Gedolei Yisroel, including members of the respective
Counsels of Torah Sages of both Degel HaTorah and Agudas
Yisroel in Eretz Yisroel, met with a substantial delegation
representing the US Counsel of Torah Sages, to discuss ways
of buttressing Chinuch Atzmai.
The unprecedented gathering to strengthen the prodigious
school system, which saved the education of an entire
generation, was held at the Moriah Classic Hotel in
Jerusalem. Maranan verabonon kept filing in one after
the other to take part in the historic meeting convened to
carry out the legal procedures needed to enable the proper
operation and expansion of the holy enterprise.
Among the rabbonim in attendance were Maran HaRav Yosef
Sholom Eliashiv, HaRav Yehuda Leib Shteinman, HaRav Michel
Yehuda Lefkowitz, HaRav Chaim Pinchos Scheinberg, HaRav
Nissim Karelitz, HaRav Shmuel Auerbach, HaRav Yitzchok
Sheiner, HaRav Gershon Edelstein, HaRav Meir Tzvi Bergman,
HaRav Nosson Tzvi Finkel, HaRav Nissim Toledano, the Admor of
Erlau, the Admor of Sadigora and HaRav Meir Horowitz
shlita. HaRav Horowitz was sent by his father, the
Bostoner Rebbe, who is currently hospitalized.
From the US, participants included HaRav Aharon Shechter,
rosh yeshiva of Yeshivas Rabbenu Chaim Berlin, HaRav Dovid
Feinstein, rosh yeshiva of Yeshivas Tiferes Yerushalayim,
HaRav Aharon Feldman, rosh yeshiva of Yeshivas Ner Yisroel,
HaRav Malkiel Kotler, rosh yeshiva of Yeshivas Lakewood, and
HaRav Yosef Harari-Raful, rosh yeshiva of Yeshivas Ateres
Rabbi Menachem Porush and Rabbi Shlomo Lorincz, who have been
dedicated to Chinuch Atzmai since its founding in 5713 (1953)
were also in attendance.
The meeting began with the nomination of the Admor of Erlau
as the legal chairman of the gathering, and he was asked to
deliver the opening remarks. He spoke about the importance of
presenting a united force for the sake of the holy
organization and discussed the decline of today's youth as
well as ways of bringing them to a life of Torah and mitzvas
through Chinuch Atzmai. He also raised the issue of
increasing chilul Shabbos and the need to combat it.
Later in the course of the meeting, the participants
unanimously named Rabbi Shlomo Lorincz the legal secretary of
the gathering. He spoke briefly about the difficulties in
managing Chinuch Atzmai that have arisen since so many of its
official board members have passed away in recent years. He
also said the legal form of the Ottoman organization that has
controlled Chinuch Atzmai up until now should be transformed
into a registered non-profit-type of organization. He
explained the ramifications of the law and the legal
procedures that need to be carried out, saying this is the
reason the members of the respective Counsels of Torah Sages
had come together since they are the supreme authority over
the Chinuch Atzmai Central Organizations.
Rabbi Lorincz also said all the members of Moetzes Gedolei
HaTorah who were unable to attend could give notice of their
wishes to join the new organization, noting that a number of
prominent rabbonim had already done so, including the Admor
of Vishnitz, HaRav Chaim Kanievsky, and several members of
Moetzes Gedolei HaTorah of the US - HaRav Simchah Bunim
Ehrenfeld, the gavad of Mattersdorf, HaRav Chaim
Levine, rosh yeshiva of Yeshivas Chicago, and HaRav Shmuel
Kamenetsky, rosh yeshiva of Yeshivas Philadelphia.
HaRav Meir Horowitz read aloud a letter from his father
saying that he, too, would like to join the new organization
and that he supported any decisions reached at the meeting by
gedolei Yisroel shlita.
Rabbi Lorincz than asked HaRav Yosef Efrati, who is regularly
entrusted by HaRav Eliashiv, to read aloud the proposed
decisions. After discussing the proposals the participants
approved the decisions and called on all gedolei
Yisroel to join the organization. The Admor of Erlau
signed a legal document confirming the decisions reached, as
well as other legal documents needed to set up the new
organization. The documents were then signed by HaRav
Eliashiv, HaRav Shteinman and the members of the three
Councils of Torah Sages.
As a sign of appreciation for years of fundraising and
promoting Chinuch Atzmai around the world, helping to build
it into today's large organization numbering hundreds of
schools, maranan verabonon decided to approve their
membership in the new organization.
The official decisions include a statement that "the supreme
spiritual authority over the organization is maranan
verabonon shlita, who serve on the Councils of Torah
Sages of Eretz Hakodesh and in the US."
Another decision reached at the meeting was to name Rabbi
Menachem Porush and Rabbi Shlomo Lorincz as Vaad HaAguda,
making them the executors of the legal procedures needed and
charging them with the task of presenting the directors,
maranan verabonon, with the recommendations for the
renewal of Chinuch Atzmai schools.