August 04, 2015   19 Av 5775
Union Temple of Brooklyn, NY
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Religious School, Sundays 9:15 AM


From Kindergarten to 7th grade 

Classes starting September 20, 2015,

Or contact

Mindy Sherry Director of Family & Youth 

Shabbat Schedule

OUT OF THE SHABBOX will resume in September 2015

'What is Kinder Kef' ?'

Fridays at Four Tot Shabbat will resume in October 2015

Shabbat services are conducted throughout the summer months, July & August: 

Kabbalat Shabbat on Fridays at 6:30 PM,

Shabbat Morning Services on Saturdays at 10:30 AM

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!

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.

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...

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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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

A Monument of Comfort

He shall be like a tree planted by waters,
Sending forth its roots by a stream:
It does not sense the coming of heat,
Its leaves are ever fresh;
It has no care in a year of drought,
It does not cease to yield fruit.
- Jeremiah 17.8

Thus the prophet Jeremiah speaks of the one whose trust is in God.

On a quiet hilltop in the heights of Rosh Pina in northern Israel, overlooking the Hula Valley and the Golan, there is a small stone monument carved with the beginning of this verse from Jeremiah.  It stands within a lovely little park at the scenic overlook, as if in silent watch over the hamlets and villages in the valley below.  There is a tree and a few brightly colored benches, which offer visitors a quiet place to sit and think for a few minutes, as they take in the exquisite expanse.  

Written on the monument is the following, with the caveat that I have rendered the two last lines not literally, but in a way that makes the most sense to me in English.

(followed by the verse from Jeremiah)

In memory of BE'ERI (BARRY) OVED, zichrono liv'rachah
Born 19 Sivan, 5742 - October 6, 1982
Killed in a terrorist attack on the #37 bus 
on Moriah Boulevard, Haifa,
1 Adar II, 5762 - May 3, 2003
Age 21

BARRY, you were a well of fresh water for us;
Your beaming smile of grace will remain with us forever. . . .

Throughout Israel, there are quiet monuments similar to this one, though in its simplicity and quietude, this one is particularly moving.  At his funeral, Barry's sister Limor said:  "He was modest and shy, and gave all he had to everything he did."  A Staff Sergeant in the Army, Barry was in Haifa to visit his grandparents, when he boarded the No. 37 bus, along with Christians, Druze, and Jews.  15 people were killed on that bus, 8 of them children under the age of 18.  There was also another soldier killed with Barry, who was 20.  Barry was laid to rest in the Rosh Pina Military Cemetery.

It seemed particularly meaningful that we happened by this overlook on this past Sunday, as the country marked the observance of the 9th of Av - Tish'ah B'av.  It is the day that memorializes the destruction of the Temple in Jerusalem by the Babylonians in 586 BCE, and then, became the assigned date as well for numerous other disasters that followed.   Tish'ah B'av is traditionally observed as a day of fasting and mourning.  Reform Jews have never observed this fast, by and large, because at least ideologically, we have not considered ourselves to be "in mourning" for the Temple, and don't particularly hope to see it rebuilt anytime soon. . . .    Nevertheless, Reform Jews as well, over recent years, have developed a keener sense of historical identification with these events, and the observance of Tish'ah B'av, at least in some form, has come into the Reform consciousness much more palpably.    In addition, it is virtually impossible to be here in Israel, particularly in Jerusalem where the Temple once stood in all its splendor, and not be aware of the terrible destruction that took place here, plunging our people into a state of exile and depression.  Certainly we New Yorkers can relate, when we remember what we went through on 9/11.  As the ruins of the Twin Towers covered the streets of Lower Manhattan, so did the huge stones of the Temple and its precincts cover the broken streets of Jerusalem.  And certainly, Tish'ah B'av as a day of commemoration of disasters that have befallen our people is a day for us to take into our hearts, regardless of the fine points of our modes of observance.

The quiet little park dedicated to the memory of Barry Oved reminds us of all the victims of hatred and fanaticism whose lives have been so wastefully cut short in the name of - - something-or-other. . . .  Whether Jew, or Muslim, or Christian or Druze, or the appropriate counterparts elsewhere in the world, humanitarians and peace-loving people everywhere have been hurt and brutalized.  Yet, the quietude of this park can also remind us of our capacity for good - our aspiration not to tear down but to build; not to hurt, but to comfort; not to dominate, but to live in peaceful coexistence.  

This coming Shabbat is Shabbat Nachamu - the Sabbath of Comfort.  "Comfort, O comfort, My people. . ."  says Isaiah.  Perhaps the overriding message of Tish'ah B'av is to reject destruction and brutality and instead work to build a just and peaceful society.

Nachamu, nachamu ami, yomar Eloheichem. . .   
Comfort, O comfort, My people, says your God.   
Speak tenderly to Jerusalem. . .
A voice rings out:
"Clear in the desert 
A road for the Eternal!
Level in the wilderness
A highway for our God!
Let every valley be raised,
Every hill and mount made low.
Let the rugged ground become level
And the ridges become a plain.
The Presence of the Eternal shall appear, 
And all flesh, as one, shall behold - 
For the Eternal God has spoken."
- from Isaiah 40.1-5

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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.


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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