About the Yeshiva

About the Yeshiva

Founded in 1977 by Rabbi Tzfaniah Drori, the Kiryat Shemona Hesder Yeshiva is a religious Zionist institution of advanced learning that provides religious soldiers with an opportunity to continue their religious studies while performing military service.

Over the decades, the Yeshiva has become a Torah center for all residents of the Upper Galilee by investing tremendous resources in caring for all the spiritual needs of the local community.

Torah study in the Yeshiva takes place in a warm and encouraging atmosphere where the brotherly love between the students and Rabbanim permeates the shiurim, chevrutot, and general life.

Our uniqueness is that we live out the values of our intense Jewish learning through acts of kindness. Our students are involved in welfare, education, Jewish Identity, and security programs all around the city and region. As a result of their deep connection to the city, some of our graduates and their families have remained in Kiryat Shemona to build their lives here and strengthen the periphery of the country.

The Yeshiva sees military service as a significant part of the connection to the People and the State of Israel as well as an important process for personal growth. We are proud that all our students serve in elite and combat units in the IDF.

More than 1,500 Yeshiva graduates live all over the country and work in the fields of the Rabbinate and halakhic jurisprudence, education, media and public affairs, security, science and technology, settlement, industry and more.

The Yeshiva serves as a community center, with a variety of programs and services, ranging from providing assistance to the poor, elderly, infirm, and those with special needs, to offering educational services to the outlying communities. We function as a food bank in times of war and peace and serve as the point people for distributing food to families in bomb shelters when necessary. The Yeshiva and our students serve as the first line of defense on the northern border with Lebanon.

History of the Yeshiva

On Chol Hamoed Pesach in 1974, there was a deadly terrorist attack on an apartment building in Kiryat Shemona during which 18 citizens were murdered in their own homes. At the time, there were no electronic devices on the border to provide any warnings and the enemy was able to simply cross over, with the intention of killing as many people as possible.

Rabbi Drori, who was sent to Kiryat Shemona in 1968 by Rav Kook to instill Torah in the town (then only a small absorption center on the Lebanese border), realized the need to provide the community with a sense of security. Given the instability and the immense security concerns of the community at large, he approached a number of key people with the idea of establishing a Hesder Yeshiva where soldiers would be able to live and learn while doing military reconnaissance in the streets at night. It was thus that the Yeshiva was born.

The first incoming class of student-soldiers was in 1977. Thirty-five students were at first housed in temporary accommodations at a local school until dormitories could be renovated for permanent residence.

Study Program

The Yeshiva offers a five-year program for young Jewish men serving in the IDF. Students are considered soldiers in every respect, including reserve duty, during the program.

Daily studies begin at 6.45 a.m. with Teffilah. Students study Talmud most of the day, either with a partner (chevruta) or in a formal shiur. Other subjects at the Yeshiva include, but are not limited to, Emunah (faith), Tanach and Jewish Philosophy.

Beginning in the fourth year, students have the option of completing their academic studies and receiving a bachelor’s degree in Education.

Today, most of the educational staff in the Kiryat Shemona schools is composed of Yeshiva graduates and their families. Please contact us if you would like to receive more detailed information regarding our study programs.

Mission Statement

The philosophy of the Hesder Yeshiva can be summarized in two words: “Safra veSaifa,” which translated means “with a book and a sword.” Rav Drori believes that by nurturing students and transforming them into Talmidei Chachamim, the Yeshiva can serve Am Yisrael where the need is greatest. The Yeshiva gives students the ability to delve deeply into Jewish life, philosophy, and textual studies, and to apply these Jewish teachings to the world today. Our graduates, who serve in combat and elite units of the IDF, become individuals who support the mission of Am Yisrael in all aspects, military and civilian alike