No! TSTI is an inclusive congregation committed to developing and fostering a joyous lifelong Jewish experience. We are proud of, and enriched by, our diverse congregation, and live the progressive values of Reform Judaism through worship, education, acts of social justice, Torah study, and community service. Our members are Jews by birth and by choice. They are single, partnered, and many are part of interfaith families. They are people of all races, sexualities, gender-identities, socio-economic statuses, and abilities. We strive to be a second home, where individuality is celebrated, and every person matters.
Please join us for a service, community event, or class, whether online or in person and see how TSTI shines!
We begin promptly at 6:00pm as we welcome Shabbat together. We do our best to keep the service to one hour so those in attendance can then gather at home or somewhere else to enjoy a Shabbat meal. The services are open and accessible to all, and there is typically an opportunity to socialize at the pre-service Oneg at 5:30.
Anything that feels comfortable – we don’t have a formal dress code. Some people wear their everyday clothes, some their work clothes, and some dress up. Whatever you decide, you’ll fit right in. Tallitot (prayer shawls) and kippot (yarmulkes) are optional.
We are committed to keeping all our members and guests as safe as possible. Right now, there are limited in-person services and events, and all require proper social distancing and masks. We are closely monitoring the ever-changing situation, however, so please check our calendar frequently for updates.
No problem. Many TSTI members don’t speak or read Hebrew. While Hebrew is a part of our services, our worship experiences are full of music and soul, spirit and insight, which you don’t need Hebrew to enjoy.
Just join us! Beyond our Shabbat service, there is so much going on at TSTI, from meditation sessions and panel discussions, to trips, movies, and more. Whether it’s online or in person, we’re excited to get to know you . . .and for you to get to know us!
Within our inclusive environment, we strive to ensure that individuality is celebrated, and every person matters. We understand that each member of the community will connect to Jewish tradition in their own, unique way. As such, we embrace the Reform Jewish approach that celebrates individual, informed choice, and seek to draw community members more deeply into active Jewish life. We also like to have fun.
But don’t take our word for it…ask around. Our members are more than happy to share their experiences.
TSTI has a large congregation of 750+ families, but don’t let that worry you. Once you’re part of the community, you’ll see we’re a close-knit group. Members live in several communities with the largest concentration from South Orange, Maplewood, Short Hills, Millburn, Livingston and West Orange. We also have members from Summit and Westfield and a few from other towns.
All of our clergy members are active and committed Zionists. As a congregation in the Reform Movement, we are connected to, and supporters of, ARZA- the Association of Reform Zionists of America.
Rabbi Cohen is particularly active in pro-Israel activism. A member of the AIPAC National Counsel, he was one of the co-chairs of the very first AIPAC Progressive Rabbinic Mission to Israel in July of 2014. Rabbi Cohen has been active with Outwardbound Peacebuilders, a small organization that seeks to foster connection and understanding between Jewish Israelis and Moslem Israelis by taking members of both communities into the wild where they learn to rely upon another and communicate better in the hopes of finding a peaceful solution to the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict that is respectful of all involved.
No, you do not have to be a temple member to be part of the preschool or summer camp. We do offer a gift of FREE membership to Preschool families while their oldest child is a full tuition paying student in our Preschool.
We understand that finding a congregation that is the right “fit” is beneficial to both households and communities. As such, we offer ONE year of study in the Linda and Rudy Slucker Religious School prior to formally affiliating with the congregation, ONLY when your oldest child is in either Kindergarten, First or Second Grade. During that year, your family is responsible ONLY for tuition, and dues are waived. We know that after a year in our school your family will happily join our temple community.
We would love to show you around our beautiful temple and answer any questions you may have. To arrange an appointment please contact Beth Blackman or call (973) 763-4116. Our address is: 432 Scotland Road, South Orange, NJ.