Friday night at 8:00 PM
Saturday morning at 9:30 AM
Following each service is a delicious spread...
Shabbat morning Torah reading 10:15 AM
Members are encouraged to sponsor Friday night onegs and Shabbat morning kiddush/luncheons in honor of a simcha or in observance of a yahrzeit.
We generally meet only on Shabbat - for the Friday evening Kabbalat Shabbat service where we welcome in the Shabbat, and for the Shabbat morning Shacharit and Musaf services. Members who desire a weekday service to observe the recitation of kaddish with a minyan (prayer quorum) may ask for a special morning and/or evening weekday service. This is a service performed for the benefit of our members here in the center of Jewish Poconos life.
FRIDAY EVENINGS 8 PM
Friday evening services follow the late evening format, beginning at 8 PM. They conclude around 9 PM, and contain worship elements of responsive English readings, as well as the traditional choral melodies familiar to many. The service is followed by an Oneg Shabbat, where members gather to socialize over the dessert collation.
SHABBAT MORNINGS 9:30 AM
Shabbat mornings are celebrations of the spirit and nourishment to the soul. Those who desire to do a complete pisukei d'zimra (introductory service) to elevate one's mood prior to formal prayer are invited to take advantage of private time, as the building is opened at 9:00 AM. One is also invited to private meditation (hitbodedut) in the sanctuary as early as 9:00, with formal public worship beginning at 9:30 AM.
Public prayer begins with the early morning blessings, pesukei dezimra, with an uninterrupted Shacharit (morning) service beginning with Nishmat (soul of all living things). The service contains Shochen Ad, Yishtabach, Barchu, the Shema and its blessings, the Amidah, the Torah service and Musaf.
The Torah is read weekly. We follow the Jerusalem-based Triennial reading cycle. Those called up for aliyahs both make and are given blessings. A prayer for healing is said during the Torah service. Following the Torah reading we chant the haftarah, reciting a selection from the Prophets. The Rabbi offers pithy remarks both evenings and mornings, a discursive sharing of spirituality usually based on the unifying them of that week's sedrah (Torah portion).
On Festivals, such as Pesach, Shavuoth and Sukkoth, we hold services on Yom Tov only (plus Shabbat), not including the intermediate days. We meet for Tashlich, Selichot, Simchat Torah, Hanukkah and Purim. On most chagim we add the Hallel service and read from a second (and sometimes a third) Torah. Our Holidays are known for their energy and festive spirit.
In larger urban areas, one often finds bar mitzvahs conducted each week, with a downside for the urban congregation that often loses its central focus of shared community. Being that we are a relatively small congregation, our numbers are small, and so we conduct no more than a half dozen bar/bat mitzvahs each year! Hence our worship community benefits from a shared sense of belonging and togetherness which is quite beautiful. We are like a family that cares for one another where one can expect to form deep attachments and connections of caring.
Our services are uplifting and spiritual experiences, drawing upon beautiful melodies. Services end with eyn kelohaeinu, aleinu and kaddish, concluding with adon olam. We have an Oneg on Friday evenings and a traditional Kiddush on Shabbat. members at times sponsor an Oneg Shabbat or a Shabbat Kiddush Luncheon to honor family members or to celebrate a life cycle event. We celebrate Erev Shavuot with a supper replete with blintzes and cheesecake. We are a community.