Building Our Home
The time has come for us to grow!
Beit Matanya, Kvutzat Reut’s main building, was named after Matanya Robinson z”l, our beloved student from the mechina’s second year, who was killed in Jenin during Operation Defensive Shield. In 2009, thanks to generous donations from the Harry and Jeanette Weinberg Family Foundation, the Jerusalem Foundation, and many dear private donors, we opened our current building.
We are now excitedly approaching a new stage of growth: building three more stories to accommodate the expansion of our programs and the larger number of participants. The new building will be a warm, welcoming space to hold the mechina, our growing child and youth programs, our beit midrash, and a prayer and gathering place for the Beit Yisrael community in Gilo, which has doubled in size in the past decade. The new space will also act as a center for our expanding alumni and student activist network.
The new space will be a center of creativity, Jewish spirit, growth, and new ideas — a bridge between different populations and cultivates community action.
Hoshea’s speech at the Beit Matanya dedication
On the mosaic behind me, Mark and Rina chose the wonderful saying from Hillel the Elder, that is so appropriate and so perfectly reflects Matanya:
“Hillel said, ‘Be like the disciples of Aharon: Love peace, pursue peace, respect all humankind and bring them close to Torah.” (Avot 1:12)
What is the essence of this teaching? There’s a story told of a non-Jew who asked Hillel to convert him to Judaism, but on condition that Hillel teach everything, all of Torah, while he stood on one foot. Hillel responded: “What is hateful to you, do not do to your fellow human being. Now, go and learn (the rest).”
Just as Rabbi Akiva said, “Love your fellow human as yourself:’ that is the great law of Torah.”
The Maggid of Mezeritch added to this: “This is the meaning of the verse ‘Love your fellow human as yourself, I am God’: The Divine Presence is found where people love one another.”
May this home continue to be a place that nurtures brotherhood and love. This was Matanya’s way, and there is no better way to continue his light – from this house, with this spirit, and with the people who come to Beit Yisrael for their growth and self development.
May we all be considered worthy to succeed in building a society where the shechinah rests.