Thursday, December 6, 2007

Jewish Press published my article

The Jewish Press just published my article in the Letters to the Editor section

It was also mentioned in Hirhurim


  1. Thank you for this.

    You are becoming one of the most instrumental and proactive influences in the struggle to save American Jewry.

    I am not saying this to flatter you, but I feel as though very few American or Israeli Rabbis are able to understand just how outrageous American Orthodoxy has become vis a vis permitting intermarriage in our communities.

    When I first heard of Eternal Jewish Family, I was extremely distraught and felt that their program might spell the near annihilation of American Judaism altogether.

    Now I sincerely believe that thanks to the efforts of some very dedicated and committed Rabbis and scholars such as yourself, the gravity of the problem of permitted intermarriage among Orthodox Jews in America as well as the role and the extent to which American Orthodox Rabbis have been inadvertently ENCOURAGING intermarriage is being brought to the attention of those who might be are in a position to stop it.

    Please do not let anyone stop you from your quest to save American Jewry from itself. Many American Orthodox Rabbis unfortunately cannot see the "forest for the trees" enough to know that intermarriage among Orthodox Jews is as high as 20% and after 4 generations, bogus conversions done only to permit intermarriage have affected half of all Orthodox affiliated families in the US(aside from Syrian Jews and Hungarian Chassidim).

    Sadly for many American Orthodox Rabbis the gravity of this widespread tragedy, which in many cases they personally participated in for decades, did not even BEGIN hit them until they realized that their own children and grandchildren would not be considered Jewish in Israel because they or their sons had married women who were the daughters or granddaughters of Gentile women who had been "converted" in order to permit their biological Jewish fathers to intermarry with them.

  2. Rav Eidensohn, shlita,

    I recently joined the EJF staff on a part time basis. I (and they) are interested in clarifying your objections to EJF's activities. At present, I do not fully understand your criticisms and I would appreciate your enlightenment.

    If your criticisms are indeed valid, I am fairly confident that they would be willing to modify their modes of operation. I find them to be good people.

    There seem to be three points you object to:

    1) "proselytizing simply means trying to convince someone to change their religion. That is clearly what EJF is doing. It is a fact that Rav Tropper spends hundreds of thousands of dollars per convention to persuade a handful of uncertain or curious couples that they should become Jews. Those who are certain are not invited. These intermarried couples are given free conventions at quality resort hotels where they are wined and dined and given an intensive program by the world’s best religious motivational speakers – all in the hope that they will decide to convert."

    The important distinction seems to be between "certain" and "uncertain or curious."

    Are you saying that if a gentile wants to know more about becoming Jewish, no Jew should offer any assistance to him? Must all such assistance be withheld until he declares first that he is certain he wants to become Jewish? And if so, I have two questions: a) Do you apply this standard even where a Jew is violating prohibitions constantly because of this gentile's non-Jewishness? b) What is your source for applying this rule in each scenario?

    If that is not what you mean, please enlighten me. I do not understand the nekudas hamachlokes.

    2) You have commented on the Hirhurim blog [one of the few outstanding blogs around] that "In fact the claim is based on more than that and also includes the placement of non-Jewish children in kiruv programs and religious schools." [Your comment is here: ]

    2) First the placement of non-Jewish children in religious schools: The EJF staff has told me that the only case that comes close to this concerns a family from one of the southern states whose children were in a Talmud Torah there before they converted -- and before EJF was involved. EJF became involved later, assisted in their gerus and only afterward helped place them in a frum school when they moved to a northern city. Do you disagree with this account or do you have another case in mind?

    3) In kiruv programs: The EJF staff told me that the reference seems to be to a certain college kiruv lecture program that was attended by both Jews and non-Jews. R' Azriel Auerbach was asked about this in regard to R' Elyashiv's opinion and he pointed out the איסור ללמד תורה לנכרים. When R' Azriel was asked further: But these non-Jews are taking steps to be migayer! He responded: Oh, that's different. He went to speak to his shver (R' Elyashiv) and indeed he ruled that that was permitted. Do you disagree with this account or do you have another case in mind?

    Thank you in advance.


  3. I am greatly puzzled as to why you amicus EJF insist on being anonymous? are you in fact associated with EJF or are you simply a troll?

    Regarding your point one - this has been thoroughly discussed in my correspondence with Rav Tropper as well as in my recent postings on hirhurim. I don't understand what you don't understand about what I wrote.

    Regarding the other two points I will respond in more detail in the near future after you have identified yourself.

  4. Rav Eidensohn, shlita,

    I can appreciate the desire to talk to a real person.

    I am happy to identify myself if we may carry this further in email correspondence instead of on this blog. Please email me at and I will respond with my name.

    Also, I may want to modify my third question somewhat.

  5. Here is my correction to the third point:

    The source for the ruling permitting the presence of non-Jews interested in converting at kiruv Torah shiurim is a letter by Rav Elyashiv, shlita, to his son-in-law R' Yitzchak Zilbershtein.

  6. Sorry, yet another correction:

    It was not a letter from Rav Elyashiv to R' Zilbershtein, but rather an oral psak of Rav Elyashiv recorded by R' Zilbershtein.

    It is available to be faxed. If you are interested, please send me an email with your fax number, and I will pass it on to the EJF staff.

    My email address is


please use either your real name or a pseudonym.