Congregation B'nai Emunah - San Francisco

Congregation B'nai Emunah - San Francisco


I know that many of you are troubled by the dire conditions at refugee detention centers and asylum seekers at our border. If you are feeling helpless but want to do something, check out these organizations: HIAS, NCJW, Uri L'Tzedek, and the International Rescue Committee. From HIAS website (lots of good info there) "Now is the time to raise your voice in support of the rights, dignity, and safety of asylum seekers. Sign a quick petition in support of Asylum Seekers Join a Lights for Liberty vigil in your area on July 12 (if your Shabbat practice permits) Join our August advocacy campaign. Sign-up to organize an in-district meeting with your Members of Congress, and we will be in touch with instructions...."
WinterFaith Shelter Walk to benefit the Interfaith Winter Shelter This Sunday April 7th at 1:30 pm at Lake Merced! Please register and/or donate today! Thank you for your support!
Rabbi Pam makes the news! (Check out the 0:30 mark, and then the 2:20 mark)
WinterFaith Shelter Walk Supporting Interfaith Winter Shelter - Sunday May 6 at 1:30 pm around Lake Merced. Register and/or donate today!
COME JOIN US shopping social evening amongst friends. Get a wardrobe and mood uplift just in time for the new school year and 5778.
B'nai Emunah family history in the local Jewish newspaper.
Member Bonnie Lindauer has had her article, "Purim: The Joyous Jewish Holiday" published in the May/June 2017 issue of children's magazine "Face: People, Places, and Culture."
To read the full article in the J Magazine May 5, 2017 issue go to:

The Friendliest Synagogue in San Francisco - On the liberal side of Conservative Judaism Congregation B'nai Emunah is a liberal, egalitarian, inclusive synagogue affiliated with the United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism.

Our community has greatly evolved over its 60-year history, when first founded by the "Shanghai Jews" who fled Nazi Germany. We've become a family of Jews from all walks of life, including Jews-by-choice, interfaith families, members of the gay and lesbian community, and recent immigrants from around the world. Everyone is Welcome and Included.

Mission: To pursue Jewish knowledge, identity and observance in an open, inclusive and welcoming environment where people gather from all walks of life as one loving and supportive community. Our Strategy Judaism, San Francisco-style We provide a supportive place for those seeking to live Jewishly in a welcoming environment. Our love of Jewish tradition and rituals and our welcoming culture make us special. Membership spans the full range of age, race, ethnicity, backgrounds, and lifestyles, making us approachable and easy to be with.

Operating as usual

R' Sami Barth's drash for Rosh Hashanah

Rabbi Sami's d'rash, now available here and on our YouTube channel

Rosh Hashanah Day 1 with B'nai Emunah and friends

Erev Rosh Hashanah with B'nai Emunah and friends

Gordon Mar 馬兆明

Our SF District 4 Supervisor, Gordon Mar 馬兆明, has tested positive for COVID-19. Mr. Mar is a friend of the Congregation who not only has visited our synagogue but also has participated in several events. We wish him safe and speedy recovery.

As all of us should, I’ve been getting tested regularly for COVID-19 since the onset of this public health crisis. Today, my test result came back positive for COVID-19. My family is getting tested immediately. Fortunately, my symptoms are minor, and I will continue to work remotely to serve our neighborhood and city.

Our public health orders are here to protect us—all of us—from this historic pandemic. I have worn a mask, followed public health guidelines, practiced social distancing, and been regularly tested. And still, none of us are immune from this pandemic. I am not the first person in San Francisco to contract COVID-19 without experiencing most symptoms, and I won’t be the last. We have a responsibility to be good neighbors and take every action we can to protect public health and slow the spread of this disease.

Socially distance. Wear a mask. Get tested. Stay home as much as possible.

As a parent, I know the challenges we face to take care of our kids, ourselves, our work, and our health. As a public servant, I know too many workers are terrified to get tested and potentially lose income if they test positive, and face impossible choices between their health and making ends meet. As a City official, I know we have a moral responsibility to do all we can as individuals, as a community, and as a City to protect families, workers, and residents in the face of our unprecedented public health and economic crises. And as a person, I know we yearn to see our friends, to lower our guard, to return to some sense of normalcy.

We cannot afford to lower our guard. These are not normal times, and we can’t act normally.

I will continue working remotely with my colleagues to expand critical protections for workers, businesses, and residents. I ask every person in San Francisco to please take this pandemic seriously, take the steps required by our public health orders, and take care.

Honors, happenings, comings & goings — August 2020 – J.

"Congregation B’nai Emunah and Congregation Beth Israel Judea, both of San Francisco, have announced the two-year appointment of Rabbi Samuel Barth to the position of transitional rabbi. He previously has served as an interim rabbi in Madison, Wisconsin; Buffalo, New York; and Minneapolis. He also taught liturgy and prayer at the Jewish Theological Seminary and served as a dean at the Academy for Jewish Religion. Barth and Beth Israel Judea’s Rabbi Danny Gottlieb will work together as Gottlieb begins to transition into the role of rabbi emeritus. B’nai Emunah celebrated its outgoing leader, Rabbi Pam Frydman, with a Zoom party on July 19. An email from the congregation noted that everyone was 'wishing her well as she pursues new challenges and adventures.' " Honors The JCC of the East Bay has been awarded the Platinum Seal of Transparency by GuideStar, which collects and analyzes information on nonprofit organizations. Platinum is the highest level awarded, indicating an organization with a commitment to financial and operational transparency. Robinn Ma...

The Jewish Theological Seminary - JTS

Why does the Book of Ruth matter so much this #Shavuot? Dr. Amy Kalmanofsky on “the most human” book of the Bible #JTStorah

Southside Jewish Collaborative

Chag Shavuot sameach! Happy Shavuot!

San Francisco Interfaith Council

Regional Shelter-in-Place Orders Extended Through May 31 as Some Rules Ease

Southside Jewish Collaborative

Yom HaAtzma'ut sameach / Happy quadruple-chai (72nd) Israeli Independence Day!

SFMTA | San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency

Are you a senior 65+ or person with a disability affected by Muni service cuts? You may qualify for our new Essential Trips Card. More information about the program and how to apply:

San Francisco Interfaith Council

Face coverings are now required in San Francisco


JFCS Holocaust Center

We’re proud to be one of the community sponsors for this event.

#WeRemember the faces that history threatens to forget. Join us and the Bay Area community on April 20th as we commemorate Yom HaShoah virtually for the very first time. Register here now:

AJC - American Jewish Committee, Israel in San Francisco, Hamaqom The Place, Israeli American Council - IAC, Jewish Community Center of San Francisco, JCRC of San Francisco, Jewish Partisan Educational Foundation, San Francisco Interfaith Council, Congregation B'nai Emunah - San Francisco, Congregation Sherith Israel, Sha'ar Zahav, Congregation Emanu-El, Congregation Beth Sholom, Contemporary Jewish Museum

Curry Senior Center

Curry would like to wish all of our Jewish clients, staff, and friends a happy and healthy Passover this year!

It was a joy to work with the teams at Congregation B'nai Emunah - San Francisco and Jewish Family and Children's Services to get Matzo and wonderful Passover cards (made by preschoolers) delivered to our clients all around San Francisco!!!

[03/13/20]   This month's L'Dor v'Dor Shabbat morning program is cancelled.

Invest in Peace

We were proud to be a co-sponsor for this wonderful concert!

Special thanks to the individuals and organizations who have joined our Harmony + Hope Benefit Concert as Co-Sponsors: Judy Gold Bloom, Irene & Regina Dick-Endrizzi, Congregation B'nai Emunah - San Francisco, Gia Daniller-Katz & Steve Katz, and Wendy and Doug Sinton

J. The Jewish News of Northern California

A new wave of an email scam that targets clergy and their congregants is targeting rabbis around the country. Several Northern California synagogues have been affected.

If you know of any additional local rabbis and synagogues that have been targeted, let us know in the comments.

Greetings from Rabbi Mark for our 70th Anniversary!

Greeting from Cantor Linda

Greetings from Cantor Linda for our 70th Anniversary!

J. The Jewish News of Northern California

Our anniversary is in the J.!

B'nai Emunah, founded by the German-speaking "Shanghailander" Jewish WWII refugees, is celebrating 70 years this month.

Serious Jews, Funny Jews: Stories

B'nai Emunahn Martin Lindauer has published a Kindle edition e-book, "Serious Jews, Funny Jews: Stories," available on for $0.99. "Serious Jews, Funny Jews" is a fiction collection of 30 short stories and tales that touch on Jewish life and experiences related to Jewish holidays and practices, the Bible, the Holocaust, family life, coming-of-age, growing old, and death, among other topics. About half of these stories have been previously published in literary magazines.

The easiest way to find it on Amazon is to use these key words: Martin Lindauer Jews. If you have a tablet, iPad, or Kindle, once you purchase the e-book it will be downloaded to your device. If you have a laptop or desktop computer, Amazon offers a free app so that you can read the e-book. A print copy is forthcoming.

Royalties will be donated to B'nai Emunah. Serious Jews, Funny Jews is a fiction collection of 30 short stories and tales, about half previously published, that touch on Jewish life and experiences related to Jewish holidays and practices, the Bible, the Holocaust, family life, coming-of-age, and growing old, among other topics.

J. The Jewish News of Northern California

We were very happy to host this event about our community origins and heritage -- that of the Jews of Shanghai -- and we love that there remains so much interest in these stories of escape and survival.

The story prominently features B'nah Emunahn Shanghailanders Helga, Guenter, and Ilse (and granddaughter Izzy). Kudos to Past-President Sharon Bleviss, who co-organized the event with Susan Dean.

Three Jews who rode out World War II as refugees in Shanghai shared their stories at San Francisco’s Congregation B’nai Emunah on Sept. 8. The crowd included several generations of descendants who came to celebrate their stories — some perilous, some joyous.

JFCS Holocaust Center

Learn about the Jews of Shanghai and hear survivor testimony -- September 8th at Congregation B'nai Emunah - San Francisco!

A Tribute to Joseph Ambrus

@The Times of Israel carried Rabbi Pam Frydman's story, "A Tribute to Joseph Ambrus" -- about the late Joseph Ambrus and how Congregation B'nai Emunah - San Francisco, Congregation Ner Tamid, UCSF, Sinai Memorial Chapel, J. The Jewish News of Northern California, and Joseph's friends stepped up to perform the mitzvah of burying and honoring the dead. From the blog of Pamela Frydman at The Times of Israel

Conflicts Management Group | University Development

Since 2012, B'nai Emunah members Linda and Frank Kurtz have endowed an annual scholarship at SFSU for students who attend classes or major in Jewish Studies. The scholarship in memory of Linda's beloved brother, Bernie, who lost his life during the Vietnam War.

In 2017, Frank and Linda attended an event entitled "Collaboration Through Differences: Campus Dialogue" which was organized by SFSU Professor (and fellow B'nai Emunah member) Victoria Chen. Victoria held the event in partnership with the 80 students enrolled in her Dialogue Across Difference class. Moved by this approach, Linda and Frank have begun underwriting small intensive workshops for SFSU students facilitated by Professor Chen in the area of conflict management.

See this inspiring article about the endowment and their conflict resolution efforts: Linda and Frank Kurtz INSPIRING UNDERSTANDING THROUGH SPONSORING CONFLICT MANAGEMENT AT SF STATE Like the United States, San Francisco State University is a rich mixture of cultures, perspectives, and beliefs —which sometimes erupt in conflict. Although difficult, these conflicts can offer the com...

Chag Pesach sameach / Happy Passover!

J. The Jewish News of Northern California

Rabbi Pam Frydman attended Women of the Wall Nashot HaKotel's 30th anniversary service at the Western Wall. As usual, Women of the Wall and their supporters were subjected to physical and verbal abuse. Here's a play-by-play of a morning with Women of the Wall.

[03/16/19]   Interfaith Prayers and Vigil for the Victims
of the New Zealand Mosques Shootings

Saturday, March 16, 2019 at 8 pm
Pacifica Institute
979 San Pablo Avenue
Albany, CA 94706

The United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism

Statement from our denomination's parent organization

As the Jewish community is all too familiar with ethnic and religious hatred and violence, we are appalled by the terrorist attack that targeted two mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand and took 49 innocent lives.

We wish comfort to our Muslim brothers and sisters, partners in faith, and to all those whose lives will be impacted by this tragedy. We pray the families of the deceased find peace and that the wounded recover fully and speedily.

When a gunman attacked the Tree of Life synagogue in Pittsburgh, PA, the local mosques there were among the very first to help. Once again, we stand stronger together.

This latest attack is an unfortunate reminder that hate is on the rise globally. An act of hate against one community is an act of hate against us all. In this fearful time, we call for unity, not divisiveness. We offer love and support and pledge to work for the fulfillment of the promise of Leviticus 26:6: “I will grant peace to the land, and you shall lie down untroubled by anyone."

Rabbinical Assembly
Cantors Assembly
Federation of Jewish Men's Clubs
Jewish Educators Assembly
The Jewish Theological Seminary
Masorti Foundation for Conservative Judaism in Israel
Masorti Movement
The North American Association of Synagogue Executives
The Schechter Institutes, Inc.
Seminario Rabinico Latinoamericano
Womens League for Conservative Judaism
Ziegler School of Rabbinic Studies

Seeking Shanghailanders to Tell Their Stories!

From time to time, the office receives requests from journalists and academics to be put in touch with Shanghailanders to tell their stories. At this time, the office is hoping to put together a list of those who are willing to tell their stories and whose contact information can be given out when requests come in. If you are interested, please contact Shais in the office either by phone or email.

[12/28/18]   Coming in February: An Adult B'nai Mitzvah Class!

The class will meet on Monday nights from 6:00-7:30pm beginning in February. Learn the how's and why's of the Shabbat morning service, gain competency in having an Aliyah, read from the Torah and Haftarah, and lead a prayer or two or as many as you have time to learn, plus other skills. An Adult B'nai Mitzvah date will be chosen by those registered when the class begins. Taught by Rabbi Pam. Free for members. Sliding scale for non-members.

Baruch Dayan Ha'emet - Blessed is the Judge of Truth

It is with great sadness that we inform of the passing of our beloved member, Heinz Kochman. He passed away yesterday - 27 Kislev 5779 - in Colorado where he had been living near family. He was 96 years old, and a Holocaust survivor. Heinz will be laid to rest next to his beloved wife Ruth, of blessed memory.

The funeral will take place on Friday December 7 at 1:00 pm at Salem Memorial Park, followed by a meal of condolence here at the shul.

The family has requested that donations be made in Heinz's memory to Congregation B'nai Emunah. May Heinz's name be a blessing for all who knew him.


Chag Chanukah sameach! Here's some fun holiday music from Six13

Is this just fantasy? No, it's our Chanukah tribute to one of the greatest and most epic songs of all time. Ready, Freddie? Kindle the lights, remember the Maccabees, and rock on. CHAG SAMEACH!

Please follow, comment, like, and share with anyone who loves Chanukah, classic rock legends, or both.

Check our comments below for links to:
- The FULL LENGTH VERSION of Bohemian Chanukah (and all of Six13's other songs) on iTunes
- Send this song as a PERSONALIZED VIDEO CHANUKAH CARD to your friends and family
- The YouTube version of this video for the FULL LYRICS and CREDITS
- The SINGALONG SHEET with all the lyrics you can print out and SING THIS AT YOUR CHANUKAH PARTY or SCHOOL PROGRAM

Booking and more information about Six13:
[email protected]

What a great time at the Chanukah Bazaar today - we can still smell the latkes.

Hag sameach, Happy Chanukah!

[11/04/18]   We had an enjoyable Shabbat as we came together in fellowship, love, solace, and solidarity. We welcomed a range of attendees, from new visitors to regulars, and our Shabbat morning attendance was double the normal number. #ShowUpForShabbat

As Shabbat approaches, we welcome those who want to #ShowUpForShabbat to our synagogue:

* Jewish Persons of Color: You are welcome!
* Non-regular shul-attending Jews: You are welcome!
* Unaffiliated Jews: You are welcome!
* Non-Jews who want to show solidarity: You are welcome!

Tonight is our Shabbat Shelanu Family Service; traditional, lay-led services will take place Saturday morning at 10am.

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Videos (show all)

Greetings from Rabbi Mark for our 70th Anniversary!
Greeting from Cantor Linda
Purim song from the wizard of oz




3595 Taraval St
San Francisco, CA

General information

Our Clergy Samuel Barth, Rabbi Linda Semi, Cantor Emerita Service Times Friday Evening - 7:30pm Saturday Morning - 10:15am Tuesday - 9:00am

Opening Hours

Monday 10:00 - 15:00
Tuesday 10:00 - 15:00
Wednesday 10:00 - 15:00
Thursday 10:00 - 15:00
Friday 10:00 - 15:00
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