Home Bais

IMG_20130305_201627_012“Welcome to Homehb Beis…You are in on the ground floor”.  These words spoken by Rabbi Zvi Teitelbaum began a new chapter in Jewish life in our nation’s capital. Home Beis: The Yisroel Lefkowitz Center for Advanced Jewish Studies, opened its doors this past Tuesday night in response to a resurgence in Washington D.C. of people willing to embrace and explore their Judaism in greater depth. The Beis, as in Beis (or Beit) Midrash, which is located just a few blocks from the White House provides an opportunity for young professionals to escape from the hectic lifestyle of Washington D.C. into the oasis of a yeshiva like environment.

IMG_20130305_212201_135On opening night, 18 men along with staff joined together to delve into the depths the Talmud. After Rabbi Teitelbaum’s introductory remarks, the group broke into chavrutot (study partners) or chose to participate in a small beginner’s level class on the Talmudic selection. Afterwards, the group joined back together for a brief, in depth, discussion of the ideas they had just studied followed by a short message about self development and personal growth.

The aim of Home Beis is to create a center for Torah study and growth in DC.  While the first program offered is the Tuesday night Beit Midrash program, the hope is to expand and provide more study opportunities to meet the demands of the growing community.  As Rabbi Teitelbaum mentioned, the goal is to help Washington DC flourish into a place where people can grow and embrace their Judaism.  He said: “we are not only here for ourselves, but also as a responsibility to our D.C. community.”  This is a community wide project not associated with any particular group or organization so that all Jews will feel welcome to participate.IMG_20130305_201724_540

Home Beis is generously dedicated by the Lefkowitz family as a tribute to the legacy of Mr. Yisroel Lekowitz.  Mr. Lefkowitz, the father of Rabbi Dovid Lefkowitz, was a visionary and an activist on behalf of the Jewish people. His acts of kindness and charity touched the lives of thousands.  Although he was an ordained Rabbi, Mr. Lefkowitz chose not to carry the title because he was not an acting rabbi.  The Lefkowitz family is confident that Mr. Lefkowitz would take great pride in his center playing a prominent role in the continuing development of the growing Jewish Washington DC community.

IMG_20130305_212907_348Much credit must be given to Manny Halberstam and Mark Donig for all of their work and the ownership they have taken in helping Home Beis and the Beit Midrash program get off the ground.

For more information about Home Beis please contact rabbiberkman@gmail.com .

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