Northern view of Shavei Shomron. [Photo Source: Wikimedia Commons]
Shavei Shomron (Returnees of Samaria) is a religious community approximately 25 kilometers northwest of the city of Shechem (Nablus). During the holiday of Sukkot, in 1977, a group of religious families from Netanya and the surrounding area travelled to an old Jordanian base with the purpose of establishing a new Jewish community there. They named the community that they established Shavei Shomron, due to the city’s close proximity to the remains of Shomron, the capital city of the Kingdom of Israel.
The ancient city of Shomron and the village of Sebastia (which is the Greek name for Shomron) lies north of Shavei Shomron. To the south of the community The city – the capital of the Kingdom of Israel – and on the slope of the tell lies the village of Sebastia, which preserves the Greek name of ancient Samaria. To the east of the community is the village of An-Naqura, which is home to a beautiful ancient waterbed, a sealed spring from which water once flowed into the city of Samaria.
Remains of a Samaritan community from the Roman-Byzantine period were found south of the Shavei Shomron and contained beautiful remains of synagogues.
The location of the community and its unique characteristics are attractive to many young people. The community is located about 30 minutes from Netanya and 25 minutes from Kfar Sabba. There are educational institutions for young children, Torah classes for children and adults, special groups and after-school activities for children, a ritual bath for Men and Women, a community swimming pool and more. In addition to public and religious holiday celebrations, the community also organizes community meals, evenings of getting to know one another, concerts and trips.
The community of Shavei Shomron falls under the jurisdiction of Shomron Regional Council. In 2016 it had a population of 897. The community is located in the portion of Israel that was designated for the tribe of Menashe (Manasseh).