Join The Conversation With Mishpacha's Weekly Newsletter



Bearer of the Torch

Yehudah Roset

Rav Noam Yitzchak Alon, the beloved rosh yeshivah at the helm of Mir Brachfeld, continues to light the lantern of “the Shver”

Wednesday, December 13, 2017

 Mishpacha image

Rav Nosson Tzvi ztz”l chose Reb Noam as a son-in-law for his drive in learning, but more than that, for his exceptional consideration of others. As leader of Mir-Brachfeld, he hasn’t disappointed on either account (Photos: Shuki Lehrer, Matisyahu Goldberg, Baruch Ovitz)

A s buses from around the country pulled up at 27 Rabi Akiva Street in Modiin Illit, a stream of bochurim made their way into the dormitory building, pulling their suitcases as they tried to maneuver with their various bags and packages — initial supplies for the long winter zeman ahead. But before entering the beis medrash, each one of them made a preliminary stop: They went to greet their rosh yeshivah, like children run to greet their father after a long separation.

Rav Noam Yitzchak Alon, or Reb Noam, as his talmidim call him, is relatively new to the job — just 45 years old and already the senior rosh yeshivah in Mir-Brachfeld. The first three years here were spent working hand in hand alongside Rav Aryeh Finkel ztz”l, but in the year and a half since Rav Aryeh’s passing, Reb Noam has become the official rosh yeshivah. During this short time, he’s proven an original and creative leader as he continues to build this Torah empire.

His mark is felt in its every corner — and it’s not just his lomdus and diligence, but the intensity and strength of character that has led him along a challenging journey.

A child of academic Rechovot, young Noam Alon discovered the yeshivah world, breaking in with persistence and drive. His passage has been one long testimony to the truth of the Vilna Gaon’s maxim that “akshan yatzliach,” the tenacious one will succeed.

That willpower has certainly manifested itself in his intense learning schedule, inspired by his father-in-law and the yeshivah’s founder, Rav Nosson Tzvi Finkel ztz”l.

Looking for a Leader

Rav Nosson Tzvi would say the word “lernen,” and his face would light up. He showed the way to reach greatness — one chavrusa following another, one seder after another — and it became the Mir-Brachfeld way as well.

It took a similar fortitude for Reb Noam to ascend the mountain. He didn’t grow up in the Bnei Brak cheder system and he wasn’t learning Sefer Hamitzvos in exchange for Crembo treats on Shabbos afternoons. His father, Dr. Yoav Alon, is a respected professor at the Weizmann Institute of Science in Rechovot — and quite proud of his son, the rosh yeshivah.

Noam began his post-bar mitzvah yeshivah education in a typical moden yeshivah high school, although his older brothers had already felt drawn to a more chareidi lifestyle. Noam, true to his nature, didn’t simply follow them without carefully observing their choices and considering the path before him.

What makes this yeshivah special, the boys say, isn’t the generosity of the hanhalah but the availability of their rebbeim. Just as Rav Nosson Tzvi kept the door to his dining room open throughout the day, the Brachfeld Rosh Yeshivah is constantly available

In high school, he won a Mishnayos be’al peh contest, displaying his powers of concentration and focus. He became very close with Rav Simcha HaKohein Kook, the chief rabbi of Rechovot, who publically proclaimed that young Noam would go on to become a great talmid chacham. Noam eventually moved over to Yeshiva L’tzeirim of Rechovot, and then switched to Yeshivas Ohr Yisrael in Petach Tikvah, under the aegis of Rav Yigal Rosen.

As Noam Alon rose to the top of the yeshivah, discussions were taking place at the dining room table in the apartment on Jerusalem’s Rechov Ha’ameilim. Rav Nosson Tzvi Finkel, rosh yeshivah of the largest yeshivah in the world, was looking for a shidduch for his eldest daughter, Golda. (Excerpted from Mishpacha, Issue 689)

Related Stories

A Century In His Glow

Mishpacha Contributors

Rav Aharon Yehudah Leib Steinman ztz"l carried the weight of the Jewish People. Today we are all orp...

Flickers of Light

Project Coordinator: Rachel Bachrach

Everyone has a special menorah. A collection of personal accounts for every night of Chanukah

Never, Ever Alone

Rabbi Leib Kelemen

An incredible saga. A medical miracle. A true account in 8 chapters

Share this page with a friend. Fill in the information below, and we'll email your friend a link to this page on your behalf.

Your name
Your email address
You friend's name
Your friend's email address
Please type the characters you see in the image into the box provided.
CAPTCHA
Message


MM217
 
Evolution vs. Revolution
Shoshana Friedman I call it the “what happened to my magazine?” response
Up, Up, and Away
Rabbi Moshe Grylak What a fraught subject Eretz Yisrael is, to this day
Where Do You Come From?
Yonoson Rosenblum Could they be IDF officers with no Jewish knowledge?
Heaven Help Us
Eytan Kobre Writing about anti-Semitism should rouse, not soothe
Work/Life Solutions with Chedva Kleinhandler
Moe Mernick “Failures are our compass to success”
An Un-Scientific Survey
Rabbi Emanuel Feldman Are Jerusalemites unfriendly? Not necessarily
Out of Anger
Jacob L. Freedman How Angry Lawyer was finally able to calm down
5 Things You Didn’t Know about…Yitzy Bald
Riki Goldstein He composed his first melody at eight years old
When the Floodgates of Song Open, You’re Never Too Old
Riki Goldstein Chazzan Pinchas Wolf was unknown until three years ago
Who Helped Advance These Popular Entertainers?
Riki Goldstein Unsung deeds that boosted performers into the limelight
Your Task? Ask
Faigy Peritzman A tangible legacy I want to pass on to my children
Are You There?
Sarah Chana Radcliffe Emotional withdrawal makes others feel lonely, abandoned
A Peace of a Whole
Rebbetzin Debbie Greenblatt Love shalom more than you love being right
Seminary Applications
Rabbi Zecharya Greenwald, as told to Ariella Schiller It’s just as hard for seminaries to reject you