Monday, March 27, 2006

Hatzolah of Far Rockaway

Things sure seem to be heating up in Far Rockaway the past week or so. Apparently, a prominent Rov got up in his Shul on Shabbos and advised his Kehillah that they should think twice before calling Hatzolah on Shabbos. He then gave an example of a "cut finger" on Shabbos which should be shown to a doctor before calling Hatzolah; and naturally if it's a serious situation such as chest pains, not to hesitate but call Hatzolah immediately!..... The local Hatzolah Coordinators who (from what I hear) have a long standing feud with this Rov, took out two full page ads in the local newspaper (5 Towns Jewish Times) and for all practical purposes BLASTED this Rov. These are excerpts of the ad: In the summer of 2000, the Hatzalah Bais Din Poskend "on the issue of whether or not a local Rav or even Vaad Horabbanim has a right to become involved in Halachic decisions regarding Hatzalah practices in their local neighborhood.....if anyone in our community has any questions or suggestions they should be directed to Rabbi Dovid Weinberger Shlita.... While we are hurt and outraged at the accusations of a local Rabbi in our community, publicly accusing our members who are Yirah Shamayim and Moser Nefesh of Rachmana Litzlan being Mechallel Shabbos, we would have been silent, preferring not to dignify his venomous attacks against us, with a response. However, when he recently publicly Poskened that one should not call Hatzalah but rather look for a Doctor to determine if it is indeed a Sakanah, because Hatzalah members are not qualified to make that determination, we must cry out. We are frightened and concerned that delay in calling for emergency care will Rachmana Litzlan result in unnecessary death. Meanwhile while searching the web I came across the Hatzolah of Far Rockaway Website where there was a "Halacha Page"; and it sure sounds like they are contradicting themselves. Here's what it said: "These Halachos were prepared by Rabbi Dovid Weinberger, Posek for Rockaway Lawrence Hatzalah and Morah D'asrah of Shaari Tefilah. However please consult your own Rav for guidance on specific issues." I would also like to know if the Hatzolah Coordinators consulted with "their" Bais Din about the two page ad that was published in the newspaper. Did they proof read it? Did they write it? Did they authorize the $3,000+ that the newspaper charges for an ad that size?
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