Services bring us together in prayer – Tefillot. Our Tefillot are an important part of Jewish life. Tefillot is a way for us to communicate about G-d and to communicate with G-d. Tefillot takes us beyond ourselves, beyond our own individual existence. Tefillot brings us together with our community. Tefillot connects us with our rich history … and, ultimately, Tefillot connects us with G-d.
Tefillot is like the ladder of Jacob’s dream. Tefillot helps us rise to greater heights. We cannot, though, get from the bottom of the ladder to the top without climbing the rungs.
Our various Youth Services are each intended to provide such meaningful and engaging Tefillot opportunities at age appropriate levels:
While all are welcome, our special T.G.I.S. services are particularly geared towards preschool, kindergarten, 1st grade, and 2nd grade students and their families on Friday evenings. These services are intended to be engaging in age-appropriate ways for the younger children.
While all are welcome, our special Kidz Shabbat services are particularly geared towards preschool, kindergarten, 1st grade, and 2nd grade students and their families on Saturday mornings. These services are intended to be engaging in age-appropriate ways for the younger children.
While all are welcome, our special Junior Congregation Saturday morning services are particularly geared towards pre-Bar/Bat Mitzvah school age children including those who are working towards reading Hebrew and those who are already reading Hebrew. These services are a mixture of English and Hebrew and are led in a way so as to be meaningful and engaging for children learning the prayers and the service. Junior Congregation services are designed to be educational services providing opportunity for pre-Bar/Bat Mitzvah students to learn and progress forward on their Judaic journeys towards becoming ready to be counted as Bar/Bat Mitzvah.
On select Shabbats, the Minyonaires offers special opportunities for post-Bar/Bat Mitzvah students to take active roles in helping lead the regular congregational Shabbat services.
It is the philosophy of the MJCBY Religious School that once students are ready to be participating more fully in other congregational services that they should be sitting with and participating with the adults in the congregation. Particularly once a student has become a Bar/Bat Mitzvah, s/he should be ready to take on such adult responsibilities as participating in full services. Pre-Bar/Bat Mitzvah students are required to attend regular Shabbat congregational services in the months leading up to their big day.
Even before students are more ready to participate as such in regular congregational services, children are encouraged to attend services with their parents where they can gain from and little by little grow from experiencing actual services.
On most Religious School days, the entire Limud comes together for a Tefillot session as a school community together – Kehillah Together.
The 3rd through 7th Grades also each have special Class Services. The 3rd Graders help lead a Friday night service and celebrate their 3rd Grade Consecration. The 4th Graders help lead a Saturday morning service. The 5th Graders help lead a Saturday evening service. The 6th Graders help lead a Sunday morning service as well as a Saturday morning service. The 7th Graders help lead various Shabbat services.