On The Passing of Rabbi Menachem Porush
Agudath Israel of America Statement on the Passing of Rabbi Menachem Porush
Rabbi Menachem Porush was a giant within the world of Agudath Israel and beyond.
The contributions Rabbi Porush made to the growth of the Torah community in Eretz Yisroel over many decades of remarkable service, both from within the Israeli government and without, are incalculable. He was blessed with considerable talents — a brilliant mind, magnetic personality, keen insight into human nature, unparalleled communication skills — and used them all to promote the interests of Klal Yisroel. His closeness with Gedolei Yisroel from all backgrounds made him one of the world’s most prominent spokesmen for daas Torah, which for him was no mere slogan but a way of life.
Rabbi Porush’s petirah leaves a gaping hole that will not easily be filled. It is incumbent on all of us now to study his incredible life story, and to learn and grow from it.
Rabbi Menachem Porush was very kind to my and my wife in 1970-71 when we spent a year learning in Israel.He was one of the last of that first generation of leaders, who built the foundations of today’s chareidi community. He invited us to spend a shabbos at the Central Hotel as his guests . He fought the good fight, although sometimes he did it in a way that we Americans would not have done. A case in point was when he threw (dropped) a Reform Siddur on the floor during a debate on pluralism in the Knesset. In the biography of Rabbi Moshe Sherer, it is mentoned that this deed met with disapproval from Rabbi Sherer. I spoke with Rabbi Porush about it and he didn’t grasp the nuances of his act. Though Rabbi Sherer fought Reform his whole life, he would have used a more sophisticated way of expressing his disapproval of Reform theology. Rabbi Porush was a builder and his legacy will live on. Yechi zichro boruch.
I remember when Rabbi Porush came to the US and stayed at a hotel my husband worked at. He required some services of my husband at the hotel. He was only required to pay the regular fee just like anyone else, yet he tipped my husband as well and would not take no for an answer.I was newly frum at the time and did not have much contact with rabbanim up til that point. I found his generosity to be very heart warming. Little did I know just exactly who this man was. I have always had a warm place of regards for Rabbi Porush.
May Hashem bring his neshama to high heights in shemayim.