Bet Shalom is a community as well as a congregation, and therefore events in the lives of our community of congregants are important. Whether it is the joy of marriage, a birth or a young person coming of age or a time of sadness like a death, it is our desire to be there for you. Sharing these times with you is what makes a community strong and makes Bet Shalom feel like a family of friends.

  • Birth (Bris, Naming) – There are few joys that are greater than, as a parent, welcoming a new child into the world. The bris (for boys) and naming ceremony (for girls) gives families, friends and the entire community the opportunity to celebrate the new life. It is also an important event in marking the entrance into covenant with God and the Jewish people.
  • B’nai Mitzvah – “Son or daughter of the commandment,” Bar/Bat mitzvah is the process of being recognized as an adult in the eyes of the Jewish community. At the age of thirteen young people become responsible for the mitzvot. Bar/Bat mitzvah preparation focuses on synagogue skills, Hebrew language, and Torah chanting. These fundamentals are essential for a child to fully participate in adult Jewish life. Here at Bet Shalom the Bar/Bat mitzvah occurs during our regular Shabbat services so our community can be part of this special day. This day also usually involves a family simcha (celebration).
  • Marriage – A wedding is one of the most exciting and significant days in a couple’s life together. It is not only an outward expression of a couple’s love and a legally binding contract, but also a holy experience. Bet Shalom wants to do everything possible to make a couple’s day under the chupah everything that they desire.
  • Conversion – A person may choose to join the Jewish people for a number of reasons, but this decision is one that involves study and self examination. The Jewish life is one that is meant to be lived daily and by experiencing Jewish rituals, holidays and services “Jews by choice” can begin to meaningfully bring these practices and beliefs into their lives. Through these actions they also become a part of the fabric of the Jewish community at large.
  • Death – When a death separates us from a loved one, the sadness and grief can seem overwhelming. Our desire is to be a support to families dealing with this process, by honoring their loved one while also consoling the family. Our desire is to assist the family with all the typical needs, funeral scheduling, shiva arrangements, and through our Caring Community even food when possible.
  • Unveilings – It has been customary since ancient days to mark a loved one’s grave with a stone. The unveiling ceremony usually takes place within the first year of a loved one’s passing. There is a brief ceremony at the cemetery where some Psalms are read, the loved one is remembered, the cloth is removed from the stone and the mourner’s Kaddish is read.