I was deeply pained to hear the sad news of the petirah of Rebbetzin Berenbaum, a”h. We go back so many years. My father-in-law, Harav Yechezkiel Leitner, z”l, was in Shanghai together with the Rosh Yeshivah Harav Shmuel Berenbaum, zt”l, and when my husband was sitting shivah for his father, the esteemed Rosh Yeshivah came to our house to be menachem avel. To this day, we cherish the chair he sat on.
Rebbetzin Berenbaum had tremendous pleasure from the fact that I taught people of all ages how to read Hebrew. She used to tell me, “You are saving spiritual lives.” Whenever I would visit her, be it in Haym Solomon nursing home or at her home, she would have me tell her stories and amusing anecdotes of my teaching experience. She would shep such nachas from my teaching kriah.
I once said to her, “I’m jealous of you the way you can sit and read and say Tehillim all day.” Wistfully she said, “But I never taught anyone how to read Hebrew so that they can daven and say Tehillim.” What an amazing thing to say to me — she made me feel so good.
I feel both humility and pride to have known such a great woman.
May the time come speedily in our days when we will know of no more sorrow. Amen.