New Sefer Torah Dedicated on 60 Year-Old Secular Kibbutz; Yeshiva Participates
The Yeshiva has an ongoing relationship with Kibbutz Ma’ayan Baruch (located a few kilometers north-east of Kiryat Shemona, near the intersection of the Israeli, Syrian and Lebanese borders) since Hesderniks began leading the Tefillot and participating in the minyan on Yom Kippur, at the request of the kibbutz leadership several years ago.
History was made recently when a Sefer Torah was inaugurated on the kibbutz in a very moving ceremony, accompanied by Rabbi Drori and a large group of Hesder students. Their special, ongoing connection with the kibbutz was inspirational in setting the tone, and whose dancing and singing in joyful unison with large numbers of kibbutzniks brought tears to the eyes of many participants.
The scroll was borne to its temporary home in one of the kibbutz houses until it finds its final place in a new synagogue that is presently in the planning stages.
The unusual thing about this occasion is that never before has such an event taken place on this secular 60 year-old kibbutz! It was not until recent years when new families began moving to houses in the kibbutz extension that there was a request for a new sefer torah. The kibbutz owned a 90 year-old Torah that was no longer fit to be used, so when needed, a scroll was brought for use each time from the Hesder Yeshiva. Although the vast majority of the kibbutz residents are not religious, more and more of them have started to attend Friday night minyan.
This occasion is living proof that secular kibbutzim are slowly embracing Jewish tradition into their lives, and that our Yeshiva takes pride in being an integral part of this process.