On Sunday, August 8, the Rabbinical Alliance of America/Igud HaRabbonim (RAA) and Chazaq partnered to present the RAA’s 80th annual pre-High Holiday Chomer LiDrush (homiletics) session. An annual event, the Chomer LiDrush session offers timely examples of sermon material from master speakers and thinkers to help rabbis prepare their own speeches and classes during the upcoming holidays. This year’s conference, held online, prepares rabbis for a particularly challenging holiday season full of opportunities to discuss personal, communal, and theological issues. To offer useful and compelling Torah content during this unique year, RAA partnered with Chazaq in bringing six distinguished rabbis to address the gathering:
Rabbi Yaakov Klass, Chomer LiDrush Session Chairman; Presidium Member RAA/Igud; Rav, Congregation Bnei Matisyahu, Brooklyn, New York; Rosh Kollel, Kollel Ayshel Avraham Rabbinical Seminary; Torah Editor, The Jewish Press
- Chief Rabbi Warren Goldstein, Chief Rabbi of South Africa
- Chief Rabbi Yitzchak Yisraeli, Chief Bukharian Rabbi of USA & Canada
- Rabbi Dr. Hanania Elbaz, Presidium Member of the RAA/Igud; Rabbi of Congregation Ahi-Ezer, Yeshivah Synagogue, Brooklyn, New York
- Rabbi Ephraim Glatt, Esq., Assistant Rabbi, Young Israel of Kew Gardens Hills, Queens, New York
- Rabbi Zevi Saunders, Delray Orthodox Synagogue, Florida
RAA partnered with Torah Anytime to make this conference widely available around the globe. Through its effective use of technology, Torah Anytime has quickly become one of the greatest promoters of Torah learning in the world, particularly seen during the stressful period of the pandemic. RAA is proud of its close relationship with this important organization.
This special conference was sponsored by Rebbetzin Fayge Eisner in memory of her husband, HaRav Shlomo ben HaRav Levi Yitzchok Eisner zt”l (Rabbi Saul Eisner), previous Executive Vice-President of the RAA. Rabbi Saul Eisner was a leading figure in the post-World War II generation, a scion from an illustrious Chabad family, and a graduate and musmach of the Mir Yeshiva. Rabbi Eisner nobly served a myriad of Jewish institutions, of which the most beloved to him was the Igud HaRabbonim. For nearly 40 years, Rabbi Eisner dedicated his life and energy to the Igud HaRabbonim for the sole purpose of advocating for the honor of the rabbinate and the Jewish people. Since his passing in 2011, the RAA has dedicated the Chomer LiDrush session in his sacred memory.
Rabbi Yaakov Klass, presidium chairman of the Igud HaRabbonim, explained, “Rabbi Eisner firmly believed that the American rabbi must be a genuine talmid chacham with additional expertise in conducting himself professionally with his congregation and positively influencing American Jews by making them comfortable in order to be receptive to the message of authentic, Torah-true Judaism. A rabbi must carefully prepare his speeches and classes for the High Holidays, because during this season he reaches his broadest audience. For these holy days, the rabbi needs a powerful, heartfelt message. Rabbi Eisner made certain that the Igud HaRabbonim, under his careful watch, brought together the best array of Chomer LiDrush presenters as possible. That is why, on his passing, the RAA dedicated this important homiletic session in his memory.”
“This year, the world cautiously appears to be emerging from the pandemic. The central theme of this year’s Chomer LiDrush sessions of the RAA is hope and optimism,” stated Rabbi Mendy Mirocznik, executive vice-president of the RAA. Mirocznik continued, “Two years ago, when klal Yisrael assembled for the High Holidays, we had no idea of the impending COVID-19 pandemic, along with its quarantine, loss of life, and disruption of the world we once knew. Our lives turned upside down, our economy took a beating. Our children and seniors, our most vulnerable, together with the rest of the world, are suffering immeasurably both physically and emotionally. This year, the RAA decided to share our Chomer LiDrush and to partner with Chazaq, a national outreach organization that successfully engages with all Jews across communities, to bring hope and inspiration to rabbis and laymen alike. What better way to help get the Jewish community in the holiday spirit than to collaborate with like-minded organizations in bringing forth a message of hope and inspiration? We were particularly honored to have two chief rabbis speak – Rabbi Warren Goldstein and Rabbi Yitzchak Yisraeli – who offered their experience and wisdom to our diverse membership of rabbis across the Orthodox spectrum. With Hashem’s help, we will get through this trying time and, through the power of unity, build a foundation of resilience and strength that will make us as individuals and as a community stronger and more unified.
“On behalf of the RAA, I thank the multi-talented brothers, Rabbi Yaniv Meirov and Rabbi Elan Meirov of Chazaq, for joining forces together with the Igud HaRabbonim to produce an exceptional program of Chomer LiDrush with a message of hope and inspiration for 5782. It is our prayer that we succeed in renewing the faith of our listener and offering them spiritual strength to succeed in this difficult time. I also thank Rabbi Gil Student, Director of the RAA Vaad Halacha/Halacha Commission; Rabbi Dovid Katz, Menahel/Director of the RAA, and Rabbi Moish Schmerler, Administrative Director of the RAA, for coordinating with Robbie Aboff and for producing a wonderful Chomer LiDrush Program.”
Rabbi Yaniv Meirov stated, “We at Chazaq are proud to have hosted and worked together with the Igud HaRabbonim in making this program the success that it was. We look forward to further collaboration with the Igud HaRabbonim with the aim of bringing hope to the Jewish Community and strengthening their Jewish identity. Thank you, Rabbi Mendy Mirocznik, Rabbi Gil Student, Rabbi Moish Schmerler, and Rabbi Dovid Katz for your true friendship and partnership in spreading the warmth, joy, and love of Torah. May we merit to join for the 81st Igud HaRabbonim’s Chomer LiDrush session next year in a fully rebuilt Jerusalem.