How We Worship
"We believe that the congregation should not be a passive, listening audience, but a creative, participating community."
– Sam Blumenthal z”l, founding RSNS member
A Billy Collins poem and an ancient Hebrew melody. A middle-eastern chant and a favorite congregational tune. Our worship services place an emphasis on group participation, as our members engage in lively discussions and spirited singing, using a modern prayerbook that helps worshippers of all backgrounds connect to the service in a meaningful, interactive way. B'nei mitzvah families often take an active role during Shabbat services, offering a family d'var Torah and their own choice of English readings. Monthly Friday night family services are joyful and engaging, and Saturday morning b'yachad services include adult Torah study with childcare for younger children, followed by a lively Shabbat morning experience. As a progressive community, we embrace and encourage full participation by all whenever we come together to pray, to celebrate, to remember.
Prayer at RSNS
Erev Shabbat Services, except for the monthly Family Service, begin at 8:00 p.m.
During the school year, all families are invited to attend our hour-long Family Services that begin at 7:30p.m. one Friday a month, which are filled with music, stories and student participation. Each month, a different Synagogue School grade will learn key prayers to help lead parts of the service. Visit the calendar on this website for exact dates.
Shabbat morning services when there is a b'nei mitzvah begin at 9:45 a.m. B'yahad (family) Saturday mornings are once a month, with an adult Torah study at 9:00 a.m. (childcare is available for younger children and family services from 10:15-11:00 a.m., followed by a light kiddush lunch. See our monthly calendar for exact dates and times.
Non-members are always welcome to join us for Shabbat services. Please see our calendar for complete details.
The High Holidays
We observe Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur with services and programs that are directed to people of all ages, which are accessible to people who come from strong Jewish backgrounds and to those who are just learning to formulate questions.
Rosh Hashanah: On the first day of Rosh Hashanah, we host two morning services using the Reconstructionist High Holiday Prayerbook. In the tradition of our congregation, (at 8:45 AM and at 11:30 AM) the service is punctuated with modern and contemporary readings and life cycle determined aliyot at the Torah. At 2:00 PM, we invite toddlers and their families to a half hour long “circle” service in the Blue Room, which includes a story and songs. This experience is followed by a family oriented service at 2:30 PM in the sanctuary. We all gather for Tashlik at Baxter Pond Park in Port Washington at 4:15 PM.
We meet again for services on the second day of Rosh Hashanah at 9:45 AM. This service features a panel of congregants in lieu of a rabbinic address. We also offer family-friendly New Year’s experiences featuring art, stories, and social action activities for children 2-7 and 8-11.
Yom Kippur: We begin Yom Kippur with a single service that features the chanting of Kol Nidre. As on the first day of Rosh Hashanah, we host two morning services in our sanctuary, a 2:00 PM toddler service in the Blue Room, and a 2:30 PM family oriented service back in the sanctuary. We return in the late afternoon for the concluding services of Yom Kippur, which include a family d’var Torah on the Book of Jonah, Yizkor Ne’ila, and Havdalah. For those who want to spend more time in the synagogue, we offer two different consecutive hour-long programs that lend different perspectives on this most important day.