Absolutely! A number of our Members are interfaith families, meaning that one parent is not Jewish. Our Temple community embraces all families who seek Jewish community, or who are looking to raise Jewish children. Moreover, non-Jews, as well as Jews of any denomination, are welcome at our weekly Shabbat services, which are held Friday evenings and Saturday mornings. Temple Emanuel regularly welcomes at Shabbat services individuals from the East Valley community who are unfamiliar with Jewish religious practice or who are looking to increase their familiarity. Temple Emanuel offers a year-long Discovering Judaism class open to adult non-Jews and Jews alike looking to further their Jewish education. To learn more about the Discovering Judaism class at Temple Emanuel, please contact the Temple office.
Shabbat services at Temple Emanuel include a mix of Hebrew and English. The prayer book (a siddur in Hebrew) used at Temple Emanuel is the Mishkan T'Filah: A Reform Siddur. Our siddur provides all of our prayers in Hebrew. Transliterations accompany the Hebrew prayers so that those who cannot read Hebrew may participate. Below most prayers are English translations. Shabbat Services at Temple Emanuel honor tradition, and most prayers are led in Hebrew. While the service is a mix of Hebrew and English, many parts of the service are accessible to someone with no Hebrew knowledge. On Friday Shabbat evenings, for example, Rabbi Dean Shapiro or Rabbi Jason Bonder give a short sermon which may be a D'var Torah, a teaching based on the weekly Torah portion (parshah in Hebrew), or he may read a traditional Jewish folktale in English. Our Services vary during the course of the month.
Temple Emanuel has a sizable community of young singles and couples, both with and without children, who share a common desire to connect. The temple facilitates chavurot that cater to their unique interests. Temple Emanuel's Sisterhood and Men of Emanuel organizations promote community with diverse social events, from poker nights to social justice opportunities, both for their members and for couples.
Temple Emanuel develops programming for our whole community of diverse individuals, families and couples. In addition to events for all ages such as our Social Justice opportunities, Torah Study, and Book Group. There are age specific opportunities for empty nesters, Yeddidim, our empty-nesters group, meets monthly for dinner and schmoozing. The Yarn Yentas meet weekly for knitting and fun.
The Ann B. Ritt Religious School of Temple Emanuel is the heart of our community. On Sunday mornings and Tuesday and Wednesday afternoons and evenings our Temple is bustling with Jewish learning, celebrating Jewish holidays, exploring Jewish values, and connecting with Jewish friends. Our Religious School is 300 students strong, with virtually all teachers having formal education training and/or many years of Jewish supplementary school teaching experience.
Many people who are unfamiliar with synagogue life are surprised to learn that most temples do not collect offerings weekly. Instead, most synagogues support their facility and extensive programming by collecting annual Membership dues and ticket sales for High Holy Days Services. Without such revenue, none of our community's pursuits are possible. Please contact Rebecca Weinstein, Membership Specialist, for dues ifnormation. Temple Emanuel never turns away a prospective Member due to an inability to pay. Anyone who, due to financial difficulties, cannot afford the annual Membership dues, Religious School fees, High Holy Days Services tickets, or other supplementary programming fees, will find a sympathetic ear and the ability to make special arrangements.
Temple Emanuel offers a year-long Discovering Judaism class open to non-Jews and Jews alike who are looking to further their Jewish education. Individuals who are interested in converting must take this class. In addition, such individuals will meet regularly one on one with Rabbi Shapiro as they make their Jewish journey. The path to conversion necessarily varies from participant to participant. For more information, please contact the temple office.
Definitely! Please join us for community, prayer, and meaningful worship. Both Members of the larger East Valley community and out-of-town guests of current members are encouraged to contact the temple office during regular office hours to purchase tickets. The purchase price for tickets can later be applied to mmbership dues, should a visitor choose to join our cngregation after the holidays.