While we are not able to be together in person, we remain an active synagogue here in Williamsburg. Temple Beth El holds Shabbat services every Friday night and one Saturday morning each month, and holds Shabbat Kulanu/Shabbat For All Of Us, a family-oriented service, on one Friday night each month. Because our building remains closed, we are unable to loan prayer books to our congregants. We offer digital versions of our prayer books, but you may wish to purchase physical copies of the books for your personal use.
Shabbat Vehagim is the Reconstructionist movement’s prayerbook for Shabbat and the three major Festivals. It includes the liturgy for Kabbalat Shabbat, Shabbat morning and afternoon, and the pilgrimage festivals, and is supplemented by an extensive readings section.
Siddur Kol HaNo’ar: The Voice of Children, is the Reconstructionist movement’s family-oriented prayerbook, and is the siddur we use at our monthly Shabbat Kulanu service. This siddur is unique in its use of stories from Jewish sources and folklore. Questions in the siddur invite children to engage in a conversation with prayer, its meaning to them and their lives.
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Mi Shebeirach by Debbie Friedman
Mi shebeirach avoteinu
M’kor hab’racha l’imoteinu
May the source of strength,
Who blessed the ones before us,
Help us find the courage to make our lives a blessing,
And let us say, Amen.
Mi shebeirach imoteinu
M’kor habrachah l’avoteinu
Bless those in need of healing with r’fuah sh’leimah,
The renewal of body, the renewal of spirit,
And let us say, Amen
Prayer for Our Country
Our God and God of our ancestors, bless this country and all who dwell within it.
Help us to experience the blessings of our lives and circumstances
To be vigilant, compassionate, and brave
Strengthen us when we are afraid
Help us to channel our anger
So that it motivates us to action
Help us to feel our fear
So that we do not become numb
Help us to be generous with others
So that we raise each other up
Help us to be humble in our fear, knowing that as vulnerable as we feel there are those at greater risk,
And that it is our holy work to stand with them
Help us to taste the sweetness of liberty
To not take for granted the freedoms won in generations past or in recent days
To heal and nourish our democracy, that it may be like a tree planted by the water whose roots reach down to the stream
It need not fear drought when it comes, its leaves are always green
Source of all Life,
Guide our leaders with righteousness
Strengthen their hearts but keep them from hardening
That they may use their influence and authority to speak truth and act for justice
May all who dwell in this country share in its bounty, enjoy its freedoms and be protected by its laws
May this nation use its power and wealth to be a voice for justice, peace and equality for all who dwell on earth
May we be strong and have courage
To be bold in our action and deep in our compassion
To discern when we must listen and when we must act
To uproot bigotry, intolerance, misogyny, racism, discrimination and violence in all its forms
To celebrate the many faces of God reflected in the wondrous diversity of humanity
To welcome the stranger and the immigrant and to honor the gifts of those who seek refuge and possibility here,
As they have since before this nation was born
Let justice well up like waters, and righteousness like a mighty stream
(Jeremiah 17:8; Isaiah 16:3–5; Amos 5:24)
© Rabbi Ayelet Cohen