." The Chofetz Chaim asked why the Torah is compared to pearls and not to gold. He answered that the value of gold increases arithmetically: two grams of gold are worth just double the value of one gram. However a pearl that is twice the size of a small pearl is worth much more than double the value of the small pearl. The situation is similar with Torah knowledge.

HaRav Naftoli Nussbaum, one of the leading experts in Choshen Mishpat, distributed certificates to the seventeen members of the Kollel who have received Yodin- Yodin from him. HaRav Nussbaum tests the members of the Kollel each year. He wrote how he is amazed at the outstanding knowledge that these avreichim have acquired.

HaRav Nussbaum was joined by HaRav Yitzchok Shuvacs, who read the certificates to the audience. HaRav Shuvacs, who has been preparing and marking the monthly tests of the Kollel since its inception, noted that the certificates were an understatement of the avreichim's true achievements. HaRav Shuvacs' tests are noted for their thoroughness, with questions that prove one's understanding of every question and every proof of the Nesivos. In order to remain in the Kollel, members are required to succeed in the tests of both HaRav Shuvacs and HaRav Nussbaum.

The Torah world was pleased to learn that the Kollel is planning to open a beis din in the near future. It recently opened a special program to train dayanim to serve in communities in English-speaking countries.


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