I want to commend The Lakewood Scoop for being on the forefront of bringing the plight of our precious single Bnos Yisroel in Litvish communities throughout the United States. In your last op-ed article, the writer highlighted the staggering mismatch in the number of single Litvish girls in Shidduchim in the United States, and how this is not a problem in the Litvish community in Israel, or the Chassidish community in America or Israel, as was highlighted in the letter of the Gedolei HaDor. The Gedolim explained, that the only change that will be effective, is to have Bochrim get married at a younger age and hence eliminate the AGE GAP. See the link here
Klal Yisroel appreciates immensely the future changes which will be taking place this year of completely eliminating Fourth Year Bais Midrash in the United States so that Bochurim could go to Israel earlier, and the total elimination of the “Freezer Policy” in all Yeshivos in the United States (and this year’s Freezer may be starting a bit later perhaps will only start on Rosh Chodesh Kislev, pending a meeting this Sunday evening in a prominent Lakewood Yeshivah). While those are both amazing developments more has to be done for our Bnos Yisroel.
In the Artscroll/Mesorah Rav Chaim Kanievsky book on Shidduchim (page 33) it says:
R’ Chaim Kanievsky would frequently say over the following which he heard from his mechutin R’ Aharon Leib Shteinman:
Napoleon’s army invaded Russia in 1812 and eventually retreated, as the French were ill-equipped to cope with the brutal Russian winter. At that time, thousands of French soldiers were stranded in Russia. Among them were several hundred observant Jewish men, many of whom married Russian Jewish girls.
Shlomo HaMelech said, (Mishlei 21:1) “Like the streams of water is the heart of a king in the hand of Hashem.” Rav Chaim of Volozhin suggested that perhaps one of the reasons why Hashem caused Naploeon to invade Russia was to help hundreds of bnos Yisrael meet their predestined zivug from abroad.
Consider this French army boys marrying Russian Girls what a cultural mismatch! I’m sure the naysayers then (they existed back then as well) would challenge this and speak about the lack of readiness and preparedness for marriage, of the young Frum French recruits. Yet R’ Chaim of Volozhin stated that: Hashem enabled them to be at in Russia, so that they could be in the very same place as their Bashert and many Doros Yeshorim were created.
We all have undertaken additional Torah learning and Tehillim these days as a merit for our brethren in Eretz Yisroel who underwent the day with the largest number of Jews being killed in a one day time span, since the Holocaust. Many Bochurim are in the United States now, unsure if they should go to Israel now, or wait to see if things are more settled before going. Of course, everyone should follow the lead of their parents and Daas Torah whether they should go now or wait a bit. However, one thing is crystal clear, EVERYONE, should also listen to the Daas Torah of ALL Israeli and American Gedolim who implored the Litvish Bochurim to start Shidduchim younger as was posted to TLS
While human beings cannot begin to fathom or comprehend the calculations of Hashem. During this tragic situation of the brutal murder and maiming of our dear brothers and sisters in Eretz Yisroel, perhaps one the things we can do for our Bnos Yisroel and everlasting memory for the kedoshim is to help rebuild some of what was destroyed, if the 22 year old Bochurim are home anyway for the next few weeks, awaiting to see if they are to return to Israel or not. they should begin starting For the Kedushah of Klal Yisroel, the Bochurim (many of them are over the age of 22) should start Shidduchim NOW, and with the help of Hashem, they will get engaged soon, and they can return to Israel as Chassanim or with their wives after they get married. As R’ Chaim Kanievsky would stress many times. We are living in the times of Moshiach who is at the door about to enter. The Gemorah states that Moshiach will only come when all the Neshomos descend to this world. This will hasten the GEULAH for all of us. Yes, BH positive changes were made with eliminating fourth year Bais Midrash in the USA and the abolishment “freezer policy” which although less than thirty years old (I read in the above link that some readers commented, that the freezer policy in our town existed for forty years. I did EXTENSIVE research on the matter, they are WRONG! the “freezer” was NOT instituted while R’ Aharon Kotler or his son R’ Shnuer Kotler were Roshei Yeshivah). I implore to all Yiddishe mothers out there, please, please, please, let us utilize this time of uncertainty to start your sons in Shidduchim. If your son is over 22 years old why are you waiting? Most of your husbands were that age when they were married before the inadvertent age gap fermented these last 20 years. Besides doing this for your son, remember this will ultimately help your own DAUGHTER as well that there should be enough Bochurim their age when she starts Shidduchim. When I saw the numbers of the Litvish Community age gap several weeks ago, I have not been able to rest peacefully. May it be a Zechus Refua Shelimah for the thousands of wounded in Eretz Yisroel and for all the Cholim of Klal Yisroel worldwide.
Od Yishama Be’Arei Yehudah Uvechutzos Yerushalaim, Kol Sasson VeKol Simchah, Kol Chassan VeKol Kallah.