Welcome to Temple Emanu-El!
More than 150 years of tradition, warmth and caring distinguish Temple Emanu-El, where our founders made history by establishing Santa Clara Valley's first Jewish congregation in 1861. Today, we are proud to be one of the oldest Reform congregations on the west coast.At Temple Emanu-El, we join together in a vibrant, diverse community to make our Jewish heritage relevant to our lives in the 21st Century through innovative Shabbat worship, joyous holiday celebrations and life cycle events, and enriching Education opportunities for all ages. We offer great community programs through our auxiliaries and committees and information on how you can be involved in our community.
Temple Emanu-El is a vibrant Reform Jewish congregation dedicated to nurturing a caring and inclusive community that enriches the spiritual and social lives of our members and strengthens the bonds within our community and with the state of Israel, ensuring continuity as a people and a religion. Our congregation fosters a love and understanding of our Jewish heritage, traditions, and values while promoting interfaith fellowship, celebrating diversity, and taking action to heal the world. We explore innovative approaches to worship and holiday celebrations; seeing Judaism through a “fresh set of eyes” enables us to gain a better understanding of its teachings and better serve the needs of our diverse community.
In order to achieve our mission, we have established the following goals:
- As a House of Assembly, we welcome everyone to participate in our religious, social, educational and community programs and life-cycle events.
- As a House of Learning, we cultivate a lifelong love of Torah, Jewish heritage, ethics, and values through innovative and engaging educational programming for all ages and backgrounds.
- As a House of Worship, we create a sacred space where our congregation gathers to pray and experience a sense of Kedushah (holiness).
- As a caring and active community, we reach out to promote fellowship and support each other; ensuring our members feel a deep sense of Kesher (connection) to our warm, extended family and a need to participate in Temple activities.
- Beyond our synagogue walls, we are committed to Tikkun Olam (repairing our world) through proactive leadership and participation in social justice and social action initiatives.
Meeting Today's Needs
Temple Emanu-El offers a balance between Judaism's rich traditions and modern-day realities - our synagogue provides a solid foundation for members' spiritual, intellectual, and social needs. As a congregation we adhere to the principles of egalitarian mainstream Reform Judaism as warmth of song, prayer, sermons, learning, social events and community service add meaning to our lives. We also have clergy available for all life cycle events as well as one-on-one counseling.
Temple Emanu-El's members include individuals, couples and families from diverse backgrounds. Some members come from more traditional Jewish backgrounds - others are interfaith couples, individuals looking to Judaism for answers, or those rediscovering their religion. We embrace diversity of all forms and those who choose to make our Synagogue a part of their lives will find themselves welcome into our Congregational family.
Recognizing Jewish education as a top priority for preparing and grounding our children in the hyper-competitive world of the Valley, we offer classes with personalized attention from preschool through the 12th grade. With the addition of our Temple's national award-winning preschool and adult education classes, we provide a continuous life experience for education - a true Beit Midrash, or House of Learning.
We invite you to connect with your Jewish roots by visiting us at Temple Emanu-El. You can easily - and best - experience the spirit of our community by attending Friday night Shabbat services - we are as welcoming a synagogue as exists in the Bay Area. Please feel free to call us at 408-292-0939 or contact us if you have any further questions - we look forward to hearing from you and hope to welcome you as a member of our extended family.