Rabbi Avrohom Kalmanowitz – Gaon in Torah, Hatzalah Legend, and Torah Builder
So many accomplishments, by one man, in one lifetime.
- He was an ilui, an extraordinary talmid chacham, and a beloved Rav and Rosh Yeshivah.
- He was a trusted emissary of the Chofetz Chaim and Rav Chaim Ozer Grodzensky on missions of vital importance, and was hand-picked by Rav Eliezer Yehuda Finkel to help develop the Mirrer Yeshiva.
- He was a builder- and, later, a rebuilder - of Torah life, in Europe and then in the United States.
- He was "the malach hamoshia," the rescuing angel for the entire Mirrer Yeshivah, enabling its students to reach the safety of Shanghai.
- Once the full horror of the Final Solution became known, he worked tirelessly for the rescue of all the remaining Jews of Europe and, with wars' end, for the welfare of the survivors.
- He recognized the physical and spiritual threats to Sephardic Jewry and - despite the great differences of language and culture - he devoted himself to rescue of the Jews of Morocco, Syria, Egypt and Tunis.
- And, of course, in his own Mirrer Yeshivah in New York, he was like a father to all the talmidim, teaching and molding them with his shiurim, involved in every aspect of the yeshiva's phenomenal growth.
He was Rav Avrohom Kalmanowitz, the man who brought the blazing light of Torah to the darkness of war, genocide, and spiritual and physical destruction. This is his story.
By: Avrohom Birnbaum
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