Rabbi Asher Bush

 

Congregation Ahavat Yisrael of Wesley Hills, New York is privileged to have Rabbi Asher Bush as its morah d'asrah -- spiritual leader -- since 1998. Over the years, Rabbi Bush has contributed enormously to the growth of the Wesley Hills Jewish community, and wider orthodox Jewish community through his leadership, scholarship, counsel and friendship.

He is a rabbi with not only impressive credentials, but someone with a legacy of communal accomplishment at nearly every level, giving him a unique perspective into Jewish and family life.

In addition to serving as a pulpit rabbi, he is also a longtime educator at a local high school; author of an acclaimed sefer, numerous responsa and scholarly articles; administrator of a widely respected kashrut organization; and a key figure at the largest group of orthodox Jewish rabbis in the nation. He has also served as hospital chaplain, lecturer, scholar-in-residence, kashrut and eruv consultant, kollel fellow, and beit din dayan.

His own philosophy was influenced greatly by the principles championed by R. Samson Raphael Hirsch, HaRav Avraham Y. Kook, and Rav Josef B. Soloveitchik -- the latter of whom was his rebbe. These leaders believed of the importance of Torah im derech eretz; engagement with, and sanctification of, secular and scientific knowledge; an appreciation of Eretz Yisrael; an appreciation of Jews of all backgrounds; and uncompromising fidelity to classical halachic interpretation and thought. These philosophies inform Rabbi Bush's approach to Jewish communal life. His congregation and wider community are its fortunate beneficiaries.

For the last number of years, Rabbi Bush has held the seat formerly occupied by Rabbi Yosef Soloveitchik as the chairman of the Rabbinical Council of America's (RCA) Va'ad Halacha Committee, charged with formulating halachic perspectives on a variety of pressing matters in the public arena. The committee has recently taken particular interest in how Jewish law relates to medical matters, such as end-of-life issues. Rabbi Bush has, himself, authored important guidelines pertaining to the Jewish perspective on tobacco dependency.

Rabbi Bush is the author of Shoel B'Shlomo, a sefer acclaimed by Rabbi Hershel Schachter and Rabbi Mordechai Willig, leading roshei yeshiva at the R. Yitzchak Elchanan Rabbinical Seminary of Yeshiva University. The book comprises an extensive series of practical responsa to contemporary questions pertaining to prayer, brachot, kashrut, family life, education, Shabbat and yom tov. In fact, more than half a dozen chapters are based on questions posed by congregants of Ahavat Yisrael.

The sefer was the result of both previously unpublished original thought, as well as a variety of articles on contemporary halacha he authored for such scholarly rabbinic journals such as Yeshiva University’s Bais Yitzchak, the RCA's HaDaron, Mizrachi's Ohr HaMizrach, and the Orthodox Union's Mesorah magazine.

Prior to his installation as rav of Ahavat Yisrael, Rabbi Bush was the spiritual leader of the Utopia Torah Congregation in Queens, NY. At the start of his rabbinic career, Rabbi Bush was the rabbi of the Young Israel of Stamford, CT. There, he spearheaded kashrut initiatives previously non existent in that community. As a result of these initiatives, the Va'ad of Fairfield County, CT was eventually born.

He has taught Jewish history, gemara, tanach and halacha to high school students at the Frisch School in Paramus, NJ for more than 20 years.

After receiving yoreh-yoreh ordination, Rabbi Bush then received yadin-yadin, the highest level of smicha, from Rabbi Nissan Alpert of the R. Yitzchak Elchanan Rabbinical Seminary of Yeshiva University. Earlier, he had earned a master's degree in Jewish education, and a bachelor's degree in history.

As part of his responsibilities at Ahavat Yisrael, Rabbi Bush leads gemara, parsha and navi shiurim and administers a benevolent fund. Rabbi Bush serves the community along with his wife Laya in many ways, such as hosting neighborhood children at an annual communitywide sukkah hop and at a weekly family learning session. Our rav and rebbetzin are blessed with a son and three daughters who have grown up in the heart of our vibrant community.

Rabbi Bush can be reached at: (845) 364-9426

 

 

Mon, November 20 2017 2 Kislev 5778