It has been a year since the passing of Rabbi Yisroel Moshe Friedman, The Rebbe of Sadigura. He lead his Chasidim for 7 and a half years, and he was by all accounts a great leader and one that many people from outside of Chasidic group greatly admired.
When he passed away it was expected that his successor was going to be named by his funeral, but it didn’t happen until after the shiva. And when it was announced it that it was not going to be his oldest son, Rabbi Mordechai Shalom Yosef Friedman, but his fifth son, Rabbi Yitzchak Yehoshua Herschel Friedman, who is the youngest married child (The Youngest son Shimon Menachem Nachum Friedman is not yet married and is studying at the Brisk Yeshiva in Jerusalem) should be his lone successor.
This came as a shock to most people because his son, Rabbi Mordechai Shalom Yosef seemed to have a very close relationship with his father was very involved with the various Institutions worldwide and seemed to be a worthy successor to his father. His father chose his younger brother, Rabbi Yitzchak Yehoshua Herschel, who is a definitely a Torah Scholar who was studying in a Kollel in Antwerp. And at least to my knowledge was never involved in running any of his father’s institutions.
So The late Rebbe’s widow Rebbetzin Sara Friedman, who was definitely one of the closest people to her husband and actually was his first cousin as well. Decided that in order to keep the peace in the family and really feeling that her husband true desire was not being fulfilled that there should be 3 Rebbes instead of one. So she said that the will should be amended and now say that the oldest son, Rabbi Mordechai Shalom Yosef Friedman should be The Rebbe of Jerusalem, The 3rd son Rav Aharon Dov Ber Friedman should be the Sadigura Rebbe of London and the 5th son Rav Yitzchak Yehoshua Herschel Friedman should be the Sadigura Rebbe of Bnei Brak.
Most of the Chasidim of the previous Rebbe accepted the The Sadigura Rebbe of Bnei Brak as their Rebbe which is something that I have no problem with that and that is their right. I do have an issue is how the Late Rebbe’s Widow has been treated I understand that there are those who think that she betrayed the late Rebbe by making 2 of her other sons Rebbes as well. But as it has recently been reported on Chadashot 13 that there are those within The Chasidus that are making it very hard for her to live in her apartment which is located on the 3rd floor of the Sadigura Building in Bnei Brak. They have changed the locks to the building have taken items away from the apartment because they want their new Rebbe to have that apartment and sit on his father’s chair in the late’s father’s study.
Kicking anybody out of their home is a terrible thing and it is even worse when that person is a widow. I hope and pray those responsible for this will repent and make sure that the Widow and the rest of the late Rebbe’s Family are given the honour and respect that they deserve.