Conversion

At Sha’ar Zahav, we celebrate you for who you are. Since our founding in 1977, our members have always included non-Jews with or without Jewish partners.

We understand that not everyone is interested in choosing Judaism as their spiritual path. We respect that choice. If you are, however, interested in becoming part of the Jewish people, we welcome you to explore our Journey to Judaism program.

Our community has been immensely enriched by the dozens of people who have made the decision to join the Jewish people and our community. Members who have chosen to convert to Judaism serve on our board, have been elected president and co-lead our religious services.

What are the steps on the Sha’ar Zahav Journey to Judaism?

  1. Attend our Shabbat services, celebrations and educational programs. Is Judaism—and our community—right for you?
  2. Meet with our rabbi, Ted Riter. The rabbi will help guide your questions and reflections about Judaism.
  3. Participate in an Introduction to Judaism class, attend services regularly, learn basic biblical Hebrew and study with a volunteer mentor.
  4. Completing the Journey to Judaism through conversion or affirmation requires a one year process for most people. The Reform movement, of which Sha’ar Zahav is a part, outlines the formal process.  The final steps include a Bet Din (court of clergy) and immersion in the community mikveh (ritual bath).

We recognize that not everyone who goes  through our Journey to Judaism will decide to convert. We respect your decision and will continue to welcome you and celebrate you no matter where you are on your journey.

For more information about the Journey to Judaism program or to make an appointment with Rabbi Riter at rabbi@shaarzahav.org