Omer Bar Lev, the current head of the board of Angel’s Bakery, and Yaron Angel, one of the owners of Angel’s Bakery went to the Shiva home of Rabbi Gershon Edelstein to apologize, on Sunday, according to a report by Ishay Cohen.
ירון אנג׳ל ועומר בר לב הגיעו לנחם בביתו של הרב אדלשטיין בבני ברק. החרם על אנג’ל במגזר החרדי התחיל בעקבות ההפגנה מול בית הרב בהשתתפות בר לב. באותה הפגישה השניים השאירו מכתבים בהם התנצלו על הפגיעה במגזר החרדי @AkivaWeisz pic.twitter.com/Mbwl5C7yIl
— כאן חדשות (@kann_news) June 4, 2023
לא בלתי מעניין: עמר בר לב וירון אנג׳ל צפויים להגיע בשעה הקרובה לנחם בביתו של מרן הגאון רבי גרשון אדלשטיין זצ״ל.
— ישי כהן (@ishaycoen) June 4, 2023
After failing to make the cut as a leftwing politician and minister in the Labor party, Bar Lev was appointed to head the board of Angel’s Bakery. But that didn’t stop him from getting involved in radical leftwing hate politics. In the beginning of May, Bar Lev was at an anti-Haredi protest held outside the home of Rabbi Gershon Edelstein, who was the Rosh Yeshiva of the Ponevezh Yeshiva and spiritual leader of the Degel Hatorah faction in the UTJ party.
השר לשעבר עמר בר-לב מפגין מול ביתו של הרב גרשון אדלשטיין בן ה-100. pic.twitter.com/HJUOUIsq96
— שילה פריד (@shilofreid) May 4, 2023
The disrespect shown to the centenarian rabbi launched a spontaneous boycott of Angel’s Bakery by nearly the entire Haredi community. The Haredim demanded that Angel’s Bakery fire him or he apologize. Neither happened.
Rabbi Edelstein was someone known for not getting involved in fights and even called on the Haredi community to not respond to protests, but Bar Lev already did his damage, and it was too late.
At the time Angel’s claimed the boycott actually helped their business as they no longer had to sell subsidized bread at a loss, but as the boycott continued and time passed, that claim has become much less credible. Currently their stock is at trading at NIS 3.624 a share, below the NIS 3.798 price it was at when they claimed the boycott helped them.
Now, in an unexpected move, the two visited the family of Rabbi Edelstein, who passed away last week, to offer their condolences and apologize. They pair left letters of apology to the family saying it was not their intent to dishonor the rabbi or the Torah. Rabbi Edelstein would probably have accepted it. But still, perhaps their next stop should be to Rabbi Edelstein’s grave to ask forgiveness directly.
Both Shas’s Aryeh Deri and UTJ Degel Hatorah’s Moshe Gafni said “מודה ועוזב ירוחם” (He who confess and forsakes (sins) will find mercy). The phrase is from the Mishle 28:13 “מְכַסֶּה פְשָׁעָיו לֹא יַצְלִיחַ וּמוֹדֶה וְעֹזֵב יְרֻחָם” (He who conceals his sins will not succeed, but he who confesses and abandons [them] will obtain mercy.) In short, the two Haredi political leaders called to end the Haredi boycott against Angel’s Bakery.