BDE: Rebbetzin Sara Finkel, Mother Of Rabbi Nosson Tzvi Finkel Zts’l, Passes Away At Age 101

BDE: Rebbetzin Sara Finkel, Mother Of Rabbi Nosson Tzvi Finkel Zts’l, Passes Away At Age 101
BDE: Rebbetzin Sara Finkel, Mother Of Rabbi Nosson Tzvi Finkel Zts’l, Passes Away At Age 101

JERUSALEM (VINnews) — The Torah world mourns the passing of Rebbetzin Sara Finkel, mother of Mir Rosh Yeshiva Rabbi Nosson Tzvi Finkel Zts’l, at the age of 101.

Rebbetzin Finkel was lucid until her last day but on Tuesday night she collapsed at her home in the Gush Shemonim neighborhood adjacent to Bar Ilan street in Jerusalem and despite the efforts of Hatzalah paramedics to resuscitate her, she passed away.

Rebbetzin Finkel was born in Poland to Rabbi Shmuel Rosenbloom, a Gerer chasid. When she was a year old the family emigrated to America. She married Rabbi Eliyahu Meir Finkel, a grandson of the Alter of Slabodka and built her family in Chicago, where they provided hospitality and kosher food for many illustrious visitors including the Ponovezher Rav, Rabbi Aharon Kotler, Rabbi Mordechai Chevroni and many others.

A watershed moment occurred when she and her husband visited Israel in 1957, taking their 14-year-old son Nosson Tzvi with them. In her memoir “Rabbi Nosson Tzvi” which she wrote in her 90’s in memory of her son, she writes that:

It was the day before Rosh Hashanah during that fateful first visit to Eretz Yisrael. I recall the Uncle (that’s how my husband referred to him), Rav Leizer Yudel, {Rosh Yeshiva of Mir and son of the Alter of Slabodka) summoning me to his room to speak with me concerning a serious decision I had to make. He asked me in Yiddish to leave my son Nosson Tzvi in Eretz Yisrael to study in his yeshiva, the Mir. Before uttering a reply I thought to myself, What, leave my son, at the tender age of 14, across the ocean, thousands of miles away from home without his parents and his younger brother? How could I possibly do such a thing? When I hesitated he added, with a warm smile on his face and a twinkle in his eye, “Du darfst hobben em unter dine fachtug?- Do you need him attached to your apron strings?” To which I answered in Yiddish, the language I learned from my parents as a youngster growing up in St. Paul, “I will have to think about it.” I repeated, “I will think it over,” and I thought to myself, How can I leave him behind?

On the second day of Rosh Hashanah after Shachris, following the reading in Parashas Vayeira that narrates the moving story of Akeidas Yitzchak…I thought to myself, If your patriarch, Avraham Avinu, was willing to bring such a korban, to make such a profound sacrifice, why am I hesitating? It was precisely at that moment that I made my decision, which I later related to “the Uncle,” Rav Leizer Yudel: “I will permit Nosson Tzvi to remain in Eretz Yisrael.” I somehow felt at the time that I was giving him to the world; what a thought for a young Jewish mother.”

Subsequently Rav Nosson returned to Chicago to complete his high school studies but the time spent in Mir had left an indelible impression on him and he returned at the age of 18 to study in Mir, married the granddaughter of Rabbi Leizer Yudel and eventually became the Rosh Yeshiva of Mir, serving for over 20 years in the capacity despite suffering from Parkinson’s disease from an early age.

Rebbetzin Sara sent her younger son Gedalia to study in Israel and eventually moved to Israel in the 1980s, where she and her husband continued their hospitality and support of Torah scholars. Rebbetzin Sara was a gifted artist who drew many pictures of gedolim and also wrote a number of recipe books.

In Gush Shemonim she lived adjacent to Rabbi Yitzchak Tuvia Weiss shlita, the head of the Eda Chareidis, and he even came to visit her at her home this week.

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Rabbi Yitzchak Tuvia Weiss visits Rebbetzin Sara Finkel on Sunday, where she presents him with his own portrait drawn by her.

She is survived by her son Rav Gedalia, her grandson Rabbi Eliezer Yehuda who is the current Rosh yeshiva of Mir and many other grandchildren and great-grandchildren all of  whose names she remembered in special ways.

The funeral will leave from the Mir yeshiva in Jerusalem at 1 PM.

May her memory be blessed.

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BDE: Rebbetzin Sara Finkel, Mother Of Rabbi Nosson Tzvi Finkel Zts’l, Passes Away At Age 101 1

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