History

Temple Beth Sholom (TBS) is a Conservative Synagogue, a member of the United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism, and follows traditional Jewish practices in a modern setting.

TBS was founded in 1940 as Jews moved from Camden eastward. Our first permanent location was in Haddon Heights, where we grew into a synagogue of over 600 families with a strong commitment to Jewish education and practices.

In 1989, we moved to our present location in Cherry Hill, taking with us our traditions and some of the physical reminders of our old building as we grew into a congregation of 800+ families. On a glorious expanse of seven acres, located at Kresson and Cropwell Roads, Temple Beth Sholom brings the feeling of Jerusalem home. The Sanctuary, with its balcony and adjoining social hall, comfortably seats up to 2,200 people. The school wing houses 19 classrooms and offices with a playground outside that channels the creativity of the most energetic youngster. There are both dairy and meat kitchens, a youth lounge, bride's room, and many other well-planned areas for religious, cultural, and social use. In 2002, Temple Beth Sholom proudly dedicated its new Green Center for Jewish Learning, an expansion of 13,000 square feet, including a state-of-the-art Multimedia Resource Center, seven high school classrooms, and a lounge where our teenagers can relax in a Jewish environment.

TBS offers a full range of activities for members, including a Sisterhood, Men's Club, Young Members Group, Social Action Committee, HAZAK (Seniors Group), Hesed (Caring Community) and many other committees. Learning is a lifelong journey at TBS from nationally recognized speakers and scholars-in-residence and engaging adult education courses to parent/child classes and family education programs. Friday evening services are at 6:15 pm, and Shabbat morning services are at 9:30 am. Shabbat Mincha/Maariv takes place at sundown. Morning minyan is at 7:00 am on weekdays and at 8:15 am on Sunday and secular holidays. Afternoon and evening minyan is at 8:00 pm, Sunday through Thursday. Non-members are always welcome to join an adult education class or to attend services.

Temple Beth Sholom offers a comprehensive, award-winning religious school program that focuses on creating differentiated learning environments for all students. TBS has been awarded the prestigious Framework of Excellence School by The United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism. Our religious school offers a program designed to meet the needs of today's family. Our two-day per week religious school maintains a nationally recognized Special Needs Education Program, as well as a Multimedia Resource Center in the Hebrew High School wing. The religious school participates in the Gift of Israel program, and a Confirmation Class Israel Experience is part of our curriculum. In addition to formal classroom education, Temple Beth Sholom offers a wide variety of interactive programs for parents and children of all ages. Families participate in holiday celebrations, group learning programs, Shabbat dinners, and synagogue-wide festivals. Alex Weinberg serves as Director of Congregational Learning.

TBS's Early Childhood Education Center features a child-directed curriculum supplemented with gym, library, science, music with "Best of Philly" winner Marcia Kratz, playtime in the Noah's Ark Play Center, and Shabbat celebrations. Full day care (beginning at six weeks), Kindergarten Enrichment, lunch and learn, after-school activities and parent/child programs are available. Accommodating the individual needs of our students is a top priority in all areas of synagogue programming. Young Members Group is an active community of young adults and families that offers innovative family, social, religious, and educational experiences. Family programs are geared towards both early childhood-aged and religious school-aged children, and all Young Members Group events are open to the community! Summer camp is available for children between the ages of 2 and 5. Ellen Berju is the Director of Early Childhood Education.

Unique Family Shabbat Services occur three times per month, as well as youth services on Shabbat mornings: Tot Shabbat (ages 0-3), Shabbat Enrichment (ages 3-7) and So-Shul Networking (grades 5-6). Babysitting is offered on Shabbat and holidays. Adult and youth choirs provide spiritual outlets for congregants of all ages.

Our Shorashim (1st - 2nd grades), Haverim (3rd - 4th grades), Kadima (5th - 7th grades), and USY (8th - 12th grades) youth groups are outstanding. We have received numerous regional awards for programs, especially for Social Action.

The Social Hall has a stage for performances and there is ample space for large banquets and family celebrations. The facilities are available for weddings, B'nai Mitzvah, and other simhas. Noah's Ark Play Center is available for children's birthday parties. Kashrut is observed.

And while the physical plant is impressive, it's what you'll find inside that most stirs the heart ... the real cornerstone of Temple Beth Sholom: its congregation. A melting pot of professionals, businesspeople, artists, and craftsmen, of new families and senior members, the underlying bond is still the warmth, caring, and understanding each brings inside. Whether it's celebrating a simha or being supportive at a time of sorrow, Temple Beth Sholom emerges as more than a great place of worship. It is our religious home, and the congregation is our family.

Ron Safier is Executive Director.