IDF Spokesperson Office Chief Rabbi Metger with IDF troops Protecting the Protectors

Study sessions that enhance Jewish identity, integrate soldiers from different background, and foster a sense of Jewish pride

The Jewish People is rich with customs and traditions that cover every aspect of life. Having begun as a tribal family from the descendants of Jacob, we feel a filial responsibility toward every other member of our “extended family.” So, just as the young men and women serving in the IDF protect Jews the world over, so too we support them in a myriad of ways.

One such effort is our program “Protecting the Protectors.” While the IDF offers us physical protection, we provide an element of spiritual enrichment which ultimately serves as an added element of protection from above.

Although one can sponsor a study session for any reason, one common practice is to dedicate a shiur in memory of a deceased loved one the occasion of their yarztheit (the anniversary date of death). Our rabbis have taught that once a person leaves this world, their soul lives on and can be elevated by the deeds of their descendants. Sponsoring a learning session on a yartzheit or in time for the recitation of the Yizkor prayer on the holidays, serves as an elevation for the soul, while providing our soldiers with a different form of group integration and Divine protection.

A $50 donation will enable us to arrange for a rabbi/educator to go out to an army base to deliver a study session to a group of soldiers. When such a class is dedicated in memory of an individual, the teacher will share some information with those present about the person, recite kaddish in their name and organize a small memorial in their honor. Of course, refreshments are also served.

More expanded opportunities for a monthly series, dedicating a library and the like are also available. For more information on this project, please contact us.

To read a little about the recent Jewish identity building shiurim, please see below.


Shiurim dedicated during the month of Iyar:

Adina Margalit – 6th of Iyar (April 20, 2010) – A shiur was given to unit 890, a division of the paratroopers. Rav Ram Cohen delivered the session to 18 soldiers on the topic of “ Halachic issues relating to interpersonal behavior .” Following the learning, a memorial was held and the kaddish prayer was recited. Refreshments were enjoyed by all of the participants.

May her memory be for a blessing

burning candle Protecting the Protectors

Nechama bat Binyamin Elimelech ha’Cohen – 10th of Iyar (April 24, 2010) – A shiur was given to Chativat Menashe where 30 chayalim gathered. The learning was guided by Rav Sod Shacha on the topic of “The laws of Shabbat .” As is customary, a memorial was conducted, the kaddish was recited and refreshments were served.

May her memory be for a blessing

burning candle Protecting the Protectors

Betzalel Shlomo ben Yosef Simcha – 19th of Iyar (May 3, 2010) – A shiur was presented to the members of unit 817 – a special forces unit of Duvdevan. Rav Ramo Geliebstein delivered the shiur and 42 soldiers participated in the study session. The rav spoke on the book “ Pele Yoetz,” a mussar type text dealing with moral behavior. This is most appropriate for these special young men who bring a unique spirit of fighter and gentleman to the most elite of army units. In retrospect, it seemed quite fitting that this shiur was dedicated to the memory of a 24 year old(the number in reverse of those who attended)who was described as “ a gentle soul, a man of great faith who loved to learn.” Kaddish was recited and refreshments were served.

May his memory be for a blessing

burning candle Protecting the Protectors

Shiurim dedicated during the month of Sivan:

Eidel Yitzchak Margalit – 24th Sivan (June 6, 2010) – A shiur was given in his memory at Chatmar Binyamin – a large army base located in Beit El. Rav Yoram Lesser delivered the study session on the topic of the destruction of the Temple – a fitting topic as we gradually approach the month of Tamuz and the historical time period that led up to this disaster. The emphasis was on interpersonal relationship coupled with an understanding of the mitzvot. With 80 chayalim in attendance, surely this individual’s neshama was elevated from the learning and traditional recitation of kaddish. The soldiers all enjoyed the refreshments that followed.

May his memory be for a blessing

burning candle Protecting the Protectors

Chana Chaya Halpert – 5th of Sivan (April 18,2010) – This study session was given at Chativat Yehuda, at an outpost known as Charsina which is located in Chevron. Members of Gedud Shimshon # 92, combat soldiers and career officers participated in this shiur. This unit used to operate inside and around Gaza when Gush Katif still existed and as such is known as an extrememly important and well trained group of chayalim. Rav Yehuda Alfassi delivered the shiur on   “Ahavat Chaverim – Love between Friends.”  That evening 40 soldiers attended. The traditional kaddish was recited and refreshments were served.

May her memory be for a blessing

burning candle Protecting the Protectors

Shiurim dedicated during the month of Elul:

Moshe David ben Yosef Chandler – 13th of Elul (August 23,2010) – Two study sessions were dedicated to the memory of this special man, by his wife and son. One shiur was given at the Yehuda and Shomron headquarters by Rav Yuval Dahan on the topic of Chagei Tishrei – the upcoming holidays of the month of Tishrei. The study session was well attended by both male and female soldiers numbering approximately 45. The second class was given to Charuv unit 93, a well known and respected combat unit. In total 28 combat soldiers were able to attend. Once again Rav Yuval Dahan inspired our soldiers as he explained about the holidays we celebrte in the month of Tishrei.  As the month of Elul is a month of reflection in preparation of the High Holy Days of Tishrei, we trust that the study and prayer at these classes entered the hearts of our soldiers and served as an elevation for the neshama of the deceased.

May his memory be for a blessing

burning candle Protecting the Protectors

Rav Tzion Ben Tzvi – 4th of Tishrei (September 12,2010) – With shloshim falling out between Rosh Hashana and Yom Kippur, it was most fitting that Rav Avigdor Torani delivered a shiur on this very topic: “Bein Kese l’asor – Between Rosh Hashana and Yom Kippur: laws, customs, traditions and approaches to the Days of Awe.” The class was given at the Chalamish outpost and 48 soldiers attended. As is our custom, kaddish was recited and refreshments were served.

May his memory be for a blessing

burning candle Protecting the Protectors

A shiur sponsored by Frances Wolf – At this time of year, as one year ends and a new one begins; as we recall man’s creation which is marked on Rosh Hashana; as we consider that another name for Rosh Hashana is Yom Hadin – The Day of Judgement, we are often moved to make another donation, to do another good deed. Frances’ donation, sponsored the learning of 40 soldiers from the Duvedevan unit, an elite undercover unit that operates within Arab populated cities and towns throughout Israel. The class was given by Rav Rafi Cohen on the most fitting subject of Rosh Hashana. Of course, refreshments were enjoyed by all!

Thank you Frances!


Yonatan Alon ben Avigdor – Three study sessions were donated for a refuah shelaima (speedy recovery) for this lovely gentleman. The first shiur was presented by Rav Ehud Ben David in the Ein Shemer base to soldiers on active duty serving in the tank corps. 80 soldiers attended this timely session which dealt with the laws of Rosh Hashana. The second study session was given Polsar Golani battalion stationed in the southern Chevron Hills at the Shekef base. Rav Mordechai Cohen presented a session that also dealth with Rosh Hashana. 35 soldiers managed to take time out of their patrol schedule to attend this shiur.The final study session was given to Gedud 217 which is a part of Duvdevan. Rabbi Yehuda Kroizer presented an informative and interactive lesson on Tractate Suckot, another timely topic. 35 combat soldiers learned together that evening.

May he have a speedy recovery from illness

Shemaya Tzvi ben Hinda – A study session was donated for the speedy recovery of Shemaya. Rav Tzvi Yehuda gave a shiur to the 401st battalion of the Tank Corps. 50 combat soldiers spent an hour learning about the Megillah from Tractate Megillah in the Talmud. With refreshments to follow, the soldiers prayed for his quick recovery from illness.

May he have a speedy recovery

Michael Yona ben Leah – A study session was dedicated to the speedy recovery of Michael. Rav Yuval Dahan presented a very important class on mussar – ethical behavior and moral principles. 60 soldiers attended this class which was given at Yosh (Yehudah and Shomron) Division headquarters. Before enjoying the refreshments, the soldiers prayed for his speedy recovery.

May he have a speedy recovery

Aryeh ben Ytzchak Yehuda Weiss– Rosh Chodesh Tevet (December 2010) A study session was dedicated in loving memory of Aryeh on his 50th yartzheit by his daughter and son-in-law. The rav delivered a session to the Shomron Brigade relating to the laws of Shabbat. 70 soldiers attended this most important shiur. Kadish was recited afterwards as the soldiers prayed for the elevation of his soul.

May his memory be a blessing

burning candle Protecting the Protectors

Chana Chaya Halpert – 5th of Sivan (April 18,2010) – This study session was given at Chativat Yehuda, at an outpost known as Charsina which is located in Chevron. Members of Gedud Shimshon # 92, combat soldiers and career officers participated in this shiur. This unit used to operate inside and around Gaza when Gush Katif still existed and as such is known as an extremely important and well trained group of chayalim. Rav Yehuda Alfassi delivered the shiur on   “Ahavat Chaverim – Love between Friends.”  That evening 40 soldiers attended. The traditional kaddish was recited and refreshments were served.

May her memory be for a blessing

burning candle Protecting the Protectors

Zecharya Kalman ben Yael – 5th of Sivan (May 18, 2010) – A study session was dedicated in her memory by her loving family. Rav Ehud Shachal presented a very interesting shiur on the weekly Torah portion to 40 combat soldiers from Menashe brigade. The soldiers also enjoyed a collation and recited the kaddish in her memory. May this learning have served as an elevation for her soul.

May her memory be for a blessing

burning candle Protecting the Protectors