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Nine-Year-Old Highland Park Boy Celebrates Siyum on Mishnayot

If you’re looking for an inspiring example of the youthful joy of learning Mishnayot and the unrivaled role of ArtScroll seforim in supporting this Torah study, consider the recent accomplishment of Gavi Rothstein.

On June 9, Gavi, a 9-year-old who just finished the third grade at Yeshiva Shaarei Tzion in Piscataway, New Jersey, made a siyum for completing Seder Zeraim, the second seder of Mishnayot he’s completed with his father, Betzalel (the first one was Seder Moed). Together with his family and classmates, he celebrated the siyum at the ArtScroll Mesorah Publications headquarters in Rahway, where his mother, Chana, serves as executive assistant to Rabbi Gedaliah Zlotowitz, president of ArtScroll Mesorah Publications.

Gavi and his class had the zechut (honor) of hearing from Rabbi Nosson Scherman, the general editor at Mesorah Publications, who spoke at the siyum. Rabbi Scherman commented later: “A siyum for such a youngster is a great achievement. And equally impressive is Gavi’s personality and enthusiasm. He has a great future, with Hashem’s help.”

Rabbi Scherman also helped lead the young boys in dancing at the siyum, which was inspired by the talented singing of noted Jewish music performer NACHAS (Nachi Baldinger), whom the Rothsteins arranged to join the festivities.

Rabbi Cohn, Gavi’s rebbe at Yeshiva Shaarei Tzion, stated afterwards: “How amazing it was to see how motivated Gavi was to make this big accomplishment in his learning on his own.”

Reached by The Jewish Link, Gavi said that he likes studying Mishnayot “Because it gives you a big reward and learning it is very interesting.” Asked to recall one of the first Mishnayot that he found inspiring, he spoke about a Mishna he learned that stated how all three groups of Jews—Kohanim, Levi’im, and Yisraelim—could all bring Korbanot in Yerushalayim.

Chana stated: “Gavi’s nightly learning seder with his father adds a very special aura of Torah to our home. I am constantly in awe of Gavi’s genuine love of learning and his commitment to his Mishnayos.” She added that after Gavi made his first siyum, last summer, two boys in his class told him that they started learning Mishnayot on their own. She hopes that this second ArtScroll Mesorah siyum will help inspire additional classmates to start learning Mishnayot on their own too.

“It might seem as though we have been pushing Gavi to achieve this impressive accomplishment, but in fact the opposite is true,” said Betzalel. “Gavi motivates me to make sure that we never miss a day of learning, even insisting on learning after the Pesach Sedarim, on Zoom when I was not home at times, and learning all night with me on Shavuos. He inspires me every time we open the Mishnayos.”

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