Kenneth Cohen

Where Are the Chief Rabbis

The Hanukkah story has many heroes, connected with the great victory over the Greeks. Perhaps the initiators of the rebellion, were the greatest heroes of all.

The Jewish people were being oppressed, to the point that they were not allowed to practice their religion. The family of the Chashmonaim, who were also Cohenim, decided that it was time to take action.

The High Priest, Matityahu, took the first dramatic step, by killing a Jew, eating the flesh of swine. His son, Judah, carried out the rallying cry of “Who is like you O’mighty G-d?” The Hebrew letters spelled the word, “Maccabee,” which became the name of the liberators of Israel.

This victory could not have come without the inspiration of the leaders of that time. They encouraged the people that Hashem was with them, and with His help, they would defeat their enemies.

During our current crisis, we desperately need spiritual inspiration. As a nation, we are still in shock, and we are still mourning the death of our beloved. We were thrust into a war of survival, and we have lost too many brave soldiers, defending our country.

It could be such a comfort if we would regularly hear from our chief rabbis on radio and television. We need their guidance, direction, and inspiration. It would seem that this is their obvious role.

With G-d’s help we will get through all of this. We are a resilient people. But the challenges that lie ahead could be made easier, if the chosen spiritual leaders of our country, would step up, and inspire us, just as was done in the days of the Hanukkah story.

About the Author
Rabbi Cohen has been a Torah instructor at Machon Meir, Jerusalem, for over twenty years while also teaching a Talmud class in the Shtieblach of Old Katamon. Before coming to Israel, he was the founding rabbi of Young Israel of Century City, Los Angeles. He recently published a series of Hebrew language-learning apps, which are available at
Related Topics
Related Posts