Beit Zvi – More than just a Kollel

Coming to Ahavat Shalom in the late hours one of these evenings, I found Motty (not his real name), poring over a sefer. When I approached him he told me he’s… preparing a shiur.

Knowing that Motty is a very nice guy and a successful computer expert, but not a rabbi or a noted scholar, my interest was piqued.

A shiur?

“I’m giving a shiur in kollel Beit Zvi”.

What’s that?

Beit Zvi, according to Motty, is much more than just an evening kollel. It’s a well-organized study program for working people, many of them beginners, who want to make a serious progress in their studies.

One of Beit Zvi unique points is the fact that each month a different student gives over a shiur that summarizes the subject he’s learning.

“For many of us it’s a real experience. It gives us confidence, and obliges us to have a deep understanding of the topic we learn. We cannot allow ourselves to be passive.”

Do you guys always study in a group?

“No. Each student has an experienced avrech who studies with him. Each and every one of us gets maximum attention, and though most of us study the same massechta (Shabbat, at the moment), each one learns at his own pace.  The atmosphere is serious, but not pressurizing.”

Why “Beit Zvi”?

“The kollel is named after Mr. Zvi Weisfogel ZL from Gibraltar, who was a very loving and special person. He interacted positively with all types of people. We, in Beit Zvi, carry on his message. The kollel has students of all types: Sephardi and Ashkenazi, people from all circles, and from many different origins.

How many of you are there?

At the moment there are eight sets of chavrusas. We started less then a year ago with four, so it’s steadily growing. The Beis Midrash is full.

I didn’t want to bother Motty anymore, but as I was inspired by his serious study, I just asked him one last question:

Can I join you?