Conservative Judaism

We are affiliated with the United Synagogue for Conservative Judaism (USCJ).

We Are Part of Judaism’s Conservative Movement

The Conservative movement has often been described as the middle ground between the strict interpretation of Orthodoxy and the liberal approach of Reform Judaism. As such, we represent the passionate and engaged center of the Jewish people. At home in both the legacy of the Jewish historical experience and modernity, Conservative Judaism strives to convey and communicate a deep commitment to the values, concepts, and rituals inherent in our literature, laws, and traditions.  We are equally committed to the hallmarks of a democratic Western culture such as individual rights, freedoms, and protections; social and economic justice; and concern for the environment. These enrich and deepen our Jewish practice and identity.

We Embrace Modernity and Tradition

While the movement is guided by a belief in the sacred nature of Jewish law, its strength lies in the interpretation of Jewish law for contemporary life. Decisions rendered by the movement’s Committee on Jewish Law and Standards have redefined acceptable Jewish practice in our time. These decisions have affected multiple areas of life. Same-sex marriage, driving to synagogue on Shabbat, the ordination of women, and counting women in a minyan are just several examples of changes that have been brought about by the movement’s legal decisors – Conservative rabbis and scholars. The dual embrace of modernity and tradition by Conservative Judaism is the spirit that animates life at Temple Israel and is why our doors are wide open to everyone who wants to embark on or continue the Jewish journey. We offer multiple points of entry, beginning with our welcoming, inclusive approach to worship and ritual practice, as you’ll discover.