Welcome to West End Synagogue, a Reconstructionist congregation on New York's Upper West Side dedicated to building an intellectually challenging, spiritually vibrant, diverse, and mutually supportive Jewish community.
We hope that you enjoy our website, and that you will drop by soon to visit us in the real world! Please let us know if you have any questions, or would like additional information about any aspect of our community.
On the fourth Friday of each month at 6:30 pm, Rabbi Marc Margolius leads "Yedid Nefesh" (Companion of the Soul), a contemplative service for Shabbat evening consisting largely of guided silent meditation, interspersed with chanting and a short teaching.
While the basic liturgy will be followed, this one-hour service essentially will be quieter and more reflective in nature. No prior meditation experience is necessary or assumed.
Photo © Roger Smith
Ruth Balinsky Friedman will speak about the status of women's leadership in Orthodoxy in today's world, and about her own experience as a member of the inaugural class of Yeshivat Maharat, which is dedicated to “confirming Orthodox women as halakhic and spiritual advisors.”
Ruth graduated from Barnard College in 2007, then studied at the Drisha Institute for Jewish Education. Originally from Chicago, Ruth served as rabbinic fellow for Or Tzedek, as Rosh Beit Midrash of Uri L'Tzedek, and has taught at Drisha, Congregation Shearith Israel, and a variety of other locations in New York and Chicago. Ruth serves as the Congregational Intern at the Hebrew Institute of Riverdale, and interns and teaches at the JCC in Manhattan.
From tots to teens, we seek to instill in our children and parents a love of Judaism and Jewish culture through our philosophy of creative, whole family, hands-on learning. Our goal is to create a dynamic, inclusive community of families, all on a journey of Jewish discovery.
Jewish Family Life and Learning replaces the Hebrew School model with a dynamic new paradigm integrating children's classroom learning with creative, family-based celebration of Shabbat and the cycle of Jewish holidays, and intergenerational Tikkun Olam (social action) activities. Our Tot Shabbat is a warm, welcoming special Shabbat morning program each week for younger children and their parents. Dor Hadash ("New Generation") is our program of dynamic weekly teen learning activities led by our Rabbi, Hazzan, Educational Director and lay leaders.