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Shabbat Parashat Yitro| 5767

Pninat Mishpat

 In conjunction with the opening of our new beit din, Mishpat V’halacha B’Yisrael, we have begun to put out a weekly publication on the field of Jewish jurisprudence, called Halacha Pesuka. Halacha Psuka, written in Hebrew, is sent to a subscriber list by e-mail weekly. We know that many of those who read this publication and especially this column are bi-lingual and interested in the topic called mishpat ivri,in the Israeli parlance. Therefore, we decided to introduce our readers to this new publication. We also plan, in the coming weeks, to translate and use some of the material contained within it for the Pninat Mishpat column. We now present to you the mission statement of Halacha Psuka.
 It was the vision of the prophets to return the law of the Torah to its proper standing. Unfortunately, many who are in need of legal recourse turn to the secular courts because they assume that the religious courts are incapable of providing remedies for their problems. In practice, this is not the case. The guidance of our eternal Torah is binding and viable today as in the past. The many rulings of the rabbinical courts (piskei din) that are being produced on a daily basis in a vast spectrum of matters are evidence of the vitality of Jewish jurisprudence. They present solutions to all the different elements of monetary matters.
 However, the world of piskei din is not visible to the general public. Only certain talmidei chachamim deal with the practical application of these topics on a regular, serious basis. Because the public is not exposed to their work, many have the misconception that the necessary skills and infrastructure do not exist. Additionally, even those who are involved in the field do not always have access to all of the written work that could make their own work more efficient.
In order to help rectify this situation, Eretz Hemdah’s beit din, Mishpat V’halacha B’Yisrael, has decided to produce Halacha Psuka. In Halacha Psuka, we will publicize pikei din that have been written by different dayanim over the last few years. The published piskei din do not necessarily represent the policy of Mishpat V’halacha B’Yisrael. Instead of  bringing entire piskei din, which would make the work too cumbersome for most people to benefit from, we will present summaries of the piskei din. We remove much of the give and take of the Talmudic discussion and concentrate on the basic facts of the case and the underlying principles which can be applied elsewhere. [This is similar to the condensations of piskei din that we have been presenting in P’ninat Mishpat over the last few years. The main stylistic difference is that we have done so in paragraph form and Halacha Psuka does so in outline form.] Each week a few piskei din will be presented.
If you would like to receive Halacha Psuka on a regular or trial basis via e-mail, please contact the editors at: halachapsuka@eretzhemdah.org. Include the e-mail address at which you would like to receive it.
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This edition of Hemdat Yamim is dedicated to the memory of
R’ Meir ben Yechezkel Shraga Brachfeld o.b.m.
Hemdat Yamim is also dedicated by Les & Ethel Sutker of Chicago, Illinois
in loving memory of Max and Mary Sutker and Louis and Lillian Klein,z”l.
May their memory be a blessing!

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