Rachamim Benamara was born in 1914 in Meknes (Morocco).
He was the only son of Rav Baruch - one of the great Rabbis of
Meknes - and Rabbanit Rebecca - whose forefather was “the
angel” Raphael Berdugo. His mother was well known for her
dedication and her good deeds.
After studying law, he became judge in Mazagan.
In 1957, he became dayan in the city of Casablanca while Rav Shalom
Messas was President of the Beit Din.
During the twenty years he spent in Casablanca, Rabbi Benamara
brought a new spirit to the large Jewish community of this city:
he dedicated his life to answer the needs of the community, to
bring people together and closer to the ideals of Torah with patience
In return, he was well respected and loved by the Community, specially
by the weak, the sick, the poor and the orphan who not only found
a father in him but also a spiritual guide and material support.
In 1975 at the age of 61, he made alyia to Israel and lived in
Beit HaKerem for two years. He became the Rabbi of a large district
in Jerusalem: Kiriyat Menachem, Ir Ganim, Kiriyat Yovel...
The Jewish community of Morocco and Jerusalem, out of respect
and gratitude, signed him in the KKL Golden Book.
He officially retired in 1989 at the age of 75, but he continued
to be active.
Knowing the real needs of people, he created institutions in order
- help people in need (the sick, the orphan,…)
- bring material, social and moral support to the elderly: he
created a framework for old people, often isolated or forgotten
in old age homes, in order to give them a new spiritual and social
life in a joyful and warm atmosphere and, at the same time, lighten
the burden of their families.
He also wrote ten books on Jewish ethics, in Hebrew and in French,
which profit goes directly to those institutions.
About them, he writes in his spiritual will (Leet Metso, first
“It is the best legacy I can give you. It is true, eternal
and its worth will bring you happiness, a long life, and the unlimited
blessing of G-d...”
All information about the organization of these institutions –
names of the management, assistants, volunteers, their phone numbers… can be found in their books.
The devoted managers who are helping me today are Amram Hacohen
and Maimon Dery. May G-d bless them with a long life, health and
prosperity! In case they can’t fulfill their obligations
they will choose their replacement, paid or volunteer.
They will find many people ready to help… and G-d will bless
And you, my dear children, do your utmost to develop these institutions,
to strengthen them. They are part of the foundations of the world:
Torah and Chessed. You will be blessed - and whoever helps you
- with a long and good life, happiness and will receive the material
and moral comfort, Amen.”
His passion for Chessed that was part of him helped him to overcome
great hardships, such as illness.
He peacefully passed away on the first day of Rosh HaShana 2001
(September 18, 2001) after the prayers and listening to the Shofar.