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    As we mark the centennial of the BJ Sanctuary, join us and add your voice to a musical journey through the songs that have sustained us communally, culturally, and spiritually over the past 100 years.

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    Join us as we celebrate 20 years of BJ Blood Drives. Donation typically takes 45 min-1 hr, so register now for a time slot that works best for you.

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    Join us for one or all of our enlightening adult classes.

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    Our hearts go out to the Jewish community of Pittsburgh and we stand with them as they grapple with the aftermath of the October 27 mass shooting.

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    Hear from our Kadima@BJ students about why your kids should join them! Registration is open now for 2018-19.

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    Watch a short video message from Rabbis Roly Matalon, Felicia Sol, and Dini Lewittes introducing the Jewish Home Project.

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    Watch Shabbat services on the BJ livestream at www.bj.org/live.

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    Dedicate a siddur and find out other ways about how you can remember and renew.

Shabbat Services


Friday, December 14

6:15 PMKabbalat Shabbat88th Street Sanctuary
6:15 PMMindfulness Kabbalat Shabbat89th Street Third Floor

Saturday, December 15

9:30 AMShabbat Services88th Street Sanctuary
10:45 AMChildren’s Services89th Street Reception and Middle Rooms
10:45 AMKulanu89th Street Chapel

Morning Minyan

Week of December 9 - 15

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

Latkes All Night Long—A Hanukkah Play

Friday, December 7-Tuesday, December 11 | Various Times | Various Locations

In this rocking holiday musical revue, BJ’s youngest actors (kindergarten through third grade) will shine on stage as they tell the story of Hanukkah.

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Hag ve Hesed–Hanukkah Candle Lighting

Through Sunday, December 9 | Various Times | Various Locations

Hanukkah is just around the corner! Join our fun and rewarding Hanukkah candle lighting initiative. Visit a fellow BJ member to help bring them the light of the Hanukkiyah and celebrate the Hag at home, l’dor v’dor, from generation to generation. BJ will provide candles, dreidels, and gelt. The week before Hanukkah, we’ll match you with another member. To volunteer or to receive such a visit, please email Galit.

Sanctuary Centennial Exhibition

Through Thursday, December 27 | During Community House Open Hours | Community House

The BJ Sanctuary Centennial Exhibition recounts the history and impact of our remarkable community, with a focus on the 100 years we have occupied our beloved 88th Street Sanctuary: 1918-2018. The eight panels reflect themes at the core of BJ, as we trace the beauty and the stories of the Sanctuary building and all that it has contained. Read more »


Friday, December 7 | During and Following the Kabbalat Shabbat Service | Chapel and Middle Room

Hitoreri, our monthly teen only Kabbalat Shabbat & dinner, is a BJ teen tradition. Teens participate in a mindfulness-style Kabbalat Shabbat service, led by one of the BJ rabbis, where we leave behind the hectic energy of the school week and transition into the peacefulness of Shabbat. This is followed by a delicious Shabbat dinner and plenty of down time for the teens to catch up and hang out.

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Latkes All Night Long—A Hanukkah Play for Kindergarten, First-Third Graders (Rehearsals)

Saturday, December 8 | 12:15-1:45PM | Various Locations

In this rocking holiday musical revue, BJ’s youngest actors will shine on stage as they tell the story of Hanukkah. Each child will have a speaking line and singing part, so Latkes All Night Long is a wonderful opportunity for actors at any level.

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“Wiki-Torah: Genesis” Weekly Torah Study with BJ Rabbinic Fellow Tobias Divack Moss

Saturdays, December 8, 22 Following Shabbat Morning Services | Community House

Spend a few minutes at Kiddush, grab a plate of food, and come join a conversation about the weekly Torah portion. We encourage first-time participants to sign up below.

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BJ’s Purim Shpiel—For Kindergarten-Sixth Graders (Auditions and Rehearsals)

Saturday, December 8 | 2:30-4:30PM | Community House 4th Floor

Calling all actors! This year’s Shpiel is a full-scale Mamma-Mia-meets-Mordekhai musical spectacular, and we couldn’t be more excited. This disco-filled production is open to kindergarten-sixth graders, and no previous theater experience is necessary. Everyone who is interested will be cast in the show, but auditions (December 8-13) are required to help us get to know each actor and think about what role will be the best fit for them.

Those auditioning should prepare about 16 bars of a song to be sung a capella.

More interested in helping out behind the scenes? Email Emma about opportunities for involvement in tech crew and more.

See the website or email Emma for more information!

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Monday Meditation Minyan

Monday, December 10 | 6:30-7:00PM | Chapel
Whether you have a deep meditation practice or are interested in exploring mindfulness for the first time, we invite you to join us for Monday Meditation Minyan, led by Yael Shy. Each session will begin with wisdom from the Jewish tradition, followed by focused meditation (with some guidance), a short discussion, and an opportunity for community members to recite Mourner’s Kaddish. No experience necessary; all are welcome.

Monday Meditation Minyan meets weekly, with the exception of national and Jewish holidays. To get a glimpse of what you can experience in-person, check out the live stream of this season’s first session.

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Hebrew Ulpan Classes אולפן עברית

Monday, December 10 | 5:00-7:00PM and 7:00-9:00PM | Community House

Registration for this series is closed. Classes are held every Monday. 

Join members of the BJ, Habonim and Shaare Zedek communities in a small group environment to build and improve your Hebrew conversational skills. The Hebrew Ulpan course teaches the fundamental structure of Hebrew and its basic forms, as well as the necessary vocabulary for everyday conversations, reading, and writing. This class is open to both members and non-members of the three synagogues so invite your friends to join!

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The Book of Job

Mondays, December 10, 17, January 7, 14 | 7:00-8:00PM | Community House

The Book of Job is a fascinating, strange, and powerful text—impossibly difficult to translate, and even harder to understand. During these five sessions, we will engage with this text and broaden our understanding of it through literature and theater, while seeing what wisdom can be gleaned from it in our approach to the suffering of the world, our own experiences, and its theological implications.

Each session will build upon the previous session. Hebrew reading ability helpful, but not required.

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Shed Some Light: A Deep Dive Into the Ritual of Shabbat Lights

Monday, December 10 | 7:00PM | Middle Room
Hanukkah may be over, but don’t put the matchbook in the drawer quite yet! Join Cantor Dave Mintz for a fascinating evening of learning and exploration about the depth of meaning behind the ritual of kindling Shabbat lights. What is it about the power of lighting a flame that is so evocative in spiritual life? What does this ritual instill in us? How did the tradition of lighting Shabbat candles develop? Why is lighting Shabbat candles traditionally considered a woman’s role? Do women have to be the ones to light Shabbat candles? Is there room for creativity and innovation in this ritual? We’ll explore all of these questions and more in a lively exploration of the Shabbat ritual that has sustained our people. No registration necessary, all are welcome.

The Prophets with Hillel Friedman

Tuesday, December 11 | 9:00AM | 4th Floor Conference Room

Join Rabbi Hillel Friedman, longtime BJ member, for a perusal of the classical prophets. Together we will study excerpts from the classical prophets and apply their wisdom to our concerns in the 21st century.

This class meets every Tuesday. 

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"Soul Food" Lunch and Learn with Rabbi Felicia Sol

Reading Torah

Tuesday, December 11 | 12:30-1:45PM | Middle Room

This series meets every Tuesday through December 18.

Bring a bag lunch and open up your soul to the nourishment and challenge of the Hassidic rabbis. Join Rabbi Felicia Sol as we imagine old world wisdom for everyday life. Each class will stand alone, so new participants are always welcome. No prior knowledge is expected. This series is free of charge.

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Kadima@BJ Shirah with Shira

Tuesday, December 11 | 4:00-4:45PM | Community House

This series meets every Tuesday through December 18; registration is closed. 

Kadima@BJ is excited to announce a new Hebrew immersion class geared towards children ages 2-5. Shira Averbuch will lead children and their parents and caregivers in music, stories, and movement. Children will gain a sense of community rooted in Jewish tradition, while gaining exposure to Israeli culture, Hebrew language, and holiday customs. Cost for the fall semester is $200 for members and $300 for non-members. Both members and non-members may receive a sibling discount ($50 off). Contact Danielle Freedman for more information.

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Celebrate 20 Years of BJ Blood Drives: Give the Gift of Life

Give Blood Drawing

Wednesday, December 12 | 3:00-9:00PM | Sanctuary

Twice a year, we have the opportunity to provide this essential service to the community. Save a life and donate now at the BJ Blood Drive. Learn more about how you can prepare to donate, including any restrictions that may apply. Donation typically takes 45 min-1 hr. Don’t forget to bring your donor ID card or number (if you have one). Questions? Contact Larissa Wohl.

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Teen Learning Series

Wednesday, December 12 | 6:00-7:15PM | Community House Room 411

Want a chance to learn, study, and discuss some of the most intriguing issues facing Jewish teens today? Join us as we explore R-rated Talmud, the complexities of Israel, civil rights, poverty, and race within Judaism. Sessions will be facilitated by Aniko Gomory, Ayala Wasser, Rabbi Felicia Sol, Moshe Samuels, and outside facilitators.  Read more »

Introduction to Judaism

Wednesday, December 12 7:00PM | Community House
This class meets every Wednesday; registration is closed. 
This course offers an overview of the core beliefs, practices, and history of Judaism and the Jewish people. We hope to deepen the understanding of those just beginning to explore Jewish life as well as of those who would like to participate more fully in the life of the Jewish community. No prior knowledge or experience necessary. Individuals: $435 (members)/$660 (non-members); Couples: $650 (members)$980 (non-members). Please contact Billie with questions.

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Everyday Ethics with Rabbi Adina Lewittes

Wednesday, December 12 | 7:00-8:30PM | Reception Room

Ethical questions of war and peace, global warming, immigration, and healthcare can be overwhelming. And yet, consciously or not, we answer critical ethical questions every day as we order our coffee, pay our workers, dine with our friends, and even shop online.

This class meets every Wednesday; join us at any time during the series; all welcome.
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"In the Mirror" Lunch and Learn with Rabbi Roly Matalon

Embedded Gateways. Photo: Karoly Lorentey

Thursdays, December 13, 20; January 10, 17, 24; March 7, 14, 28; April 4, 11 | 12:30-1:30PM | Location Provided Upon Registration

We will continue our close reading of short stories about the lives, struggles, and concerns of the Talmudic rabbis, in order to uncover deeper layers of our own selves and to become better equipped to wrestle with our human nature. No knowledge of Hebrew is required; you are welcome to bring your own lunch to class. This series is free of charge, but open to BJ members only.

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The Spiritual State of Being a Woman in America

Torah text. Photo: Max Orenstein

Thursday, December 13; January 10; February 7 | 7:00-8:30PM | Community House

With the emergence of #metoo movement, the Kavanaugh hearings, and misogyny voiced from the highest office in the country, what does this mean for women? How can we turn to religious life for support, while also acknowledging the patriarchy that exists in religious texts and spaces?  Join Rabbi Felicia Sol for an exploration of these questions through experiences, textual learning, and conversations with guest speakers. The first session will be for those who identify as women only, and the following two sessions will be open for all.

December 13 – Open to those who identify as women

January 10* – With Reverend Amy Butler, Senior Pastor of Riverside Church

February 7* – With Professor Yifat Bitton, Legal Academic and Social Activist for Equality

Read more »

View more upcoming events »

Notary Services for BJ Members

Business hours | BJ Community House

Our Human Resources and Administrative Associate, Shakeara Hatchett, is now authorized to provide notary services (for personal or business purposes) to all BJ members. Email Shakeara to set up a notary appointment.

View more ongoing events »
Listen to this d'var

Parashat Vayishlah

November 24, 2018 • Tobias Moss
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Parashat Vayetze

November 17, 2018 • Rabbi Felicia L. Sol
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Parashat Toledot

November 10, 2018 • Rabbi Erin Glazer
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Parashat Hayei Sarah

November 3, 2018 • Rabbi J. Rolando Matalon
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Parashat Vayera

October 27, 2018 • Rabbi Shuli Passow
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Parashat Lekh Lekha

October 20, 2018 • Rabbi Felicia L. Sol
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Parashat Noah

October 13, 2018 • Rabbi J. Rolando Matalon
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Parashat Bereshit

October 6, 2018 • Rabbi Marcelo R. Bronstein
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Parashat Ha-azinu

September 22, 2018 • Rabbi Shuli Passow
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Parashat Yom Kippur Afternoon

September 26, 2018 • Rabbi Marcelo R. Bronstein

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.

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 | 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.