Yeshiva World News

Cuomo: Summer School In New York State Will Be Online

Summer school students will not be reporting to the classroom. New York City will deliver 1 million meals a day to fight hunger during the outbreak. State labor officials hit with a flood of unemployment applications say they’re working through the backlog. Coronavirus developments in New York: SUMMER SCHOOL Summer school in New York will be conducted remotely, Gov. Andrew Cuomo said Thursday, citing the risks of returning children to the classroom. The governor said it’s too early to make a decision about the fall semester. School buildings in New York have been closed since March. “Schools obviously pose risks. They’re places of gathering. They’re on buses. They’re in classrooms,” Cuomo said at his daily briefing. “How do you reduce density in a classroom? How do you reduce density in a cafeteria, on a school bus, et cetera? How do you get children to wear masks?” Cuomo also mentioned increasing awareness and concern about a syndrome affecting children that is thought to be linked to COVID-19. Pediatric multisystem inflammatory syndrome affects blood vessels and organs and has symptoms including prolonged fever, abdominal pain and vomiting. New York is investigating 157 cases of the syndrome, which has been reported in more than a dozen countries. Two young boys and an 18-year-old woman diagnosed with the syndrome have died in New York state. Meal programs and child care for essential employees will continue during the summer session, Cuomo said. New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio on Tuesday said instruction in the city’s public schools will be online this summer. ___ THE NUMBERS There were 105 new deaths reported statewide, the fourth straight day the daily death toll has hovered slightly above 100. The death tally peaked at 799 on April 8. There were 5,187 COVID-19 patients hospitalized statewide, a drop of 383 from the day before. ___ UNEMPLOYMENT Cuomo’s administration says it’s making progress on its backlog of pending unemployment benefit applications. New York has paid out over $10 billion in benefits to more than two million individuals, state labor commissioner Roberta Reardon said. That’s up from $2.1 billion paid out in total last year. Critics say the state’s system has been too slow to help unemployed workers. In response, the labor department revamped its website and made other changes. Cuomo’s administration looked at over a million applications submitted before April 22, and found the state hasn’t processed 7,580 claims that are missing information. Another 15,831 are going through final processing that includes a check for fraud and identity theft, according to Reardon. The state has processed another 20,801 claims but hasn’t released those benefits because individuals haven’t submitted federally mandated weekly certifications. “We will continue to try get in touch with everyone who applied so we can connect them with the benefits they are eligible for,” Reardon said. ___ EMERGENCY FOOD New York City is meeting the coronavirus crisis with a massive emergency food assistance program and will be delivering 1 million meals daily by next week, with another 500,000 meals available daily for pickup at school sites, Mayor Bill de Blasio said. “We will let no New Yorker go hungry, period,” de Blasio said. “It’s not acceptable, no matter what we’re up against, that anyone would be hungry in this city.” The city-provided meals are supposed to meet nutritional […]

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NEW! Totally Shabbos Download From The Popular Circle Magazine

Every parent wants a pleasant and meaningful Shabbos table experience. But it can be hard to keep kids engaged without a plan and a lot of preparation. That’s why The Circle, a popular children’s magazine, has teamed up with Yeshiva World to create a free download with impressive and captivating content to help parents create a meaningful and entertaining Shabbos with their children. Circle Time: At Your Shabbos Table is an exclusive free download hosted right here and will be available every Thursday morning. Send us your feedback at circletime@circmag.com. CLICK HERE TO DOWNLOAD THE FREE ISSUE (YWN World Headquarters – NYC)

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Massive Fire Destroys Home of Rov Of Ohr Samaeach In Johannesburg [VIDEOS]

The home of HaRav Yechezkel Auerbach, the Rov and Rosh Kollel of Ohr Sameach in Johannesburg, was totally destroyed in a fire on Thursday night. Bichsdei Hashem there are no injuries reported. A large number of firefighters were on the scene for hours attempting to put the fire out. Video footage submitted to YWN from eyewitnesses shows that the home was totally destroyed. STAY UPDATED WITH BREAKING UPDATES FROM YWN VIA WHATSAPP – SIGN UP NOW Just click on this link, and you will be placed into a group. (YWN World Headquarters – NYC)

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Divided Senate Confirms Ratcliffe As Intelligence Chief

A sharply divided Senate confirmed John Ratcliffe as director of national intelligence on Thursday, with Democrats refusing to support the nomination over fears that he will politicize the intelligence community’s work under President Donald Trump. All Democrats opposed Ratcliffe, making him the first DNI to be installed on a partisan vote since the position was created in 2005. The tally was 49-44. Ratcliffe will take over the agency at a tumultuous time. The nation faces threats from Iran and North Korea, Russian disinformation campaigns to interfere in the U.S. elections and tensions with China over rising competition and the spread of the coronavirus. At the same time, Trump has viewed the intelligence agencies with distrust and ousted or fired multiple officials. The Texas Republican seemed unlikely to get the position when he was nominated in February, as he had already been nominated for the job last year and then withdrew after Republicans questioned his experience. But senators warmed to him as they grew concerned about the upheaval in the intelligence community and wanted a permanent, confirmed director. Ratcliffe will replace Richard Grenell, the current acting director who has overseen some of the personnel changes. Grenell, the U.S. ambassador to Germany, has a thin intelligence background and is seen as a loyalist to Trump. As acting director, he ordered a review of the DNI office that Trump’s critics feared was an attempt to clean house. The last Senate-confirmed intelligence director, former Indiana Sen. Dan Coats, was popular with his former colleagues in Congress but left the post last summer after clashing with the president. Democrats allowed a quick vote on Ratcliffe’s nomination, dropping their usual procedural delays in a signal that despite their skepticism, they prefer him in the job over Grenell. Ratcliffe insisted during his confirmation hearing that he would be an independent leader, but faced skepticism. A member of the House intelligence and judiciary committees, he has been an ardent defender of the president through House impeachment and investigations into Russian interference. Maine Sen. Angus King, an Independent who caucuses with Democrats and a member of the Senate intelligence panel, said he has concerns that Ratciffe has limited experience in the intelligence community yet extensive experience in politics. “A dangerous combination,” he said. “Now more than ever it is vital that the DNI respect the critical firewall that must exist between intelligence and political calculations — especially if the truth isn’t what the boss wants to hear,” King said. Before being elected to Congress in 2014, Ratcliffe was mayor of Heath, Texas, and a U.S. attorney in the Eastern District of Texas. When he was first nominated, senators questioned whether he had enough intelligence experience and whether he was picked because of his willingness to defend Trump. But given a second chance, Ratcliffe worked to separate himself from the president at his confirmation hearing, including by saying he believed Russia interfered in the 2016 presidential election, a conclusion Trump has resisted. He said he would communicate to Trump the intelligence community’s findings even if he knew Trump disagreed with them and might fire him. Still, the position carries unique challenges, given the president’s seeming inclinations to politicize intelligence and bend intelligence agencies to his will. Trump has openly rejected intelligence community assessments at odds with his own viewpoint, including […]

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Homemade and Delicious Shavuos Meals for Friends and Family in Israel from Catering by Rochy

For fifteen years Catering by Rochy has been providing delicious homemade takeout food in Israel. Join our hundreds of satisfied customers and treat yourself or send something special to someone you love for Yom Tov or any time of year. Click here to view our full milchig and fleishig takeout menus- www.cateringbyrochy.com Order deadline Monday May 25th, orders will be delivered Wednesday May 27th and Thursday May 28th For questions contact us at directly at 718-578-4181

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Israel: 1669 Cases, 279 Deaths, Israel Celebrates Yom Yerushalayim

Like Wednesday morning, Israel’s Health Ministry failed to provide updated data on the number of coronavirus infections and fatalities on Thursday morning. As Israel’s economy opens up, the government also approved the reopening of museums but no hands-on activities or exhibits are allowed and each person entering the museum must be allowed 15 square meters of space. Interior Minister Aryeh Deri announced on Wednesday that he has approved the return of 400 foreign workers to Israel for work in nursing homes or the homes of the elderly or disabled. The workers, who have been stranded abroad due to coronavirus travel restrictions and closed borders will be required to self-quarantine in Israel for 14 days before beginning work. Also on Wednesday, El Al announced that it is extending its freeze on flights until June 20. Israel is preparing on Thursday to celebrate Yom Yerushalayim on Thursday night and Friday to mark the 53rd anniversary of the capital city’s reunification. Various events to mark the day are taking place, including a vehicular convoy from the Teddy Stadium parking lot through Jerusalem, including the Knesset and around the gates of the Old City to the Kosel. There will also be a parade or “human chain” embracing Yerushalayim encircling most of the Old City gates that will begin at Gan Teddy. The event requires pre-registration and will adhere to social distancing regulations. An event with about 450 people will take place at the Kosel plaza about 7 p.m. This event also required pre-registration. (YWN Israel Desk – Jerusalem)

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Judge Grants Sanctions Against D Over Citizenship Question

A federal judge on Thursday agreed to impose financial sanctions against the Trump administration for failing to produce hundreds of documents during litigation over whether a citizenship question could be added to the 2020 census. U.S. District Judge Jesse Furman said in a ruling that the Trump administration’s failure to produce the documents “may well have been inadvertent, but is nevertheless unacceptable for any litigant, and particularly for the Department of Justice.” The judge in New York ordered the administration to pay some of the costs and fees of nonprofit advocacy groups that had sought the sanctions. “To be sure, this was not DOJ’s finest hour,” Furman wrote, referring to the Department of Justice. “At best, DOJ failed to produce more than ten percent of the documents that Defendants were required to produce as part of this litigation.” The Department of Justice declined to comment. Last year, Furman ruled against an effort by the Trump administration to add a citizenship question to the 2020 census. That decision was upheld by the U.S. Supreme Court which said U.S. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross’ rationale for the citizenship question — to help enforce voting rights — appeared to be contrived. Nonprofit groups that had sued to block the citizenship question demanded sanctions after new documents surfaced that they say suggested Ross’ motive in adding the citizenship question was for aiding redistricting efforts that could benefit Republicans and non-Hispanic whites. Lawyers for the Trump administration admitted last fall that they had discovered more than 3,700 pages of documents while responding to a congressional inquiry that had not been shared during the litigation over the citizenship question. The judge refused a request by the nonprofit groups to grant sanctions for concealing evidence and false testimony from two witnesses. Furman said he was offering no opinion on whether those allegations were true, but even if they were true, it wouldn’t have changed the outcome of the case. The Department of Justice had blamed its failure to produce the documents on a technical error during its document-search process. Furman described the error as “a lapse that would make a first-year litigation associate wince.” A citizenship question is not on the 2020 census, which started in March and will continue through October. But President Donald Trump instead has ordered the Department of Commerce to collect citizenship information through administration records. The judge’s decision finally ends the two-year litigation over the citizenship question, said Dale Ho, director of the ACLU’s Voting Rights Project, one of the advocacy groups that challenged the question. “The court has reaffirmed that the Trump administration’s ‘official story concealed their true reasons’ for attempting to add a citizenship question to the census,” Ho said in a statement. (AP)

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SEE THE EVIDENCE: Is Michael Cohen Becoming Frum in Prison? [VIDEO & PHOTOS]

Has Michael Cohen become Frum in prison? Video and photos from his return home sure make it seem that way. Footage shows his Tallis and Tefillin bag being brought into his home upon his early release from prison. Additionally, a “Kedem Grape Juice” box was taken out of the vehicle with the words “Michael Cohen Legal Documents” on it. LOOK AT THE FOOTAGE BELOW: STAY UPDATED WITH BREAKING UPDATES FROM YWN VIA WHATSAPP – SIGN UP NOW Just click on this link, and you will be placed into a group. Wearing a surgical mask and a baseball cap, Cohen arrived at his Manhattan apartment building at around 10:40 a.m. after his release from FCI Otisville in New York. He removed boxes of legal documents from the trunk of a car. A uniformed doorman at the luxury residence, not far from Trump Tower, carried them into the lobby on a luggage cart. Cohen, who pleaded guilty to tax charges, campaign finance fraud and lying to Congress, didn’t stop to speak with reporters gathered on the sidewalk. Cohen, 53, was released on furlough as part of an attempt to slow the spread of the virus in federal prisons. He began serving his sentence last May and had been scheduled to remain in prison until November 2021. (YWN World Headquarters – NYC)

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BREAKING: Cuomo On Summer Camps: Until More Clairty On Kawasaki Disease, No Decision Made

NY Governor Cuomo, during a daily coronavirus task force briefing in Manhattan, said a syndrome that is similar to Kawasaki disease that has afflicted 157 children across the state has made his administration hesitate to make a decision on reopening summer day camps for children. A decision on schools, he added, will not be made until well into the summer months. “Should I send my children to day camp? Is it safe? Until we have this answer on this pediatric syndrome; as a parent, until I know how widespread this is, as a parent I would not send my children to day camp,” he said. “They’re still exploring this. So, make a decision on the facts. What do you do when they keep changing the facts?” SEE VIDEO BELOW STAY UPDATED WITH BREAKING UPDATES FROM YWN VIA WHATSAPP – SIGN UP NOW Just click on this link, and you will be placed into a group. (YWN World Headquarters – NYC)

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These Tzadikim are calling out to you with an Pikuach Nefesh campaign – special Tefilah for the donors

ספר תורה שרוי בצער!הרבנים הגאונים הגאון הצדיק רבי שמעון גלאי שליט״א והגאון הצדיק רבי יצחק קולדצקי שליט״א חתן מרן הגר״ח קנייבסקי שליט״אHave gathered together to launch this emergency campaign.One of the great Talimidie Chachomim in Eretz Yisrael, is in a critical situation which is true פיקוח נפש. With the guidance of   שר התורה מרן הגר״ח קנייבסקי שליט״א His son in-law הרב הצדיק רבי יצחק קולדצקי שליט״א will perform a special Tefilah with a Minyan of Talmidei Chachomim at the Kever of the  סטייפלר זצוק״ל To Daven specifically for all those joining the 1,000 donors of this campaign. Please email your name and specific need (in Hebrew) to namesrabbikoledetzki@gmail.com CLICK HERE TO DONATE NOWThe Rabbonim are pleading everyone to help with any amount so חס ושלום they do not have to open a קרן יתומים. In order not to embarrass the well known family, the Rabbonim decided not to publish the name of this individual.Teire Yidden! Who can see these Gedolim cry out and not act accordingly? Would you not help when seeing these 2 Gedolim go out of their comfort zone?The Rabbonim are pleading for your help, and are showering you with Brachos (see the letter) CLICK HERE TO DONATE NOW״ובזכות מצוות הצדקה וחסד והצלת נפשות יזכו כל המסייעים לבני חיי ומזוני, ברכה והצלחה ובריאות הגוף והנפש ואורך ימים ושנים ונחת מכל הצאצאים שיהיו כולם דורות ישרים ומבורכים, בריאים ושלמים תלמידי חכמים וצדיקים וכל טוב סלה״. CLICK HERE TO DONATE NOW Check you can make out to: Tomchei Tzedaka corp. Mail: P.o Box 1003, Lakewood NJ 08701 PLEASE SPECIFY FOR “KEREN RABBI GALAI AND RABBI KOLEDETZKI #10122” CLICK HERE TO DONATE NOW

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THIS SUNDAY: Free Antibody Testing In Catskills And Flatbush – You Must Register Today!

Bikur Cholim has partnered with the prestigious Mayo Clinic and the NIH to offer the most advanced antibody testing for the purpose of qualifying you as a convalescent plasma donor. This may also allow researchers to better understand the COVID-19 immune response and work towards a cure. There are no requirements to have had COVID-19 symptoms in order to be tested. REGISTRATION CLOSES TONIGHT – PLEASE SIGN UP HERE NOW There will be a drive in Flatbush at two locations, and for the first time in the Catskills in the Hatzalah Garage in partnership with Catskills Hatzalah. All donors will be receiving their results. It will allow local doctors and Rabbinic figures to determine the true extent of the immune response in your neighborhood. We will be testing individuals with symptoms (or confirmed COVID) and those without any symptoms. It will provide you with the most advanced and accurate antibody results that exist using Mayo Clinic’s testing platform. It will allow further study and analysis of our communities’ antibody response by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) who will be detailing and analyzing our communal response in creating better tests and hopefully a vaccine. (YWN World Headquarters – NYC)

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A Powerful Op-Ed Defending The Kavod Of The Moetzes Gedolei HaTorah

(By Rabbi Yair Hoffman for 5TJT.com) It is a sad reality that very often, lawyers win cases not on the evidence per se, but rather upon their ability to speak more passionately and more convincingly than the lawyer representing the other side. Recently, a Rav of a Flatbush shul delivered a deeply passionate resignation speech.  Listening to the speech strikes an emotional cord within us.  It was a plea for Tefilah, a plea to hear the sweet sounds of tinokos shel bais Raban. What yid with a heart listening to this powerful presentation would not empathize with this Rav? Who cannot be taken by his passion? His genuine pain?  The power of an emotional speech is most convincing. The problem is that the Rav’s appeal to the emotion, so powerful and so prevailing, leads us, perhaps, down a somewhat murky path.  It is a path that, intellectually, perhaps, sets off some warning bells in our head.  And yet, the sheer force of his passion, his earnestness of expression, his sincerity – draws us ever closer toward his thinking.  Is he, perhaps, right? It is hard to navigate – but there is something tugging within us.  Something we feel is not quite right.  Why does his speech set off warning bells? Because, we are the am Hashem, and we like to think that we cannot simply throw our Gedolim under the bus. Everyone knows that the Sar haTorah – Rav Chaim Kanievsky shlita has not davened b’Minyan for weeks.  Should we listen to this Rav and view Rav Chaim as being misled by baal habatim that know nothing of Torah and Yiddishkeit?  And what of Rav Gershon Edelstein Shlita?  The warning bells are a bit too scary to also throw Rav Edelstein under the bus. Rav Meir Stern shlita has also closed every minyan.  His depth and gadlus and yiras shamayim are beyond reproach.  Is it wise to really take on such Gedolim?  There were numerous Admorim and Chassidisha Rabbonim who also self-isolated.  Indeed, the Novaminsker Rebbe himself zatzal came out strongly in not attending minyanim. Also, Rav Yeruchem Olshin Shlita – has not left his apartment in nine weeks.  His seforim in learning and in mussar and machshavah have been described by the greatest Gedolim as a matanah for this dor.  How do we throw his hanhaga to the wind? And, finally, let’s not so easily dismiss the intelligence and love for Klal Yisroel of the entire Moetzes Gedolei Torah.  To describe Rav Dovid Feinstein and Rav Shmuel Kamenetsky, the einei hador as too old and senile is very very disturbing.  In this Rav’s worldview, we never should have closed the shuls or the chadarim.  The way he expresses it – the doctors do not know any more than he does. This also sets off warning bells.  Doctors are more experienced than we are.  The frum pediatricians just do not seem the type to hate the shuls and wish to close them. Another warning bell is the accusation levelled toward Agudath Israel of America that there was forgery in issuing their guidelines of how to gradually re-enter our shuls.  To accuse hundreds of well-meaning doctors who give their days and nights in selfless dedication and care for our friends and relatives who have died is just untenable. Yet another warning […]

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POLL: Americans Harbor Strong Fear Of New Infections

Strong concern about a second wave of coronavirus infections is reinforcing widespread opposition among Americans to reopening public places, a new poll finds, even as many state leaders step up efforts to return to life before the pandemic. Yet support for public health restrictions imposed to control the virus’s spread is no longer overwhelming. It has been eroded over the past month by a widening partisan divide, with Democrats more cautious and Republicans less anxious as President Donald Trump urges states to “open up our country,” according to the new survey from The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research. The poll finds that 83% of Americans are at least somewhat concerned that lifting restrictions in their area will lead to additional infections, with 54% saying they are very or extremely concerned that such steps will result in a spike of COVID-19 cases. “Oh, I’d like to get my hair and nails done. It’s one of those little pleasures you take for granted,” said Kathy Bishop, a 59-year-old billing specialist who had pneumonia two years ago. “But I’m just going to suck it up. It’s not worth the risk.” Bishop lives in the western suburbs of Columbus, Ohio, a state where Republican Gov. Mike DeWine is among the state chief executives leading a gradual reopening of businesses such as salons, barbershops, restaurants and bars. But even after nine weeks spent at home, Bishop is among the solid majority of Americans who support rigorous criteria for economic reopening that goes beyond wearing masks in public places and continued social distancing. About 8 in 10 Americans say that it’s essential to reopening for people to return to self-quarantine if they are exposed to the virus. Roughly 6 in 10 also say having widespread testing for the coronavirus in their area is essential to reestablishing public activities, along with requiring people to keep 6 feet (1.8 meters) apart in most places and to wear face masks when they’re near others outside their homes. Full Coverage: Virus Outbreak Nearly as telling as the public’s appetite for rigorous precaution: Close to half say it is essential that a vaccine be available before public life resumes. A third say that’s important but not essential. Taken together, the findings suggest that while some Americans are anxious to get back to business as usual, most don’t see the country returning anytime soon to what once was considered normal. Instead, Americans largely envision a protracted period of physical distancing, covered faces and intermittent quarantines ahead, perhaps until a vaccine is available. Joe Yeskewicz, of Middleboro, Massachusetts, said he believes a vaccine is a must for his town of 23,000 south of Boston to fully reopen. He’s among the nearly 8 in 10 Americans who don’t expect one to be ready before the end of the year. “It is so novel, so unpredictable and so terribly, terribly contagious,” the 76-year-old retired teacher and college professor said of the virus. “The vaccine predictably could take years because it has to undergo a vigorous testing program for it to be effective and safe. Regardless of the optimism, this is going to take a while.” The latest AP-NORC survey was conducted over this past weekend, before Monday’s news of positive results in a clinical trial of a potential vaccine. It found that a […]

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Mazal Tov! Orphaned Son Gets Engaged After Shloshim For Parents Who Died Of COVID-19

Leizer Porush, 22, the son of Rav Tzvi, z’l and Baila Porush, a’h, who passed away days apart after they both fell ill with the coronavirus, got engaged on Tuesday. The shidduch had already been suggested when the parents were still alive but before the two could meet, the coronavirus began to spread and the parents became ill, according to a Kikar H’Shabbos report. “It’s a great simcha,” said one of family members to Kikar H’Shabbat, “because this was the will of the parents, who discussed the shidduch while they were still alive.” Leizer’s mother, Baila Porush, a’h, passed away first – only days after she began feeling ill – at the age of 54. Two days later, her husband, R’ Tzvi (Hershel) Porush, z’l, passed away at the age of 58, leaving their children, four of them not yet married, double orphans. Fortunately, another son in the Porush family, who had also contracted the coronavirus and was seriously ill, has completely recovered. Tragically, the family has suffered tragedy in the past, when the oldest son, Shmulik, z’l, passed away suddenly, failing to wake up one morning. A fund has been established to help the family. 

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Kabbalas HaTorah Will Look Different This Year

The Yom Tov of Shavuos. The acceptance of the Torah. Not merely a remembrance of what was, but an actual giving of the Torah to those people that study it and hold it dear. Shavuos has always come, no matter where and how the Yidden find themselves. It has come during times of great joy, and it has come during times of persecution and sadness. But it has always come. This year, Klal Yisroel finds themselves in a unique situation for the acceptance of the Torah, with Yeshivos, Batei Midrashim, and Shuls closed across the country it hardly creates the environment that we usually associate with this precious Yom Tov. However, just like Shavuos always comes, so too is the way to prepare ourselves always the same; that is with Limud Hatorah. It may be by ourselves, in our own houses or on our lawns, by teleconferencing or by Zoom, but prepare we must by learning Torah for this great day. This change of venue stands out in a very pronounced way for those that learn the Daf Hashavua program. Started fifteen years ago, Daf Hashavua was created to help people learn in-depth with a structured schedule that allows them to cover ground, but still be able to have a fuller understanding of the Sugyos and give time for review. Daf Hashavua has become very popular all over the globe, especially for Bnei Torah who are joining the workforce as they are able to continue an Iyun-style learning, similar to what they did when they were in Yeshiva. With over 5,000 participants worldwide and hundreds of Chaburos in Batei Midrashim all over the globe the Lomdei Daf Hashavua have toiled on the weekly Daf, week by week, month by month, year by year.  Now, coming up on this Rosh Chodesh Sivan the participants of Daf Hashavua will be reaching a huge milestone; the finishing of Seder Moed. Masechta Shabbos, the first moed, began nearly fifteen years ago, and the ending of Maseches Chagiga is merely days away. Indeed, one cannot think of a better way to prepare for the Yom Tov of Shavuos then through achieving such a monumental accomplishment. The siyum, planned to be an international event, with participants worldwide joining together, has been cancelled due to the virus. However, as Rabbi Zacharia Adler, the indefatigable Director of Daf Hashavua explains, the Siyum will still go one, albeit in an unusual way. “All the people that have learned the Daf for years definitely deserve the best Siyum possible”, explains R’ Zacharia, “therefore we plan on a virtual Siyum with someone being Mesayem, the beginning of Masechta Yevamos, and lively music in honor of this great accomplishment.” The Siyum will also feature Divrei Chizzuk from leading Rabbonim and Roshei Yeshivos, urging the Lomdim to continue their never-ending work of toiling in the Torah, with the beginning of Masechta Yevamos, a difficult and complex Masechta. Although this timing seems hard for the beginning of such a Masechta, R’ Shimmy Globman, Chairman of Daf Hashavua, is not fazed. “Look at what’s going on the last couple of months” says R’ Shimmy, “even with the Batei Midrashim closed, our Chaburos continue to learn and share with each other insights, be it by phone, Zoom, WhatsApp, or other means. Lomdei Daf Hashavua know how […]

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DISPELLING THE FALSEHOODS: Senior Gedolim Release Timely Letter After Viral Audio Message

The Agudah, today, has released the attached letter signed by three senior members of the Moetzes Gedolei HaTorah, Rabbi Shmuel Kamenetsky, Rabbi Dovid Feinstein, and Rabbi Aharon Feldman, for purposes of clarification. ENGLISH TRANSLATION We write in response to slander and to publicly declare that the Guidelines released by the leadership of Agudath Israel of America – on the subject of how and when to reopen the doors of our shuls and batei medrash for tefillah in a way that is in accordance with the law and in which there is no danger of the further spread of coronavirus – were fully accepted by us and were with the approval of the Moetzes Gedolei HaTorah. The rumors that the leadership of Agudath Israel acted on this of their own discretion are complete fabrications. It is appropriate to emphasize that all the activity of the Agudah’s leadership under the direction of Rabbi Chaim Dovid Zwiebel are for the sake of Heaven and are performed after consultation with gedolei Torah. On this we sign on the 27th of Iyar, 5780, Dovid Feinstein SHmuel Kamenetzky Aharon Feldman (YWN World Headquarters – NYC)

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Regional Fed Chief: Loan Program Could Aid A Slow Recovery

The president of a regional Federal Reserve bank that will oversee a groundbreaking business lending program said Wednesday that he thinks a slower-than-expected recovery from the economic downturn would lead companies to seek critical support from the program. In an interview with The Associated Press, Eric Rosengren, president of the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston, said the new Main Street Lending Program will provide bridge loans to formerly healthy companies that are struggling because of the virus and the resulting business shutdowns and economic downturn. The Main Street program, announced in March, is expected to begin operations by June 1. The program will act as “an insurance policy in case things don’t go as well in the second half of the year as we hope,” Rosengren said. Companies that still suffer from weak demand or from an eventual second wave of the coronavirus might be unable to borrow later this year because many banks could be saddled with failing loans. That shortfall would likely boost demand for the Fed’s Main Street program, Rosengren said. “I think many businesses are now realizing … that this may be a much more extended and slower ramp up than they were hoping,” Rosengren said. “Firms may not immediately need the funds. But if this were to be a fairly slow recovery, they may find, as we get into the summer, that they’re more in need of the funds and the facility becomes very useful.” The Main Street Lending program marks the first time since the Great Depression that the Fed will lend directly to businesses outside the banking sector. Most of the other emergency programs it has launched this year are intended to benefit the economy by ensuring that the financial system is operating smoothly. Despite its name, the Main Street program is geared for companies too large for the government’s small business lending effort, known as the Paycheck Protection Program. The Fed has said it will lend up to $600 billion through the program. Companies with up to 15,000 employees or $5 billion in revenue will be eligible for loans. The minimum loan will be $500,000 — more than twice the size of loans provided by the PPP. In an online speech to a business group Tuesday, Rosengren suggested that the U.S. economy will continue to struggle long after states and cities lift their restrictions on business activity. Without a vaccine or other effective public health measures, he said, many consumers, particularly elderly ones, will continue to avoid shopping, eating out or traveling. Given that one-fifth of U.S. jobs involve the restaurant, retail and hotel industries, a full recovery won’t be possible until people feel more confident, Rosengren said. “While allowing employers to reopen will enable some people to return to work, it is not a panacea for our economic challenges, which again are rooted in public health concerns,” the Fed official said Tuesday. In the interview, Rosengren said the Fed is willing to accept risks with the Main Street program and is prepared to lose money. That echoes a reversal Tuesday by Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, who said the Treasury would accept losses from the $75 billion it is providing the Fed to finance the Main Street program. Mnuchin had previously said the Treasury expected to be fully repaid. “These loans are […]

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