YWN regrets to inform you of the Petira of Hagon HaRav Chaim Pinchos Scheinberg ZATZAL, one of the Gedolei & Poskei HaDor, just moments ago, at the age of 101.
Rabbi Scheinberg was the founder and Rosh Yeshiva of Yeshiva Torah Ore, and also served as the rav of the Kiryas Mattersdorf neighborhood of Yerushalayim.
He was admitted to Shaarei Tzedek Medical Center in Yerushalayim before Shabbos, and his condition deteriorated rapidly, suffering from a a blood infection, major kidney problems, and was placed on a respirator.
Despite his old age, Rav Scheinberg would travel to the United States with great Mesiras Nefesh to fund-raise for his Yeshiva – even at the age of 100.
Rabbi Scheinberg was born in 1910 in Ostrov, Poland, the second son of Rabbi Yaakov Yitzchok Scheinberg and Yuspa (Yosefa) Tamback.
At age 9 the Rav Scheinberg moved with his family into a small apartment on the Lower East Side, where his mother gave birth to twins, Shmuel and Chana Baila. After briefly attending public school, he enrolled in the Rabbi Jacob Joseph School (RJJ), where he studied until age 14. At that time, Rav Yaakov Yosef Herman, who influenced promising young Jewish men in New York City to advance in their Torah learning, encouraged him to transfer to Rabbi Yehuda Levenberg’s Beis Medrash LeRabbonim yeshiva in New Haven, Connecticut, where no secular subjects were taught. Rav Herman also decided that the youth would make a good husband for his third daughter, Bessie, who was then only 12 years old.
By the time Rav Scheinberg left the yeshiva at the age of sixteen and a half, he was regarded as a masmid and had already made a siyum on Shas.
At age 17 Rav Scheinberg progressed to Yeshiva University’s Rabbi Isaac Elchanan Theological Seminary. There he learned under Rabbis Shlomo Polachek (known as the “Meitcheter Ilui”), Rav Moshe Soloveichik, and Rav Shimon Shkop.
His Chavrusas included Rav Avigdor Miller, Rav Moshe Bick, Rav Mordechai Gifter, and Rav Nosson Meir Wachtfogel, future Gedolei Yisroel of American Torah Jewry.
When Rav Scheinberg was 19, Rav Herman suggested the Shidduch with his 17-year-old daughter and the Scheinbergs agreed.
Hagon HaRav Boruch Ber Leibowitz ZATZAL, who was a guest at the Herman home at that time, wrote out the tenaim.
With the encouragement of his father-in-law, Rabbi Scheinberg and his new wife spent their first five years of marriage in the town of Mir, Belarus (then Poland). They lived next-door to the yeshiva, where he immersed himself in learning while his wife coped with the impoverished lifestyle. There was no running water, the only source of heat was an oven in the center of their apartment, and the unpaved streets were always muddy. Bessie, however, encouraged her husband to grow in learning, and he developed a reputation as one of the yeshiva’s biggest masmidim.
While in Europe, Rabbi Scheinberg also learned at the Kaminetz yeshiva and received semicha from Rav Boruch Ber Leibowitz.
In 1935 the Scheinbergs returned to America because his American citizenship would have expired after more than five years abroad. Soon after his return, he was offered the position of mashgiach ruchani of the Yeshiva Chofetz Chaim in Queens founded by Rabbi Dovid Leibowitz. He served in that position for 25 years, until leaving to open his own yeshiva, Torah Ore.
Rabbi Scheinberg also became the Rav of Congregation Bakash Shalom Anshei Ostrov on the Lower East Side, where he gave shiurim to working men.
With the help and encouragement of his brother, Rabbi Shmuel Scheinberg, and his son-in-law, Rabbi Chaim Dov Altusky, Rav Scheinberg opened the Torah Ore yeshiva in the Bensonhurst section of Brooklyn in 1960. The yeshiva opened with six students and grew steadily, enrolling many local Sephardi boys who were attracted by Scheinberg’s Torah knowledge and warmth. The Scheinbergs treated their students as their own children, raising money to marry them off and even pay their dentist bills.
In 1963 Bessie’s sister Ruchoma visited their father in Israel and toured a planned Charedi housing development in northern Jerusalem called Kiryat Mattersdorf, which was being developed by the Mattersdorfer Rebbe, who was Ruchoma’s neighbor in New York. Upon her return, she told Bessie about her desire to buy an apartment there, and Bessie also expressed interest in buying an apartment. Though Rabbi Scheinberg was skeptical about relocating his family and his American yeshiva to Israel, he made a pilot trip to tour the development and decided that it could work.
The Scheinbergs, their daughter Fruma Rochel and her family, their son Simcha and his family, and over 20 of his Talmidim moved into their new homes in May 1965, and built a Makom Torah, and Yeshiva which has been the home to thousands upon thousands of Talmidim over the years.
As was reported by YWN, Rebbitzen Scheinberg A”H was Niftar in October of 2009.
Rabbi Scheinberg was famous for wearing many layers of Tzitzis. In the past he would wear about 150 pairs, but recenty, due to his fragile health, he only wore about 70 pairs. Although there is much speculation as to why he did this, it doe not apepar that anyone knows the reason.
Below is a video of Rabbi SCheinberg talking about his life.
Click HERE to watch this video from a mobile device.
Below is a moving video taken in 2009 of Hagon Rav Scheinberg visiting Hagon Chacham Ovadia Yosef Shlita, who was suffering from severe back pains. In an extremely moving video of two Gedolei Hador Shlita, Chacham Ovadia cries to Rav Scheinberg that it’s hard for him to learn from the pain, and asks Rav Scheinberg for a Bracha.
Click HERE to watch this video from a mobile device.
Boruch Dayan Emmes…