The Detroiter, zy”a
Builder of Yiddishkeit in America
Back in Williamsburg of the early 1920’s, the Stoliner Rebbe, Rav Yaakov Chaim, zy”a, arrived to bridge the old of Stolin with a spiritually-barren American landscape. He would live a life of incredible chessed, dedicating his life to those in need with superhuman dedication.
Volumes could be written about the Rebbe’s chessed for others, most of which was done it utmost secrecy.
And then there was the Rebbe’s deep passion for building Torah intuitions for the American-born young. He keenly understood the need to establish stellar educational institutions if the youth were to follow the ways of their ancestors, and if Yiddishkeit was to thrive in America.
While the time had not yet come for Stolin to establish its own educational intuitions—this would be accomplished by his brother, the Rebbe, z”l— the Rebbe was a dynamic force in the establishment of numerous yeshivos and Beis Yaakov schools, in New York and beyond.
Like all of his activities, his immense efforts were known only to those involved in the work of founding these intuitions, and would not become known for decades. Because this was his way. Indeed, his brother would later attest: “No one knows what our brother accomplished in America.”
The Rebbe would raise astronomical sums—even during the Great Depression—to support these efforts. He would go around from home-to-home recruiting children for the yeshivos and Beis Yaakov’s, and he would constantly guide, advise, and encourage these activists who were fighting the fierce winds of the times.
The Rebbe loved yeshiva students, and had a special place for them at his table and in his heart.
Through his twenty-five years of work on behalf of American Jewry, the foundation was laid for the future of Yeshiva Karlin Stolin.