Brattleboro Area Jewish Community

Congregation Shir Heharim

Yom Rishon, 28 Av 5777

Please join us for Shabbat services ...

 May 20th is a special Shabbat: Congregation Achavas Achim (Keene) members and Sabeeha and Khalid Rehman will come to BAJC for 10 am morning services followed by an oneg Shabbat luncheon. Sabeeha is the author of Threading My Prayer Rug, a memoir of her life as a Pakistani American Muslim.  Sabeeha and her husband, Dr. Khalid Rehman, raised their children on Staten Island, NY.  With no Muslim community there, they founded one along with some Muslim neighbors, eventually building a mosque. Sabeeha and Khalid will talk about their experiences and answer questions at the lunch.


Come enjoy a Kabbalat Shabbat service on Friday, May 26th at 7pm.


This year, BAJC is offering two opportunities to observe Shavuot. On the evening of Tuesday, May 30, which is the beginning of Shavuot, we have an exciting evening of creative study and exploration. It is traditional to observe a Tikkun Leyl Shavuot, staying up all night to study Torah. We will be offering a playful, creative take on this idea, aimed at teens and adults. From 7 pm to midnight we will be singing songs, creating art, exploring movement, using story to relate to Torah, learning a bit about the history and practice of Shavuot, and perhaps even engaging in some traditional text study. Our presenters will include Andi Waisman, David Arfa, Michael Knapp, Cantor Kate, and others TBA. Watch for the evening’s schedule on your weekly email, Facebook, and this website. Feel free to drop in at any time for all or part of the evening. We will break in the middle of the evening for some dairy sweets. Previous art, movement, or singing experience is not necessary – nor is great learnedness in Torah!

On Thursday evening, June 1st we will offer Shavuot Maariv and Yizkor at 7:00, followed by a dairy dessert oneg. Come to say Kaddish to remember your lost loved ones and to give your BAJC community the gift of allowing them to say Kaddish as well. Help us make a minyan!

Services in June are on the 3rd, 10th, and 17th at 10 am.

Join us for Kabbalat Shabbat June 23rd at 7pm

*All services are at Brattleboro Area Jewish Community, Congregation Shir Heharim unless otherwise noted. 

For directions please click here


October 2nd-4th   Rosh Hashanah

October 11th-12th  Yom Kippur

October 16th-23rd  Sukkot

October 23rd-24th    Shemini Atzeret (Yizkor)

October 24th-25th    Simchat Torah

At sundown on Sunday, October 2nd, Jewish people all over the world will welcome Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish year 5777. Rosh Hashanah begins a sacred period known as the Days of Awe that culminates ten days later on Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement, observed this year on October 12th.

Daniel Kasnitz, President of Congregation Shir Heharim, announces that the Brattleboro Area Jewish Community will offer Rosh Hashanah services beginning at 7pm on October 2nd at the West Village Meeting House of All Souls Church on South Street in West Brattleboro, and continuing there the next day at 9:30 am. The traditional second day of services will be offered at the congregation’s synagogue at 151 Greenleaf Street in West Brattleboro, on Tuesday morning at 9:30 am.

Yom Kippur services begin on Tuesday evening, October 11th at 7:00 at the West Village Meeting House with the beautiful and haunting Kol Nidre prayer and continue there the next day at 9:30 am. There is a Yizkor service at about 11:30 that day with special memorial prayers remembering and honoring the departed, a traditional Musaf service at around 12:30 pm, and a late afternoon service with a reading from the Book of Jonah at 5:00 pm, followed by Ne’ilah, the closing service, at 6:00.

Congregation Shir Heharim’s high holiday services will be led by Cantor Kate Judd, the congregation’s spiritual leader. Cantor Judd was ordained by Hebrew College in Newton, MA, a pluralistic seminary, where she also received a Masters of Jewish Education.Cantor Judd has performed throughout New England as oratorio and operatic soloist and was a service leader at several synagogues before becoming the spiritual leader of the Brattleboro Area Jewish Community five years ago. She will be assisted by several community members who will co-lead parts of the service.

The Days of Awe are marked by contemplation, introspection, confession, and prayer.   Reflecting upon the past year, Jews around the world ask forgiveness from family, friends, and other people they may have hurt. Tradition teaches that once this is accomplished, forgiveness from God will follow. The season is regarded as a time of judgment, when people seek atonement and pray to be inscribed in the Book of Life for another year. On Yom Kippur, twenty-four hours are spent in prayer and contemplation, with no food or drink from 7:00 Tuesday night until after sunset on Wednesday night. As the long day ends, the Ne’ilah service portrays the Gates of Heaven slowly closing as the last prayers of atonement are offered to God. Like people everywhere, Jews are comforted by the hope that if they really strive to make themselves better than they were in the past, God will forgive them and grant them life.

BAJC welcomes all to attend high holy day services. New prayer books, in Hebrew, contain translations into English, along with interpretative study texts, and all the Hebrew prayers are transliterated so that people who don’t read Hebrew can follow and participate. BAJC does not require tickets or reservations, but it is hoped that guests will help cover the expenses of making the services available to all.(Suggested donation is $100 per person for each holiday.) Please consider mailing donations to BAJC, PO Box 2353, Brattleboro 05303, in advance so guests can be welcomed at the door and so that we can follow the tradition of not dealing with money or record-keeping on the holy days.  Donations from guests will be applied toward membership if the donor decides to become a member of the congregation at any time during the year. Call 802-257-1959 for more information.

October 2 - 7PM, No Hebrew School - Erev Rosh Hashana Service 

October 3 - 9:30 AM, Rosh Hashana first day at WVMH/Tashlich at 1:30-ish at BAJC

October 4 - 9:30 AM, Rosh Hashana 2nd day at BAJC 

October 8 - 10:00 AM, Shabbat Shuvah Service

October 11- 7:00 PM, Erev Yom Kippur  at WVMH

October 12 -9:30 AM, Yom Kippur at WVMH - Yizkor at 11:30, Musaf at 12:30, Mincha at 5, Ne’ilah at 6

October 15 -10:00 AM, Shabbat Service

October 16- 4:30 PM, Sukkot Family service with our Hebrew School students

October 22- 10:00 AM, Shabbat Chol HaMoed Service

October 23- 5:30 PM, Yizkor service 

October 25 - 7:00 PM, Simchat Torah Service


For Directions click here