Founders of Ezras Torah
Leading Torah Luminaries of the Past Century who urged the American Rabbinate to create Ezras Torah
Founding Executive Director
The Chofetz Chaim
Rav Yisroel Meir Kagan
Previous Presidents of Ezras Torah
Rav Moshe Feinstein
|Rav Israel Rosenberg
|Rav Naftali Riff
|Rav Dovid Lifshitz
|Rav Menachem Gettinger
The year was 1915 (Jewish Year 5676). Europe was in the violent throes of World War I. Hunger and disease, poverty and despair besieged
European Jewry. The Chofetz Chaim, Rav Yisrael Meir HaKohen, may the mention of the righteous person's name bring for us a blessing - ZT"L,
and Rav Chaim Ozer Grodzinsky, ZT"L, turned to the Agudas HaRabbonim of America with an urgent plea: "Please do something to aid the starving,
impoverished Jews of Europe". The immediate response was the formation of an organization called the Torah Relief Society, or by its more
popular Hebrew name, Ezras Torah. Funds and food were sent overseas, many lives were saved, much misery was alleviated.
Later in 1926 one of the greatest European Torah scholars came to America. His name was Rav Yosef Eliyahu Henkin, ZT"L. For the next 50
years Rav Henkin with unprecedented self-sacrifice guided and directed Ezras Torah, his name becoming synonymous with the organization itself.
Ezras Torah became known in the Jewish world as the organization that stood for Tzedakah (Charity) and Chesed (Kindness) according to the
highest Torah standards. In fact, Ezras Torah was referred to
by the great Rav Isser Zalman Meltzer, ZT"L, as the "Holy of Holies of Tzedakahs".
Through the nightmare years of the Holocaust, Ezras Torah was again the rescue agent, helping thousands of families escape to freedom. As
refugees poured onto the shores of America, Ezras Torah was there to help them rebuild their broken lives. Then later in 1951, the Chief
Rabbinate of Israel beseeched Rav Henkin to expand the operations of Ezras Torah in the Holy Land. In response, Ezras Torah in co-operation
with the Israeli government built 6 housing projects spanning Jerusalem, Bnei Brak and the Negev.
Today 95% of Ezras Torah's operations and programs are directed to Israel under the devoted leadership of Rav Yisrael Gettinger, Shlita. Over 1,300 families have established Endowment Funds or Loan Funds with Ezras Torah to date. As well, Ezras Torah receives over 1.5 million dollars a year through its Direct Mail Campaigns, E-Mail Campaigns, Parlor Meetings, Breakfasts, and Bequests. Ezras Torah is currently expanding its Emergency Medical Assistance (Keren Refuah) Program in order to provide for the ever increasing medical costs of the poor, in addition to expanding its efforts in providing funds for poor orphaned Chasonim and Kallahs. In 5776 Ezras Torah celebrated 100 years of serving the Jewish people in Tzedakah and Chesed.
In order for it to continue and expand its services it must expand its budget, with G-d's help, at all costs. To achieve this Ezras Torah needs
your help. Please join with the many thousands of dear and cherished contributors who enable Ezras Torah to help and may G-d respond with unlimited
blessings of health, happiness and success to you and yours in kind. Click here to offer your support.