Reaction To Weberman
The observant community was torn by the recent embarrassing arrest, trial, conviction, and sentencing of Nechemya Weberman. He was found guilty by a jury and sentenced to 103 years for the abuse of a minor.
Some felt he was wrongly convicted on the testimony of only his accuser, without any witnesses or supporting physical evidence. Others felt the admitted egregious routine violations of religious gender separation pointed to his guilt. Still others felt that though he may have been guilty, he should not have been sentenced to 103 years.
Many conversations revolved around the role of the Brooklyn district attorney.
Some felt his office was failing in the prosecution of abuse offenders within the observant community and that the Weberman trial and severity of sentence was political; that in effect this was a show trial. Others felt the district attorney has been vigorously championing abuse victims.
Some argue that the confidentiality accorded abuse victims in the observant community by the DA’s office has made it somewhat easier for such victims to come forward. Yet others contend the DA’s office is failing in prosecuting alleged perpetrators.
Vishnitzer/Rachmestrivka: Two Chassunahs
The aufruf of Noson Nuta Zev Twersky was celebrated in the main Vishnitzer beis medrash in Monsey on Shabbos Bo, January 19, with participation of the great-grandfather, Rabbi Mordechai Hager, Monsey Vishnitzer Rebbe.
The chassan is the son of Rabbi Yaakov Yosef Twersky, Lakewood Vishnitzer Rav; son of Rabbi Avraham Dov Twersky, Monsey Rachmestrivka Rav; son of Rabbi Chai Yitzchok Twersky, Rachmestrivka Rebbe in Boro Park. Rabbi Yaakov Yosef is the son-in-law of Rabbi Chaim Yitzchok Twersky, Loyever Rebbe in Boro Park; son-in-law of the Spinka Rebbe, zt”l.
The kallah is the daughter of Rabbi Shlomo Leifer, Monsey Krula Rav; son of Rabbi Yesochor Berish Leifer and son-in-law of the Spinka Rebbe zt”l.
Motzaei Shabbos saw the traditional forshpiel, followed Sunday by the chassan mohl and the urimmer chassunah with a formal meal. The kabbalas panim took place in the main beis medrash on Monday afternoon (the Vishnitzer Rebbe entered at 4:30) followed by the chuppah outside the front doors, with the Vishnitzer Rebbe and the Rachmestrivka Rebbe officiating. Every wedding participant and guest then stood on long lines to wish a mazel tov to the great-grandfathers and wedding family. The chassunah meal was served and the Vishnitzer Rebbe entered at 9 p.m. to lead in the formal bentching, followed by the mitzvah tantz.
On Tuesday, January 22, the sheva berachos were held in the Lakewood Vishnitzer Beis Medrash. Wednesday, the sheva berachos were celebrated by the Monsey Krula Kehilla at the Toshnod Hall. The Vishnitzer Yeshiva in Monsey hosted the Thursday evening sheva berachos while the Shabbos sheva berachos were celebrated in the main Vishnitzer beis medrash in Monsey, with the Vishnitzer Rebbe gracing the joyous events. The last sheva berachos, on Sunday, was held in the main beis medrash.
On Tuesday, January 29, Rabbi Dovid Moshe Twersky, son of the Rachmestrivka, escorted his son, Chaim Ben Zion Twersky, to the chuppah to marry the daughter of Rabbi Eliezer Dovid Schlager, mashgiach Gibbers Vishnitzer Yeshiva; son of Rabbi Avrohom Shlager, Bokashevitzer Rav; son-in-law of Rabbi Yisroel Eliezer Fish, Biksader Rebbe; son-in-law of Rabbi Mordechai Hager, Monsey Vishnitzer Rebbe. The chassan is the son of Rabbi Dovid Moshe Twersky, son of Rabbi Yitzchok Chai Twersky, Rachmestrivka Rebbe, and son-in-law of Rabbi Yaakov Yitzchok Unger, zt”l (1932-2002), Dombrover Rebbe.
The Shabbos Beshalach aufruf took place in the Rachmestrivka beis medrash in Boro Park and the chassunah was held in the main Vishnitzer beis medrash in Monsey with the participation of the Vishnitzer Rebbe and the Rachmestrivka Rebbe.