Shul Shopping for the Holidays


tiny Robin photoMy family just moved to Massachusetts a few months ago from the Midwest. My husband and I are a typical Jewish Boston couple: he is a medical fellow and I am the Network Director at Our son is enrolled in the JCC preschool. We are a middle class family living in a very expensive city. We have been shul shopping and think that we have found a synagogue which is family friendly and suits our needs. I looked into membership and for the first year the High Holiday tickets are free and the membership is half price! Yes, we can afford this!

For our second year, the prices go up for membership and High Holiday tickets, plus the obligation to pay our part of the building fund kicks in, and this will become one more added expense.

Joining a shul is a priority for my family. We have held a membership since our engagement. So we will join for the next year, but for the first time, we are considering whether our long term goals involve active synagogue participation….

I know there a lot of other families who want to join in the Jewish community, but memberships and tuitions add up quickly. If you look, there are certainly scholarships, but there are also organizations that are inviting and attach few or no strings. Many of them are listed in our Connections In Your Area System. Another, near universal source of free Orthodox High Holiday services is the Hasidic Jewish organization Chabad.

You can also use Google with the terms “High Holiday services” and your location. If you find a welcoming place, please let me know and I will work to get them listed on’s website.

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