Rabbi Israel HaKohen Kahanovitch

Story: In the previous generation there was a superb scholar that has been quite unknown beyond his community and those that met him. Rabbi Israel Isaac Kahanovitch, whose Hilula fell on 11 Tammuz (1945), was the Chief Rabbi of all of Western Canada and the Western United States from 1905-1945.
Rabbi Yisroel Kahanovitch
Rabbi Yisroel Kahanovitch
  Rabbi Kahanovitch attended the musar yeshivas of Slobodka and Novardok, and was ordained as a Rav by the Aruch HaShulchan, who was the foremost Posek in his generation in Europe. While Rav of Winnipeg his halachic rulings reached from Toronto to Los Angeles. In fact, both cities requested his permanent station, but he would not leave his position of head of Winnipeg Jewry, as well as his two specific congregations, Beth Jacob and Ashkenazi. Every Shabbos he would speak fiery drashas about supporting the return to Eretz HaKodesh, for he had seen the damage in war torn Europe, from which he fled. In addition, he sent millions of dollars to Eretz Yisroel to help support the Jewish settlers. When Rav Kook, Chief Rabbi of Eretz HaKodesh passed away, Rabbi Kahanovitch was asked to become his successor, but again he refused because of his dedication to his community. In addition to correspondence with Rav Kook, the Rebbe and Previous Chabad Rebbe wrote to Rabbi Kahanovitch for support on issues facing the Jewish People (see index to Igros Kodesh). Until his last days he would spend his spare moments helping orphans, widows, and refugees, and still find time to review the Gemorah and Shulchan Aruch, of which he was completely fluent. The author of this work hopes that this small biography can give honor to his great-grandfather, whose inspiration drives him every day. In addition he hopes the merit of Rabbi Israel Isaac will protect his descendants and Klal Yisroel . This biography was written by  Rabbi Israel's grandson, Rabbi Yonason Kahanovitch he can be contacted at kahanovitch@yahoo.ca.

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