Our Emissaries

Background

Shavei Israel is dedicated to the research of the Lost Tribes of Israel, anousim (Marranos), and other descendants of ‘lost Jews.’ Shavei Israel also endeavors to provide tangible assistance to individuals and communities who sincerely desire to return to the Jewish people. This includes sponsoring spiritual leaders and educators to communities who are in the process of returning to the Jewish fold.

Details

Shavei Israel supports emissaries in communities that show a desire to increase their Jewish awareness. Today, Shavei Israel sponsors rabbis in Spain, Portugal, Brazil and Poland and educators in India. Additional emissaries are needed in these countries and in Latin America.

Shavei Israel emissaries teach Judaism and Hebrew, conduct prayers on Shabbat and holidays, prepare weekly bulletins for the community, establish programs for children and youth and give individual guidance. Shavei Israel emissaries are a contact for members of the community, as well as those on the outside of the community framework, who are interested in investigating their connection to Judaism and the Jewish people.

Emissaries

Rabbi Nissan Ben Avraham – Shavei Israel’s emissary in Spain

Itinerant Rabbi among different Bnei Anousim groups that are interested in returning to Judaim in Spain (Barcelona, Palma de Mallorca, Alicante, Sevilla and Valencia). He writes articles in Catalan about the weekly parasha for Shavei Israel’s bulletin and is a Sofer Stam. A descendant of the Chuetas from Mallorca, he made aliya in 5738 (1977). In Israel he returned to Judasim and studied in the Ateret Cohanim and Shilo yeshivas. He received his semicha (Rabbinical ordination) in 5751 (1991). Contact Rabbi Nissan Ben Avraham

Rabbi Elisha Salas – Shavei Israel’s emissary in Portugal

He serves as the Chief Rabbi of the city Belmonte and as a traveling shaliach in the villages of northern Portugal. Rabbi Salas was born in Chile and received smicha from the Sefardi Beit Midrashi in the Old City of Jerusalem.  He has also received certification as a shochet, in education, and as a mashgiach kashrut.  Rabbi Salas made aliya in 1999 and lives in Jerusalem.  He has a degree in accounting and management from the University of Santiago De Chile. Contact Rabbi Eliash Salas

MeRabbi Avi Baumol – Shavei Israel’s emissary in Krakow, Poland

In Krakow, Poland, he serves as a Rabbi for the the local community and asists the “hidden Jews” of the area . Rabbi Avi Baumol was born in New York and received Smicha from Yeshiva University where he also received a BA in Economics and an MA in Medieval Jewish History from Bernard Revel Graduate School. He became the Rabbi of Congregation Schara Tzedeck in Vancouver, Canada from 1998-2003. Building the community there and serving on the Bet Din and in the conversion program. Moving to Israel he has taught in Yeshivot and Seminaries, performed weddings for secular Israelis as part of Itim, continued to work as a rabbi in his congregation in Efrat and authored a book on Tehillim called The Poetry of Prayer.   Contact Rabbi Avi Baumol

Rabbi Yehoshua Ellis – Shavei Israel’s emissary in Katowice, Poland

He serves as the Chief Rabbi of Katowice and assists the local community of “Hidden Jews.” In the past he served as a community volunteer in Warsaw. Rabbi Ellis was born in Kansas and studied at various Yeshivot in Jerusalem. He received his rabbinical ordination from the Shehebar Sepharadic Center and he is also a certified Schochet (ritual slaughterer). Contact Rabbi Yehosua Ellis

 

Rabbi Herberger PicRabbi Tyson Herberger – Shavei Israel’s emissary in Wroclaw, Poland

Rabbi Tyson serves Jews throughout the southwest edge of Poland from his home community in Wroclaw. The communities are comprised of holocaust survivors, post-communist atheists, and many “hidden Jews” who only found out they were Jewish in the last few years, after the collapse of communism. Previously, he has served Jewish communities in the US, Canada, Norway and Ukraine in synagogues, nursing homes, day schools, youth groups and more. He studied at multiple Jerusalem area yeshivot and kollels, and has smicha from both Rabbis Shlomo Riskin and Zalman Nechemia Goldberg. Always a learner, Rabbi Tyson’s Masters in Jewish Education is from Hebrew College in the US; with prior studies at the University of Michigan, the Sorbonne, Hebrew University and elsewhere. Contact Rabbi Tyson Herberger

Rabbi Shlomo Zelig Avrasin – Shavei Israel’s emissary in Vysoki, Russia

In Vysoki, Russia, he serves as the community Rabbi for the Subbotniks Jews. He was born in the Ukraine and received his smicha from Yeshivat Hamivtar, in Efrat, Gush Etzion. He is also a schochet and finished his academic studies in Education at Michlelet Herzog. Rabbi Avrasin has served as an emissary in different countries, including Russia, Germany and Poland and has a wealth of experience as an educator in different frameworks. Contact Rabbi Shlomo Zelig Avrasin

Rabbi Pinhas P. Punturello – Shavei Israel’s emissary in Italy.

Rabbi Pinhas was born in Naples, Italy in 1977 and was chief rabbi of the Naples Jewish Community from 2003 until 2010. He studied in Yeshivat Hamivtar in Efrat, Gush Etzion and received his semicha from Rav Shlomo Riskin Shlita. Academically, he has a Laurea [M.A.s] in Political Sciences from University “L’Orientale” of Naples. His thesis, about Hannah Arendt: a Jewish Woman between Assimilation and Zionism, was published in 2012. Rabbi Pinhas is a translator, a freelance journalist and has much experience as an educator in different fields. Contact Rabbi Pinchas Punturello

soloRabbi Shimon M. Yehoshua – Emissary of Shavei Israel in Colombia

Serves the Bnei Anusim communities and conversion candidates in Colombia. Rabbi Shimon was born in Argentina and received his Rabbinic ordination in Jerusalem at the Beit Hamidrash Hasefaradí. He is a graduate of the Amiel Institute, which prepares Rabbis for the Diaspora. He served as Rabbi of the city of Pattaya in Thailand, and was the general program coordinator for Latin America of Bnei Akiva. He taught at the Yeshiva Torah beTzión and at Midreshet Lindenbaum and worked as a mashgiach kashrut in Argentina. Contact Rabbi Shimon Yehoshua