The Rosh Yeshiva’s Tzavah & The Shofros That Were Returned Prior To Kevurah

Photo: Shuki Lehrer

HaGaon HaRav Gershon Edelstein, z’tl, served as the Ba’al Tokea at Yeshivas Ponevezh for over 70 years, including this past Rosh Hashanah.

HaRav Gershon, zt’l, would only trust HaRav Tzvi Greineman, the son of HaGaon HaRav Meir Greineman, the nephew of the Chazon Ish, regarding the kashrus of the shofros. In recent years, he only used the shofros belonging to HaRav Tzvi and two of the shofros were on loan at HaRav Edelstein’s home.

Less than two hours after the petirah, HaRav Tzvi received a phone from the Rosh Yeshivah’s family members inquiring about his whereabouts and informing him that his shofros would be immediately delivered to him. The family members explained that the Rosh Yeshivah, z’tl, left a tzavah that all debts and borrowed objects in his possession be returned to their owners prior to kevurah.

HaRav Edelstein, z’tl, began blowing the shofar while still a bochur by the Chazon Ish – in 1944.

The Chazon Ish is rumored to have said about HaRav Edelstein that “Rebbe Gershon is ‘handicapped’ in the midah of gaivah – even the ‘eighth of the eighth’ that is permitted for a Talmid Chacham.”

The Rosh Yeshivah, z’tl, and HaRav Tzvi Greineman testing the shofros. (B’Chadrei Chareidim)

(YWN Israel Desk – Jerusalem)


  1. Yes, BaltimoreMaven, it’s called Minhag Lita and all of the Israelis do it, even if they’re only blowing 30 (for women, sick people, etc). To the point that many Israelis are concerned that if you don’t blow “broken” Shvarim that you’re not yotzei.

    Also look up about the Chazon Ish Shvarim Teruah. There’s a machlokes between Rav Gerson and Rav Chaim Kanievsky if you blow the Shvarim-Teruah as one breath נשימה אחת like Rav Gerson did (which sounds like 2.5 Shvarim to me, but ….), or if you blow them VERY close together without any pause at all in between the Shvarim-Teruah (that is arguing on the Mishne Berura). Either way, the Mishne Berurah’s נשימה אחת is the Chozon Ish’s שתי נשימות.