First Time Visitors

Temple Shalom welcomes students and other visitors, and we invite you to participate with us in our religious services.  We hope this introduction will provide you with the information you need to understand, feel comfortable, and get the most from your visit.

PRAYER SERVICES AND BOOKS:

As Jews, we pray directly to God, without an intermediary, such as a minister or priest.  The rabbis, meaning “teacher,” and cantor lead the services, announce which prayers are being said, provide explanations, and tell the congregants which prayers should be said while standing. If clergy is unavailable, a lay member of the congregation will lead the services.  The prayer books are written in Hebrew and have transliterations (Hebrew written in Roman letters) and have English translations for each prayer. Since Hebrew reads from right to left, the books will appear to open from the wrong direction, but the pages are numbered so you will be able to follow the services.

SHABBAT SERVICE:

You are welcome to attend and participate in our Friday night Shabbat service. The Jewish Sabbath begins at sunset each Friday and concludes at sunset each Saturday.

Friday evening services begin at 6:30pm and last approximately one hour. Services are also live streamed as well as broadcast through our Temple Shalom Facebook page. We have a wine and cheese oneg before services, beginning at 6:00pm.

CUSTOMS AND PRACTICES TO BE AWARE OF:

As in religious services of all faiths, there are certain customs and practices we follow.  While you may be visiting in order to observe and learn, please remember that congregants are worshipping. 

SPECIAL NOTE FOR STUDENTS:

We understand that you may have an assignment to write a paper on what you observe and experience. Please wait until after you leave the Temple before you write down your observations.  While you are at the Temple, feel free to ask the rabbis, cantor, ushers, or congregants any questions about the services or Judaism. (Please remember that there is a wide range of knowledge and understanding about Judaism, and varying degrees of religious observance among Jews.  Therefore, you may wish to clarify whether their answers reflect the personal beliefs and practices of the individuals you talk with, or whether they are universally accepted within Judaism.)  The web site myjewishlearning.com is especially useful in obtaining explanations and information about Judaism.

SPECIAL NOTE FOR CLASSES OR GROUPS:

When you contact the office, please let us know you’d like to attend as a group. We will arrange for a docent to host your group, provide additional information about our worship services, facility and Judaism, and to answer questions. To arrange a group visit, please contact Clergy Assistant Halley Gottlieb at (972) 661-1810 x201.

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