Worship

Our Vision for Worship
Everyone is welcome at our services, whether you already are a member of the congregation, considering joining us or just want to visit. Rabbi Kraus and Cantor Fine lead Shabbat services on most Friday evenings and Saturday mornings throughout the year (some Shabbat services are led by congregants). At each service, we strive to create a worship experience that is warm, welcoming, filled with beautiful and varied music, invites active participation and, we hope, is inspiring to all.

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While we are firmly rooted in the richness of Jewish tradition, we enjoy infusing that ancient tradition with new life by reinterpreting it in fresh ways. When our observance is more traditional, we work hard to make the tradition accessible for those of us less familiar with such practices. Most importantly, we cherish the caring, diverse spiritual community we are building together. We feel privileged to be exploring and strengthening our relationships with our own sense of meaning, with one another, with the Jewish tradition and with God in such a loving community.

 

 

Throughout the year, we invite various groups within the community to take a turn leading our worship services. These groups include members of our older Hebrew School classes, who lead a few of our Shabbat evening or morning services. We also look forward to services created and led by our high school youth group (BEFTY), our Brotherhood and Sisterhood and our Social Action Committee. These services give us the opportunity to express gratitude for the leadership of these individuals and to celebrate the Jewish spiritual roots of their work in our community and beyond.

 

 

Our Sanctuary
We are quite proud that our beautifully renovated sanctuary (rededicated in the fall of 2009) is a flexible, accessible, comfortable and effective space for communal worship. Among the major priorities of our renovation was the addition of handicap access ramps to insure that every member of our community can participate fully in every aspect of worship. We installed new windows to bring more natural light into our sanctuary and to allow us to remember both our connection and responsibility to the world outside the sanctuary. 02-web
The creation of a flexible seating area (with moveable chairs) permits us to arrange our worship space in a variety of configurations for different size gatherings, for different age groups and for a full range of creative worship experiences. Having this flexible area also helps us to deepen relationships in our community by allowing us to sit across from each other and see each other’s faces. We installed a gently sloped floor and built a bima (the raised platform from which services can be conducted) with two levels that enable us to create a greater sense of intimacy while still preserving excellent sightlines. Finally, we upgraded both our sound and lighting systems and preserved several beloved, longstanding elements of our sanctuary that include our congregation’s first aron kodesh (holy ark) and our breathtaking stained glass windows.


Accessibility

We are proud that our sanctuary is now handicapped-accessible and are glad to offer large print prayer books and hearing assistance devices to those who would find them helpful. Ask an usher at any service if you need assistance.

 

For more information
If you have any questions about worship at Beth El Temple Center, please contact:
Ken Siskind, Ritual Committee Chair at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
 or Rabbi Kraus at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Please check the Temple worship calendar for service times, as they vary. We look forward to seeing you and celebrating with you at services!