Shabbat Services

Shabbat is the most holy and special day of the week. At Shaarei Shomayim, Shabbat is a time to focus on God, prayer, and community. We turn away from our workaday lives to focus on eternal values and to relax with friends and family in a warm, loving environment.

FRIDAY NIGHT

Friday night davening is held in the new Beit Midrash on our synagogue's lower level. On occasional Friday nights, special services such as a Kinderminyan or a Carlebach Kabbalat Shabbat are conducted. Check the calendar, weekly Shabbat Matters bulletin or Torah For Your Life for the most current information.

SHABBAT MORNING

Shaarei Shomayim offers three Shabbat minyanim for Shacharit and Mussaf on Shabbat morning.

Max & Lil Sharp Sanctuary (Upstairs Minyan)

Shaarei Shomayim stands among the great sacred spaces of our history. Shaarei Shomayim’s main sanctuary reflects the grandeur of the Temple with its soaring ceiling and modern architecture. The tall windows bring warm light to this airy space. The aron hakodesh (ark) depicts the Ten Commandments which were given to our people at Mount Sinai. Our sanctuary is filled with the wonderful sounds of prayer with singing throughout the service. The Torah is expertly read by our baal koreh, Ralph Levine. The rabbi delivers a weekly sermon before Mussaf which bridges the eternal values and inspiring themes of our Torah to the modern world in which we live. For eighty years, our synagogue has shown that a Jew can be fully committed to halacha (the laws of the Torah) and yet proudly North American in lifestyle and outlook.

Shabbat morning services begin at 9:00 AM in the Max & Lil Sharp Sanctuary, led by the Chazzan, Gabbaim and Rabbi Strauchler. On holidays this minyan meets at 8:45 AM. On Rosh Hashanah, this minyan meets at 8:00 AM, and on Yom Kippur, at 8:30 AM. Scholars-in-residence and guest speakers often address the community immediately following the conclusion of davening.

Shabbat services are followed by a congregational kiddush.

Hashkama Minyan

This intimate, meaningful minyan meets in the Beit Midrash (lower level) each Shabbat morning at 7:30 AM. The Hashkama Minyan is known for its early start times. It enjoys a quiet ambiance and the camaraderie of its devoted following. Services are led by participating synagogue members. Rabbi Strauchler delivers a short devar torah at this minyan. A regular kiddush follows this minyan.

Downstairs Minyan

Over 30 years ago, the “Downstairs Minyan” began as a special teenage service that gave students an opportunity to learn how to lead the services and read the Torah and Haftarah. Today, this minyan has developed into a service attractive to all ages. Led by Rabbi Elliott Diamond, services are conducted by members, and the atmosphere is one of family warmth, informality and participation. During the year, the minyan meets every Shabbat and Yom Tov morning, except for Simchat Torah. Services begin at 9:00 AM in the Sisterhood Hall (which is, of course, downstairs) and is followed by a kiddush. 

For information about the Downstairs Minyan, please contact Rabbi Diamond.

SHABBAT AFTERNOON

Mincha is held in the main sanctuary. The time for this service varies based upon the time of sunset. Please check the calendar for weekly times.

After Mincha, the community gathers for Seuda Shlishit, a light meal followed by Shabbat songs and a devar torah.

After Seuda Shlishit, we return to the main sanctuary for Maariv and Havdallah, marking the end of Shabbat and the beginning of the work week.