Shoneh Halachos is a program for eighth grade boys to encourage and guide them in the study of Kitzur Shulchan Aruch with the Alter Rebbe’s Psak as clearly explained in notations made by Rabbi Levi Bistritzky a”h – former Rav of Tzfat. It was established by the Igud Menahalei Yeshivos of Crown Heights for Oholei Menachem, United Lubavitcher Yeshiva of Crown Street and joined by Cheder Chabad Monsey, Cheder Lubavitch Morristown and Yeshiva Tomchei Temimim of Queens to expand the knowledge of Halacha and Yiras Shamayim of the talmidim of our community.
The program was founded in memory of HaRav Marlow a”h whom the Rebbe referred to as ‘Ish Halacha’ – a man of Jewish Law; HaRav Marlow’s life was dedicated to the knowledge and clarification of Halacha.
The learning thereof is leilui nishmas HaChosid Reb Schneur Zalman Gurary a”h to whom the interests of the Rebbe were very dear. The program is sponsored by Keren Razag, in memory of Reb Zalman and surely serves as a fitting tribute to an individual who was legendary for his hiskashrus, limud and hidur in performing mitzvos.
There are written tests throughout the year and boys who do well receive a cash reward. Boys that are in the Chidon receive additional money plus seforim.
The finale of the program was a Chidon amongst 36 contestants which was held on Monday evening – 28 Iyur. Rabbi Moshe Wiener, Rabbi Sholom Zirkind and HaTamim Yosef Zirkind sons of Rabbi Yitzchok Zirkind a”h served as the panel of judges. The audience of parents, melamdim, community members and fellow students were astounded at the ability of the participants to quote the Halocho almost verbatim. A D’var Torah was presented by talmid Levi Yitzchok Sternberg (a grandson of Reb SZ Gurary) and Tehillim led by Chaim HaLevi Hurwitz. The event was chaired by Rabbi Hershel Lustig – Menahel of Oholei Menachem who together with Rabbi Leibel Newman and Rabbi Yosef Simpson serve as coordinators of the program.
The winners of the Chidon are:
First Place: Menachem Mendel Gottlieb, Eliezer Karasik
Second Place: Eliyahu Brenenson, Chaim HaLevi Hurwitz, Mordechai Sasonkin, Asher Shurpin
Third Place: Shloma Kanofsky, Sholom HaLevi Lieberman, Shlomo Matusof, Menachem Mendel Okounev, Shlomo Zalman Rosenberg.