The Moetzes Gedolei Hatorah of Agudas Yisroel of America released a call for Yidden everywhere to increase their learning Torah, tefillah, and tzedakah, as well as improving the respect for kedushas beis haknesses (sanctity of shuls), interpersonal relationships and maintaining the sanctity of our nation by ensuring that all computers and smartphones have a kosher filter.
In their kol korei, the Moetzes Gedolei Hatorah reminded the tzibbur the words of the Rambam (Hilchos Taanios 1:2-3) that when we are faced with adversity, we must not act as if it is a result of a natural occurance, but we must rather hear the call of the shofar and realize that it is a signal from Hashem for us to rectify our ways.
“We find ourselves, both here and in Eretz Yisroel, apprehensive about our fulfillment of the Torah and service to Hashem, and alarmed about our health and financial stability, in the face of challenges not faced for many years. We are faced with the dangers of technology and popular culture’s dilution of our values on the one hand, and the ever-present fear of COVID-19 on the other. Our young children’s schools are closed to a greater or lesser extent, our older children’s schools are operating under significant constraints, and attendance in our shuls is down – of the ones that are still even open. The future is uncertain – may Hashem rescue us from calamitous decrees!
“It is quite possible that the troubles we are facing are measure for measure: It may be that because we have been deficient in honoring the Torah, its commandments, and those who learn it, and because we have been deficient in acting respectfully in our shuls, our places for Torah and prayer have been shuttered. And it may be, too, that because of strife between groups and conflict between individuals, we have been compelled to distance one from another, as well as to cover our mouths and faces with masks.”
“We close with words of blessing: May this year and its ordeals end in the merit of our teshuvah, prayer, and tzedakah; may the new year and its blessings begin, and may we merit a year of uplift of Torah and prayer, a year of health and prosperity, a year of healing and imminent redemption for all Jews.”
Agudas Yisroel of America welcomed new members of the Moetzes Gedolei Hatorah, shlita: Harav Hillel David, Mara D’asra of Kehillas Yeshiva Shaarei Torah; Harav Aharon Dovid Goldberg, Rosh HaYeshiva of Telshe Yeshiva Cleveland; Harav Shlomo Eliyahu Miller, Rosh Kollel and Av Beis Din of Kollel Avreichim Toronto; Harav Yeruchim Olshin, Rosh HaYeshiva of Beis Medrash Govoha; Harav Yitzchok Sorotzkin, Rosh HaYeshiva of Mesivta of Lakewood and Telshe; and Harav Shimon Yehuda Svei, Rosh HaYeshiva of Talmudical Yeshiva of Philadelphia.
These new Chavrei haMoetzes join the sitting members of the Moetzes Gedolei HaTorah, shlita: Harav Elya Brudny, Rosh Yeshiva of Yeshivas Mir; Harav Yitzchok Feigelstock, Rosh HaYeshiva of Mesivta of Long Beach; Harav Dovid Feinstein, Rosh HaYeshiva of Mesivta Tiferes Yerushalayim; Harav Aharon Feldman, Rosh HaYeshiva of Yeshivas Ner Yisroel; Harav Yosef Frankel, Vyelipoler Rebbe; Chacham Yosef Harari-Raful, Rosh HaYeshiva of Yeshivat Ateret Torah; Harav Yakov Horowitz, Rosh HaYeshiva of Yeshivas Beis Meir; Harav Shmuel Kamenetsky, Rosh HaYeshiva of Talmudical Yeshiva of Philadelphia; Harav Aryeh Malkiel Kotler, Rosh HaYeshiva of Beis Medrash Govoha; and Harav Aharon Schechter, Rosh HaYeshiva of Yeshivas Rabbeinu Chaim Berlin