Am Yisrael suffered a devastating loss today.
Police reported that a staggering 800,000 mourners accompanied the Rishon L’Tzion, Maran HaRav Ovadiah Yosef zt”l on his final journey through the streets of Yerushalayim, and countless others watched the proceedings on television or online.
An unsurpassed Torah giant, Rav Ovadiah zt”l was renowned for his incredible memory, his encyclopedic knowledge, his love and concern for his fellow Jews, and most of all, his willingness to rule on complex issues that many others were afraid to address.
At one point, a TV anchor asked who would replace him, and one of the commentators responded that Rav Ovadiah zt”l cannot be replaced. After all, the commentator continued, the only previous “Maran” was Rav Yosef Karo zt”l, the compiler of the groundbreaking halachic code, the Shulchan Aruch.
The following video clip – of Rav Ovadiah’s hachtarah (coronation or investiture ceremony) as Sephardic Chief Rabbi of Israel in 1973 – aired this evening on Israel Television:
.יהי זכרו ברוך