April 14, 2024
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Shivti Learning Program Coming to Beth Aaron

On Sunday morning, December 16, the inaugural session of a new and innovative learning program will be held at Congregation Beth Aaron. In welcoming yet another inspirational opportunity for learning into the community, Rabbi Larry Rothwachs, mara d’atra of Congregation Beth Aaron, offered, “We are very excited to be introducing the Shivti program at Beth Aaron. This program affords individuals the opportunity to experience a meaningful immersion in a range of fascinating Torah topics. The curriculum is thoughtfully prepared and allows participants to engage on a variety of levels. People with different backgrounds and styles of learning will find this program exciting and engaging. We hope that individuals from throughout the community will consider participating in this exciting program.”

Joining Rabbi Rothwachs in this new program as a leader is Rabbi Sasson Gabay, rabbinical intern at Beth Aaron. “I am excited to be part of this innovative program that has worked so well…in many…communities throughout the U.S. The materials provided to us by the Shivti organizers are arranged in a coherent order, are reader-friendly and provide periodic synopses for additional clarity and comprehension. I am personally excited by the choice of topics and accompanying sources.”

Shivti was founded with the goal of providing intensive learning opportunities for the men in the community who had already left the physical walls of the yeshiva but are serious about continuing their genuine growth in learning. In furthering this goal, Shivti aims to cover a myriad of topics in Shas, from complex business interactions to basic daily life and everything in between. A sampling of the topics include Shabbat with sub-topics incorporating Kiddush, melechet machshevet, neirot Shabbat, seudat Shabbat, tosefet Shabbat and kavod v’oneg Shabbat, among many other related topics. A series of sessions will be offered on topics such as bedikat chametz, birkat haTorah, bishul akum, hiddur mitzvah, ketivat sefer Torah, pat akum and many more lifecycle areas.

The typical Shivti curriculum starts with in-depth iyun and ends with halacha l’maaseh’s practical applications. The weekly Shivti booklet provided to each chabura features carefully curated content, clearly presenting exactly what the topic is, what will be learned and which specific path is optimal to take through the topic. Shivti learning typically takes place within a chabura setting, led by the local rav, similar to the classic yeshiva learning seder.

The reason for Shivti’s success in many learning communities throughout the country is that the curriculum was designed to cater to all levels of participation. It is arranged in a unique, revolutionary style, which focuses on general halachic topics split into separate units to produce a weekly sub-topic. The learning provides a balance between lomdut and halacha, starting from the Gemara sources all the way down to contemporary psak.The booklet provides all the steps required in this process through sources listed in the right order followed by a concise caption of explanation following each source.

The Beth Aaron Shivti program is scheduled for Sunday mornings, following the 8 a.m. minyan.

A light breakfast will be offered, followed by a 45-minute seder. The program will then be provided with a shiur offered in rotation by Rabbis Rothwachs and Gabay and other noted rabbinical personalities.

To learn more about the program and to sign up as a participant, go to Shivti – Form – Congregation Beth Aaron.

By Pearl Markovitz

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