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Choosing Judaism

Making the Journey to Judaism

The Jewish tradition teaches, “more beloved by God than all the children of Israel who stood at Mt. Sinai are those who choose Judaism, who come to the Torah of their own accord.” (Midrash Tanchuma)


What does it means to be Jewish? The Jewish tradition teaches us that to be a Jew is to connect your fate with that of Jews everywhere. It is a decision that should be undertaken with intent, meditation and commitment. Conversion to Judaism is powerful, challenging and transformative act. Our conversion program helps you explore all that Judaism entails. Our process takes about a year and new cohorts form each Fall.

1) Introduction to Judaism

Fall-Winter, Wednesdays, 6:30–8 pm (see registration for details)
This survey course address four questions: how do Jews worship; what holidays do Jews observe; how do Jews approach life cycle events/issues; what do Jews believe. It is perfect for anyone looking for adult-level basics, whether you never set foot in the Jewish classroom or just have hazy memories of Sunday school. This course is designed to prepare you for other classes or independent study.

2) Hebrew language study

Introductory Prayerbook Hebrew
Wednesdays, 6:30–8 pm, February 17–April 21

Participants will learn to read and pronounce the letters of the Hebrew alef-bet. In addition familiarity with the prayerbook, basic blessings and core parts of the liturgy will be provided.  This class requires no prior knowledge.

Adult Intermediate Hebrew
Sundays, 1–2 pm

Prayer book Hebrew for the advanced beginner, focusing on reading and deeply understanding prayers from the siddur. Email instructor Noa Levy for more information.

3) Mentoring

Each prospective Jew-by-choice works with a mentor, a member of the synagogue, who suggests an individualized program of suggested study based on your knowledge and interests. Mentors are chosen for their knowledge, enthusiasm and compatibility.

4) Jewish Community

Judaism is a tradition that cannot be practiced alone. Individuals studying for conversion are encouraged to join us for Shabbat and holidays, classes and volunteer opportunities to learn how to put theory into practice. 

5) Community Commitment

We ask that each conversion candidate make a donation to the maintenance of the synagogue community by becoming a Friend of Sherith Israel. This contribution will become your first year's membership donation after your formal conversion. All levels of commitment are welcomed and honored.

6) Conversion

Conversion culminates with an appearance before a beit din (religious court), plus a visit to the mikvah (ritual bath). The congregation then publicly welcomes the individual into the community. It is hoped that individuals studying for conversion at Sherith Israel chose to become members of the congregation.

Mon, December 6 2021 2 Tevet 5782