Photo by Brooke Cowen
Ahad Ha'am wrote: "More than Israel has kept the Shabbat, the Shabbat has kept Israel." OJC religious and communal life has the Shabbat as its center; we call our Shabbat celebration the jewel in our crown. Shabbat at the OJC is a time for praying, for celebrating, for socializing, for learning, for connecting--to one another, to our tradition and to God--in soulful singing and in sharing a meal.
Friday nights offer an array of services: a monthly family service (the first Friday of the month starting earlier at a family friendly hour – 6:00 pm), a monthly Early Kabbalat Shabbat for young families (the third Friday of the month starting at 5:45 pm), a monthly Friday night lecture, and student-led grade level services. Always, our services are characterized by our ruach-filled (spirited) singing.
Shabbat mornings are energized by an up-tempo service that includes congregational singing and inspiring sermons, lay Torah readers and teen daveners. Shabbaba Shabbat and Family Congregation options offer other venues for families to explore and to connect. The morning culminates every week with a kiddush luncheon accompanied by Shabbat song.
Every Shabbat afternoon, a more intimate, less formal group shares Mincha (afternoon service with Torah reading of the next week’s Torah portion); Seudah Shlishit (a light meal) accompanied by discussion and song; and Maariv and Havdallah (evening service and a deeply spiritual, sensory ritual to separate Shabbat from the beginning of a new week). Occasional Shabbat afternoon lifecycle events give us the opportunity to share the magic of this special part of the week!