Dei'ah veDibur - Information & Insight

A Window into the Chareidi World

19 Adar 5761 - March 14, 2001 | Mordecai Plaut, director Published Weekly








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Yeshivas Mordechai Hatzaddik in Melbourne - and Around the World
by Shlomo Boruch Abelesz and Yated Ne'eman Staff

The world renowned Ovos Ubonim learning program, where fathers and sons come together to study Torah, has now arrived Down-Under in Australia. It also enjoyed considerable success elsewhere.

Following weeks of pomp and fanfare, it was officially launched on Purim day in Australia as around the world, entitled Yeshivas Mordechai Hatzaddik -- commemorating the actions of the hero of the Megilla who gathered 22,000 youngsters to study Torah and thus helped towards the destruction of Homon Horosho and his wicked plans.

Although, in Australia the organizers couldn't find as many talmidim as did Mordechai Hatzaddik in Shushan, close to 200 fathers and sons did come in the middle of a busy Purim day to the beis hamedrash of the Adass Yisroel Kehilla in Melbourne to take part. They stopped mishloach monos deliveries and the many tzedokoh collections that dozens of the boys had undertaken and headed for the beis hamedrash for an hour of serious learning. The kol haTorah could be heard in the neighboring streets and the nachas that the fathers shepped from learning with their sons brought an additional layer of simcha to their Purim -- which continued throughout the Shabbos.

So great was the reaction to the initial session, that the follow-up, which was held at the same venue on Sunday, could no longer accommodate all the additional learners. The organizers immediately extended the beis hamedrash by opening the double doors to the shul's hall and bringing in additional tables and chairs.

The Ovos Ubonim initiative has been extremely successful wherever it has been introduced and it is obvious that Melbourne is no exception.

The main organizers, Mr. Eli Benedikt and Reb Yitzchok Aharon Goldberg, were ably assisted by sponsors, the Friedman brothers of Yumi's Seafood Products (quite apt -- mazal Adar dogim) with the assistance of the menhalei hamosdos, Rabbi Elozor Yitzchok Greenfeld and the full cooperation of all the melamdim in the Adass Yisroel Talmud Torah, who in fact joined in the program learning with their own children.

It was a heartwarming sight: fathers being osek beTorah with boys of all ages. There were the young ones practicing their Ivri, others learning Chumash and Rashi, with the older boys learning gemora and Tosafos with their Tatties.

All boys who participated were entered in a raffle for scooters -- which were won by Shmuel Meir Schreiber and Moshe Farber. Following the draws all boys were treated to an ice cream and also rewarded with additional prizes and gifts.

After consultation with the newly-appointed Vaad Hachinuch of the Mosdos Hatorah, Rav A. Z. Beck, rav of the kehilla, Rav Binyomin Wurzburger, rosh kollel Beis Hatalmud and Dayan Yehudah Katz, rosh kollel Beis Yosef, the askonim plan to turn this into a weekly experience. For upcoming the winter zman, Ovos Ubonim will be held on motzei Shabbos and during the longer summer days -- on Shabbos afternoon, as it is in many parts of the world.

A similar program for the talmidim of the Adass Yeshiva Ketana was successfully introduced last year by the rosh yeshiva, Rabbi Yosef Loebenstein.

Organizers told Yated that in Israel for Purim the number of locations doubled from what it had been in the past year, going from 120 to 240. Most of them are expected to continue throughout the year. They announced that they ordered 25,000 prizes of rubber stamps. In Yerushalayim, where Purim Meshulash gave an extra day, sessions were held on Friday and on Sunday.


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