in metro new york
Many Yeshivish Jewish people escaped Europe, especially their homeland of Lithuania, during World War II after enduring persucution from the Nazis. Rabbi Ahoron Kotler was one who escaped, and he founded the Lakewood yeshiva (Orthodox Jewish school). Lakewood, New Jersey is about 40 miles south of NYC and has grown into the home of 60,000 Yeshivish Jewish people, about half of the 120,000 Yeshivish Jewish people in Metro New York. Much of the growth of Lakewood has been due to lower-cost living compared to NYC. Part of the growth in Lakewood is because the Rabbi Kotler’s original yeshiva, Beth Medrash Govoha, has grown to instruct nearly 7,000 students.
As for many Orthodox Jewish communities, Yeshivish Jewish people face anti-Semitism, which is sometimes complicated as they have tight, insular, growing populations. For these reasons, the Jewish leaders in Lakewood are active in multi-ethnic civic groups to address tension and challenges.
Yeshivish Jewish people are typically Zionists—strongly pro-Israel.
- The Purim holiday is typically a big two-day celebration in Yeshivish communities. On these days, Jewish people celebrate the liberation of the Jewish people in the days of Esther in the Bible.
- The Celebration of Sukkot is a seven-day festival recognized in Yeshivish communities. It commemorates the 40 years that the Israelites wandered in the desert upon leaving Egypt.
As mentioned above, Beth Medrash Govoha is located in Lakewood. It is the second largest yeshiva in the world.
Yeshivish Judaism has an interesting history. As the Hasidic movement spread in the 18th century throughout Eastern Europe, the opponents spread to criticize, and sometimes persecute, Hasids for their fascination with magic and lack of Talmudic study. Over time, the persecution stopped, but this movement grew into an ultraorthodox community focused on Talmudic study and adherence. This community became known as Yeshivish, which came from “Litvish” due to their origin in Lithuania, and because of their emphasis on starting yeshivas—Orthodox Jewish schools.
Unreached people groups can also be viewed as "hidden" people groups (i.e., they are largely unnoticed and unaffected by the global Body of Christ). In the prayer gallery section below, as well as through the Google Earth prayerwalk tool, you can visualize these hidden people group communities. By doing so, we pray God gives you insight into how to pray through what you see. By scrolling through major points of interest in the prayer gallery section, pray for people you see, and pray that the peace and hope of Jesus will become known to people who frequent these places. Through the Google Earth prayerwalk tool linked at the bottom of the page, you can virtually prayerwalk through the community, praying "on site with insight." You could also take the route and points of interest from that tool and save them to your "Google Maps" to prayerwalk in person. Allow the following three steps to guide your prayers using these tools, and try prayerwalking with another person or small group! God hears the voice of His people, and He responds to our prayers!
Praise God for who He is. Thank Him for His blessings and salvation that is extended to all peoples. Praise and thank Him for appointing the time and boundaries of this people group's presence in North America so that they might seek Him and find Him (Acts 17:26). Pray Scriptures that come to mind about His glory being made known among all peoples and nations (e.g., Rev 7:9-10).
Luke 10:2 says “The harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few. Therefore pray earnestly to the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into His harvest." Pray for God's laborers to share Christ's love through hospitality to this people group. Pray for laborers among this community to establish loving relationships and proclaim the gospel. Pray for Christians to emerge from within this people group who will reach their friends and family members.
Most members of unreached people group communities remain unreached because they have failed to hear the gospel in ways they can understand. Others have heard the gospel but have many barriers to overcome before receiving the gospel. Pray that this community will understand the gospel. Pray for God to draw them to Jesus and remove the barriers that keep them from salvation in Christ.
Beth Medrash Govoha
Beth Medrash Govoha was established in 1943 by Rabbi Aaron Kotler. It was the first kollel (institute for full-time study of the Talmud and rabbinic literature) established in the United States. It is believed to be the second-largest yeshivah in the world with roughly 7,000 students.
Visit this page to learn general information about Haredi communities in North America and their religious beliefs. Also, discover resources to help share Jesus with them in their language.
Prayerwalk through some of the main Yeshivish restaurants, places of worship, and businesses in Lakewood, NJ using a tool we developed in Google Earth. You could also do a prayerwalk in person using the same points of interest.