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Congregation Beth HaTephila

An Engaging, Inclusive, Reform Congregation in the Blue Ridge Mountains


Social Distancing in Effect. No gatherings at the Temple.
Click here for more info on the Temple's Covid-19 status.

Lifecycle Events

Lifecycle events at CBHT are beautiful events that balance the personal with Jewish tradition and sweetened by presence of community.

For further information, please contact the CBHT office at 828.253.4911 or admin@bethhatephila.org.

Birth and Baby Naming / Bris

Bris
Bris

The birth of a baby is always a blessing! Congregation Beth HaTephila provides multiple opportunities to have your children begin their Jewish lives within the embrace of our community. Whether your child or grandchild is male or female, we look forward to celebrating their birth.

B’rit Milah is the oldest religious right in Judaism. It dates back almost four thousand years when God commands Abraham: “Every male among you shall be circumcised….and that shall be the sign of the covenant between Me and you” (Genesis 17). At Congregation Beth HaTephila, Rabbi Meiri will, with great joy, participate in the planning of this ancient rite. She will be available for consultation both before and following your son’s birth. If you choose to have a traditional bris, there are several doctors in Western North Carolina who perform the rite of circumcision. During the ceremony of a bris, your son will be given a Hebrew name.

If you have a female child, or have not had a traditional bris, you are given the opportunity to have a Naming Ceremony. At Congregation Beth HaTephila, this ceremony is egalitarian and inclusive of the entire family. Often the Naming occurs during our Friday evening Shabbat service. While the details of this ceremony are decided by you, traditionally your family is called to the bima where your child will be given their Hebrew name and blessed with the three-fold Benediction of the Torah. If you choose to relate the heritage of your child’s Hebrew name, the Naming becomes a particularly meaningful and personal occasion.

Whether you choose to have a B’rit Milah, a Naming ceremony or neither, your child will hold a special place within our Congregation.

Mazel Tov!

B'Nai Mitzvah

B'nai Mitzvah
Bat Mitzvah

B'Nai Mitzvah is a coming of age ritual for boys and girls (Bar Mitzvah for boys, Bat Mitzvah for girls. When a Jewish boy or girl is 13 years old, he/she becomes accountable for his actions and becomes a bar/bat mitzvah.

We enjoy seeing our youngsters become bar or bat mitzvah.  A good deal of study, practice and preparation is required to be able to lead the service, chant the portion and interpret that portion. The event reflects a good amount of rote and conceptual learning. It is also an indicator of a commitment. We all kvell (rejoice) in the youngster’s accomplishments. It’s a joyous rite of passage. Read More on the B'Nai Mitzvah page...

 

Confirmation

confirmation class
Confirmation Class

Confirmation is the ceremony acknowledging one's commitment to Jewish life and the completion of religious school studies; often held on Shavuot.

Confirmation students focus on a dynamic inter-generational interview project entitled “Humans of CBHT.” Students learn to conduct in-depth interviews with congregants and to discern what Jewish values and lessons can be gleaned from the congregant's life experience. At the conclusion of the year, the class leads a Shabbat service where they share the results of their interviews enabling the congregation to know one another on a deeper level. Students meet for 14 1-1/2 hour sessions various Sundays from October through March.

Marriage

Wedding
Marriage

Jewish tradition calls marriage kiddushin, from the word kadosh, meaning holy. Congregation Beth HaTephila, joyfully provides couples the opportunity to join their lives in this sacred union. Whether the union you are seeking is with a heterosexual person or same sex person, we are committed to helping you have a wedding which will not only fulfill the tenants of Reform Judaism, but also be a unique and personal life event. As you stand under the Chuppah, symbol of God’s sheltering presence, as Rabbi Meiri recites the centuries old prayers, you will celebrate your union with your individual vows and perhaps choose to read from your Ketubah. As you break the glass and hear Mazel Tov echoing in your ears, know that our entire community will be wishing you well!

Our historic sanctuary is available for what will be one of the most momentous days of your life and if you choose, our modern Dave Hall can accommodate many of the celebrations following your ceremony. We do look forward to having the opportunity to share this occasion with you! 

Death and Mourning

book-star-and-roseThe phrase, “May the Source of Life comfort you among the mourners of Zion and Jerusalem” is reflected in Congregation Beth HaTephila’s response to death.

Following a loss and throughout the time of mourning, our community responds with sensitivity and compassion, striving to support your family and recognize your loved one in a personal and dignified manner. Rabbi Meiri will contact you to offer her sympathetic guidance to ensure that any wishes of the deceased and their family are met with the utmost of care and concern.

For those choosing to follow the tradition of ritual purification and/or shomrim (guards), our Jewish Community provides dedicated and trained members of Chevra Kadisha. If a funeral is held locally, the use of our sanctuary is available. Burial or cremation plots in the Congregation Beth HaTephila section of the historic Riverside Cemetery can be purchased for our members and their immediate, first degree family members.

Whether a funeral is held locally or not, both clergy and trained congregants can perform meaningful Shiva Minyan. Led by the CBHT Caring Community, temple members will provide both a post burial repast and refreshments for Shiva.

Your loved one’s name will be recited at Shabbat services throughout the period of shloshim and, unless otherwise requested, on the anniversary of your loved one’s death (yahrzeit).

It is the hope of our congregation that you find comfort from our Community during this time of sadness and grief.

Thu, December 3 2020 17 Kislev 5781