In the early 1960s, Congregation B’nai Jeshurun was searching for a location where they could build a beautiful temple that would accommodate its growing membership and inspire a love for Judaism and Jewish traditions in their children and future generations. More than four decades later, their dream continues to be fulfilled at B’nai Jeshurun.
Nestled on verdant grounds, in Short Hills, New Jersey, B’nai Jeshurun’s magnificent sanctuary is the spiritual home of more than 1100 members (or families). Its glass entrance invites worshippers into a spacious and elegant sanctuary. The focal point is, of course, the ark. A magnificent stained glass window, located behind the ark, soars 80 feet high and draws attention to the spiritual heart of the sanctuary. Ten stained glass window panels, each with an abstract letter of the Ten Commandments, frame the sanctuary and a 12-foot high sky-light stretches across its ceiling. The exquisite ark doors, the eternal light and the menorah are from the congregation’s original temple in Newark.
The sanctuary seats 1,000 worshippers on the main level and balcony. The smaller, Newman Chapel is to the left of the sanctuary and the Ellis Auditorium is on its right. During the High Holy Days the combined space seats 2,700 people.
Downstairs the Religious School’s 17 classrooms surround the octagonal Youth Lounge where students gather for Youth Group activities, special programming, parties, and High Holy Day services.
The sanctuary’s grounds extend for 22 acres and feature
- a circular landscaped courtyard with outdoor seating that faces a gracious fountain
- the Ruth Pilchik Biblical Garden with memorial rocks inscribed with the names of the 12 tribes of Israel
- the beautifully serene Milton Perlmutter Memorial Outdoor Chapel
as well a large parking area set off by landscaping.