Religious Life


Because Bay Area residents come from a variety of communities and backgrounds, our synagogues take pride in being warm, welcoming and inclusive. Call individual synagogues for information about schedules for services, holiday worship, bar/bat mitzvah training, religious schools, day care, children’s and adult classes, and special program offerings.

San Francisco

Congregation B’nai Emunah

Congregation B'nai Emunah 3595 Taraval St. San Francisco, CA 94116
(415) 664-7373 Fax: (415) 358-8488
Rabbi Mark Melamut (415) 664-7373 Fax: (415) 358-8488
Administrator Seth "Shais" St. Martin

Full-service egalitarian, haimish, participatory congregation open to all. Weekly Shabbat services and morning minyan twice a month.  Adult education, religious school and youth groups, Tot Shabbat, monthly Shabbat dinners and social get-togethers.  Trial membership available

San Francisco

Adath Israel Congregation

1851 Noriega St. San Francisco, CA 94122
(415) 564-5665 Fax: (415) 564-5629
Rabbi Joel Landau (415) 564-5665 Fax: (415) 564-5629

A friendly, diverse and creative Orthodox community that brings tradition to life, making Judaism relevant and meaningful. This community has a rich history of more than 60 years in San Francisco, and it is booming with an influx of young professionals and families.    Offerings include adult education, a multitude of youth programs, holiday and Shabbat services, a daily minyan and a number of special events throughout the year. Call to inquire about preschool programming, youth education, and one-on-one personalized bar/bat mitzvah preparation.

South Bay

Am Echad

1504 Meridian Ave. San Jose, CA 95125
(408) 267-2591
Rabbi Menachem Levine
President Andy Hartman

Offers Shabbat hospitality, daily minyanim and shiurim (classes). Jewish men and women at any point of observance are welcome.

East Bay

Aquarian Minyan

P.O. Box 7224 Berkeley, CA 94707
(510) 981-2130
Shomeret Abigail Grafton
Executive director Benjamin Gramer

A Jewish Renewal community, combining innovative and traditional approaches. Meets for holidays, potluck Shabbats, lifecycle events, guest speakers, and progressive discussion groups at homes and sacred spaces throughout Berkeley. Largely lay-led, the Minyan offers opportunities for personal growth and creativity. These gatherings are opportunities for joyful participatory worship, deep learning, and contemplation, with space for music, connection, individual expression, meditation, and dance.

East Bay

Beth Chaim Congregation

1800 Holbrook Drive Danville, CA 94506
(925) 736-7146
Rabbi Dan Goldblatt

A vital Contra Costa County Jewish community providing a vibrant, embracing, enriching environment for over 450 residents in the Tri-Valley. Offers worship, celebration, youth education, community service, continuing adult education, and a portfolio of enriching events and programs. More than a synagogue, more than a religious school, more than a center for lifecycle events, the congregation is a reflection of each member's desire to define what modern Judaism means for him or her.

East Bay

Beyt Tikkun: The Synagogue of Spiritual Transformation and Social Healing

951 Cragmont Ave. Berkeley, CA 94708
(510) 644-1200
Rabbi Michael Lerner

Don't believe in God as "big man in heaven," yet want an authentic Jewish spiritual experience - not New Agey or intellectually flabby? This community is welcoming to atheists and secular humanists as well as people deeply committed to their own vision of God. Want a community that is interested in fundamental transformation of our economic and political system? Want a place where Israel is appreciated, but not worshipped, and hence a congregation that is open to strong criticism of its treatment of Palestinians, refugees and non-Orthodox strands of Judaism? Yet in all this, remaining rooted in Torah and Jewish tradition and love for the Jewish people, equally affirming a love for the Earth and our love and caring for the wellbeing of everyone (not just Jews). Creating a safe space to find one's own spiritual connection to God or Goddess or the spiritual reality of the universe. at an egalitarian, politically progressive, neo-Chassidic Jewish Renewal synagogue that welcomes singles, traditional families, LGBTQ, and interfaith couples and families. Services are in both Hebrew and English. They follow the traditional structure of the prayers, yet with plenty of English, plus innovative prayers and guided visualizations, singing and dancing, and meditation.

North Bay

B’nai Israel Jewish Center

740 Western Ave. Petaluma, CA 94952
(707) 762-0340 Fax: (866) 482-1990
Rabbi Ted Feldman
Administrator Jennifer March

Inclusive center for Jewish life: Gan Israel Preschool, Community School for Jewish Learning (a joint program with Congregation Ner Shalom of Cotati), adult education, social and culture activities, Shabbat and holiday services, sisterhood, mens club and Judaica shop.

East Bay

Chabad House of Berkeley

Chabad of the East Bay P.O. Box 5292 Berkeley, CA 94705
(510) 540-5824
Rabbi Yehuda Ferris (510) 540-5824
Miriam Ferris (510) 540-5824

Sharing Jewish joy and inspiration and serving the entire Jewish community. Offers classes and events for every age and level of Jewish observance; a wide range of activities in a welcoming atmosphere. Activities include community outreach and lifecycle events, holiday celebrations, daily minyan, weekly Shabbat services, Shabbat hospitality, adult education, prison and hospital visitation, as well as challah baking and cooking classes. Hebrew school, bar/bat mitzvah training and Camp Gan Israel in the summertime. Also Mommy and Me, for moms and tots.  JME: Jewish Marriage Enrichment offers a full-service mikvah and premarital, marital and relationship counseling. Contact for informative mikvah tours and events for women's groups.  For those who need a mezuzah for the house door, or tefillin to don, send an email; items will be provided for a nominal fee.

North Bay

Chabad Jewish Center of Novato

7430 Redwood Blvd., Suite D Novato, CA 94945
(415) 878-6770 Fax: (866) 604-2267
Rabbi Menachem Landa

Judaism with a smile. Offers innovative and exciting programs to Jews of all backgrounds and ages: Jewish kids club, teen club, bar/bat mitzvah preparation, Jewish Women's Circle, Jewish men's club, Shabbat services, adult education classes, community dinners, holiday  events, hospital/senior visitation and much more. No membership required.

San Francisco

Chabad of Cole Valley

Chabad of Cole Valley 1336 Willard St., Apt. D San Francisco, CA 94117
(415) 598-8718
Rabbi Nosson Potash (415) 598-8718
Rebbetsen Chaya Potash (415) 598-8718

Nonprofit community organization located in Cole Valley. The mission is to make Judaism's rich heritage and values available to those in Cole Valley and beyond through community events and educational programs while simultaneously caring for those in need.

East Bay

Chabad of Fremont Jewish Center

220 Yerba Buena Place Fremont, CA 94536
(510) 300-4090 Fax: (888) 863-4096
Director Rabbi Moshe Fuss (510) 300-4090 Fax: (888) 863-4096
Co-director Chaya Fuss (510) 300-4090 Fax: (888) 863-4096

Serving the Tri-City with a Hebrew school, holiday programs, services, classes, lifecycle services, women’s events and social programs. No membership required.

North Bay

Chabad of Napa Valley

4186 Ortez Court Napa, CA 94558
(707) 320-2348
Rabbi Elchonon Tenenbaum
Chanie Tenenbaum

Dedicated to serving all Jews throughout Napa Valley with Ahavat Yisrael: an unconditional love and concern for every Jew, regardless of background and affiliation. Offering Shabbat services, holiday awareness programs, women's group, kosher meals, seniors visitation, hospital chaplaincy, prison chaplaincy, Jewish Learning Institute and Torah  studies. Also bar/bat mitzvah instruction, circumcision, funeral services and Cuvée Chabad wines.


Chabad of North Peninsula

1670 S. Amphlett Blvd., Suite 125 San Mateo, CA 94402
(650) 341-4510/ (650) 549-4045
Rabbi Yossi Marcus (650) 549-4045
Rabbi Yale Spalter

No membership required to participate. Sunday school, bar and bat mitzvah, preschool, adult education, High Holy Day services and holiday events, adult education. Hebrew tutoring for all ages. Summer camp ages 5-12.

South Bay

Chabad of San Jose

15405 Los Gatos Blvd., Suite 204 Los Gatos, CA 95032
(408) 358-5530 Fax: (408) 402-9673
Rabbi Aaron Cunin

Shabbat services, adult education classes, holiday awareness programs, Hebrew school, bar-bat mitzvah lessons, drug prevention. All welcome regardless of religious background, knowledge or level of observance.

South Bay

Chabad of Sunnyvale

540 Utica Drive Sunnyvale, CA 94087
(408) 720-0553
Rabbi Yisroel Hecht

Open door to the entire Jewish community. Children's programs, bar/bat mitzvah preparation, teen club, Chabad Hebrew school. Adult education. Beginner and children-friendly services on Shabbat and holidays. Camp Gan Israel, summer and winter.

East Bay

Chabad of the Delta

Chabad of the Delta 2295 Tilton Lane Brentwood, CA 94513
(925) 238-8770
Rabbi Dovber Berkowitz (925) 238-8770

Serving the Jewish communities of the East County region of Contra Costa. Adult education, Shabbat dinners and services, holiday programs and events, women's group, Hebrew school, hospital visitation, No membership required.

Santa Cruz

Chadeish Yameinu

P.O. Box 3578 Santa Cruz, CA 95063
(831) 295-8467
Rabbi Eli Cohen

Supports the ongoing process of renewing Judaism and bringing its spiritual and ethical vitality into our lives. Draws on kabbalistic and Hassidic sources, and embraces a global vision of the role of all peoples and paths.

East Bay

Chochmat HaLev

Center for Jewish Spirituality 2215 Prince St. Berkeley, CA 94705-1818
(510) 704-9687
Congregational leaders Maggid Jhos Singer, Julie Batz
Executive director Jen Roitman

Dynamic Renewal shul with musical celebratory Shabbats, contemplative services and transformative High Holy Day observance. Meditation, Kabbalah, mysticism and adult/children's education. Walking distance from Ashby BART.


Coastside Jewish Community

P.O. Box 1729 El Granada, CA 94018
(650) 479-5252
Spiritual leader, interim rabbi Rabbi Jane Rachel Litman
President Sara Russell (650) 490-0914

Musical, spiritual, culturally diverse, innovative, yet also tradition-based. Kabbalat Shabbat and High Holy Day services, potlucks, family/community learning days, holiday celebrations, Tot Shabbat and b'nai mitzvah, educational and social programs. Welcomes straight or LGBTQI, multifaith, all ages. The community draws primarily from the San Mateo Coast and the Peninsula.

San Francisco

Congregation Anshey Sfard

1500 Clement St. San Francisco, CA 94118
(415) 752-4979
President Solomon Isaac (415) 752-4979

Morning minyan Mondays and Thursdays 6:30-8 a.m. and every Rosh Chodesh. Shabbat services begin 10 minutes before sunset and at 9:15 a.m. Saturdays followed by a luncheon. Saturday evening services begin 30 minutes before the end of Shabbat and include Havdallah. Services on all holidays. Hebrew classes for adults and children; call for times.

North Bay

Congregation Beth Ami

4676 Mayette Ave. Santa Rosa, CA 95405
(707) 360-3000 Fax: (707) 360-3003
Executive director Leah Frost
President Laura Alexander

Monthly Shabbat dinners, joyous holiday celebrations, fostering a strong sense of community; toddler through teen programming, extensive library and gift shop. Conservative egalitarian. Warmly welcomes interfaith, singles and LGBTQ.

South Bay

Congregation Beth David

19700 Prospect Road Saratoga, CA 95070-3352
(408) 257-3333 Fax: (408) 257-3338
Senior Rabbi Philip Ohriner
Community engagement and outreach Rabbi Leslie Alexander

A warm and energetic community: from the halls of learning, where the innovative religious school expands the young mind, to Talmud study with the rabbis, where deep intellectual discussions take place on ethics and what it means to be Jewish. One of the goals is to foster a love of Judaism in children. The synagogue offers worship learning and social activities for children of all ages, with tot services for preschoolers, Haverim for grades K-3 and Youth Congregation for grades 4-7. Additionally, the main service is always open to the entire family. Members share interests and find a place in the community — whether it is social, worship, education or helping to repair the world (tikkun olam).

East Bay

Congregation Beth Emek

3400 Nevada Court Pleasanton, CA 94566
(925) 931-1055 Fax: (925) 931-1054
Rabbi Laurence Elis Milder, Ph.D.

A center for Jewish learning, prayer and community in the Tri-Valley. Affiliated with the Union for Reform Judaism. Approximately 225 families from Pleasanton, Livermore, Dublin, San Ramon, Danville, Tracy and surrounding communities. Offers educational, religious and social activities for ages 1 to 101. Popular programs include an award-winning preschool, a religious school with caring and experienced teachers,  bar/bat mitzvah preparation, a vibrant youth group for teens and outstanding adult education and Hebrew classes. A volunteer choir, community engagement through social action, and a variety of senior activities. Frequent guest lecturers, concerts and a film festival, a Sukkah Soirée and Shabbat Under the Stars are annual highlights. The rabbi is a nationally known singer-songwriter whose guitar-playing enlivens every worship service and whose rich academic background informs inspiring sermons.


Congregation Beth Israel

5716 Carmel Valley Road Carmel, CA 93923
(831) 624-2015 Fax: (831) 624-4786
Rabbi Bruce Greenbaum
Executive director Alethea Horne

Largest and oldest synagogue on the Monterey Peninsula. Member of the Union for Reform Judaism, in the mainstream of liberal Judaism. Looking to our heritage as a repository of wisdom, insight and numerous possibilities for religious expression.

East Bay

Congregation Beth Israel

1630 Bancroft Way Berkeley, CA 94703
(510) 843-5246/ (510) 843-8052 Fax: (510) 843-5058
Rabbi Yonatan Cohen (510) 843-5246/ (510) 843-8052 Fax: (510) 843-5058
Maharat Victoria Sutton (510) 843-5246/ (510) 843-8052 Fax: (510) 843-5058

Modern Orthodox community. Welcomes visitors from all levels of observance. Youth programming, ongoing adult education, social-action committee, Shabbat morning child care, Shabbat lunch, daily services.

San Francisco

Congregation Beth Israel Judea

625 Brotherhood Way San Francisco, CA 94132
(415) 586-8833 Fax: (415) 586-9013 www/
Rabbi Danny Gottlieb (415) 586-8833 Fax: (415) 586-9013
Executive administrator Sara Heckelman (415) 586-8833 Fax: (415) 586-9013

 A progressive, egalitarian Jewish community, welcoming all,  including returning Jews and interfaith families. Hebrew school. Lively musical family services every month.

North Bay

Congregation Beth Shalom of Napa Valley

1455 Elm St. Napa, CA 94559
(707) 253-7305 Fax: (707) 253-1109
Rabbi Lee Bycel
Administrator Paige Thorgersen

Napa Valley's only synagogue, founded in 1953. Provides a spiritual home to all who want to be a part of the Jewish community. Dedicated to exploring, experiencing and studying Judaism, Jewish heritage, Israel and individual well-being in a context inclusive of Jews of all backgrounds and ideologies, including non-Jews interested in being associated with the Jewish community.  A contemporary Reform synagogue and an active member of the Union for Reform Judaism. Offers a full schedule of religious, educational and cultural programs; weekly Shabbat services and religious school. An involved and welcoming congregation supports the synagogue,which provides spiritual guidance for Jewish life and learning.

San Francisco

Congregation Beth Sholom

301 14th Ave. San Francisco, CA 94118
(415) 221-8736 Fax: (415) 221-3944
Rabbi Aubrey L. Glazer, Ph.D. (415) 221-8736 Fax: (415) 221-3944

A diverse community that creates authentic and meaningful points of connection for contemporary Jews. Twice-daily egalitarian minyan, multigenerational programming, preschool, religious school and more.

North Bay

Congregation B’nai Israel

1256 Nebraska St. Fax: P.O. Box 3066 Vallejo, CA 94590
(707) 642-6526 Fax: (707) 642-6526
Rabbi David White (707) 642-1006
Administrator Sue Barush

Gatherings are warm occasions in a community involved in celebrating rituals while reflecting on life's meaning, sharing questions, challenges and joys. Weekly Shabbat services on Friday evenings and Saturday mornings. Community Shabbat seders held the second Friday of each month, September through May. During summer months, Sha'BBQs take place in the courtyard. The sisterhood sponsors events and runs the Judaica shop. Offering Sunday school for pre-K to eighth grade, including Sunday morning tefillah with the rabbi. Also midweek Hebrew school for third through eighth grade. Dynamic summer camp on site. A Midrasha affiliate. Adult Hebrew and Jewish education classes held in the social hall or library. Bagel Cafe is open during Sunday school hours, offering an opportunity to nosh and meet with friends.

East Bay

Congregation B’nai Shalom

74 Eckley Lane Walnut Creek, CA 94596
(925) 934-9446 Fax: (925) 934-9450
Rabbi Daniel Stein (925) 934-9446 Fax: (925) 934-9450
Administrator Lisa Elgazzar (925) 934-9446 Fax: (925) 934-9450

Traditional Conservative community. Egalitarian, inclusive and multigenerational. Activities for babies to bubbes. Preschool, religious school; non-members welcome. All holidays celebrated. Kosher kitchen.

East Bay

Congregation B’nai Tikvah

25 Hillcroft Way Walnut Creek, CA 94597
(925) 933-5397 Fax: (925) 933-6833
Rabbi Rebecca Gutterman (925) 933-5397 Fax: (925) 933-6833
Administrator Judy Blum (925) 933-5397 Fax: (925) 933-6833

Taking pride in meeting the religious and communal needs of its members.  A uniquely approachable and comfortable environment.  Membership includes a diverse range of ages and families as well as many interfaith households.  Guests are encouraged to visit and explore the many opportunities that await them.

San Francisco

Congregation Chevra Thilim 

751 25th Ave. San Francisco, CA 94121
(415) 752-2866 Fax: (415) 752-2019
Rabbi Shlomo Zarchi (415) 752-2866 Fax: (415) 752-2019

A contemporary Orthodox synagogue dedicated to promoting a nurturing environment for spiritual, social and intellectual growth. The community strives to develop a deeper connection to the values and ideals of the Torah in the context of the modern world. It offers a wide variety of programming, from Sunday school to holiday celebrations, Shabbat community dinners and prayer services. The community embraces individuals of all levels of observance.  Just as San Francisco is known for its diversity, this is an Orthodox synagogue where everyone is valued, respected and welcomed. In 2012, the synagogue underwent major renovations, which include an open and modern social hall and meeting rooms, used for community events and life celebrations.

San Francisco

Congregation Emanu-El 

2 Lake St. San Francisco, CA 94118
(415) 751-2535 Fax: (415) 751-2511
Senior Rabbis Beth Singer and Jonathan Singer
Director of membership services Terry Kraus, FTA (415) 750-7552

Dedicated to advancing its members' lifelong involvement in Judaism, engaging them in communal prayer (avodah), the study of sacred texts (Torah) and the performance of compassionate deeds (g'milut hasadim). Proud to have been a part of the San Francisco community since 1850. While the synagogue's history provides a rich heritage, embracing new congregants, including young adults, ensures that the synagogue will serve generations to come. Discover a spiritual home, build relationships with clergy and fellow congregants, and learn with exceptional educators.


Congregation Emek Beracha (Palo Alto Orthodox Minyan)

4102 El Camino Real Palo Alto, CA 94306
(650) 857-1800 Fax: (650) 857-0601
Rabbi Yitzchok Feldman

For 40 years, this congregation (formerly "The Minyan") has welcomed students, business visitors and tourists to Silicon Valley. Its growing, vibrant Orthodox community of over 140 families creates a warm atmosphere and welcoming environment for people from all backgrounds. Committed to approaching the modern world through the perspective of halachah, embracing religious Zionism, and growing in Jewish learning and observance. The name "Emek Beracha" derives from a verse in Divrei HaYamim (Chronicles), in which the kingdom of Yehuda gathers in a valley of blessing (Emek Beracha), so-called because "from there they blessed HaShem."

South Bay

Congregation Emeth

17835 Monterey St. Morgan Hill, CA 95037
(408) 778-8200
Rabbi Debbie Israel
Administrator Debbie Zajac

South Santa Clara Valley Reform congregation with a welcoming spirit and diverse membership. It attracts members from Morgan Hill, Gilroy, South San Jose, San Martin, Hollister and beyond. It welcomes all who desire a meaningful Jewish connection, growing together and creating a vibrant Jewish presence in the region. The congregation engages in lifelong learning, worship, social action and community while celebrating Judaic spiritual and cultural traditions. About half its 80+ members are interfaith families. It offers religious services and K-12 religious school at its home in Morgan Hill as well as adult Jewish growth and learning classes. After 30+ years, it has established a permanent site to serve as both a center of Jewish cultural/social activities in the valley and as its congregational home. The hand of friendship and welcome is always offered, during happy and sad times, as the congregation celebrates Shabbat, holidays and personal milestones. Brings Torah alive, impacts the greater community and elevates the degree of holiness in our world. Overseeing Jewish section of Gan Emet/Emeth Gardens Cemetery in Gilroy.


Congregation Etz Chayim

4161 Alma St. Palo Alto, CA 94306-0657
(650) 813-9094 Fax: (650) 813-9024
Rabbi Chaim Koritzinsky
Executive director Ellen Bob

Experience community of approximately 300 households, with people of diverse beliefs and backgrounds: sing, learn, pray and celebrate.  Labels such as Reform, Conservative or Reconstructionist do not apply. The community-created prayerbooks, used for egalitarian, participatory services, incorporate the best of all Jewish traditions. Rabbi Chaim Koritzinsky leads weekly Torah study at 9 a.m. Saturdays. Outstanding youth education program for students 18 months to 18 years. Special-interest groups include hiking, needlecraft and book discussions. Like an extended family, our members actively support each other and celebrate together.


Congregation Kol Emeth

4175 Manuela Ave. Palo Alto, CA 94306
(650) 948-7498 Fax: (650) 618-6809
Rabbi David Booth
Rabbi Sarah Graff

A dynamic, egalitarian community embracing traditional Jewish practices with contemporary meaning, located in the heart of Silicon Valley. Offering a warm environment for Jewish study and prayer. Through classes and programs, congregants have many opportunities to stay involved with the synagogue and to be part of a vibrant Jewish community.  Conservative, participatory, egalitarian, traditional services; daily minyanim; Friday night Shabbat programs; religious school; social action programs; adult and family education; and programs for young professionals.

North Bay

Congregation Kol Shofar

215 Blackfield Drive Tiburon, CA 94920
(415) 388-1818
Rabbi Susan Leider
Rabbi Chai Levy

A dynamic congregation rooted in the enduring values of Jewish traditions while embracing innovations that enrich contemporary Jewish life. Cultivates personal spiritual growth and connection to a caring community. Creating meaningful, accessible experiences of learning, prayer, service and celebration to help people of all ages and diverse backgrounds live more purposeful lives and improve the world.

San Francisco

Congregation L’Dor VaDor

Jewish Home 302 Silver Ave. San Francisco, CA 94112
(415) 334-2500 Fax: (415) 334-4375
Senior communications officer Ilana Glaun (415) 562-2673

Musical, participatory worship and Torah study. Kabbalat Shabbat: Fridays, 2 p.m.; Saturday morning service, 9:15. Oneg Shabbat: 2 p.m., garden cafe. Friends, families and community are welcome to join a fully accessible synagogue.

East Bay

Congregation Netivot Shalom

Congregation Netivot Shalom 1316 University Ave. Berkeley, CA 94702
(510) 549-9447 x110 Fax: (510) 549-9448
Rabbi Menachem Creditor (510) 549-9447 Fax: (510) 549-9448
Executive director Amy Midanik-Blum (510) 549-9447 X101

Egalitarian and participatory, welcoming intermarried and nontraditional households. Religious services, b'nai mitzvah program, adult education, social action, Torah study, preschool.

North Bay

Congregation Rodef Sholom

170 N. San Pedro Road San Rafael, CA 94903
(415) 479-3441 Fax: (415) 479-9220
Senior Rabbi Stacy Friedman
Executive director Michael Kamler

The congregation's Shema statement: Igniting the passion to connect: with Jewish values, with each other, and with our world.  A congregation committed to helping people discover why being Jewish really matters: a place to deepen a commitment to a Jewish way of being.

San Francisco

Congregation Sherith Israel 

2266 California St. San Francisco, CA 94115
(415) 346-1720 Fax: (415) 673-9439
Rabbi Jessica Zimmerman Graf (415) 346-1720 Fax: (415) 673-9439
Executive director Amy Mallor

Founded amid the exuberance of the California Gold Rush, the congregation has welcomed the Jews of San Francisco and beyond since 1851. The sanctuary, a jewel of synagogue architecture, has embraced and inspired worshippers for more than a century. The synagogue doesn't just observe Judaism; it celebrates it, offering a contemporary Reform approach to our timeless traditions. Study Torah, history and our cultures, passing a rich heritage on to our children. Worship in a spiritual environment embracing individual and communal participation. Engage in the work of social justice.  Make meaningful memories at every milestone in our lives. Involving Jews and their families from many backgrounds, including non-Jewish spouses and partners. Visit for Shabbat services, a holiday celebration, Torah study, a class or workshop, or a tour of the historic sanctuary.

East Bay

Congregation Shir Ami 

4529 Malabar Ave Castro Valley, CA 94546
(510) 220-3345 / (510) 537-1787 Fax: (510) 276-6100
Barbara Heimowitz (510) 220-3345 / (510) 537-1787 Fax: (510) 276-6100

An intimate, inclusive, intergenerational Reform Jewish community that welcomes interfaith families. Nurturing members' spiritual growth and cultural identity, and making Jewish education fun and joyful for children and adults alike. Strives to embody the Jewish values of lovingkindness and righteous action. A place where people feel wanted and where they want to be.

South Bay

Congregation Shir Hadash

20 Cherry Blossom Lane Los Gatos, CA 95032-4637
(408) 358-1751
Rabbi Melanie Aron
Executive director Gordon Gladstone

Recognizing that different people approach Judaism differently, the congregation is proud to offer a variety of experiences to members.   Worship, study, acts of tikkun olam (fixing the world), and gemilut chasadim (deeds of lovingkindness) are all important parts of communal life.    Shabbat worship is held every Friday evening and Saturday morning. The main service on Friday always includes a lot of singing and regularly highlights a speaker, sermon or special program. The congregation offers a monthly early service for young families and a lively, interactive musical service for all ages. An alternative, participatory Shabbat morning service meets regularly.  Services are held for the High Holy Days and other festivals.  Educational opportunities are offered for preschoolers to grandparents. The preschool operates five days a week. Educational offerings include a Sunday school program for grades K-6, a Hebrew school program at four levels and a Tuesday night program for grades 7-12.  Adult study takes place on Sunday mornings as well as on weekdays. A retirees group meets monthly for lunch.     Congregants provide service to those who are ill or need support, and also work for justice in the broader community. The congregation offers an annual health fair.

North Bay

Congregation Shomrei Torah

2600 Bennett Valley Road Santa Rosa, CA 95404
(707) 578-5519 Fax: (707) 578-3967
Rabbi Rabbi George D. Gittleman
Rabbi Rabbi Stephanie E. Kramer

Weekly Shabbat and holiday services, lifelong learning, b'nai mitzvah and a rich program of community events. A socially progressive synagogue.

South Bay

Congregation Sinai

1532 Willowbrae Ave. San Jose, CA 95125
(408) 264-8542 Fax: (408) 264-4316
Rabbi Joshua Berkenwald
Executive director Joelle Pluemer

Connects people to Judaism, to each other, Israel and the world. Offers a full range of activities for all ages all year long, including weekly Shabbat and Sunday morning services, Ima & Me program, Torah for Tots, youth services. K-7 religious school, b'nai mitzvah preparations, active Kadima and USY youth groups. Nursery school onsite. Ongoing adult education, social action, Shabbat dinners, holiday celebrations and more.

North Bay


P.O. Box 5278 Novato, CA 94948
(415) 948-6659
Rabbi Henry M. Shreibman, Ph.D.

Outreach to unaffiliated individuals and families. Workshops, parlor meetings, lectures and religious services to support interest in Jewish life and learning through a Reconstructionist lens. High Holy Day services, Passover seders, Hanukkah celebrations, periodic Shabbat services, children's services, interfaith family workshops, home prayer lifecycle events, bar/bat mitzvah training for all ages, and study sessions conducted in San Francisco, Marin, Sonoma and the Peninsula.

North Bay

Gan HaLev Jewish Congregation of the San Geronimo Valley

Mail to: P.O. Box 280 Woodacre, CA 94973
(415) 488-4524
Administrator Laurie Chorna

A friendly spiritual home for people from a wide range of backgrounds and observance levels who want to experience and observe Judaism in ways that are relevant and meaningful to their lives. Programs are mainly in the San Geronimo Valley and Fairfax. A small size means people are closely connected as they explore what it is to be Jewish in America: culturally, ethically and spiritually. The congregation is unaffiliated and post-denominational, with members from diverse religious backgrounds and from throughout the world. Monthly rabbi- or lay-led Shabbat services as well as holiday celebrations, Jewish education and activities throughout the year, including a Jewish American Fiction Book Club with the Fairfax Library, participation in the Marin Interfaith Council and social justice work in the Marin Organizing Committee. An  inviting, socially and economically diverse community made up of families with children, single parents, couples and single adults of all ages. Generally meets at the San Geronimo Valley Community Center at 6350 Sir Francis Drake Blvd. in central/west Marin County.

East Bay

Jewish Gateways

(510) 410-0622
Rabbi Bridget Wynne

Welcoming  all who wish to explore Jewish wisdom, spirituality, and celebration.

Creating an open and inclusive community in which each individual and family can pursue personally meaningful Jewish pathways.

Includes wandering or wondering Jews and non-Jews; singles, couples, and families; those in interfaith and multiracial relationships; Jews-by-choice; adult children of interfaith families; members of the LGBTQ community; and people of color.

Offers open High Holy Day services, family learning and activities, opportunities to work for social justice, holiday celebrations, interactive Jewish learning and more.


Keddem Congregation

P.O. Box 50758 Palo Alto, CA 94303
(650) 494-6400

A community-led Reconstructionist Jewish congregation dedicated to discovering, developing and celebrating godliness in ourselves and each other. Practicing an evolving Judaism that infuses tradition with new meaning and is responsive to contemporary life. Inclusive, egalitarian, participatory, inquiring, innovative and compassionate.

East Bay

Kehilla Community Synagogue

1300 Grand Ave. Piedmont, CA 94610
(510) 547-2424 Fax: (510) 547-2442
Rabbi David J. Cooper
Executive director Michael Saxe-Taller

An open-hearted and progressive Jewish Renewal community, composed of people of all colors, genders and sexual orientations, including people with a wide range of religious and spiritual persuasions. Committed to being a safe and welcoming place for all. Religious school grades 1-6, Joyfully Jewish program for kindergartners meets Sundays bimonthly and religious school for grades 1-6 meeting once a week. Also bar/bat mitzvah program and adult education classes.

East Bay

Kol Hadash Community for Humanistic Judaism

Mail to: P.O. Box 2777 Berkeley, CA 94702
(510) 982-1455/ (415) 751-3766 Fax: (510) 338-0695
Kimberly Read

A Humanist congregation serving unaffiliated Bay Area Jews looking for a community with a secular, nontheistic, human-oriented approach to Jewish identity, history and culture. The name itself means "New Voice." Services are relaxed and lay-led, and include monthly Shabbats, major Jewish holidays and festivals. In addition, each month features a free public video lecture series on Jewish history and culture, as well as a Bagel Brunch Café and speaker series (often with video) on various topics. Members participate in chavurot (friendship circles), and several interest groups such as book/film, study/discussion, social and hiking. There are special presentations for Yom HaShoah and Yom HaAtzmaut. The diverse membership includes couples, families, singles, people of mixed religious and ethnic backgrounds, and Holocaust survivors. Affiliated with the Society for Humanistic Judaism (SHJ) of Farmington Hills, Michigan Most of the events are held at the Albany Community Center, 1249 Marin Ave., near I-80/580 in the East Bay.


Los Altos Chabad

1211 St. Joseph Ave. Los Altos, CA 94024
(650) 241-8770
Rabbi Ezzy Schusterman
Nechama Schusterman

Offering Jews of all backgrounds and ages innovative and exciting programs: Adult education, Rosh Chodesh Society, monthly Shabbat service, holiday programming, bar/bat mitzvah preparation, youth programs and more.

San Francisco

Magain David Sephardim Congregation

Magain David Sephardim Congregation 351 Fourth Ave. San Francisco, CA 94118
(415) 752-9095
Board members Angela Beniflah, Jacob Levy

The first Sephardic synagogue in San Francisco founded in 1935, maintaining an active community. Daily morning minyan during the week. On Friday nights, Kabbalat Shabbat services are held at candlelighting time during the winter, and at 6:30 p.m. during the summer. Shabbat morning services are on Saturdays at 9:30 a.m., followed by a seudah. Also holiday services and special events.

East Bay

Minyan Dafna

Independent, traditional egalitarian minyan in Berkeley. Meets once a month on Friday night for Kabbalat Shabbat services and once a month for services on Shabbat morning. Also meets for High Holy Day services. Vibrant, energetic, and inclusive community committed to halachah.

East Bay

Nishmat Shalom

(510) 559-8372/ (510) 848-8996
Contacts Ethel Murphy, Max Weinryb

Egalitarian, observant, feminist. Committed to inclusive liturgy and encouraging women's leadership. Shabbat services in members' homes. Men and women of all backgrounds and orientations are welcome.

San Francisco

Or Shalom Jewish Community

Or Shalom Jewish Community 625 Brotherhood Way San Francisco, CA 94132
(415) 469-5564 Fax: (415) 586-9013
Jonathan Harris (415) 469-5564 Fax: (415) 586-9013

A community of Jews and non-Jews, diverse yet united in the desire to support each other and mend the world. Sharing a commitment to deep mutual acceptance, progressive values and a spirit of questioning. Approaching Judaism with a dynamic balance of tradition and innovation.

East Bay

Or Zarua: Reconstructionist Havurah of the East Bay

(510) 684-5580

A community of families and individuals striving to build a welcoming, intimate, inclusive, progressive and spiritual Jewish community in the East Bay. Embraces Jewish tradition from a Reconstructionist perspective. Holds Shabbat morning services followed by a potluck on the first Saturday of each month at St. Alban's Church on the Berkeley-Albany border. Offers adult study, an annual camping retreat at Tilden Park, family/community events and more. Free child care at services and most events.


Peninsula Sinai Congregation

499 Boothbay Ave. Foster City, CA 94404
(650) 349-2816
Rabbi Corey Helfand
Administrator Marylou Khalfa

Congregation is a derech, a pathway, for making Judaism and Jewish identity more meaningful and spiritually fulfilling parts of people’s lives.  The vision is to inspire, influence, and help shape a Jewish life journey through community and tradition. Members come from all backgrounds to form an embracing, egalitarian and Jewishly committed community. Helping people in their spiritual quests for God, meaning and fellowship. Removing financial barriers to put relationships first. Multifaith, LGBTQ and spiritual seekers of all types always have a place here.


Peninsula Temple Beth El

1700 Alameda de las Pulgas San Mateo, CA 94403
(650) 341-7701 Fax: (650) 570-7183
Senior Rabbi Dennis J. Eisner

A home for the Jewish community on the Peninsula for over 60 years. While this history provides a rich and wonderful heritage, the synagogue also embraces new members and is committed to inclusiveness, traditions, tikkun olam, education for all ages and new approaches. Creative and participatory worship services anchored by outstanding music. Embraces being part of a larger Jewish peoplehood and actively seeks to build bonds with the Jews in our own community, in Israel and around the world. Seeks opportunities to work collaboratively with other Jewish organizations and communities.


Peninsula Temple Sholom

1655 Sebastian Drive Burlingame, CA 94010
(650) 697-2266 Fax: (650) 697-2544
Rabbi Daniel Feder
Karen Wisialowski

An inclusive Jewish community where congregants can find peace, inspiration and a personal connection to Judaism. Whether in the synagogue, each other's homes, or the world beyond, the congregation creates a sacred space for those who are part of it. Core values of inclusivity, human connection, caring and kindness, commitment to community, and embracing change define the path taken to achieve this vision and mission.


Congregation Beth El

Congregation Beth El 1301 Oxford St Berkeley, CA 94709-1424
(510) 848-3988 Fax: (510) 848-2707
Rabbi Yoel H. Kahn (510) 848-3988 Fax: (510) 848-2707

Vibrant and innovative Reform Jewish congregation dedicated to Jewish learning, worship, tikkun olam and acts of lovingkindness. Actively welcomes individuals and families of all backgrounds who are seeking community and wish to explore and learn about Jewish practice, spiritual growth and learning.


Most congregational rabbis are available for lifecycle events and to teach Jews-by-choice. Many synagogues have conversion programs. Contact the Board of Rabbis of Northern California at (415) 369-2860, the East Bay Council of Rabbis at (510) 522-9355 or the Cantorial and Rabbinic Association of Greater San Jose at (408) 358-3033. Also see Chapter 3, Lifecycles.

Bay Area


Most congregational rabbis are available for lifecycle events and to teach Jews-by-choice. Many synagogues have conversion programs. Contact the Board of Rabbis of Northern California at (415) 369-2861, the East Bay Council of Rabbis at (510) 451-3263 or the Cantorial and Rabbinic Association of Greater San Jose at (408) 357-7509. Also see Chapter 3, Lifecycle Events.

Interfaith Programs

Interfaith programming is provided by most JCCs, JFCS and synagogues, as well as the organizations listed below. Activities include holiday workshops and celebrations, support groups and social occasions. Several local rabbis perform interfaith marriages. Contact individual rabbis or the organizations listed below for further assistance.


Building Jewish Bridges: Embracing Interfaith Families

2736 Bancroft Way Berkeley, CA 94704
(510) 845-6420 x11
Director Dawn Kepler

Welcoming interfaith and intercultural families. Offering workshops, lectures and panel discussions to explore interfaith and intercultural issues. Individualized support and guidance for couples with questions about compromising in an interfaith relationship. Spiritual, but not religious? Agnostic or atheist? All are welcome. Is one partner religious and one an atheist? Also welcome. Negotiating couples' issues, raising children, finding a community and making friends are all part of creating a successful interfaith, multi-ethnic and, sometimes, multiracial home. Couples groups are a great way to share with and learn from other interfaith couples in a warm, supportive environment.

Also assists adults who grew up in interfaith homes and may not have had a Jewish education, and offers an opportunity to explore Judaism and meet others who have similar background and questions. Still negotiating intra-family dynamics? Join other young adults who are on the same path of self-discovery.

A biweekly email offers events and resources of interest to members of interfaith families.

Bay Area


San Francisco Bay Area
(415) 878-1998
Bay Area director Rabbi Mychal Copeland

Premier resource for interfaith couples exploring Jewish life, providing in-depth, easy-to-access resources that empower couples to make Jewish choices and help their families embrace the choices they make.   Local resources include workshops and classes for interfaith couples and families, as well as training programs and guidance for professionals and lay people who work with them. Online resources include guides for lifecycle events, articles, and essays and discussions about the unique issues interfaith families face. Also provided are resources for connecting with clergy, synagogues and other Jewish organizations, and information on events throughout the Bay Area for interfaith couples. Believes that maximizing the number of interfaith families who find fulfillment in Jewish life and raise their children as Jews is essential to the future strength and vitality of the Jewish community. Through the website and local programming, this organization connects interfaith families to each other and to the local Jewish community, and also advocates for inclusive attitudes, policies and practices.


Lehrhaus Judaica: The Adult School for Jewish Studies

The Reutlinger Center 2736 Bancroft Way Berkeley, CA 94704
(510) 845-6420 Fax: (510) 845-6446
Executive director Jehon Grist, Ph.D.

Offers courses serving the entire Bay Area and online, including those focusing on interfaith issues; the Introduction to Judaism and Choosing Judaism series; Jewish practice, language and theology; and links between Judaism and other world religions. Plus holiday workshops for those who weren't raised in the Jewish tradition, in conjunction with Building Jewish Bridges, area synagogues and JCCs.

Religious & Rabbinical Organizations

San Francisco

Bay Area Jewish Healing Center (BAJHC)

2530 Taraval St. Fax: Suite 202 San Francisco, CA 94116
(415) 750-4197 Fax: (415) 750-4115
President & CEO Rabbi Eric Weiss
Chaplain Rabbi Natan Fenner

Jewish spiritual care for those who are ill, dying and bereaved, and their loved ones and caregivers, through direct service, education and training, information and referral.  Also provides in-services, consultations and supporting materials for health care professionals and institutions as well as volunteer groups and congregations seeking to improve spiritual care to Jewish members/clients/patients facing illness or loss.

East Bay

East Bay Council of Rabbis

East Bay Council of Rabbis 3183 Mecartney Road Alameda, CA 94502
(510) 522-9355
President Rabbi Barnett J. Brickner (510) 522-9355

The East Bay Association of Reform, Conservative, Orthodox, Reconstructionist and Renewal rabbis who represent Jewish communal interests.

Northern California

United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism

Northern Pacific Region/New Frontier USY & Kadima Youth
(408) 892-2732
Contact Sarah Miller (408) 892-2732

A community of kehillot (sacred communities) committed to a dynamic Judaism that is learned and passionate, authentic and pluralistic, joyful and accessible, egalitarian and traditional. Its kehillot create the conditions for a powerful and vibrant Jewish life, empowering Jews in North America to seek the presence of God and meaning and purpose in Torah and mitzvot; to fully engage with Israel; and to be inspired by Judaism to improve the world and the Jewish people. USY, its youth group, teaches young Jews the values and skills they need to become exceptional leaders in their religious and secular communities, while the Conservative Yeshiva, located at the Fuchsberg Jerusalem Center, allows students to encounter Jewish wisdom and sensibilities through text study, ritual practice, social justice, community, prayer and the experience of Israel.  For more information, visit, and