18 Sivan 5779 , 21/06/2019

Rabbi Michael Shmerla

Av Beis Din of Strasbourg, France
Rabbi Michael Shmerla Rabbi Michael Shmerla was born in 1968 in Paris, where he spent his youth. He studied in the Merkaz Hatorah day school, which was directed by Rabbi Yaakov Toledano, and then in Yeshivas Chachmei Tzarfat under Rabbi Chaim Chaikin, who was a disciple of the Chofetz Chaim. He continued his yeshivah studies in Yeshivas Beis Yosef of Gateshead, England.
Rabbi Shmerla attributes his thirst for Torah study and success in his learning to the fact that he spent his youth in the shadows of these eminent personalities, especially Rabbi Chaikin, who was also his father’s principal teacher. After his marriage he studied in a kollel in Eretz Yisrael, where he earned semichah and dayanut. He then continued his studies in a kollel in Strasbourg.
For the past seventeen years Rabbi Shmerla has served as a rabbi in Strasbourg, and for the past thirteen years he has served as its Av Beis Din, ever since his predecessor, Rabbi Zakbach, immigrated to Eretz Yisrael. When faced with difficult issues Rabbi Shmerla usually consults with Rabbi Shaul Breisch, Av Beis Din of Zurich.
Rabbi Shmerla receives many detailed questions within his community, and he receives telephone queries from all over France. People also contact him through his website, through emails or through the telephone application called AlloRav.
Strasbourg is blessed with a dynamic, burgeoning community, and it is currently home to more than 20 battei medrash, kollels and other educational institutes. In his capacity as Av Beis Din Rav Shmerla is responsible for kashrus, kosher slaughter, gittin, conversions, mikva’os and more. He is a member of the RCE’s Rabbinical Council and of its Committee for Spiritual Advancement.
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