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Klal Yisrael to Join in Yom Limud and Tefillah on Yahrzeit of Chofetz Chaim

The Chofetz Chaim’s impact on klal Yisrael is felt every day and continues increasing exponentially. Whether through his Sefer Chofetz Chaim that has transformed klal Yisrael by educating them to take greater care in areas of speech and bein adam l’chaveiro, or through his sefer Mishnah Berurah that every Jew must know in order to conduct his day-to-day life according to Halacha, the impact of the Chofetz Chaim on our everyday life is colossal!

Yidden are obligated to show hakaras hatov for good bestowed upon us. Perhaps there is no person in recent generations to whom we owe more spiritual hakaras hatov than the Chofetz Chaim—who bestowed the twin brachos of the Mishnah Berurah and the Sefer Chofetz Chaim upon us, seforim that illuminate our spiritual lives every single day of the year.

Indeed, the yahrzeit of the Chofetz Chaim is a special eis ratzon, a remarkably opportune time to invoke rachamei shamayim. This year, on Friday, 24 Elul/September 15, klal Yisrael will utilize this eis ratzon by engaging in an international yom limud and tefillah. Jews from all over the world will recite specific chapters of Tehillim and learn segments from the two seminal sefarim written by the Chofetz Chaim, the Mishnah Berurah and the Sefer Chofetz Chaim.

The Yom Limud and Tefillah, being held under the auspices of Dirshu and its kiruv arm, Acheinu, is designed to reach out with a message of achdus to all Jews from across the spectrum and at all levels of observance, promoting Torah learning and tefillah. There is so much strife in the world, so much danger, as countries threaten one another and natural disasters plague us. There is so much polarization and heated rhetoric. Combining sur m’era with aseh tov, the Yom Limud and Tefillah has been designated as a day when all Jews will learn the sefarim of the Chofetz Chaim and make a special effort to avoid discord, lashon hara as well as any form of gossip.

This year’s Yom Limud and Tefillah is the third such event. Last year’s event attracted some 500,000 Jews worldwide and culminated with a deeply inspiring trip by gedolei Yisrael from Eretz Yisrael and America to the kever of the Chofetz Chaim in Radin. This year, as the Chofetz Chaim’s yahrzeit falls out on Friday, the large delegation of gedolim will not be traveling to Radin. Nevertheless, Dirshu will have representation at the kever of the Chofetz Chaim where heartfelt tefillos will be said. Organizers of the Yom Limud and Tefillah hope to tap into the innate feeling of every Jewish neshama in these extraordinary times, where we face threats from within and without, for a concentrated effort in tefillah and achdus to invoke rachamei shamayim in the zechus of the heilige Chofetz Chaim who was so moser nefesh to promote these ideals among klal Yisrael.

Hundreds of chadarim and schools from the United States, Canada and Eretz Yisrael have signed up to participate in the yom tefillah.

This year, Dirshu prepared special age-appropriate material for schools that will bring the message and legacy of the Chofetz Chaim to life. According to Rabbi Ahron Gobioff, Dirshu’s North American director, “Dirshu prepared three different booklets to be distributed to participating boys’ school and girls’ schools across the United States and Canada. The booklets are specifically designed for three age groups: grades 1-3, grades 4-6 and grades 7-8. The booklets contain age-appropriate halachos from both the Sefer Chofetz Chaim and Mishnah Berurah, as well as beautiful inspirational and educational stories about the Chofetz Chaim with age-appropriate biographical material about the Chofetz Chaim and his life’s mission. The booklets are available in both English and Yiddish, thereby enabling each school to participate b’achdus in accordance with their mesorah. The schools will also say Tehillim on behalf of klal Yisrael and the tefillah of ‘Acheinu Kol Beis Yisrael.’

“I was amazed at the level of enthusiasm shown by the principals and leadership of the schools for the program!” exclaimed Rabbi Gobioff. “It was remarkable to see how gratified they were to incorporate this instructive and educational programming into their curriculum on the auspicious day of the yahrzeit of the Chofetz Chaim.

“Without a doubt, the merit of the Torah learned on the Chofetz Chaim’s yahrzeit, combined with the enhanced observance of bein adam l’chaveiro and bein adam laMakom, will serve as a tremendous zechus for Jews the world over,” Rabbi Gobioff concluded.

Aside from the hundreds of boys’ and girls’ schools participating throughout Eretz Yisrael, there will be North American participation from a wide range of schools hailing from communities such as Monsey, Lakewood, Brooklyn, Toronto, Houston, Baltimore, Cleveland, Waterbury, Phoenix, Staten Island and Los Angeles.

In addition, numerous shuls and many frum-owned businesses have signed up to take a few minutes on the yom tefillah of Friday, 24 Elul/September 15, to join with klal Yisrael and recite Tehillim and learn the sefarim of the Chofetz Chaim. They will recite two chapters of Tehillim and learn the daily limud of Daf HaYomi B’Halacha, Siman 254, along with the daily mussar from the Chofetz Chaim’s sefer, Torah Ohr.

The anticipated Yom Limud and Tefillah has already begun generating a tremendous atmosphere of goodwill and achdus among klal Yisrael.

“An additional purpose of the Day of Limud and Tefillah,” explained Rabbi Shlomo Rozenstein, Dirshu’s communications director, “is to encourage Yidden the world over who have not yet joined Daf HaYomi B’Halacha to join the program together with the multitudes throughout the world. Perhaps there is no greater zechus to invoke rachamei shamayim than additional Yidden joining those who are already learning the sefarim of the Chofetz Chaim in a daily program of Halacha and mussar.

“In fact, gedolei Yisrael from both Eretz Yisrael and America who comprise the nesius of the Daf HaYomi B’Halacha have urged all who have not yet joined the Daf HaYomi B’Halacha to join and make it part of their lives.”

Efforts are also being made to tap into the auspicious day of the Chofetz Chaim’s yahrzeit to reach beyond the Torah-observant community under the auspices of Dirshu’s kiruv arm, Acheinu. Last year, this aspect of the campaign for “A Day of Jewish Unity” became so noteworthy that the mainstream media as well as the secular Jewish media covered the story. Important news outlets such as Newsweek, Newsmax and Huffington Post carried stories about the fact that Jews from all over were designating a “Day of Jewish Unity” on the yahrzeit of the Chofetz Chaim as a day of prayer and unity—a tremendous kiddush Hashem. This year, similar efforts are being made to further build on last year’s success.

As the Chofetz Chaim’s yahrzeit approaches, now is the time to join with lal Yisrael in the Yom Limud and Tefillah this coming Friday, 24 Elul/September 15.

To participate, please say Tehillim perakim 20 and 130, learn the sefer Mishnah Berurah, chapter 254 from the middle of se’if gimmel until the middle of se’if hei, and learn the Chofetz Chaim’s sefer Torah Ohr from perek 1 until V’isah b’Megillah.

Now is the time to tap into this unique eis ratzon!

By Chaim Gold


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