Pray & Learn

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Havurat Tikvah is dedicated to providing a quality Judaic experience for everyone. We continuously strive to learn and grow. In that spirit, we hope new members and old, as well as visitors, will find our congregation a welcoming environment in which to enjoy prayer, reflection, and study, as well as social action.

Spirituality is at the base of the Jewish people. Our warm and inclusive services and celebrations embrace the central themes of Judaism — Tzedakah (charity, justice), Teshuvah (turning toward God for our sustenance and faith) and Tikkun Olam (repairing the world).

We seek a Judaism that is deeply rooted in our rich culture and religious tradition, while being able to respond to contemporary life.

 

Religious Services

Our members have a wide range of Jewish backgrounds, from traditional Orthodox to secular, yet are able to find parts of our services that resonate with them.

Our services contain traditional prayers and songs in Hebrew, and our prayer books include transliterations for commonly read prayers so that all can follow along. On Shabbat, in the place of a formal sermon, a member offers commentary on the Torah portion and then invites others to join in a discussion, often lively and always enlightening.

From time to time, our members enhance our holiday and Shabbat services by playing musical instruments: drum, guitar, piano, violin and woodwinds.

Periodically, we invite a visiting rabbi or rabbinical student to lead us in a Shabbaton or for a holiday other than the High Holy Days.

On the High Holidays and at other times in response to parents’ requests, we provide babysitting and a special liturgy for children. Students preparing for B’nai Mitzvah are given opportunities to practice their prayer skills at some Shabbat services.

Regular services include:

  • High Holidays: First and Second Days of Rosh Hashanah, Yom Kippur
  • Shabbat morning services, followed by a bring-a-dish Kiddush luncheon
  • Services for some major holidays as announced
  • Havdalah services, coupled with adult programs
  • Minyans for mourners and for life-cycle events

 

Holiday Celebrations

We have supper in a member’s succah on Sukkot, dance with the Torah on Simchat Torah, light menorahs together and vote for our favorite latkes on Hanukkah, hold a seder on Tu B’Shevat and engage in comedic revelry through our Purim musical. The events may vary year to year, but the holiday spirit and the joy of sharing favorite foods with Havurah friends remains the same.

As you would expect of a Jewish organization, most of our events include food! Paper goods are provided and each household contributes a dish or dessert. Out of respect for members who observe Kashrut, the Jewish dietary laws, we only bring dairy/veggie/parve dishes using Kosher products.

For more information on our observances and celebrations, email religiouscommittee@havurattikvah.org.

 

Adult Education Programs

Programs for adults vary, according to current members’ interests, and suggestions are always welcomed. Typically on Saturday nights, we have had an Israeli film series, musical nights and guest or member speakers on cultural, political and intellectual issues of Jewish concern.

Visiting rabbis, local Jewish studies scholars and rabbinical students have also led adult education programs.

To learn more, email adulted@havurattikvah.org.

 

Mentoring and Giving Back

Havurat Tikvah benefits from a generous spirit of mentoring and informal tutoring among its members. Both B’nai Mitzvah students and adults have been coached by other members. If you are motivated to improve your prayer skills, you can usually find a mentor or study partner.

We expect our B’nai Mitzvah “graduates” (and adults) to continue to contribute their service-leading skills or to teach others. We invite them back to read from the Torah or lead prayers at holiday and Shabbat services.

 

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