“Independence Day”: The Independent Minyan/Prayer Group Phenomenon

In a special one-day event, the Union for Traditional Judaism (UTJ) explores the rise – and fall – of independent prayer groups.

According to a 2008 survey, thousands of Jews have attended one of the dozens of independent minyanim across North America.

What is behind the growth of this phenomenon? Are these “indies” a reaction to the contemporary synagogue framework? What effect do they have on the evolution of Tefillah, the study of Torah, and the observance of Halakhah?

The program begins with a Torah study session by noted author and scholar, Hakham Isaac Sassoon, who founded an independent minyan. A panel follows with founders of independent minyanim and prayer groups, who will share their experiences and the rationale behind their work.

Panelists are:

  • Dr. Adena Berkowitz, founding member of Kol HaNeshamah (NYC)
  • Dr. Ann E. Shinnar, Steering Committee, Teaneck Women's Tefillah (NJ)
  • Rabbi Chaim Solomon, founding rabbi of Traditional Congregation of Mt. Dora (FL)

An open discussion will follow the presentations. After the program, there will be a UTJ general membership meeting and elections.

The conference will be held on Sunday, March 7 – 9:00 a.m. to 1:30 p.m., at UTJ Headquarters, 811 Palisade Avenue, Teaneck.

Suggested donation of $18 includes breakfast.
Register here: office@utj.org or 201-801-0707, ext. 201.
Audio broadcast will be made available for those who are unable to attend; please contact our office for information.