The Center for Prayer and Spirituality at B’nai Jeshurun is a hub of expansive spiritual practice, devotional music, innovative ritual, and immersive experience, providing the tools for personal and communal transformation. When courageous innovation is brought to the richness of Jewish tradition, we can affirm the notion of why prayer matters, harness the power of spiritual practice to build community, and realize the possibility of transformation that is true and enduring:
Cultivating a deeper sense of awe (yir’ah), lovingkindness (hesed), and gratitude (hoda-ah)
Enabling us to revitalize and nurture intimate relationships with the Divine Presence
Heightening personal relationships and profound connections within the embrace of a spiritual community
Inspiring and propelling a community of spiritual practice toward making meaningful change in our world
Who Are We?
|Cantor David Mintz, Director|
Cantor David Mintz joins B’nai Jeshurun from New Orleans, LA, where he served as cantor of Touro Synagogue since 2014. While at Touro, he created a variety of initiatives to develop a culture of communal singing as spiritual practice. In addition, he reimagined young family Shabbat programming and oversaw the community’s 26-year tradition of Jazz Fest Shabbat, collaborating with renowned jazz musicians such as the Preservation Hall Jazz Band, Jon Cleary, Sunpie Barnes, and the Panorama Jazz Band of New Orleans. Read moreContact Dave
|Dan Nadel, Music Director|
Dan Nadel is an Israeli born, New York-based guitarist and composer, whose personal style combines flamenco, jazz, and Middle Eastern influences. He is a bandleader, a solo performing artist, and a collaborator with Tavche Gravche, his multinational neo-Balkan group.A busy musician on New York’s scene, Nadel has also worked with many world-renowned artists, including jazz musicians… Read moreContact Dan
|Kristen Kersey, Program Administrator|
Kristen’s first position at B’nai Jeshurun was as the Administrative Assistant for Youth and Family Education Department (now known as Family Life and Learning). After three years as an Event Coordinator at Citigroup, Kristen is thrilled to be returning to her spiritual home. She received a Bachelor of Arts in History from American University in 2009. Kristen lives on the Upper West Side, and when she is not at BJ, you can often find her cooking, singing, writing, or attempting some dangerous combination of the three.Contact Kristen
Upcoming CPS Programming
Mondays-Thursdays | 6:30PM | Rabbi Rachel Cowan Chapel
Coming to an evening program at BJ? Picking up your kids from Kadima? Come a little earlier, or stay a little later, fulfill the mitzvah of enabling others to recite kaddish, and help sustain our community and the Jewish people. Led by BJ spiritual leaders, staff, and community members alike, BJ’s evening minyan creates another opportunity to come together in prayer and to support the mourners among us. This minyan is open to all, and, depending on the season, provides an opportunity to daven minha, maariv, or both.
Wednesdays, September 18, 25, October 2 | 7:00-8:30PM | Rabbi Rachel Cowan Chapel
Led by Rabbi Roly Matalon and Music Director Dan Nadel
For the past thousand years, Sephardic and Mizrahi Jews have gathered for the forty days from the beginning of the month of Elul, through Rosh Hashanah, and up to Yom Kippur, rising at dawn to sing Selihot prayers and to prepare the soul for repentance and renewal. This three-part poetical and musical experience will engage us in that spiritual journey and get us ready for the upcoming days of soul-searching and prayer, the Yamim Nora’im. These sessions are free of charge and open to all.
Saturday, September 21 | 8:45-9:25AM | Rabbi Rachel Cowan Chapel
Join Rabbi Roly Matalon biweekly to prepare the soul and open the heart for Shabbat morning prayers through the singing of piyutim and reflections on kavannah. This series is open to all, no registration necessary.
Saturday, September 21 | Following Kiddush | Rabbi Rachel Cowan Chapel
Prepare for Yom Kippur by joining Cantor David Mintz for an exploration of Kol Nidre, uncovering its history, complexity, and transformative power.
Wednesday, October 9 | Following Havdalah | Location Given Upon Registration
Join us at a delicious community break-fast, generously sponsored by Helena Diamant Glass in cherished memory of her beloved parents, Regina Landwirth Diamant and Karl Diamant.
Fridays Monthly, Beginning November 1 | 6:15PM | Reception Room
On the first Friday of every month, join Rabbi Roly Matalon and BJ Music Director Dan Nadel for an alternative Kabbalat Shabbat service featuring melodies from the Sephardi and Mizrahi traditions, verses of Shir haShirim (Song of Songs), and beautiful piyutim (liturgical poems). Transitioning meaningfully into holy time by weaving together all of these elements, we invite you to bring a new dimension to your Kabbalat Shabbat.
Fridays Monthly, Beginning November 15 | 6:15PM | Rabbi Rachel Cowan Chapel
On the third Friday of every month, join us for an intimate Kabbalat Shabbat, weaving together meditation and music with liturgy and learning. Led by Rabbi Shuli Passow, Cantor Dave Mintz, Elana Arian, and Jessie Reagen Mann, this service offers an uplifting vehicle for moving into the stillness and beauty of Shabbat. Email Kristen Kersey, or call her at x255, with any questions.