Temple Beth El strives to be a place of sacred encounter where learning, prayer and deeds change our understanding of ourselves, our world, and our responsibilities in it. In December 2017, our Board of Directors passed a resolution to support the creation of an Adult Education Council.



Calendar of Events at Temple Beth El



Elements of Judaism is an introductory course to Jewish thought, belief, and practice. Get a high level view of what Jewish people believe and how these beliefs are expressed in daily life. Elements of Judaism is designed for anyone who wants to reinforce or establish a foundation in understanding Judaism. Do you want to brush up on your basic knowledge? Are you part of an interfaith family? Are you considering conversion to Judaism? Just curious? This is the course for you.

Contact Liz Cicirello, Lead Administrative Assistant for more information.


Join us for the 2018-2019  SAGE: Seeking Jewish Wisdom program as we explore Jewish Identity.  Lively and compelling chevruta discussions and thought-provoking clergy presentations will take place at Temple Beth El on the fourth Monday of the month.

Monday, October 22 – Biology or Covenant – Are we a people because of a shared biology or a shared covenant?
Monday, November 26 – The Stories We Tell Ourselves – What are the narratives that shape our identity?
Wednesday, January 30  – Jewish Time – The seasons and cycles of our lives
Monday, February 25 – Ritual and Religion – What is a “Religious Jew”?
Monday, March 25 –  American Jew or Jewish American – What is an American Jew?
Monday, April 15 – Israeli Jewish Identity – Understanding Israelis through Literature
Wednesday, May 22 – The “Chosen People” – The Struggle Between Exceptionalism and Otherness

Log in to ShulCloud and register by October 8.


Learning to read Hebrew is a great way to become more connected to services and prayers. Temple Beth El is offering a thorough beginning Hebrew class that will give you the opportunity to learn to decode and read Hebrew. Members and non-members are welcome. The class fee includes all materials. There are evening and morning classes offered at different times during the year.

Please contact Susan Jacobs, Director of Education for more information.


A community-wide educational event designed for adults interested in interfaith programming. Temple Beth El hosts the Comparative Religion Series annually on six consecutive Tuesday evenings.  The series is free and open to the public. Reservations are not necessary.

An example of recent topics:

  • Spirituality: How Do You Connect With Your Higher Power?
  • U.S. Minority Religions: Jewish, Islamic, and Buddhist perspectives on Religion and Politics
  • Christian Approaches to Religion and Politics: Conservative Protestant, Liberal Protestant, and Roman Catholic Viewpoints
  • The Vision of the Black Church: Civil Rights to Moral Monday
  • Changing Legal Lines Across the Decades: Legal Experts on Religion and Politics
  • Pews to Polls: The Use of Religion in Politics (Conservative Religious and Liberal Religious Politicians)
  • How the Pendulum Swings: An Historical Overview on Religion and Politics
  • Am I My Brother’s Keeper? Roots of Ethical Responsibility

More information about the Comparative Religion Series


Scholar-in-Residence Programs are made possible by the generosity of Norm Levin in memory of his mother, Sadie Levin. Sadie gave time, passion and energy toward building the Jewish community.


Anshei Mitzvah is an opportunity for those adults who have never had a Bar or Bat Mitzvah to participate in group study that will culminate in being called to the Torah. This program is designed for those Jewish members of Temple Beth El who want to broaden their Judaic knowledge and experience.


The lecture series was started by Marc and Mattye Silverman in memory of Marc’s uncle, Simeon Archibald “Happy” Schloss Jr., one of Temple Beth El’s founders. Each year the lecture series tries to focus on a current events and features community experts on the chosen topic.


Each year, as summer draws to a close and the High Holidays summon us to reflect on the Jewish New Year, we are delighted to invite you to join us for the Annual Wildacres Retreat. Usher in the New Year in a special way this year amid the majesty of the Blue Ridge Mountains, the perfect place for introspection, community and learning.


Join us for lively discussion and intriguing insights about the weekly Torah reading.


The Robyn Farber Leadership Development Program was created by Larry Farber in memory of his sister, Robyn, to ensure a continuous line of future leaders for Temple Beth El. The program sessions are led by TBE’s professional and lay leadership and cover a range of spiritual, educational, and social programming. If you are interested in a lay leadership position, this once-per-month commitment from October through May is a great way to meet peers and discover how your talents and interests can serve our congregation.