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    Hear Dr. Susannah Heschel share stories about her father, read some of her favorite passages, and address questions about Rabbi Abraham Joshua Heschel. Come early at 4:00PM for snacks and schmooze.

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    What makes the BJ Celebrate Community Auction unique? In a word: YOU!

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    Stand against intolerance and racism at this interfaith rally co-sponsored by BJ and other faith groups from across New York City. For more information, click here.

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    For more information on our yearlong community study, click here.

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    Our Early Childhood and Parenting Center gives young families an ideal way to start a lifelong relationship with Judaism and build lasting friendships.

Shabbat Services


Friday, February 5

5:15 PMTot Shabbat88th St. Sanctuary
6:30 PMKabbalat Shabbat88th St. Sanctuary

Saturday, February 6

9:30 AMShabbat ServicesSanctuary
10:30 AMJunior CongregationSocial Hall
10:45 AMChildren’s ServicesChapel

Morning Minyan

Week of February 7-13

89th Street | More info »
9:30 AMSunday
7:30 AMMonday
7:30 AMTuesday
7:30 AMWednesday
7:30 AMThursday
7:30 AMFriday

"In the Mirror" Lunch and Learn with Rabbi Roly Matalon

Torah text. Photo: Harriet R. Goren

Thursdays, February 4, 11 and 25, March 3, 10, 17 and 31| 12:30-1:30PM | Location Provided Upon Registration
Through the close reading of short stories about the lives, struggles and concerns of the Talmudic rabbis we uncover deeper layers of our own selves and we become better equipped to wrestle with our human nature. No knowledge of Hebrew is required. Please bring your own lunch to the midtown location. Specific location information will be provided upon registration. The March 31 session is to be confirmed.  Free of charge. Members only. To register, please click here or email Leah at lmichelson@bj.org.

The Paris Agreement on Climate Change: A Conversation with Ruben Kraeim

Saturday, February 6 | After Shabbat Morning Services | 86th Street Chapel

In his role as an advisor to the Coalition for Rainforest Nations, BJ member Rubén Kraiem participated in last December’s multilateral climate change negotiations. Those negotiations resulted in the so-called Paris Agreement, which is meant to set the course for coordinated efforts to address this global threat. Rubén will be sharing with us his impressions of the meetings, and reporting on what was (and what was not) achieved.

Shabbat Morning Learners’ Minyan

Torah. Photo: Max Orenstein

Saturday, February 6 | 9:30-10:15AM | 86th Street Chapel
Build and strengthen your Shabbat morning tefillah foundation with our pilot 5-session Learners’ Minyan. Explore liturgy, melody, and mechanics with those of all levels of experience while engaging in meaningful prayer. Led by BJ Rabbinic Fellows and Rabbis at the 86th Street SPSA Chapel on the first Shabbat morning of each month (February 6, March 5, April 2, May 7, and June 4).

The Legacy of My Father

heschel_susannah image

Saturday, February 6 | 4:30PM | 89th Street Reception Room
As a part of our year-long study of Abraham Joshua Heschel, come hear his daughter, Dr. Susannah Heschel, share some stories of her father, read some of her favorite passages, and address questions about Rabbi Heschel. Come early at 4:00PM for snacks and schmooze.

IDI Session - Religion and State in Israel

Sunday, February 7 | 4:00-5:40PM | 89th Street Community House

The issue of the proper role of religion in Israel has been an ongoing issue.  Both pre and post state, some Zionists sought a state which preferred the model of Jews as citizens and which regarded Orthodox Judaism as the form of practice most valued. What are the implications of such a reality on the Jewish democracy, on Israel-Diaspora relations and on Religious-Secular tensions? Join Rabbi Roly Matalon for a conversation about these challenging issues, featuring guests:

Please register here for this session.

Coffee on Your Corner With Senator Espaillat

Sunday, February 7 | 9:30-11:30AM | 89th Street Middle Room
Meet with New York State Senator Adriano Espaillat over a cup of coffee to discuss your concerns in the community. A light breakfast will be provided. For more information or to pre-register: 212-544-0173, eventsRSVP@adrianoespaillat.org.



Welcome the Stranger and Stand Up for Love

Sunday, February 7 | 11:00AM-1:00PM | 89th Street Community House

Want to learn more about BJ’s response to the global refugee crisis? Want to stand up against intolerance, racism and Islamophobia? Join the BJ Teens for their next Teen Day of Service. The morning starts with a screening of Refugee Kids, a documentary produced by BJ member Renee Silverman, and a discussion on BJ’s next steps in addressing this crisis. Then stay for a sign-making party for the February 14 Love Rally, an interfaith rally to celebrate our common humanity and speak out against radical hatred. This event is open to the entire BJ community. R.S.V.P. here.

Economic Justice Hevra Meeting

For Facebook

Monday, February 8 | 6:30-8:30PM | Location Upon R.S.V.P.
Attend a meeting to get involved in the Justice for Farmworkers Campaign with BJ. We are asking questions, having conversations, and educating the community to expand our collective understanding of ethical consumption to include the predominately immigrant laborers who make New York’s multi-billion dollar agricultural economy possible. Through the passage of the Farmworkers Fair Labor Practices Act, we hope to ensure that laborers who produce the food on which we depend in NYS can have the dignity and equality they deserve. If you are interested in attending these meetings or have questions, please contact Lisa.

Day School Parent Gathering

Tuesday, February 9 | 7:00-8:30PM | Address Upon R.S.V.P.

Calling all Day School parents! Please join us for an informal get together to connect with fellow parents in the community and explore and learn about all that BJ has to offer you and your children. R.S.V.P. to awasser@bj.org, we look forward to seeing you then!

Mindfulness Kabbalat Shabbat Service

BJ Sanctuary Stained Glass Rose Window

Friday, February 12 | 6:30PM | 89th Street Reception Room
Led by by Rabbi Marcelo Bronstein, Rabbi Rachel Cowan and Karina Zilberman, this service involves meditation, reflection, deep listening and personal engagement with the parashah. Please contact Beth at btarson@bj.org with any questions.

Shira Yoga: An Integrated Practice for Body and Soul

Silhouette of a woman doing yoga on the beach at sunset

Saturday, February 13 | 9:30-10:20AM | 86th Street Board Room (1st floor)

Bring voice, breath and body together in this pilot 5-session series that will combine two devotional practices: Asana Yoga and Piyut (Hebrew liturgical poetry). Each month we will study a new piyut, sing and chant together, and explore the piyut’s theme through a gentle yoga practice. We’ll finish in time to head into the main service in the sanctuary for Torah reading. Rabbi Shuli Passow leads the yoga, with Rabbi Roly Matalon, Dan Nadel, and rabbinic fellow Arielle Rosenberg rotating each month to provide live musical accompaniment.

Never practiced yoga before? The yoga practice will be open level; all are welcome and no experience is necessary to participate.

Read more »

Love: A Rally to Celebrate Our Common Humanity

Sunday, February 14 | 1:00-3:00PM | Washington Square Park

Stand against intolerance and racism at this interfaith rally co-sponsored by BJ and faith groups from across New York City. Presenters include musicians, performers, faith leaders, activists, and government officials–including BJ Rabbis Roly Matalon and Felicia Sol, and Director of Community Engagement Rabbi Shuli Passow. R.S.V.P.to tell us you’re coming and who you’re bringing; we’ll let you know the exact BJ meet up point. For more information about presenters and co-sponsors, share the event, and invite others to join you, click here.

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Helen Radin Memorial Lecture: "What Matters—Caring Conversations About End of Life"

What matters website

Tuesday, February 16 | 7:30 PM | 89th Street Reception Room
BJ is one of five sites taking part in a pilot program about advanced care planning. Join Rabbi Felicia Sol and Rabbi Sarit Horwitz, along with guests Rabbi Mychal Springer (Director of the Center for Pastoral Education, The Jewish Theological Seminary), Rabbi Joy Levitt (Executive Director, JCC Manhattan), Dr.  Eliezer Diamond (Rabbi Judah Nadich Associate Professor of Talmud and Rabbinics, The Jewish Theological Seminary) and more for an evening dedicated to exploring Jewish responses to questions surrounding the end of life. We will watch a new set of videos which discuss topics including artificial nutrition, life support, and palliative care. Free and open to the public, no registration necessary.

Tze'irim Heschel Session

Wednesday, February 17 | 8:00PM | Location upon R.S.V.P.
Be a part of this month’s discussion just for 20s and 30s on the Heschel essay of the month, “Toward an Understanding of Halacha.”  Please read the essay beforehand. R.S.V.P. to Rabbi Sarit Horwitz


A Talk By Author Alisa Solomon: "Wonder of Wonders: A Cultural History of 'Fiddler on the Roof'"

Thursday, February 18 | 6:30-8:30PM | 89th Street Community House Reception Room

To note the 50th anniversary of the premiere of “Fiddler on the Roof” and the current Broadway production, join author and Columbia University Professor Alisa Solomon for a fascinating talk accompanied by a captivating multimedia presentation. You are in for a special treat! Solomon will trace the journey of how Sholem Aleichem’s Tevye stories became not only one of Broadway’s greatest shows, but a cultural phenomenon embraced by audiences around the world. The New York Times Review described “Wonder of Wonders” “As rich and dense as a chocolate babka–so crammed with tasty layers that you have to pace yourself….As brilliant a piece of reporting as I’ve read this year.” Babka will be served and the author will sign books that will be available for purchase at the event. There is no fee for this event, but a donation will be appreciated. Click here to register.

Bo-i Kallah - A Monthly Kabbalat Shabbat Service

Shabbat Candles photo: gerard montigny

Friday, February 19 | 6:30PM | 89th Street Reception Room
Rabbi Roly Matalon and musician Dan Nadel will lead an alternative Kabbalat Shabbat service on the third Friday evening of each month. With the help of soulful melodies, verses of Shir haShirim (Song of Songs), liturgical poems and Psalms we will transition gently and with full kavannah from hol to kodesh – leaving the ordinary work-week consciousness in order to enter holy time and welcome Shabbat. If you want to read more about this service please click here.

Whitney Museum Exhibition Tour Led by Penny Dannenberg: "Collected by Thea Westreich Wagner and Ethan Wagner"

Friday, February 26 | 1:00-2:00PM | Whitney Museum of American Art, 99 Gansevoort Street

Join us for an exciting tour of the “Collected by Thea Westreich Wagner and Ethan Wagner” exhibition led by BJ member and Whitney Museum docent Penny Dannenberg. She will guide us through a selection of works from the extraordinary collection accumulated by the couple over the course of thirty years. The exhibition celebrates American and international work from the 1960’s to the present day. It features renowned pieces by artists such as Diane Arbus, Robert Gober, and Jeff Koons, among many others. Participants will pay the museum admission fee. For further information contact Asya at asya.berger@nyu.edu. Click here to register.

Fourth Grade B’nai Mitzvah Journey Opening Ritual


Saturday, February 27 | 5:00-7:00PM | 88th Street Sanctuary and Frankel Hall
Families of all 2015/2016 4th grade students are invited to BJ’s annual B’nai Mitzvah Journey Opening Ritual, where the entire Torah will be unrolled, and each student will find the parasha (portion) that he/she will read when called to the Torah for his/her Bar/Bat Mitzvah. Join Rabbi Felicia Sol for this extraordinary event that brings together all 4th grade students and families as they begin their ascent toward becoming b’nai mitzvah.  Please register here.

Tze'irim 20s and 30s Cooks for the Shelter

Sunday, February 28 | 1:00PM | 88th Street Kitchen

Join Tze’irim as we make dinner for the BJ/SPSA Homeless Shelter. We’ll gather for brunch at 1:00PM and start cooking after brunch is over (between 2:30 and 3:00PM). A $6-10/person is strongly encouraged to cover the cost of groceries and supplies for the Shelter. R.S.V.P. by Thursday, February 25. Brunch location will be provided to those who register. Contact Ellen for more information.


The Israeli Book Club Discusses "Beaufort" by Ron Leshem

Sunday, February 28 | 6:00-7:30PM | Location Upon R.S.V.P.

The Israeli Book Club is more than just a typical reading group – it is an intimate encounter with Israeli culture, society and politics. Join us for a good read and a nuanced conversation that will help you gain a deeper understanding and appreciation of contemporary issues in Israel.

In our next meeting we will be discussing “Beaufort”, by Ron Leshem. Please sign up here for location.

Read more »

Explore Jewish Argentina With Rabbi Marcelo Bronstein

Wednesday, April 6 – Tuesday, April 12, 2016 | Argentina 
Enjoy this opportunity to see Argentina in all its complexity through a uniquely Jewish lens. Among the highlights of this tour will be a visit to the Seminario Rabínico and Comunidad Bet-El, both founded by Rabbi Marshall Meyer. On this tour of vibrant Buenos Aires, you will also have the opportunity to visit an Estancia (ranch), taste Kosher Argentinian style BBQ called asado, and enjoy the gaucho skills show and folkloric dancing!  On an optional pre-trip to Patagonia, explore spectacular glaciers with a sailing excursion to National Glacier Park. For more information or to register, click here or contact Lisa Steinberg at lsteinberg@bj.org or call 212-787-7600 x228.

IDI Session - Maintaining Israel’s Security

Tuesday, March 22 | 7:00-9:00PM | 88th Street Sanctuary

The State of Israel is constantly facing external and internal security threats, some of them existential. We are honored to host Michael Herzog, retired Brigadier General in the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) and currently the Israel-based Milton Fine International Fellow of The Washington Institute. His fascinating presentation will help map out the current threats, provide a deeper understanding of the Middle East, and the potential impact on the security of Israel and its neighbors.

Please register here for this event. 

IDI Session - "Wrestling Jerusalem" Special Showing for BJ Members

Thursday, March 31 | 7:00-9:00PM | 59/59 Theatre, 59 East 59th Street

Set in America, Israel and the Palestinian Authority, Wrestling Jerusalem follows one man’s journey to understand the Israeli-Palestinian conflict; an excavation into the contours of conflict illuminates a personal story that grapples with the complexities of identity, history and social justice. Writer and performer Aaron Davidman gives voice to seventeen different characters, animating their struggles, soul searching and barriers, shedding light and offering hope in the midst of one of the most enduring conflicts of our time.

BJ Members will enjoy discounted tickets ($30 each). The play will be followed by a discussion with writer and performer Aaron Davidman and Rabbi Matalon. Get your tickets here.

IDI Session- What Role should American Jewry Play in Relation to the State of Israel?

Wednesday, April 6 | 7:00-9:00PM | 89th Street Community House

After all that we have learned this year, what is our role as American Jews with and in shaping the Jewish State? What influence might we hold and should we support Israel unconditionally? In order to address these questions and many more, join this fascinating panel discussion featuring:

  • Dr. Shuli Schwartz, the Irving Lehrman Research Associate Professor of American Jewish History and the Walter and Sarah Schlesinger Dean of Graduate and Undergraduate Studies of The Jewish Theological Seminary of America.
  • Jonathan Tobin, Senior On-Line Editor of Commentary
  • Steven M. Cohen, Research Professor of Jewish Social Policy at the Hebrew Union College Jewish Institute of Religion

Please register here for this event. 

Spoonful of Hesed: Cook and Deliver Meals to BJ Members

spoonful food

Sunday, February 7 | 11:00AM | 88th Street Kitchen
We will gather to cook healthy, delicious meals and deliver them to other BJ members in need of a little extra care and a warm sense of community. This includes those who have recently returned home from the hospital, are elderly and can’t cook for themselves, are in mourning, or who recently had a baby. If you would like to cook or deliver, if you or someone you know could use a meal from this group, or you have any questions, please email Billie or call x264.

Communities of Character: A Conversation With David Brooks


Monday, March 7 | 7:00PM | The Temple Emanu-El Skirball Center (10 East 66th Street)
Enjoy a community-wide conversation with New York Times op-ed columnist David Brooks about character, moral joy, and what it means to care for one another.  Join us for reflections from David Brooks as well as a dialogue facilitated by UJA-Federation CEO, Eric Goldstein. The cost is a charitable contribution of $18 to UJA-Federation of New York. To register, visit www.ujafedny.org/david-brooks. UJA-Federation of New York’s CommUnity: UJA+Synagogues initiative offers educational briefings, hands-on volunteer opportunities, and scholars-in-residence at local synagogues.  To learn more, contact Marissa Cinnamon at cinnamonm@ujafedny.org or 212-836-1899.


Heschel Friday

Friday, March 4 | 8:30-9:15AM | 89th St. Chapel
Start your day with Rabbi Abraham Joshua Heschel (and Rabbinic Fellows Alex and Arielle) immediately after morning minyan as we dive into a discussion of Heschel’s article “No Religion is an Island”.  All are welcome.  Please read the article before the session.

View more upcoming events »
Listen to this d'var

Parashat Yitro

January 30, 2016 • Rabbi Felicia L. Sol
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Parashat Beshalah • Shabbat Shira

January 23, 2016 • Rabbi J. Rolando Matalon
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Parashat Va-era

January 9, 2016 • Rabbi Marcelo R. Bronstein
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Parashat Shemot

January 2, 2016 • Rabbi J. Rolando Matalon
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Parashat Vayehi

December 26, 2015 • Arielle Rosenberg
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Parashat Vayigash

December 19, 2015 • Rabbi Felicia L. Sol
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Parashat Vayeshev

December 5, 2015 • Rabbi J. Rolando Matalon
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Parashat Vayishlah

November 28, 2015 • Rabbi Shuli Passow
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Parashat Vayetze

November 21, 2015 • Alex Braver

Volunteers Needed for Hesed: Shabbat Connections

Our community is strongest when we care for each other in times of need. Do a deed of lovingkindness by connecting with members of the BJ community who are homebound, lonely, or in need of some extra care. With regular and consistent phone calls we can brighten the days and warm the hearts of those who need it most. Please contact Joni Brenner at ShabbatConnections@bj.org for more information on how you can help.

BJ/SPSA Shelter Volunteer Opportunities

SPSA volunteers set the table for the nightly dinner for the guests in the BJ/SPSA Shelter for Homeless Women. Photo: Jim MelchiorreMonday and Tuesday | 88th Street Frankel Hall
Sunday, Wednesday and Thursday | 86th Street Social Hall

Our shelter is always looking for new set up and sleepover volunteers and food donors. Getting involved is easy. For food donors: families, individuals or groups can get together to prepare a light meal for 10-12 people at the synagogue, the church, at home, or even order in a light meal for our guests. Set up shifts are from 7:00-9:00PM and sleepover shifts  from 9:00PM-7:00AM. Perform a mitzvah all while sleeping through the night! To sign up or learn more, contact Larissa or call x272.

Meals for New Parents

Like to cook?  Be part of new effort to reach out with a loving hand to families in our community!  Join a team of people who will sign up to cook meals for parents when a baby is born.  Contact Enid Lotstein at Enid.Lotstein@gmail.com.

Service and Hospitality: Volunteer with the Judith Bernstein Lunch Program

Thursdays | 11:30AM-1:00PM | 88th Street Frankel Hall
Every Thursday at BJ we welcome guests into our synagogue for a delicious lunch, friendly companionship, and music performed by a BJ member every other week. Join our lunch program by volunteering and taking part in the warm and welcoming atmosphere we offer to our guests. To learn more about this opportunity or to volunteer contact Larissa Wohl or call x272.