Shabbat Services

Our services are based on the Reconstructionist prayerbook, Kol Haneshama. In both form and content, our goal is to balance tradition with creativity in our services. Members are encouraged to take on leadership roles in our services. Our children and the adults are invited to actively participate in our services. We also provide child care during the service.

On Saturday mornings, members lead different parts of the service. Service leaders are the most creative with the opening section, sometimes using instruments and contemporary prayers. We have Torah study before we read from the Torah scroll, so that when we hear the words of Torah, the experience is richer. Instead of the traditional haftarah, the service leader chooses an alternative reading from the wider tradition or contemporary sources that reflect the theme of the Torah portion for that week. Readings have included poems, children’s books, memoirs, blog posts, and recipes. When the service is over, we have a dairy/pareve potluck lunch.To accommodate those with food restrictions, we ask that dishes be labeled with all ingredients. We invite new people to stay for lunch whether or not you brought something. Or Zarua is very proud of our excellent, abundant potlucks.

For our Friday night events, we start with an informal gathering, including snacks for kids. We spend about an hour with our Kabbalat Shabbat service, and then we have a potluck Shabbat dinner. It is dairy/pareve and we label all of our dishes with complete ingredient lists. Sometimes we sing again after dinner. Child care is provided during the service.

For a schedule of services, see the Events page.