August 30, 2014   4 Elul 5774
Union Temple of Brooklyn, NY
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Sunday, September 7

9:15 AM: Religious School begins.

Please contact

Mindy Sherry Director of Family & Youth Engagement for information.

Open House

9:00 AM-1:00 PM: Sunday, September 7

For more information

Please drop in ~ bring your friends.

High Holiday Schedule

Reserve your FREE tickets online

Shabbat Schedule

Fridays at Four Tot Shabbat

'What is Kinder Kef' ?'


Newport, RI - Tour of Jewish History Dec. 6-7 More on this great trip opportunity


PJ Botton



Union Temple is pleased to announce its affiliation with the PJ Library! See how families with children from 6 months to 8 years can get a free Jewish content book or CD each month.

Click here to sign up!


                                                                                                                SHABBAT  MORNING STUDY  HEVRE

Saturday Mornings, 9:00-10:20

beginning September 6

Led by Rabbi Goodman

Bagels and Coffee are served


Songs of Comfort and Praise

~ history and literary structure, with Rabbinic commentaries and occasional musical settings ~


Anshei Mitzvah Class will be on Wednesday Evenings, for those adults who would like to learn to read Hebrew and work toward becoming B'nei and B'not Mitzvah. If you are interested, please contact Rabbi Goodman either by phone or E-mail ( during September.


Benefits for Temple Members  

Tickets for High Holy Day services A Blessing

Union Temple Preschool Discount

School of Religion Discount

Pastoral Counseling and Services

Eastern Athletic Club Discount

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Programs and Events  
We join together through Adult Education, Brotherhood, Sisterhood, and the Social Action Committee for a wide variety of educational, social, and cultural activities including:

    • Shabbat Morning Study Hevre

    • Adult Bar/Bat Mitzvah Class

    • Shabbaton with Notable Speakers

    • Concerts  *  Films  *  Lectures

    • Book Discussions  *  Game Nights

    • Dances  *   Theatre Outings

    • Walking Tours of Jewish New York

We view all our programs as opportunities to bring our congregational community together to socialize, to learn, and to celebrate our heritage.

Greetings from our Rabbi  

The congregation of Union Temple is a diverse, yet closely knit group of thoughtful and compassionate people who draw together in times of joy as well as times of sorrow. It has been a privilege for me to serve as Rabbi since 1992. On behalf of our congregational family, I invite you to celebrate our past, share our present, and be a part of shaping our future.   Rabbi Dr. Linda Henry Goodman  Click here to read the Rabbi's Message

Blood Vengeance.... In the tribal societies of the Ancient Near East, which had no strong central authority, kinship groups were the primary defenders of the lives of their members. When a member of the group was murdered, the next of kin assumed the responsibility of avenging the murder. This system found its way into the Bible, which further explained it in terms of bloodguilt. The notion was that blood spilled in murder actually stained the land. The only way to cleanse, or "redeem" the land was through the blood of the one who committed the murder. Thus the avenging relative assumed the role of Go'el Hadam - "Redeemer of Blood," or "Blood Avenger."

Establishing Justice.... As Israelite society evolved, so did the recognition that this system of blood vengeance needed to be controlled and curbed. The Book of Deuteronomy distinguished between intentional murder and accidental killing; in our own terms, "intentional homicide" and "accidental manslaughter." While deliberate killers were still subject to blood avengers, those who unintentionally caused a death were sent to an Ir Miklat, or "City of Refuge," where they were protected from avenging relatives. There were six such cities in Israel. This was part of a more overarching attempt within the Torah to establish a more refined system of jurisprudence, and thus establish a society built upon the pursuit of justice. In fact our Torah portion this week contains one of the most famous phrases of the whole Bible, Tzedek, Tzedek Tirdof, "Justice, justice you shall pursue."

The Wheels of Justice.... During the past two weeks our attention as a nation has been focused on the St. Louis suburb of Ferguson, after the police shooting of 18-year-old Michael Brown, who was unarmed. Michael Brown was African American; Officer Darren Wilson is white. Was this killing intentional or accidental, was it justified police action or the result of knee-jerk policing arising from a lack of sensitivity training? What role did race play in the officer's reaction to Michael Brown, and should race even be part of this discussion? After all, we might think, there is evidence gathering going on, there will be a grand jury, and if there is an indictment, there will be a trial. Shouldn't we wait until the judicial process has played itself out before we come to any conclusions?

The Racial Divide.... I suspect that our perspectives in trying to respond to these questions may differ significantly according to the color of our skin. It would seem that this shooting has highlighted - yet again - the depth of the racial divide in our country, no matter how much progress we like to think we have made. The reality is that white Americans and Americans of color view the police very differently. In turn, it is probably often the case that police view white people and people of color very differently as well. If there is anything constructive that we can do now, in light of this tragic death of a young person, and a family whose life is now changed forever, it must be the call that we all ought to hear as Americans to look at ourselves and our society very carefully and honestly, to confront the racism that still deeply divides us, and create programs to help ourselves overcome it and move past it. If we ever expect to establish justice in America, it would seem as though this must be done.

Tzedek, Tzedek, Tirdof, Justice, justice you shall pursue.

Who We Are  

Union Temple is an egalitarian, inclusive Reform Congregation, spanning the generations. Founded in 1848 by a small group of German and Alsatian Jewish immigrants living in Williamsburgh, since 1929 Union Temple has been located in a magnificent building at Grand Army Plaza. We are a house of worship, a house of study, and an intimate community of mutual support for our members. We reach out to the diverse communities of Brooklyn and warmly welcome individuals and all types of families to join us. As a congregation we are dedicated to Tikkun Olam, the repairing of our world, through the pursuit of social justice and active participation in the larger Jewish and general communities. Union Temple is a member congregation of the Union of Reform Judaism

Read more about the History of Union Temple...

Congregational Participation  

Our Religious School students, our junior choir, and our Brotherhood and Sisterhood, all assist in conducting the services at various times during the year. Music is an organic part of our services in the gifted hands of Shinea Kim, in addition to our wonderful cantorial students, as they encourage congregants to participate actively in the musical life of the congregation.

Shabbat and Yom Tov Services  

Beginning Sept. 7 and thereafter, all Friday services will begin at 6:30 PM, except for the 4th week of each month, when they will begin at 8:00 PM.  The first Friday of the month we will have our potluck dinner following services as usual.  Saturday morning services remain at 10:30.
Chick here for our Shabbat Service Schedule
Union Temple Preschool  

Open to all children in the community, the Union Temple Preschool is a morning program for two, three, and four year olds with some extended day options. Our dedicated, nurturing staff provides a child-centered environment with a curriculum enhanced by a Jewish perspective, and enrichment programs.

New Partnership  

Dear Friends:

With the support and approval of our Board of Trustees, I am pleased to announce our participation in an exciting new program of partnership with the Jewish Board of Family and Children’s Services of UJA. Some six other synagogues in the general Brownstone Brooklyn area also are participating in this partnership. It will provide all the rabbis and temple officers with much needed support for our older adults. I have inserted the announcement from the JBFCS below. We will be talking more about it in the coming months. If you have any questions at all, or know immediately that you would like to avail yourself of this program for yourself, a parent or relative, or someone you know, please call me at the temple: (718) 638-7600 or e-mail me at  - Rabbi Linda Henry Goodman


Through a generous grant from the Weinberg Foundation provided by UJA Federation of NY, the Jewish Board of Family and Children’s Services is able to offer the expertise of our geriatric social worker to area synagogues, free of charge.

We can provide your congregants with:

Innovative programs and workshops addressing the needs of older adults

o Health education

o Caregiver resources

o Social and recreational programs

Emotional support for older adult life issues

Support, consultation, and education for volunteers helping older adults

Individual and family assessment and counsel by our onsite geriatric social worker.

Home Care oversight and advocacy

Access to the full range of services of JBFCS, and other community agencies.

Partnering Synagogues will:

Develop an ongoing working relationship with our project social worker.

Work with our program staff to identify, plan and host activities to address the needs of older congregants.

Identify and refer older congregants in need.

Market and publicize the program workshops, groups, and services to the congregation and community.

Jewish World News  

Donations are welcome and can be made online!

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Union Temple offers many free events, classes and services. Your support helps continue the tradition and sustains the community.

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