On Motzoei Shabbos Parashas Vayechi, a group of some 400 avreichim came with their families to Bnei Brak’s Wagshal Hall to be tested on the halachos of interest (ribbis). Afterward, they each received a heter horaah from the Beis Din of Harav Pinchas Vind, certifying them to instruct in these complex laws. Among the group were a contingent of avreichim from Mexico.
Emceeing the event was Rav Yeshaya Greenspan, who spoke of Rav Vind’s efforts to raise awareness of the laws of ribbis, comparing this to the Chazon Ish’s efforts concerning the mitzvah of Shemittah.
Raavad of the Bnei Brak Beis Din, Harav Sariel Rozenberg, spoke of the importance of studying halachah and of learning Torah as a group.
Harav Moshe Shaul Klein spoke of the awesome responsibility the newly appointed Rabbanim bear in dealing with these complex halachos, in which she’eilos invariably spread out over a number of sugyos.
Harav Chaim Feinstein spoke of the severity of these halachos, which apply to everyone and can very easily be transgressed if one is not learned or does not ask a moreh horaah.
Harav Baruch Mordechai Ezrachi praised Rav Vind’s dedication to the cause of raising awareness of the potential transgressions in matters of ribbis.
Harav Yitzchak David Alter praised the newly appointed Rabbanim for their hasmadah and dedication in learning these complex laws.
Harav Yitzchak Ratzabi was mechadesh dinim in his speech, and added that he feels “the jealousy of sofrim” toward these newly appointed Rabbanim.
Finally, Rav Vind gave instructions to the Rabbanim he had tested and issued permission of horaah, once again reminding them of the weighty responsibility that now lies on their shoulders. He also spoke of his long-held goal that the laws of ribbis be taught in every yeshivah and seminary, so that all realize their applicability and severity.
Among the Rabbanim in attendance were Harav Shimon Galai, Harav Yisrael Menachem Alter, the son of the Gerrer Rebbe; Harav Yosef Efrati, Harav Masoud Ben Shimon, Rav of Bnei Brak; Harav Yaakov Greenwald, Harav Meir Steinberg, Harav Amram Fried, Harav Menachem Yaakovson, Harav Avraham Tzvi Hakohen, Harav Yoel Maklev, Harav Naftali Kofschitz, Harav Yanon Malachi, Harav Yehuda Tzarom, Harav Aharon Shapira, Harav Yosef Meir Altman, Harav Yisrael Ullman, Harav Shlomo Simcha Rothman and Harav Mordechai Shlomo Edelstein.
Afterward, a panel discussion was held in which the newly appointed Rabbanim themselves received questions on ribbis that they answered.