Prayer Leaders Serve New Jewish Communities

We are training a new generation of lay Jewish prayer leaders. The talented graduates of our first class are already bringing prayer, music, a sense of Shabbat and holiday celebrations to Poland's newly forming Jewish communities.

The second class of prayer leaders began January 2012. The third class of prayer leaders completed their course in November 2014.

The prayer leaders' training is a two-year program with nine study weekends each year at Beit Warszawa.

A special grant from the Dutch Jewish Humanitarian Fund has made a new round of learning opportunities available to all our lay cantors. Our lay cantors are able to focus on music that accompanies "life cycle" events, the Passover Seder melodies, Hallel, and some key High Holiday music. 

The second year of the program includes visiting synagogues in Berlin. Of that trip to Berlin, prayer leader Anna Jagielska-Riveiro (pictured in the slide show at right) wrote: "That trip was really exceptional to me. Never before did I have the opportunity to take part in services in so different synagogues and hear so many traditions of leading the prayer, which is important to me in the perspective of my future prayer leading and cantor studies."

"That stay," she continued, "enriched my knowledge of Judaism thanks to meeting different traditions in the synagogues as well as thanks to the lectures. I am especially grateful for having given me the opportunity of experiencing so beautiful High Holidays, which will always stay in my memory."