Rebbetzin Sarah Rasya Borenstein, a”h, the wife of, ybl”c, Harav Shmuel Yaakov Borenstein, shlita, Rosh Yeshivas Kiryas Melech, passed away on Motzoei Shabbos Parashas Tazria-Metzora after an extended illness. She was 65. Thousands accompanied her levayah, headed by Roshei Yeshivah, Rabbanim and hundreds of talmidim and alumni of Yeshivos Kiryas Melech and Chevron-Geulah.
Rebbetzin Sara Rasya was born on Shavuos 5707/1947 in Germany to Reb Yoself Leib and Miriam Kleiner, z”l. Her mother was the daughter of Harav Avraham Yitzchak Bloch, zt”l, Rosh Yeshivah of Telz in Lithuania.
As a young child, Sarah Rasya came to Eretz Yisrael with her parents, where they settled in Tel Aviv. Her parents’ home was one of ahavas Torah and support of those who learn Torah, and they imbued her with refined middos.
In her youth she learned in Bais Yaakov of Tel Aviv and then the Scharansky Seminary, where she was one of the top students. She was beloved by friends and teachers alike and was a role model with her sterling middos.
She then traveled to England, where she studied in Gateshead Seminary. While there, she published several pamphlets on various subjects, including one renowned one on emunas chachamim. The pamphlets were distributed in the seminary and were a fundamental element of the studies on emunah and hashkafah.
In 5730/1970, she married Harav Shmuel Yaakov Borenstein, who was learning at the time in Chevorn. Together, they established a home of Torah and yiras Shamayim. Indeed, her entire life revolved around the axis of Torah, and she did not allow the mundane matters of the outside world to penetrate her home.
From the beginning, the Rebbetzin undertook to support the home and tend to whatever had to be taken care of, so that her husband would be able to devote himself to his learning.
For decades she was a teacher and mechaneches in the Bais Yaakov schools in Bayit Vegan and Bais Yisrael, a position in which she excelled. She had a great influence on bnos Yisrael, molding their spiritual personalities. She earned a reputation for having boundless mesirus nefesh for her students, and she maintained close ties with her students for years.
Over the years, she stood at her husband’s side in his various positions as a marbitz Torah, primarily in Yeshivas Chevron in Geulah and in Yeshivas Kriyas Melech in Bnei Brak.
The Rebbetzin was characterized by her wisdom and her silence — she distanced herself from even the slightest vestige of lashon hara or rechilus. Everyone knew that in her presence, there was no bigger embarrassment than speaking lashon hara. Everyone felt her elevated spiritual level just by being in her presence.
She was recently hospitalized, and tefillos were offered for her recovery. Indeed, there was an improvement and her discharge was scheduled for Sunday. But on Friday, just before shekiah, she suddenly went into cardiac arrest and passed away.
The levayah departed on Motzoei Shabbos from her home in Bnei Brak. Thousands of people, including Roshei Yeshivah, Rabbanim and talmidim and alumni of her husband, participated. Before the levayah departed, hespeidim were delivered by Harav Binyamin Rimmer, Rosh Yeshivas Kiryas Melech; Harav Dovid Cohen, Rosh Yeshivas Chevron; Harav Chaim Mordechai Ausband; Harav Chananya Schiff, on behalf of the neighbors, and her husband Harav Shmuel Yaakov Borenstein.
The levayah then proceeded to Yerushalayim, where she was buried on Har Hamenuchos.
The Rebbetzin is survived by her husband, Harav Shmuel Yaakov Borenstein; her brothers, Reb Yitzchak Kleiner and Reb Yaakov Kleiner; and her sister, Rebbetzin Sternbuch of Switzerland.