Dei'ah veDibur - Information & Insight

A Window into the Chareidi World

27 Teves 5764 - January 21, 2004 | Mordecai Plaut, director Published Weekly









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Shema Yisrael Torah Network











HaRav Shmuel Halevy Shulsinger zt"l
by Betzalel Kahn

A crowd of thousands of bnei Torah including HaRav Michel Yehuda Lefkovitz, HaRav Chaim Kanievsky and HaRav Gershon Edelstein gathered on motzei Shabbos to participate in the levaya of HaRav Shmuel Halevy Shulsinger zt"l, the rov of Kiryat Ata, who passed away on Shabbos night at Tel Hashomer Hospital.

HaRav Shulsinger was born in Jerusalem in 5695 (1935) to HaRav Yitzchok Shulsinger, the rov and moreh tzedek of Haifa and formerly the rov of Kfar Ganim in Petach Tikva. In this home he absorbed a powerful love of Torah. In 5709 (1949) he began his studies at Yeshivas Tiferes Yisroel in Haifa before transferring to Yeshivas Ponovezh in the summer of 5711, where he was held fondly by the roshei yeshivos, particularly the Ponovezher Rov zt"l.

He gained renown as a tremendous masmid who had command of the entire Shas as well as halochoh, responsa and mussar seforim. Once the Ponovezher Rov arrived from the US with ten sets of the Mishneh Torah and announced he would give them to bochurim who were tested on 600 pages of gemora and excelled. R' Shmuel was among the recipients and the Ponovezher Rav said he had performed the best, therefore he gave him a set of the Ohr Somei'ach as well. At the same time R' Shmuel was also tested on masechtos not studied at the yeshiva and he knew them thoroughly. His friends say when someone in the yeshiva wanted to know where something was written they would invariably consult him.

In 5717 he married the daughter of HaRav Yehuda Leibel Gefen, the rov of Kiryat Ata and a talmid of HaRav Meir Shapira of Lublin, who was the first rosh yeshiva of Yeshivas Yachel Yisroel Seret-Vizhnitz. For years he served as the rov of Kiryat Ata but he passed away before his daughter's wedding.

It was obvious to all that his daughter's chosson would become the rov of Kiryat Ata, known as Kfar Ata at the time. It was home to a very large chareidi community which accounted for the majority of the town's residents. The members of the kehilloh were proud to have the young rov take charge, but first they asked him to meet with the Tchebiner Rav to gauge his breadth of knowledge. HaRav Shulsinger's relatives recount that it was later heard from the Tchebiner Rav that he hadn't believed after the Holocaust there would still be Jews with as broad knowledge of Shas as "the young rov" who had come to his home.

For the next 47 years he served as the rov of Kiryat Ata and was considered close to every godol Yisroel past and present. He brought every question and matter before Maran the Brisker Rov zt"l, and later to Maran HaRav Shach zt"l, running the rabbinate according to their words of advice. He set up his home in Kfar Ata and there he raised and educated his children, all of whom follow the path leading to Beis Hashem.

HaRav Shmuel Halevy Shulsinger passed away at the age of 69 on Shabbos Shemos, whose parshoh includes the words, "Vayeilech ish mibeis leivi . . . " (Shemos 2:1).

At Beis Medrash Yarchei Kallah in Bnei Brak's Zichron Meir neighborhood hespeidim were delivered by the deceased's brothers, HaRav Moshe Mordechai Shulsinger and HaRav Elozor Shulsinger.

In Kiryat Ata eulogizers included his friends, the Gavad of Akwa and HaRav Moshe Rauchberger, his son HaRav Tuvioh Halevy Shulsinger, and his son-in-law HaRav Yosef Tzvi Turk, a ram at Yeshivas Hasharon.


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