Wednesday, November 28, 2012

gangnam or גםגם

   During  a recent wedding, sometime between the dances, a funny sounding song was played over the loudspeakers. It was not played by the band present, but a disc was inserted and i could not make any sense of the words or what language it was, but, Hebrew was not one of them. Many yeshiva bochrim started dancing along in what appeared to be a tailored dance that goes with the song. After inquiring about the song, I was told its the most popular song out there. It's  a youtube sensation with over 800 million hits and counting. Now that I've paid attention to it, I've heard it in other frum circles and elsewhere. It's not a jewish song to say the least.

   Which got me thinking- is this the style of yeshiva bochurim we are producing today?? No, these are not the serious yeshiva bochrim, but they are not kids at risk either. This was your average bochur. It seems they are missing the basic fundamentals of yiddishkeit. There is no busha to bring a prusteh song with prusteh lyrics and dance to it at a Yiddishe chasunah. A boy I spoke to just smiled and said "whats the deal its on you tube whats wrong??"

   Are we so removed from the basics that there is no difference between our culture and the culture of the street? We're at a point where bochurim don't even understand what is wrong. They know some of the basics but thats it. It used to take a while for a non jewish song to catch on into the jewish music market or at least it was copied. Now it has reached us instantly and we are no longer copying it, we are living it.

  Forget the argument about the pros and cons of the internet. The sad reality is, that the internet has connected us with the western culture in a way like never before. We became a society were there is no hevdel or differentiation. We've adopted to anything that's up on youtube or other forms of entertainment.

   As we approach Chanukah let us focus and the basic fundamentals of yiddishkeit, knowing we are different than the yevonim and other nations. Let us have more bochurim not dancing to gangam ,but  living the maamar chazal of  אל תגםגם ותאמר אלא אמר לו מיד.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Ohr Somayach -4 decades 20,000 Alumni, watch Video

Click HERE to watch Video celebrating  Ohr Someach international accomplishments inspiring 20,000 alumni in over 4 decades.

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Shaimos from Hurricane Sandy buried in upstate New York

Shaimos from Hurricane Sandy, was buried today upstate in Woodridge, New York. Volunteers from all over were on hand to help and oversee the kevurah. There were more than 3 trailer loads of waterlogged seforim and kisvei Kodesh. The yeshiva of Darchei Torah came out and paid a kavod achron as the truck drove by.

Click HERE for video.  Pictures credit to Source

Agudah tweaks Theme for upcoming 90th convention in light of current events

Besides for postponing the 90th national convention of Agudas yisroel due to Hurricane Sandy, the Agudah has changed the theme as well. The initial theme was:
                                 "Strength in Growth....Challenges in Growth"
                                             ככוכבי השמים לרב
However in the aftermath of hurricane Sandy and the war with Hamas in Gaza it was decided to change the Theme to one that reflects on the current situation
                                                         !שומרי אחינו אנחנו
          "Our responsibilities to one another in times of challenge"

"The Flood of Chesed that followed the Deluge of water in coastal New York, and the storming of the heavens in prayer of teshuva that the raining missiles on Israel evoked, were eloquent testimony to the interrelation of all Jews  It is a kinship that must always define us. In times of calm no less in times of turmoil."

 Thursday evening session will feature a centennial banquet celebrating the 100th anniversary of the founding of Agudas Yisroel in Kattowice, Poland.
The convention will take place December 27-30, 2012 Hilton East brunswick ,NJ
For reservations Email: or call 212-797-7380

Thursday, November 22, 2012

9 9 9 dont call it black Friday!

Tomorrow, Friday is the Ninth day of kislev 5773 which is the Ninth Month after chodesh nissan. In the latest Advertisement from the Kupas Hair Organization קופת העיר  they are arranging a special tefillah which will be recited at the Ninth hour of the Ninth day of the Ninth month for Nine minutes. There will be a recital of Pitum Haketores. Not sure if there is any significance to this specific time. In Yiddish it means nein nein nein but when it comes to davening hashem always answers yu yu yu.

Internet Asifa- Six Months later, are we making progress?

Its been a half a year since we stood together at Citified  on May 20th and waged a war on the Internet and Technology. Many left the stadium inspired and took action. Some got rid of  the Internet from their homes, others smashed their smart phones, filters were installed on many computers. An awareness was made that we must take action and confront the dangers of modern technology, especially the Internet and devices which are capable of  connecting to the web.

Looking back over the past 6 months many questions remain as far as are we moving forward? did we reach out to people in getting the message or did we alienate many with the wrong approach? Do we stay with the message that the Internet is here to stay or keep saying it should be banned outright? Did we reach out to those that are impacted the most or did we just preach to the choir.? did we do the correct follow up.

Great strides were made in regard to awareness with smart phones as many are embarrassed to be seen publicly with a smart phone if they have no need for one. I'm not talking about someone who needs it for his business but someone who has no real need for a iPhone. Filters on computers is still a issue as many who want to install it yet keep having problems as it interferes with their business.

All in all, between the Internet Asifa followed by  the 12th Siyum hashas at Metlife three months later, was definitely two events which inspired and gave chizuk to hundreds of thousands of yidden. Bringing us closer to hashem and feeling an Achdus by bringing yidden together making a kiddush hashem.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Important Agudah convention announcement

The Agudah Convention  traditionally takes place over Thanksgiving weekend, however due to circumstances set by Hurricane Sandy, this years 2012 convention has been postponed and rescheduled to the End of December 2012. The 90th   covention of Agudath Israel will be held at East brunswick Hilton December 27-30, 2012

Agudah asifa- Chizuk V'hisorerus in Boro Park tonight Wednesday November 21

The Asifa will take place at Agudas Yisroel Zichron Moshe at 1561 50th Street. For men and Women. Its a chizuk for the communities devastated by Hurricane sandy and divrei Hisoirerus for the Matzav in Eretz yisrael.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Reconstruction aid for Shuls and yeshivos in NY impacted by Sandy

The following Information was made available by JCRC  fill this form HERE

In the context of Sandy related damage, FEMA provides supplemental funding (after insurance payments are exhausted) for the repair and restoration of infrastructure and facilities to pre-disaster condition.Nonprofit entities that can qualify for such financial aid include hospitals, nursing homes, community centers, day care centers, libraries, museums and senior centers located in Bronx, Kings, Nassau, New York, Orange, Putnam, Queens, Richmond, Rockland, Suffolk, Sullivan, Ulster and Westchester Counties.
(Several years ago, in the wake of a natural disaster that damaged the Jewish day school in Seattle, the Orthodox Union worked successfully with the Bush Administration and allies in Congress to amend the laws and regulations which govern FEMA to clearly include non-public — including parochial — schools in the class of entities eligible for FEMA reconstruction funds.)Immediately in the wake of the storm, the OU’s Washington Office initiated discussions with senior officials at the U.S. Dept. of Homeland Security (under which FEMA operates) to establish the eligibility of houses of worship — including synagogues — damaged by Sandy for FEMA reconstruction funds. We are making progress, but the discussions are ongoing.
In order for synagogues to preserve their ability to potentially receive reconstruction aid, applicants must complete a Request for Public Assistance within 30 days of the declared event (it has been amended to December 13, 2012).

Monday, November 19, 2012

Rav Chaim kanievsky-statetment from Chazon Ish that No missiles will fall on bnei Brak still appplicable today

Rav Chaim kanievsky on current situation in gaza, wrote a letter stating that no missles will fall on bnei brak. He wrote that what was said over in the name of the Chazon Ish still applies today, as the sifri says that to say the words of tzadikim only apply when they are alive and not after they pass away is not a kiddush hashem. Therefore when the Chazon Ish promised that bombs will not fall on bnei brak we can count on it today and have nothing to fear.

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Its Dinner time!

Besides for football, Sundays in the Winter Months  host fundraising dinners for Yeshivos and Mosdos. Please come and show your support to the following Yeshivos and Mosdos.

Tonight: Sunday November 18, 2012

Ponovez yeshiva Dinner /Batay Avos
Ateres Chaya hall 1415 54th Street Brooklyn, NY

Yeshivas Chofetz chaim -Rabbinical Seminary of America
Terrace on the Park Flushing, Queens

 Mirrer Yeshiva  Brooklyn Dinner
The Palace -780 McDonald Avenue, Brooklyn, NY

Mesivta Tiferes yerushalayim MTJ/ Yeshiva of Staten Island
Brooklyn Marriott

Listen LIVE hookup for BMG azkara 50th Yartzheit for Rav Aharon Kotler

Listen HERE Radio Kol Berama, Lakewood, NJ 107.9 FM

Watch Video of azkara in Lakewood HERE and HERE and HERE

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Checking an Israeli Website for updates on Erev shabbos from the US when its shabbos in Eretz Yisrael

This past Friday with news reports of missiles hitting yerushalayim, many of us in the US were nervously checking the newswires since it was already Shabbos in Eretz Yisrael. Israeli  news websites are constantly updating on Shabbos. The Halachic problem is since they are yidden can we  have enjoyment from a maaseh shabbos?
This is not a new shailah, this has been asked already in regards to listening to a live Broadcast on shabbos on Israeli radio or other areas of maaseh Shabbos. Many Poskim have delved into this issue. There is a kunteres Internet behalacha that discusses this particular case of accessing a website on Erev Shabbos.

 Its beyond the scope of this blog to delve and pasken on these shailos we are just bringing up the issue-you can discuss it with your leading Halachic Authority.
The best Eitza would be to get the news from the non jewish media. May hashem have Rachmanus and continue watching over Klal Yisroel

Thursday, November 15, 2012


TO: All friends and constituents of Agudath Israel of America

There has been an escalation of rocket-fire, Rachmana litzlan, from Gaza into southern Eretz Yisroel over recent days.  Rockets have hit Beersheba and Kiryat Malakhi, where three people were killed, Hy"d.  Today rockets landed in central Israel, in Holon and Rishon Letzion.  Israeli military authorities have told the citizenry to be prepared for more Arab violence, chalila

There has been violent activity in the north as well, as Syrian mortar shells have landed near Israeli army posts.

This is a critical time for Acheinu Bnei Yisroel in Eretz Yisroel.  We call on all Yidden todaven for our brethren and beseech HaKodosh Boruch Hu to undermine the evil designs of those who relish the spilling of Jewish blood, R"l

Our gedolim have long called on us to recite Tehillim (in particular kapitlach 83, 130 and 142) in behalf of our brethren in Eretz Yisroel.  That is certainly most appropriate at this urgent moment. 

May we be zocheh to the bracha that includes all, birchas hashalom.

David Zwiebel, Esq.
Executive Vice President
Agudath Israel of America

Hamodia publishes special supplement- living legacy for 50th Yartzheit of Rav Aharon Kotler ZT"L

As the Lakewood yeshiva Beth Medrash govoha is set to commemorate the 50th Yartzheit of Rav Aaron Kotler, the Frum newspapers are publishing special editions coinciding with the event.

Hamodia published a 83 page commemorative edition in Honor of the 50th yartzheit. The 50th Yartzheit marks a historic Yovel of Torah Growth and endurance of his Legacy in vibrant Kehillos worldwidethat are anchored by the primacy of Torah. There is a Interview with Rav Avigdor Offen who studied under Rav Aharon Kotler in Both Europe and America.

The main Yartzheit program is said to take place on Sunday November 18th, at BMG with the participation of many Roshei Yeshiva, Admorim, talmidim of rav aharon, and thousands of Bnei Torah and baal habatim who will join in the Azkara. It will coincide with the Groundbreaking and Hanochas Even Hapinah of a new Bais Medrash and a hachnosas Sefer Torah.

Mishpacha magazine Has its front cover story dedicated to the 50th Yartzheit of Rav Aharon Kotler. An Interview with Rav Aaron Kotler grandson and namesake of rav Aharon ZT"L on his path from Kiruv Rabbi at Aish to CEO of BMG.
Yated Neeman has a 6 page Article on Rav aharon.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Yom Tefillah thousands say Yom Kippur Kotton today for Matzav of Klal Yisroel-

Today Erev Rosh Chodesh Kislev- the gedolim have called on all for a Yom Tefillah as well as to daven Mincha with Yom Kippur Koton. This is due to the situation affecting Klal Yisrael both in the US, due to Hurricane Sandy and in Eretz Yisrael. The South has come under rocket fire and the threat of  an escalation from hamas terrorists after Israel killed the hamas military chief in Gaza.

Both Rav Shteinman and the Belzer Rebbe have ordered Yeshivos in the South and in areas under rocket fire to relocate to the center of the country until the danger will pass.

Roshei yeshiva- Yeshiva world targeted by Hurricane sandy calls for Chizuk in Limud HaTorah kavod Hatorah.

Hurricane Sandy not only devastated the east coast but the Olam hatorah, the Yeshiva world was plunged into darkness as Lakewood was hit with blackouts for 2 weeks causing a tremendous amount of Bittul torah as many youngeleit were learning without electricity for days and many other yeshivos were misplaced such as Long beach, bell harbor, Darchei torah and other Yeshivos in queens and the Five towns.

Rav Reuven Feinstein Shlit"a said at the Dirshu convention that HKB"H wants to awaken us and let us know that life cannot be as it was before as if nothing had happened.  He added that we should strengthen ourselves with Torah learning of a practical nature - ללמוד לשמור לעשות ולקיים - not just learning for the sake of learning.  He also added that in order to raise Talmidei Hachamim, we need to be stronger in learning Beki'us.

 Rav Yitzchak Sorotzkin Shlit"a from Telz Cleveland and mesivta of lakewood said that the hurricane was due to Yeshiva boys who are lacking in Shibud Hatorah and Ameilus Batorah, who go home for Shabbos every other week and miss Sedarim because of a wedding here and a Bar Mitzvah here.  This is understood by the fact that the hurricane hit the Torah world, and specifically Lakewood, causing a huge amount of Bitul Torah.

On the other hand, Rav Yerucham Olshin Shlit"a  Rosh Yeshiva of BMG in Lakewood said that the hurricane was due to the attitude of some people who degrade the whole concept of Kollels and consider those who learn in Kollels babied by their parents who support them and lazy from doing work.  We see this from the fact that during the power outage caused by the hurricane, people learned Torah in the dark and in the cold, showing that Bnei Torah will continue to learn even with hardships.

Link yeranen yaakov.

Baltimore mission to Seagate עמו אנכי בצרה

Over 170 Volunteers from the Baltimore Jewish community drove down to the community of Seagate, NY that was devastated by Hurricane Sandy. They helped residents clean out their flooded homes and joined with them in sharing in their pain and help them rebuild. This letter was sent to the Baltimore community from residents of Sea gate.
Source: Click HERE for a personal account.

Monday, November 12, 2012

Novominsker Rebbe at Agudah Kinus - waters crossed the border to expell the mud of the sea back on to land

The Novominsker rebbe speaking at the Agudah Kinus of Chizuk for hurricane sandy, elaborated on how there is a gevul- a border between the mayim and the yabasha. When Hashem created the world it was all mayim than hashem said that the waters should gather and separate from the land. As the Posuk says in Tehilim in borchi nafshi, Gvul samta baal yaavorun there is a border that the water can not cross. The recent storm that we have witnessed had the water cross over this gevul this is clearly a yad hashem.

Symbolically speaking the Rebbe explained, that the yam cant keep still, it is the recipient of Aveiros as we say tashlich and it absorbs the Aveiros, as the navie yeshaya says והרשעים כים נגרש כי השקט לא יוכל ויגרשו מימיו רפש וטיט, expels all the refesh v'atit of the briah. Dont we have a great deal of refesh and tit in our society? Its about time we think about the refesh vatit that came into our personal lives,the garbage and mud as the Navie yeshaya describes. This has made a dent into civilization and gotten into our lives.

When the water is in its place its never happy, it wants to conquer the entire world it wants to spill the refesh vatit out onto the land .The rebbe said he was told by members of his own family not to use the word technology but he can not hold back. Rabbosai the eibishter is speaking to us on the amount of refesh vatit we have absorbed in our lives. Its time that we make a cheshbon on the civilization of our neshama and we must take that into perspective. The rebbe than spoke about the nesius ohl of  the absolute poverty that families have suddenly been thrown into. He lent the mike to the other speakers to talk about the bein adam lachaveroi and to describe the situation on the ground. We must have a deeper perspective on to what hakb"h did to us in the last 10 days.  Yidden should have nachas, a roof over their heads and clothes to wear, and hashem should send us the geulah.

 Click HERE to watch Video of Seagate community devastated by Hurricane sandy Produced by Arye Gelbard studio 7.

Rav Yaakov Bender spoke how it is incumbent on all to take charge and do something we must become a nasi. He gave first hand accounts of families devastated. People with literally no roof over their heads and no where to go. He mentioned how people who never took anything in their lives are now forced to accept and be the recipient of others. The amount needed for the Far Rockaway Five times communities is in the 15-20 million dollar range. Rabbi Meisels of Seagate addressed the crowd he put the number for seagate at 10 Million to help the 300 homeless mishpachos rebuild He said the Hurricane didn't just hit seagate but all of us. 

Rabbi Moshe Tuvia Lief concluded with divrei Hisoirerus that the storm is not called Huricane Sandy but is from hashem רוח סערה עושה דברו. Hashem is sending us a message and we must be mechazek. He quoted from the Rambam in begining of Hilchos taanis. He mentioned the great achdus and chesed that is going on all over, He brought up an idea shared with Reb Shimshi Sherer that each family in Brooklyn adopt a misplaced family from Far Rockaway or seagate and show that we care. One couple came to him they lost everything and their first request was to write a new Kseubah since they lost their kesuba due to Hurricane Sandy. He danced with the 2 eidim and sang od yishoma  to lift up their spirits. 

CD recordings of the Agudah kinus are available through Mr. Zalman Umlas by calling 718-252-5274 or (CD rates are as follows: $10 for Flatbush pick up, $12 by mail, $6 by email).

Rav Shteinman- We must feel the pain for those affected by Hurricane Sandy

Rav Aaron L. shteinman when told about the communities devastated by Hurricane sandy  was pained about the yidden who suffered from the Storm. He quoted  the gemara in bava basra end of the 3rd perek, when the bais hamikdosh was destroyed there were those who wanted to stop eating meat and drinking wine since they no longer brought karbanos on the mizbeach or poured wine on the mizbeach. The gemara continues, that the tzibbur is not holding by such a madraiga and they did establish other halachos to make a  zecher lechurban such as leaving an empty space on the wall of your house. But in essence we should not be eating meat or drinking wine.
 Rav Shteinman pointed out that  in regarding the suffering and events that has befallen on klal yisroel, we must feel the pain to the utmost level just like by the bais hamikdosh were in theory we should not be eating meat as the gemara starts off. He stressed that there be Chizukin Limud hatorah in mitzvos and in Tznius as the posuk says   ושב מאחריך ולא יראה בך ערות דבר

Agudath yisroel- Kinus Chizuk v'hisorerus for those affected by hurricane Sandy tonight Monday November 12 phone hook up

There will be a Live Dial in phone number to listen call 212-444-1323 Ext. 9

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Rabbanim - A call for action! time to help the Tzibbur not just Yechidim.

Rabbonim all over spoke in their respective shuls on parshas Chayei Sarah about Hurricane Sandy. To those communities spared by the Hurricane the message is you have a Nisayon to be mishtatef in the tzaar of the communities that were affected and devastated by the Hurricane. The fact that our community was spared does not spare us from the avhrayus of nesios ohl and that is our response to the storm. We must get together and help out in any which way possibble
Klal yisroel has recently launched many campaigns for yechidim were the response was tremendous, now the Rabbanim stressed is time to help an entire Tzibbur. Whole communities have been devastated there isn't anyone in cities such as Seagate,  Far Rockaway, Manhattan beach, Brighton Beach, Long beach, Belle Harbor, Bayswater that didn't suffer a loss of property damage or their entire homes. In Seagate there are over 300 mishpachos that are Homeless!! we must help these communities rebuild.

There will be asifas and fundraisers in the coming days everyone is asked to help in any which way they can. Its not just money that is needed, they need man power to help clean out the flooded homes and set up temporary shelter.
This Monday the Agudah is having a Kinus Chizuk for the affected communities for Energency Hurricane sandy Relief.
To donate for
 FAR ROCKAWAY click HERE for Achiezer of the Five towns

SEAGATE call 718-705-9666 or email or HERE

Thank you to Rav Shlomo Yehuda rechnitz. for his support of yeshivos and youngeleit in BMG and Far Rockaway who were affected by the hurricane.

Watch VIDEO HERE sea gate community in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy.

Click HERE for care packages
Yeshiva of Bell Harbor HERE  Help them raise $400,000 to rebuild its storm ravaged campus.

Donate HERE to the OU Hurricane relief fund.

please note there will be many tzeddakos collecting we assume they are all reputable but  can not verify all of them . Best is to go through the Agudah or a respected Organization with a Board and rabbanim backing it.

Watch Kinus Hashluchim 2012 LIVE

The Live broadcast for the kinus hashluchim of Chabad 5753 will begin today Sunday November 11 at 5:00 pm
Click HERE for live broadcast

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

90th National Agudah convention 2012 postponed!! due to Hurricane Sandy.

 After consulting with Gedolei yisroel, The 90th national Agudah convention 2012 has been postponed and rescheduled. The new date for the convention will be 15-17 teves, December 28-30. It was originally supposed to take place on November 22-25. It has been pushed off. The Convention will take place at the New Brunswick Hilton in NJ. Click HERE for convention updates and program.

Upon further consultation with gedolei yisroel the Agudah will sponsor a Kinnus Chizuk vehisoirerus on Monday 27 Cheshvan (November 12), at Agudas Yisroel Bais Binyomin, 2913 Avenue L, Brooklyn.

In a letter written by Rabbi Chaim Dovid Zweibel to acheinu Bnei Yisroel, He wrote about the trail of devastation that Hurricane Sandy has left in its wake. many challenges remain in helping out our fellow yidden who were affected by the storm. Our focus must be on those who are in need to be mishtatef b'tzaarom and do all in our power to help them.
To be sure, the Agudah convention is a setting where Torah leaders and anshei maaseh gather to discuss and take action on the pressing issues of the day. But the scars and wounds left by the storm are still too raw,the need for singular focus is still too urgent for us to proceed as originally planned.

The real October Surprise לב מלכים ושרים ביד השם

President Obama has been reelected for a second term as president of the United states. He rode the waves of hurricane sandy into the white house. As frum yidden we understand that everything that happens comes from hashem. It is interesting to note that in both the 2008 and 2012 presidential elections when polls or momentum were shifting for the Republican nominee there was an October surprise which changed the course in favor of Obama.

These were not surprises caused by a newspaper with a scoop or a gaffe made by a candidate, rather a natural event which was beyond the control of mankind. In 2008 we had the financial collapse which snatched victory away from John McCain. This election when momentum was shifting toward Romney following the debates and Benghazi gate, along came Hurricane Sandy which favored the president and helped him in the final week of his campaign.

The future of this country has many of us worried both for the Moral decay of society, the security of eretz yisrael and many struggling to make ends meet. We must continue to daven that hashem puts in the hearts of the leaders of this great nation to benefit us for the good.

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Kinus hashluchim relocated- Agudah convention rescheduled.

The annual Kinus hashluchim  banquet for Chabad will be relocated to Manhattan this year after the Brooklyn Cruise terminal was flooded by Hurricane sandy. The 90th Agudah convention 2012 has been rescheduled as well. It will take place on December 28-30, 2012
This letter was sent out to all shluchim,
As the Kinus Hashluchim rapidly approaches, we are pleased to report that despite many challenges we encountered due to the recent Hurricane, the Kinus programs and sessions are all on course for what promises to be an inspiring and uplifting Kinus, B'Ezras Hashem.
We are deeply pained by the hardships our fellow shluchim and their communities are enduring due to the events of last week, and we are doing our utmost to assist them in their time of need.
We are certain that the Rebbe would want the Kinus to resume and be held as planned on Shabbos Mevorchim HaChodesh Kislev.
However, after ongoing discussions with the Port Authority and the tireless efforts of our staff to overcome the logistical, environmental and labor challenges to enable the Kinus banquet to take place as scheduled at the Brooklyn Cruise Terminal, we were informed Friday afternoon that the Terminal will not be available. We understood and readily accepted their notification due to it being requisitioned to dock government and medical relief vessels servicing the heavily afflicted Red-Hook, Staten Island and other nearby areas.
With few alternative options available large enough to accommodate the growing number of banquet participants, Boruch Hashem we were able to secure the New York Hilton, New York City's largest ballroom. Along with its main ballroom and two adjacent ballrooms, the Hilton can comfortably accommodate the 4600 shluchim and their guests. We anticipate featuring segments of the program from each of the ballrooms, with live and ongoing video linkage throughout.
We hereby ask for your understanding and cooperation. Should you be attending the banquet without your Baalei Batim and are willing to volunteer and join with other chaveirim in taking a seat in one of the satellite ballrooms, please reply to this email or kindly login to your kinus registration page and note your choice and your seating preference.
We thank you for your understanding and cooperation and look forward to welcoming you this week to a most successful and enjoyable Kinus and Hisvaadus Chaveirim with our brethren shluchim from around the world.
On behalf of the Vaad Hakinus,
RabbI Moshe Kotlarsky

Yeshivos Affected by Hurricane sandy looking to relocate

The destruction and devastation of Hurricane sandy has affected many yeshivos in the tri state Area. The yeshivos of Long beach, Darchei Torah and Belle Harbor in the Rockaways will be misplaced for a few months, as their area has been devastated. LIPA has said it will take up to 7 weeks to restore power to the Rockaways. Peekskill yeshiva has no power and many Bochurim have gone home and learning in other cities. Some yeshivos are running on Generators. In Lakewood the yeshiva got hold of a mass generator to power up the batei midrashim. Many yeshivos have relocated to area shuls that have power.
Despite the Hardship The Kol Hatorah continues to resonate in our heilige yeshivos.

Special Sandy announcement by Rabbi Chaim Dovid Zwiebel of Agudah

For free food and shelter information in the 5 towns click  HERE
 For free food and shelter in Lakewood Click HERE

Zwiebel LH
Agudath Israel of America Announcement
To members and friends of Agudath Israel:

A guten Erev Shabbos. It has been quite a week, with Hurricane Sandy battering the East Coast and leaving disruption,  devastation and destruction in its wake. Countless thousands of Acheinu Kol Beis Yisroel have suffered severe damage and loss in this unprecedented storm. The hearts and tefilos of all of Klal Yisroel are with our suffering brethren. May Hashem send yeshuos to us all.  

Agudath Israel's central offices, located in downtown Manhattan where the power has been out since Sandy's arrival, have been closed all week. As a result of the storm, we had to put off our 3rd annual legislative breakfast scheduled for this coming Monday morning November 5, as well as an event we were planning for next Shabbos in the communities of Far Rockaway and the Five Towns. We hope to reschedule these events in the not too distant future.

In the meantime, Agudath Israel staff and baalebatim have been  working hard to assist individuals, mosdos and communities hard hit by Sandy. We have worked with yeshivos whose facilities were damaged in the storm to help them find temporary relocation. We have assisted local community-based organizations that are working to alleviate  severe conditions in various neighborhoods. We have reached out to the leadership of Agudath Israel shuls that suffered storm-related damage to discuss tangible ways through which our national organization can help them rebuild. Through our national network, we have coordinated campaigns in several cities across America to provide funds and other assistance to hard-stricken areas in the New York metropolitan area. Some of our key baalebatim are making major contributions -- b'gufam u'b'mamonam -- toward emergency food and clothing campaigns. 

A special yasher koach goes to our national director of government affairs, Rabbi Yehiel Kalish, who has worked tirelessly in his local hard-hit community of Far Rockaway to assist the remarkable rescue and relief campaign spearheaded by  Achiezer -- a community resource center in the Far Rockaway - Five Towns area under the leadership of Rabbi Boruch B. Bender. Rabbi Kalish has helped raise hundreds of thousands of urgently needed dollars for the Achiezer campaign. (Achiezer's hotline is 516-791-4444; or they can be reached
We strongly encourage our friends and constituents to contribute generously to these types of campaigns. In our view, the best way to address the urgent need of the day is to contribute directly to the local community-based organizations that are doing the actual work on the ground to provide assistance to our many brothers and sisters who so desperately need our help. For this reason, we have decided it would be best not to establish an independent Agudath Israel emergency relief fund at this time, but rather to work directly with the local communities.  

Just as we see how storm damage, long gas lines, prolonged power outages and impossible traffic jams are bringing out the worst in certain people, we also see how they are bringing out the best in other people -- specifically among the descendants of Avraham Avinu, the amud ha'chesed about whose mesiras nefesh for chesed we learn in this week's parsha. The incredible outpouring of chesed that Klal Yisroel is displaying during these days of crisis should be a source of tremendous inspiration and pride -- and a zchus for us all. Mi k'amcha Yisroel!
david zwiebel signature   
Chaim Dovid Zwiebel

Donate HERE for Achiezer relief for The five towns far Rockaway area

Friday, November 2, 2012

Important messages from Agudah, Yeshiva Darchei torah, Achiezer requesting aid for far Rockway/Five towns communities.

Thank you to the many, many individuals and organizations nationally who responded to our earlier email--not just with words but with deeds. Without asking for funds you have responded. Tomorrow morning a specific request for aid will be sent out in the name of the Five Towns/Far Rockaway Community. Please respond generously. The need is real and overwhelming.

If you live in a community similarly affected, please let us know so we can send out appropriate information to our concerned kehilla.
Message from Rabbi Yaakov Bender:

 We have just gone through a difficult few days and I would like to go over two important points:  
1. Many people , young and old, are hurting now. They need help in cleaning their homes from all the water and the debris. Please encourage your children to stop whatever it is they are doing and offer to help. Whatever is required, please roll up your sleeves and get to work.

2. There are many families in town that have literally been wiped out. We must get them back on their feet. I personally know of many families who have lost everything including every bit of clothing, furniture, etc. They are literally left with the proverbial clothing on their backs. When the campaign begins shortly, chaired by distinguished baalei batim in our community, we ask you to respond generously. This is literally a once in a lifetime opportunity.

We look forward to see only happy endings and beginnings.

Thank you very much,
Rabbi Yaakov Bender

Rosh HaYeshiva 

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Frum families face challenges for shabbos due to hurricane sandy, shadchan service available to host people for shabbos

Email us at If you can host a family for shabbos anywhere in the tri state area. Or if you are in need of a place to stay.

With many areas in the tri state still without power many mishpachos are scrambling to make last minute shabbos plans. While hopefull that power will be restored, there are many areas in Monsey, Passaic, Lakewood, Brooklyn, Lower east side of Manhattan and the five towns that are out of power and it will not be restored before shabbos.
 Making things more complicated, many people don't have gas or cant fill up, to go away for shabbos. People who do have power are lending out their kitchens and homes so that they have where to cook for shabbos.
 In Lakewood, NJ a website was created to act as a shadchan serce and pair up those that need a place with those that are offering their homes or have apartments.
In adition  the Eruv in many local places is down.

 Lakewood click here
Five towns click  HERE
Monsey Eruv is down this shabbos due to Huricane sandy damage

 Call Kol Hachessed 718.705.5000 X28 X2 X22 & leave a message

Frum Torah perspective on Hurricane Sandy

The non stop  media coverage on Hurricane Sandy has us listening to many reporters, politicians  meteorologists and others in expressing their personal observations on the devastation and power of the storm. We hear about how mother nature did this and how surprised  and shocked they are. How could this happen? the waves washed out the entire man made boardwalk? the sand dunes just washed away. 

As frum Torah yidden our response and reaction to a devastating Hurricane should not be with words such as Surpprised, or shocking, our reaction and lesson is we are AWED by the power of hashem. We don't see these events on a daily basis, however when an extraordinary event happens we cant be surprised by it. We are in awe of the gevurah of the eibishter we see it is the YAD HASHEM. We say gevuros 3 times a day in shmone esrei. In the shir shel yom on Monday we say  ברוח קדים תשבר אניות תרשיש hashem can destroy mighty ships withan easterly wind. We know that hashem can do this. What we are in awe of is the change of the natural tevah we are used to on a daily basis. We understand and know as true maaminim what the gemara in Chagiga (12a) tells us that hashem told the waves to stop so to he can tell the waves to storm the shore.