Kehilat Hadar has been my primary spiritual community for the past 3 years. I attend services there every weekend and on holidays, as well as evening classes during the week, and retreats. The organization is entirely volunteer led, and recently restructured its leadership to be more sustainable and better able to provide programming. It is one of the leanest, most organized and responsible organizations I have ever been a part of, with an exceptional attention to detail.
Kehilat Hadar was the welcoming, egalitarian community I was looking for when I moved to NY. Everyone there was welcoming and made me instantly feel like I belonged. There are always people saying hello and inviting others to Shabbat meals. Kehilat Hadar is also a place that encourages participation. They help anyone who wants to learn to lead davening or to read from the Torah. The people of Kehilat Hadar have become more than just a community of friends. They are my extended family.
A very high quality davening and friendly atmosphere. The commitment to excellent prayer services and attention to detail (sheets with page numbers, meticulous preparation leading to seamless transitions in prayer and highest quality prayer leaders), great leadership training and lay empowerment, all contribute to a positive energy throughout the organization and at their events.
Hadar fills an important need in the Jewish community. It is the only truly traditional yet completely egalitarian congregation I have found in the city. The community is primarily made up of young adults, which for those of us who fit into that category is a very important thing because it provides a valuable social circle; however, it is a welcoming and accepting environment for people of all ages. The leadership does a fantastic job making everything run smoothly, always innovating and coming up with new ideas and programming, and promoting feelings of acceptance and community. They invite suggestions and criticism, and take comments constructively and seriously. The commitment to social action and learning is extraordinary. They run everything in a warm and professional manner.
I used to live on the upper west side and thats how i started going to hadar. It got me interested in judaism again after I stopped doing it (which happened in college). I grew up orthodox and didn't like it - and Hadar introduced me to a community that was different. The hadar community didn't care about labels, about what i believed in and what I did. It was a great once a week connection to the Jewish community. And now i only attend the shavuot retreat. its a wonderful program where I get to go to a summer camp and play sports or learn and most of all pray with my community. Thank you.
Hadar is a wonderful place to pray, and to explore and stretch your Judaism. It is inspiring to be in a room with 150+ young people who are committed to egalitarian prayer. I have made some of my closest friends at Hadar.
It is my community. It is where I feel as a whole Jew in service of G-d and others. This community strives always for growth, bringing together those who are serious about their Judaism.
I spent two years living in New York City and Kehilat Hadar provided me with a strong and supportive community for prayer and Jewish life. During the summer of 2008 I learned at Yeshivat Hadar which transformed and greatly enhanced the way that I learn Jewish texts. It is largely because of Yeshivat Hadar and the faculty that I have decided to spend this year in Israel learning at the Pardes Institute. I have found that Hadar has done an amazing job of attracting the most thoughtful, knowledgeable, and influential staff, several of whom I remain in contact with, and who have helped me make a number of life decision. I believe that Hadar's goals are a necessary project for the modern American Jewish community, and I am continually awed by the pace of their growth and impact on my friends and the larger Jewish community.
Kehilat Hadar is amazing. It provides a prayer and ritual space where all persons are treated with dignity and respect, where one can explore religion and spirituality, and improve skills. It's a supportive community that not only was founded on a unique vision of what's often called "traditional egalitarianism," but is a a community that continues to be innovative, open to new ideas, and constantly re-evaluating to make the experience and the community better for its participants and the wider world.
This is a community that achieves a level of spiritual fulness that I have never found elsewhere in many travels.
Services at Hadar combine a seriousness and competency for Jewish observance. The community is warm and welcoming - all are encouraged to get involved or just meet someone new.
Hadar is a truly phenomenal organization. As I put it while filling out an evaluation form after attending the congregation's famous Shavuout retreat, it is an amazing marriage of organization acumen and spiritual passion. Being a part of Hadar has transformed my Jewish connection. We moved away from Manhattan and so are no longer involved with Hadar on a weekly basis as we once were, but we maintain a connection and were just there for Simchat Torah.
Kehilat Hadar is an excellent space for Jews who are interested in serious religious observance but in an egalitarian context. It's a rare breed. I enjoy going to services there because they are organized to be "by the book", but men and women pray together, and women often lead the service. Besides religious observance, Hadar also provides opportunities to do good and to study and socialize together. If it were closer to my house I'd go more often.
I first attended Hadar as a college student with friends, and I was immediately blown away by the spirit and the quality of the religious services. I felt at home in the commuity and was welcomed by active members. When I decided to move to the area, I specifically chose to live within close walking-distance from where services are held. I have been welcomed by many new faces, and I have been encouraged to take part not only as a participant but as a leader as well.
Hadar is a great community and is an inspiring center for spirited, egalitarian davening. Despite regularly attracting over 150 people on a weekly basis, it remains a welcoming community and one dedicated to serious, ongoing learning and commitment to religious practice and social justice.
Every time I've been to Hadar it's such a welcoming experience - whether for the class, or Shabbos services, it's truly incredible how your taken in & made to feel like your one of the team.
I have attended several lectures/study sessions taught by Hadar Rabbis and was impressed by their level of knowledge and ability to prepare interesting study materials.
I have been a participant at numerous Kehilat Hadar events over the last few years. Hadar does a fantastic job of organizing events. The programs and events are inclusive, well-managed, affordable, creative, and generally a pleasure to be a part of. Hadar operates with very little overhead. Almost all events are led by a wonderfully generous volunteer staff of people who share their time without any compensation.
I attend services at Kehilat Hadar fairly regularly and have participated in a social action work project (Habitat for Humanity) organized by Kehilat Hadar. I enjoy services because there is careful attention to correctness of liturgy and ritual at the same time as there is freedom for leaders to introduce new tunes, and all members of the community are invited to lead. I also appreciate the detailed planning that goes into potluck lunches, holiday retreats and High Holy Day Services.
Kehilat Hadar has revived my belief that it is indeed possible to create meaningful, engaged Jewish community without having to sacrifice a part of myself. Their holy attention to detail, compelling vision for prayer and drive to welcome a wide range of people is absolutely inspiring.