The Rabbinical Council of America, the leading organization of Orthodox rabbis in North America, mourns the death of Rabbi Shaar Yashuv Cohen, former Chief Rabbi of Haifa and a leading figure of Religious Zionism.
Rabbi Cohen, a scion of a distinguished rabbinic family, was an ever present voice for Torah and its application to the modern state. From his early days as member of the Haganah and later as deputy mayor of Jerusalem and founder of the Ariel Institute, Rabbi Cohen led with great scholarship and humanity.
For more than 25 years Rabbi Cohen served as the Chief Ashkenazic Rabbi of Haifa and served as head of its rabbinical courts. During that time he was also the Chairman of the Board of the Harry Fischel Institute for Talmudic Research, headed the committee for dialogue between the Chief Rabbinate and the Vatican and was recently appointed Head of the Committee for Dialogue between Judaism and Islam.
Rabbi Shalom Baum, president of the RCA, stated, “Rabbi Shaar Yashuv Cohen will be remembered as a gentle man with strong principles. He was a man whose life and contributions mirrored the greatest moments of the State of Israel. We in the Religious Zionist community are indebted to him for his wisdom and guidance from which we have benefited greatly.”
“Rabbi Shaar Yashuv had a warm relationship with the RCA and attended our conventions on occasion.” added Rabbi Elazar Muskin, RCA Vice President. “He was to us North American rabbis a window into the world of those working to build the religious life of the state of Israel. He was a great leader who embodied the pleasant ways of Torah.”