Rabbi Yosef: They forgot my father, Rabbi Ovadia

Sephardic Chief Rabbi criticizes Torah education organization for leaving out all mention of his father's rulings from books.

Arutz Sheva Staff ,

Rabbi Yitzhak Yosef
Rabbi Yitzhak Yosef
Yoni Kempinski

Rabbi Yitzhak Yosef, the Sephardic Chief Rabbi of Israel, criticized the Dirshu organization, which, he claimed, does not mention in the halakhic books it prints the rulings of his father, former late Chief Rabbi Ovadia Yosef.

"A few years ago, the heads of the 'Dirshu' organization came to me. I was given a gift of the volumes of Dirshu' edition of the Mishnah. I [do not accept gifts but am] allowed to receive a small gift. They brought me a set of Dirshu's Mishna Brura (halakhic work by the Chafetz Chaim, ed.), Rabbi Yosef said during his weekly Saturnday night lecture.

"They had not even sat down when I immediately told them: 'One moment, I represent Maran, our righteous late master [Rabbi Ovadia Yosef]. Why is he not mentioned in these works? What is this? Bialik, Ahad Ha'Am? Where are his writings, the Yabiah Omer, the Hazon Ovadia, the Yalkut Yosef? Why didn't you mention them? Unbelievable," Rabbi Yosef said.

He said, "They were shocked. They thought I would compliment them. They are accustomed to coming to the rabbis and being flattered. We, thank G-d, do not suffer from the plague of flattery. We told them the truth. They stammered and said they would mention them in the next edition."

Dirshu ("Seek" in Hebrew), an international organization whose goal is to encourage Torah Study, was founded in 1997. As of 2018, more than 150,000 people in 26 countries had taken part in its programs which consist of Torah lectures and financial incentives to learn and master Torah texts. It has also published new editions of traditional Jewish texts, and sponsored major gatherings to celebrate the completion of its study cycles.