Is Kehilat Hadar affiliated with any Jewish denomination?
Kehilat Hadar is not affiliated with any of the movements (e.g. Conservative, Orthodox, Reconstructionist, Reform), and members of our community come from a wide range of Jewish backgrounds. We are fully egalitarian. Our services follow a traditional format and all of our services and programming are planned in accordance with halakhah (Jewish law).
What does it mean to be both halakhic and egalitarian?
Traditionally, halakhah (Jewish law) has been understood to exclude women from participating in certain aspects of public prayer. However, an examination of the classic Jewish sources for prayer reveals that there is ample support for equal participation by women and men in davening and leyning (Torah reading), and for counting women equally with men in a minyan. At the first Shavuot retreat, our community studied these issues in depth, focusing on the following topics: women's obligation in prayer, women as shelichot tzibbur (prayer leaders) and as Torah readers, and women counting in a minyan (quorum for public prayer). The source sheets we used, as well as links to a variety of teshuvot (rabbinic responsa) and other resources on this issue, can be found here.
Does Kehilat Hadar have a rabbi?
Kehilat Hadar currently has no full-time staff. Although many rabbis have taught at Hadar programs, and Rabbi Shai Held previously served as our resident scholar, there is no rabbi who leads Hadar. The gabbaim consult with Rabbi Elie Kaunfer and Rabbi Ethan Tucker, founders of both Kehilat Hadar and Mechon Hadar, when determining ritual policy.
As Kehilat Hadar becomes the primary Jewish community for an increasing number of people, we recognize the importance of being able to speak with a rabbi within the Kehilat Hadar community. Several volunteers, including rabbis and senior rabbinical students, have offered to speak with members of the community regarding religious, spiritual, pastoral, or other issues. If you are interested in speaking with someone, please contact Hadar's Lifecycle Team.
Yes, you can find it here.
How can I let people in the Kehilat Hadar community know about other programming?
We are happy to provide a community postings section on our website which publicizes programs of interest. To submit a posting, click here.
How can I start a minyan like Kehilat Hadar where I live?
In 2006, the founders of Kehilat Hadar launched Hadar Institute, which aims to help create and sustain vibrant, practicing, egalitarian communities. For more information about how to start an independent minyan like Kehilat Hadar, and how Hadar Institute can provide support, please visit their Independent Minyanim site.
For more information about the relationship between Kehilat Hadar and Hadar Institute, click here.
How is Kehilat Hadar planning for the future?
The leadership of Kehilat Hadar is continually planning for the short term as well as strategizing for the longer term. Kehilat Hadar holds community meetings to discuss our shared vision and to plan for the future.