Rabbi Chaim Kanievsky, one of the most prominent haredi rabbis in Israel, called Sunday for the reopening of schools Monday, despite the ongoing nationwide lockdown.
The ninety-two-year-old rabbi, who was recently infected with the coronavirus, responded to questions Sunday from haredi educators, instructing them to reopen schools Monday.
The rabbi emphasized, however, that the schools should be coordinate their actions with state officials, and that it is preferable if they receive government approval for the reopening.
It is expected that at least part of the Lithuanian (non-Hasidic) haredi school system in Israel will reopen – based on Rabbi Kanievsky’s remarks – on Monday, despite the government prohibitions still in place.
During the Sukkot festival, Rabbi Kanievsky collapsed during a live broadcast of Simchat Beit HaShoeva celebrations for the holiday.
After the gemara was brought to Rabbi Kanievsky, his grandson, Yanki Kanievsky, whispered a few words to him and he opened it. Rabbi Kanievsky strained and leaned forward toward the Gemara when he suddenly collapsed. His eyes closed and he fell back into his chair.
The camera was moved immediately after Rabbi Kanievsky collapsed so as not to show the rabbi in that state. After a few moments the camera as refocused on Rabbi Kanievsky, who appeared to have recovered and was examining the gemara.
"The event continued as normal in [Rabbi Kanievsky's] presence," one participant told Arutz Sheva.
Rabbi Kanievsky's condition was defined as good last night following the Simchat Torah holiday. Prior to the holiday his condition worsened as his temperature rose.
According to the official announcement, the Rabbi's doctors explained that he is experiencing the "second and most dangerous stage of the coronavirus disease."