Wednesday, 9 November 2011
Rabbi Yehuda Yehoshua Tzadka – Yahrtzeit 12 Cheshvan
Rabbi Yehuda Yehoshua Tzadka was born in Yerushalayim on 3 Shevat 5670 (1910) (5668 - 1908?) and was named after his grandfather – Rabbi Yehoshua Somech of Baghdad. The name Yehuda was added in accordance with a dream his mother had. His mother was the niece of Rabbi Yosef Chaim (the Ben Ish Chai) of Baghdad (i.e. his mother's mother was the Ben Ish Chai's sister). Or to put it another way, his great-grandfather was the Ben Ish Chai's father. He also had the name "Chaim" added to him when he was ill.
In 5697 (1936) at the tender age of 26 – Rav Tzadka was appointed by Rav Ezra Attia – the then Rosh Yeshiva of Porat Yosef – to give over Shiurim in the Yeshiva (a remarkable honour!) In 5730 (1970) he was appointed as the Rosh Yeshiva! He cleaved all his life to the Torah of his great-uncle (the Ben Ish Chai) and conducted himself in all matters of Halacha according to his rulings. Ten years before he died, he suffered a heart-attack and in 5752 (1991) – 12 Cheshvan, he died and was buried in the Sanhedria cemetery in Jerusalem. Many come through to visit his grave.
He was the first teacher (at the tender age of 21!) of Rabbi Ben-Tzion Abba Shaul (later to become the next Rosh Yeshiva of Porat Yosef) – outstanding world-leader of Sefardi Jewry of the previous generation, and a teacher of Rishon LeTzion, Rabbi Ovadia Yosef – leader of Sefardi Jewry today and an outstanding Posek of our generation.