On 4 Cheshvan, a huge throng accompanied HaRav Eliyahu Shrem
zt"l, rosh yeshiva and founder of Yeshivas Torah
Vehoro'oh and its institutions, on his last earthly journey.
HaRav Shrem was 69 at the time of his petiroh.
HaRav Eliyahu Shrem, son of HaRav Ezra Shrem the founder of
Yeshivas Porat Yosef, was born on the 11th of Adar, 5692
(1932), in the Old City of Jerusalem. In this illustrious
home, the young Eliyahu absorbed a vast amount of Torah and
In his youth, he studied in Porat Yosef in the Old City,
where he was attached to HaRav Ezra Attia and HaRav Yaakov
Ades. He toiled over his Torah studies with much exertion and
In 5716 (1956) he married Rivka, daughter of HaRav Rafael
Abu, the av beis din of Tel Aviv, who in his capacity
as the trusted deputy of maranan verabonon helped
found the Otzar HaTorah institutions in Morocco. On his
wedding day Rav Eliyahu completed Shas, over which he
had toiled during his years in Porat Yosef.
After his marriage, he devoted all of his time to the study
of halochoh, and after many years of exertion, merited
to receive smicha from HaRav Ezra Attia. In 5719, he
was selected to preside as rav of a Tel Aviv neighborhood. As
soon as he moved to Tel Aviv, he founded a kollel on
Levinski Street where he taught.
His father, HaRav Ezra Shrem, was niftar in 5723
(1963) and in 5726, HaRav Eliyahu opened the Torah Vehoro'oh
yeshiva in his memory. At first, the yeshiva was situated in
the Ohel Moed synagogue and from there it moved to Givatayim.
The yeshiva later moved to larger quarters in the Tel Aviv
Eliyahu Hanovi synagogue, and after much difficulty, to new
quarters in the Yad Eliyahu neighborhood in Tel Aviv.
All of his activities on behalf of the yeshiva were directed
by Maran HaRav Eliezer Menachem Shach, shlita, who was
the spiritual helmsman of the institutions.
The first graduating class of the yeshiva ketana had
nine students. HaRav Shrem was hesitant about opening a
yeshiva gedola with so small a student body. HaRav
Shach was consulted and the yeshiva gedola was opened
with the nine students.
In time, there was demand for a talmud Torah in the
area too, but HaRav Shrem, who had experienced so many
hardships in spreading Torah in that region, feared such an
undertaking. HaRav Shach was again consulted, and he
unequivocally said: "HaRav Shrem, you have a lot of space and
energy. Open the talmud Torah and may you succeed."
Today, thirty-five years after the opening of Torah
Vehoro'oh, its institutions include a talmud Torah and
a yeshiva ketana and gedola with 600
HaRav Shrem would deliver daily shiurim to the yeshiva
students. He would also deliver shiurim on hilchos
Shabbos and fixed shiurim in Chovos Halevovos,
Nefesh HaChaim and Ramban on the Torah. Many outstanding
talmidei chachomim attended these shiurim.
His efforts on behalf of Jewish communities throughout the
world constituted a special chapter in his life, and whenever
he traveled abroad for Torah Vehoro'oh, he would work to draw
Jews closer to Torah and mitzvos.
In recent years, he merited to edit the seforim of his
grandfather, HaRav Yitzchak Shrem -- one of the
chachomim of Aram Tsova -- on the Shas, adding
his own chiddushim. These works were distributed on a
Five years ago, he contracted a serious kidney ailment.
Despite his suffering, which he accepted with love, he
continued to deliver shiurim and to direct his
Recently, his health deteriorated, and on motzei Shabbos,
parshas Noach, he returned his pure soul, which had been
refined by much suffering, to its Maker.
His levaya proceeded from the Torah Vehoro'oh yeshiva.
Before the procession began, hespedim were delivered
by Rav Moshe Tzadka, the rosh yeshiva of Porat Yosef
in Geula; Rav Shalom Cohen, the rosh yeshiva of Porat
Yosef in the Old City; Rav Shimon Badani, rosh kollel
Torah Vechaim; Rav Eliyahu Abba Shaul, rosh yeshiva of
Or Letziyon; and by the niftar's sons, HaRav Moshe
Shrem, director of the Messilot HaTorah yeshiva, and HaRav
Dvir Shrem, a ram in Torah Vehoro'oh. Hespedim
were also delivered by other prominent dayanim and
rabbonim. As specified in his last will and testament, his
son, HaRav Matityahu Shrem, was appointed to replace him.
His wife, family and his thousands of students bitterly mourn