Tuesday, November 3, 2009

The CHAZON ISH on "Rescueing a Child"


The "Chazon Ish" is a further extremely important name in the halachic world. Rabbi Avraham Yeshaya Karelitz was born in Belarus in 1878 and moved to Bnei Brak (near Tel Aviv) in 1933. Shortly after he came to Palestine, countless people started coming to his house asking for halachic advise.

The Chazon Ish passed away at the age of 75.

In last week's edition of the weekly paper of the Edah HaCharedit "HaEdah" I found the following quote by the Chazon Ish:


כמובן בזמן הזה הצלת ילד לחינוך ישראלי הוא לא פחות ההצלה מטביעה בנהר


It goes without saying that in these times, the rescue of a child for Israeli (Jewish) education is as important as rescueing someone drowning out of a  river.  

My English translation may not be that perfect. Neither was my German on my German blog.:-)
However, what the above statement is trying to tell is that a Jewish child needs a (religious) Jewish education. Otherwise it would just drown in a river, meaning getting lost in the secular world.

Haredi as well as national religious society very much emphasizes child education starting from Kindergarden (Cheder) and continuing at school. Up to a certain age, children are being kept away from negative influences. At least until they have established a strong confidence in Yiddishkeit. Many parents live in fear of loosing their children to the secular world or that they may become Shababnikkim (people who look religious but have left the proper ways).


  1. If you would only take a handful of people, even 5% of chassidim, litvish, people that make up the ultra-orthodox, and if they spent even a few hours a week doing some type of outreach, what a difference it would make. Yes, we have Ohr Sameach and Aish and a few other institutions, but the attitude of the charedi community as a whole always seems to be "I will keep my head in my gemara and continually improve myself, and if my neighbor burns in gehinom, well, so be it." Rav Moshe Feinstein said we're living in a time in which every frum Jew must ma'aser his time, give one tenth to someone not learned or religious. Rav Shteinman, Rav Elyashiv and others signed a kol koreh saying something similar a few years ago, but my feeling is that only the smallest percentage of the community's resources are being used.

  2. B"H

    Unfortunately, haredi society today prefers saving its own kind. Keep separate and don't get influenced by the outside world.

    I agree that they should do outreach !!!!!!!!