Building Futures, One Person at a Time.
Since its inception over 16 years ago, Mishkan Torah has been singularly dedicated to one cause: to bring warmth, unity, and Torah to the Encino-Tarzana community. The once-fledgling entity has become – with the perseverance and enthusiasm of its devoted Rabbanim, avrechim, and members – a thriving, vibrant, cohesive society.Mishkan Torah is comprised of a close-knit group of genuinely kind, caring, and welcoming individuals who share in each other’s smachot and difficulties, surrounding every member with love and support throughout life’s challenges and triumphs. Prior to the establishment of Mishkan Torah, yahadut and Torah were represented in shuls and minyanim in the valley; however, the area lacked a true makom Torah, a place to learn Torah all day, every day. In the early years, the center was barely able to scrape together a minyan, but persevered; today, it proudly stands out as a place to become a ben Torah, a yeshiva-style learning program that offers chavrutot and sedarim throughout the day.The concept of Valley Community Kollel was envisioned in 1998 with the guidance and encouragement of the hanhala of Ner Israel Rabbinical College of Baltimore and the Rosh Yeshiva moreinu v’rabeinu Harav Yaakov Weinberg, zt”l. Rav Weinberg’s advice and support continues through moreinu v’rabeinu Harav Tzvi Berkowitz, shlit”a, of Ner Israel. The kollel was successfully instituted in 2000 under the leadership of our dedicated Rosh Kollel, whose selfless toil and determination has built it up from its very foundation. Over the course of nearly two decades, Mishkah Torah has grown significantly and adapted to serve the emergent needs of its congregants. With seven minyanim daily, learning sedarim for all levels, a youth center, inspirational shiurim and Shabbatons, and amenities including a keilim mikvah and simcha hall, every need is addressed. Five motivated avreichim devote themselves to help the community in every conceivable manner. Mishkan Torah provides a program and event for every member of every family: children, teens and adults.The valley has undergone a complete transformation, with the kollel as the epicenter of a flourishing community. A community without a stable center of learning cannot survive; Mishkan Torah remains the only makom Torah designed to meet the needs of all ages, levels, and cultures, dedicated to addressing the unique characteristics of every generation and every person.Our kollel has endured hardships and happiness, challenges and celebrations, good times and difficulties. This past year has been a year of smachot; watching numerous kollel chattanim grow and build their own homes fills every member with pure joy and nachat.
It’s not simply a shul, a kollel, a congregation; Mishkan Torah is a family in every sense.
Miskan Torah is for Everyone
With the number of shuls and kollelim on the rise, many look for a niche, a specific, unfilled need to serve a distinct population. Mishkan Torah, however, does not limit their services to a particular group; on the contrary, they aim to support as many sectors of the community as possible!
The community, and, accordingly, the kollel, thirsts for higher-level learning and spiritual growth. The kollel is not simply a place to daven; it’s a place for people to learn on their level and at their pace. They will even assist members in finding the right yeshiva to suit individual needs.
Mishkah Torah is for everyone: adults, children, teens, twenty-somethings; women, men, boys, girls; unaffiliated to high-level learner; people seeking light-hearted enjoyment, support, community, or a serious chavruta. There’s a program and a place for every Jew at Mishkan Torah.
“SEED at Kollel kept us away from bitul Torah and saved our Talmud Torah, we didn’t go backwards but rather grew in our level. The SEED bochurim were amazing, keeping in touch, and teaching us emunah and mussar. Without SEED, my summer would have been wasted; it encouraged me to come to Shacharit and learn.”