020 8599 0936 admin@swesrs.org.uk

WELCOME TO SWESRS

The South West Essex and Settlement Reform Synagogue is an exciting and diverse
Reform Community based in Newbury Park, Essex. 

Services

    Our services are held at Oaks Lane, Newbury Park.

    Erev Shabbat: Friday evening – all year round at 8.30 p.m. followed by Kiddush.  

    Shabbat morning service: Every Saturday at 10.30 a.m. followed by Kiddush.

    Kol Ha Mishpachot (Voice of the Family) services are usually held every 6 weeks. Please contact the Shul office to find out the date of the next Family Shabbat morning service, suitable for all ages, with light lunch to follow.

    Services are also held on festivals. For details of times, please contact the synagogue office (0208 599 0936).           

    You do not have to be a member of SWESRS to attend any of our services: visitors are always warmly welcomed and invited to share our Kiddush.

    If you have never been to a Reform synagogue, you may find some aspects of the Service different although most will be reassuringly familiar. Some of these are:

    • There is no reserved seating and no segregation of the sexes. Families sit and pray together. Women play an equal part in the services, as they do in all areas of community life.
    • Services are conducted in Hebrew (using the Sephardi pronunciation, as in Israel) and in English.
    • Our Services begin later and tend to be shorter than in traditional synagogues. The congregation is encouraged to arrive on time and the style of the Service promotes full participation while the dignified and decorous atmosphere creates a rewarding experience for all.
    • Services are led by the Rabbi, with the assistance of lay readers who are members of the community.  They generally follow the Movement for Reform Judaism Siddur and Machzor, with occasional variations.
    • A large mixed choir with organ accompaniment leads the congregation with sung parts of Shabbat, Festival and High Holyday services 

    Special services include:

    • Monthly Children’s service (first Shabbat of the month)
    • Jazz Friday evening service – ask for details
    • Neshamah @ SWESRS – a contemplative prayer service

    Festivals

    Apart from services, we celebrate all of the Festivals in a variety of ways, including Chavurah (communal meals), a communal breaking of the fast, a Chanukah celebration, a tree planting ceremony at Tu b’Shvat, an evening megillah reading at Purim, a communal second night Seder and services for Yom ha-Shoah and Tisha b’Av.

    Baby Blessing

    This ceremony, which is part of our Shabbat service, enables both parents to thank God for the safe delivery of their child and enables grandparents, relatives and friends to share this precious moment with members of our congregation.

    Lifecycle Events

    Bar/Bat Mitzvah and Bnei Torah are traditionally celebrated within the context of the Shabbat service. For adults who did not celebrate Bar/Bat Mitzvah, a programme leading to an Ish/Eshet Mitzvah celebration has been specially developed.

    Our Synagogue is becoming increasingly popular as a venue for weddings, which can be preceded by a call up to the Torah of both bride and groom on the Shabbat prior to their wedding. Please ring the Synagogue Office (0208 599 0936) for more details and available dates. We also have a large function room available for Simchas, also our Community Centre Hall and Seminar room are available for hire too.

    Other special additions to the main services are special services to welcome into the community a convert to Judaism