Queen Wilhelmina and the Munkaczer Rebbe

A royal encounter and the importance of gratitude.

Click here if you are unable to view this video.

With thanks to Rabbi Paysach Krohn for publishing this story as well as to Rabbi Nachum Aaronson and Rabbi Motel Aaronson for verifying it.

Comments (17)

(12) Anonymous, September 18, 2019 10:29 PM

Lovely story!

God still works His miracles thru His people! What it says about Queen Wilhemina that she never forgot and was kind to the Rabbi who translated for her.

(11) Selma Adler, September 18, 2019 1:41 PM

No mention anywhere of Queen

Wilhelmina granting foreign rabbis permission to enter the Netherlands in 1939.
At that time the billionaire queen had difficulty accepting the many Jewish fugitives, who fled Nazi Germany.
I would like to know what source you get your information from.

(10) Saul Heller, September 17, 2019 5:29 PM

Very Interesting

Did you ever hear of Rabbi Yom Tov Lippman Heller my ancestor from the 16th Century and his commentaries " Tosofos Yom Tov" ?

Anonymous, September 17, 2019 7:26 PM

Sure. A very famous rabbi often quoted

You have great roots!

(9) Anonymous, September 16, 2019 3:34 PM

Wrong Photo

The video keeps displaying a photo of, not Rav Zvi Hirsch Shapiro, who is the rebbe in the story, but of his son, Rav Chaim Elazar.

Shimon P., September 16, 2019 6:29 PM


I noticed that too but when I researched Rabbi Tzvi Hirschorn Spira, this photograph appeared in several places as well; including in a photo app that I have.

(8) J Fleming, September 16, 2019 1:30 AM

Great story Rabbi. Brief as it is it has a lot of impact. Much to think about. Thank you for sharing it.

(7) Awraham Itschak, September 15, 2019 8:33 PM

Ad Shilo

The Munckacer rebbe actually said "Your kingdom will be Ad Shilih" untill Moshiach comes. Rav Tzwi Katz wrote his letter in Yiddish to the queen, it had to be translated by a shocheet from The Hague who was capable of tranlslating. Rav Katz wrote this letter in Yiddish so it needed to be translated and would get more attention than any other letter. He was granted permission to come and he did serve as the Rav of the Nidchei Yisroeil Yechanes shul in Amsterdam where B-H i am able to go from time to time especially on the first night of Selichot, Yok Kippur and Purim, i do not live in Amsterdam but in Rotterdam and the atmosphere in the NYY shul is so vibrant and full of Kawod for Hashem that makes me come back and back and,.... BE'H this year next motzaei Shabbat again. Ad Shilo is written by Rav Katz in one of his Sforim right on the first page as a thank you.

(6) Selma Adler, September 15, 2019 6:31 PM

Deleted comment

This comment has been deleted.

Andrea Schonberger, September 15, 2019 7:37 PM

I'm right behind you

Ms. Adler, I'm of your opinion. Originally Westerbork concentration camp was built in 1939 to accommodate Jews illegally entering the country to escape Nazi persecution. The queen objected to the site as it was too near her summer home--the poor thing having to suffer the indignity of having Jews for neighbors! What she must have endured from the safety of her comfortable London exile during WWII remains to be seen.

(5) tova saul, September 15, 2019 6:25 PM

wonderful story

Thank you.

(4) Rachelle Emanuel, September 15, 2019 4:17 PM

On the same topic:

Thanks for relating this. Just a couple of points - the Muncazcer Rebbe was Rabbi Chaim Elazar Spira (or Shapira), known as the Minchas Elazar.
In 1939 the Queen of the Netherlands granted permission to 42 rabbis to enter the country in gratitude for the blessing she received from the Muncazcer Rebbe. One of these rabbis was Rabbi Aharon Neuwirth, father of the Rabbi Yehoshua Yeshaya Neuwirth, renowned for his book on the laws of Shabbat - Shemirat Shabbat KeHilchata. The family survived the war in hiding in Amsterdam.
This is an example of the ripple effect of good deeds....

(3) Anonymous, September 15, 2019 3:43 PM

Mariánské Lázne

Thank you for the wonderful story, which was told - at least for non-native english speakers - a bit to fast. Marienbad or Mariánské Lázne is in Czech Republic, which never was a part of Hungary. Upper Hungary was Slovakia, which after Trianon became Czechoslovakia.

JUDY SPIRA, September 15, 2019 6:48 PM

Mariánské Lázne

Mariánské Lázne or Marienbad is now in the Czech Republic. Before World War I, it was within the Austro-Hungarian Empire, hence the term Hungary.

Anonymous, September 17, 2019 9:03 PM

Mariánské Lázne

Which is still wrong. Bohemia was never a part of Hungary. Slovakia was. Marianské Lázne always was and is in Bohemia.

(2) Chanit Roston, September 15, 2019 3:25 PM

I find this story very beautiful and inspiring. I w

A most inspiring story.

(1) Laura, September 15, 2019 1:54 PM

Acts of kindness always return tenfold.


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