At the heart of our Congregation are services that uplift, reaffirm, and connect us to Judaism and each other. Come for Shabbat. Celebrate a festival. We have many different styles and offerings – you’re sure to find (at least!) one that speaks to you.
Men and women sit together and participate as equals in all aspects of the service. A part of all services is read in English, using our prayer book Siddur Lev Chadash. A mixed members singing group often support our Rabbi, often with musical accompaniment.
Many men and some women choose to wear a kippah and tallit, but those that do not are equally welcome and feel at home.
We use Siddur Lev Chadash for all our Shabbat and Festival services, and Machzor Ruach Chadashah for the High Holydays. Our prayerbooks, published by Liberal Judaism, blend a traditional format with a great deal of innovative and creative liturgy. You will also find new prayers and interpretations which add to the richness of our services. New users particularly notice that the translations are 'gender inclusive'. The sources of all the prayers can be found at the back of the book.
Full details of all our services are in our weekly email and in the synagogue calendar. Visitors are always welcome, but please contact the office in advance if possible so we know to expect you..
Friday Night Services
Our Erev Shabbat services take place in the synagogue at 6:30pm on Friday nights, on the first and third Shabbat of each month. On the first shabbat of each month we usually hold a Chavurah Supper, a "bring and share" supper (no meat products), and a chance to catch up with friends. On other weeks our members join in person or online with other local Liberal synagogues.
Our Shabbat morning services are at 11:00am each week, and are followed by kiddush for the whole congregation. Where families are celebrating a bar- or bat-mitzvah or another joyous lifecycle event the whole community celebrates with them. For those unable to be with us in person most of our services are also available on Zoom. Contact us to sign up for our weekly email which includes the Zoom link.
We celebrate with services on the evening and first day of all the major Jewish festivals, and often with study and/or social events as well. Our services for Rosh Hashanah and for Yom Kippur are held at Clore Shalom School in Shenley.
Visitors are welcome at all our services but for security reasons, please contact the office beforehand if possible.
Life cycle events
At TLSE we celebrate Lifecycle events with the whole community
Bar/Bat Mitzvah and Kabbalat Torah
At TLSE we encourage both boys and girls aged 13 to celebrate their Bar/Bat Mitzvah by taking part in the Shabbat Service. They read from the Torah, and depending on their ability lead the congregation though part of the service.
As children mature towards adulthood a further one year programme of study culminates in the the Kabbalat Torah ceremony at age 15, which allows boys and girls to affirm their commitment to Judaism.
Our Synagogue is always popular as a venue for this happy occasion. We encourage both bride and groom to be called up to the Torah (the "Aufruf") on the Shabbat prior to their wedding. We are prod to celebrate same sex weddings between two Jews, and offer Mixed Faith blessings after a civic marriage, where either partner is Jewish.
Membership of the synagogue includes our TLSE Funeral Scheme and the Liberal Judaism Burial scheme which together cover the standard costs of the funeral as well as either a burial plot at Edgwarebury Lane or Cheshunt or a cremation at the Hoop Lane Crematorium in Golders Green. Woodland Burials are available at Greenacres Chiltern at additional cost. Details of the funeral and burial scheme are shown on the Publications page.