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Forbes Ranks Richest Rabbis in Israel

Descendents of Rabbi Israel Abuhatzeira, or “the Baba Sali,” a renowned Kabbalist who immigrated to Israel from Morroco and founded his court in Netivot, are known as righteous men, knowledgeable in Kabbalah, and miracle workers – though it is possible that theirmiracle is accumulating bills and coins.

Two of the “admorim” (admor is an acronym in Hebrew for our master, our teacher, and our rabbi ) from the Abuhatzeira dynasty top the list of wealthiest rabbis published by Forbes Israel this week, as part of a comprehensive briefing on the “Baba” economy in Israel.

The magazine determines that this branch of the Israeli economy is worth roughly NIS 1 billion a year, according to some estimates, which don’t take grey-market and secret channels through which additional money flows, inflating the total sum even more.

The late Baba Sali could therefore be proud of his son, Pinchas Abuhatzeira, a young and relaltively unknown rabbi, who essentially became a tycoon, and currently sits at first place on the list of wealthiest rabbis. His court is valued in the magazine at roughly NIS 1.3 billion, most of which he inherited when his father Elezar was murdered by one of his disciples last summer. Elazar’s brother, Pinhas’ uncle, Rabbi David Abuhatzeira, comes in at number two with NIS 750 million.

Ranking after them on the list is the Admor from Magor Rabbi Yaakov Arieh Elter (NIS 350 million), and the Belz Admor, Rabbi Yissachar Dov (NIS 180 million).

For more, go to Haaretz.com

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