Memory Lane: Rav Yaakov Meir Kahana-Shapiro - Part 2

Memory Lane: Rav Yaakov Meir Kahana-Shapiro - Part 2

Continuation from last week

Rav Yaakov Meir wrote in “Yalkut Sinai”—a collection of Midrashim and Chazal on Matan Torah and Aseres Hadibros, published by the institute in 1964: “…Founded in Yerushalayim in 1951 with the purpose of preparing bnei Torah for roles in Rabbanus, Dayanus, chinuch and hora’ah—since its founding has graduated hundreds of young men who serve successfully as Rabbanim and marbitzei Torah, mechanchim and mashpi’im in Eretz Yisroel, and in a number of prominent kehillos in America. A number of them have gone on to careers in general public service, but through their acquisition of Torah wisdom they are able to bring honor to religious Jewry wherever they go.”

Always tethered to the Holy Land

In the three decades that he spent on American soil, his heart never left the country of his birth, and never gave up their desire to return there. He dedicated much energy to furthering the development of the Jewish community in Eretz Yisroel, spiritually and materially. 

In 1953, a dinner was held to benefit the new Yeshivas Yavne in Eretz Yisroel—a branch of the yeshiva on Dahill Road—with a sefer Torah presented to Rav Yaakov Meir by the famed philanthropist Isaac Shalom, the treasurer of the building committee. 

He left the American branch in the capable hands of his son Rav Shlomo Zalman, under whose leadership it continued for a number of years. Rav Yaakov Meir continued teaching Torah until his last days, leaving this world in the summer of 1971. He was interred on Har Hazeisim. 

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