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Prayer/Tefillah

Introduction to Prayer/Tefillah - Services at PSJC

PSJC is a welcoming congregation and a friendly place, where our services are filled alternately with enthusiastic song and powerful silence.  PSJC services are fully egalitarian (equal roles for all regardless of gender), and are grounded in the traditional Conservative liturgy, complemented by contemporary forms of religious expression. Members of our congregation come from a wide range of backgrounds, from rabbis and yeshiva graduates to people with little or no Jewish background, including many who are Jews by choice (converts to Judaism).  We request that all service participants, regardless of gender or marital status, wear a head covering during all services.

Our goal is for the synagogue to be accessible and comfortable to people who have varying degrees of familiarity with traditional prayer.  Services are conducted mostly in Hebrew, with occasional readings in English. Transliterations (Hebrew words in English letters) are available in all services for people who are less comfortable reading Hebrew.  PSJC's Rabbinic Intern leads a break-out Learners’ Minyan at least once a month during part of the regular services, for those interested in understanding more about the Shabbat morning service - check the calendar for the schedule. 

We observe and hold services on all Jewish holidays and festivals, as well as on Shabbat, with Friday Night and Saturday Morning services.  we also hold  a weekly Shacharit (morning) service every Wednesday at 7:30 am, and on the mornings of Rosh Chodesh (the new month according to the Jewish Calendar).  A number of different services are provided for children and teens on Shabbat morning and during the High Holy Days. Times for religious services are always posted on the website home page. 

Our services are highly participatory and we encourage everyone to join in and even to lead the prayer services, chant Torah (leyn) and Haftorah, as well as to give divrei Torah (sermons/discussions).  Classes and one-on-one support are provided to help develop new prayer leaders, leyners (Torah readers) and Haftorah chanters.  High Holy Day (Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur) prayers are led by Cantor Judy Ribnick as well as by members of the congregation.  On the first Friday night of every month, PSJC welcomes Shabbat with our lay-led, all sung service, Lev Tahor (the Pure Heart); Cantor Ribnick leads us on the third Friday night of each month; and throughout the year there are also Kabbalat Shabbat Kulanu services, our wiggle-friendly, shush-free service that is accessible to all ages.  All other Friday night, Shabbat morning, Wednesday morning, Rosh Chodesh and Chaggim (Festival) service prayers are led by members of the congregation, in collaboration with Rabbi Carter.

We pray from Siddur Sim Shalom, which draws its text from the Bible, Talmud, and other classical sources, as well as modern interpretations, prayers and poetry composed over the last 2000 years. Although the siddur uses traditional male references for God, as an egalitarian congregation our practice is to substitute gender neutral terms (e.g. “ruler” for “king,” “Adonai” for “Lord”). 

Please follow the link to Shabbat Services learn more about Friday Night and Saturday Morning services,  Services for Children and Teens, and High Holy Days and Sukkot at PSJC.

Wed, June 3 2020 11 Sivan 5780