Rabbi Ovadia Yosef remains in serious condition, no change over holiday

Yosef remains sedated and on a respirator; Rabbi David Yosef: "We are full of hope he will recover."

Ovadia Yosef Shas campaign launch 370 (photo credit: Marc Israel Sellem/The Jerusalem Post)
Ovadia Yosef Shas campaign launch 370
(photo credit: Marc Israel Sellem/The Jerusalem Post)
The medical condition of Rabbi Ovadia Yosef, spiritual leader of the Shas movement, remained largely unchanged over Simhat Torah/Shmini Atzeret and is still defined as serious to very serious, but stable.
Prof. Dan Gilon, one of the rabbi’s doctors, said in a statement to the media that there was no significant change during the holiday in Yosef’s condition.
“With the combination of illnesses the rabbi is suffering from, and his age, there is always a danger in the background, [but] at the moment I don’t see anything immediate,” Gilon said.
Yosef’s four sons, Avraham, Yitzhak, David and Moshe, were all by his side at Hadassah University Medical Center in Jerusalem’s Ein Kerem on Thursday, along with Shas party chairman Arye Deri and former chairman MK Eli Yishai.
Yosef, 93, remains sedated and on a respirator.
On Wednesday afternoon, Yosef’s team of doctors decided to replace his temporary pace maker with a new temporary device instead of fitting a permanent pace maker which involves a more complicated procedure.
The new device was successfully installed.
Rabbi David Yosef said that his father’s condition would not improve quickly.
“This is not a matter of a few days, it will take time and we are full of hope what he will recover,” he was quoted as saying on Yosef’s official Facebook page.
“The doctors say that there is a chance he will come out of this situation and will be able to return and to function.”
Leading rabbis, hassidic leaders and haredi and religious communities around the country have continued to pray for Yosef’s recovery.
And some proposals for increasing divine healing for the rabbi have been made.
One proposal made by a Jerusalem-based rabbi is to declare to God a donation of two minutes of one’s life to Yosef and get one other person to do so as well.
Another proposal which has been suggested is to break one’s smartphone to induce greater divine mercy.
Rabbinical leaders in the haredi world have repeatedly denounced smartphones as devices which bring people to sin and have issued numerous bans on their use.
“Break the iPhone and save our master,” read a notice issued by a small haredi organization. “Our master” refers to Yosef.
“If you merited to break the unkosher device in your possession, you donated blood and oxygen to the life of our master,” the notice added.
Tens of thousands of people have been praying for the rabbi’s recovery, including Education Minister Shai Piron who joined the prayers for Yosef’s health on Tuesday night.
“Rabbi Ovadia Yosef made a breakthrough in the treatment of the stranger, the orphan and the widow,” Piron said. “As a bold adjudicator he sought to benefit the weaker sectors of society, making a name for himself as one of the greatest adjudicators of all times.”
Piron said he wishes Ovadia Yosef a full recovery and “many more years of rich Torah rulings.”
Danielle Ziri contributed to this report.