Why is this congregation different from all other congregations?  

Congregation Etz Chaim provides a welcoming community where members worship and educate their children about Jewish culture. A Reform Synagogue is a member of the Union for Reform Judaism (URJ). Founded in 1984, Congregation Etz Chaim welcomes all. Our mission is to provide well-rounded and diverse programs of services and activities which touch on every aspect of Jewish life and are meaningful and accessible to all. Our membership includes residents from throughout the Greater Rochester area. The Congregation has a diverse membership which includes those who have grown up practicing Orthodox, Conservative, or Reform families, cultural Jews, and Interfaith families choosing to raise their children in the Jewish Faith. Congregation Etz Chaim is affiliated with the Jewish Federations and the Perinton Lay Clergy Council.

Congregation Etz Chaim’s religious services are led by Rabbi David Abrahams, and accompanied by Cantorial Soloist, Ellen Lerner. Friday evening Shabbat services are held at 7:30 pm on the first and third Fridays of the months, September through June. Informal Shabbat services and cookouts are held throughout the summer months. B’nai Mitzvah services are held on Saturday mornings. Our calendar includes a full schedule of High Holiday and Festival services. All services are held at Mt. Rise UCC Church, 2 Mt. Rise, in Perinton (off Rt.31 east of Kreag Rd.) Additionally, the Temple holds informal Shabbat dinners and a congregational Seder on the second night of Passover. All of our religious services and events are open to the public, and guests are always welcome.

Our Religious School meets Sunday mornings at the JCC (Jewish Community Center) throughout the school year. The school enrolls children in grades kindergarten through seven. Our teachers provide a curriculum rich in Jewish history, Torah study and Hebrew instruction, culminating in the completion of the Bar and Bat Mitzvah studies.

Congregation Etz Chaim provides a warm, welcoming environment in all of our activities. Rabbi Abrahams takes great care to include children and non-Jewish spouses in religious events, while insuring a thorough and spiritually satisfying Jewish worship with “onegs” always following services.

Membership dues are modest. There are separate dues levels for students, single adults, snowbirds and families. Dues relief is available to those in need.

There is no need for tickets for our High Holiday services. All are welcome.

Congregation Etzc Chaim maintains an office at Mt. Rise Church with a part-time administrator. The congregation office can be reached by email at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or by phone (585) 223-5344. If you would like to learn more about Congregation Etz Chaim, we would be happy to add you to our email list to receive newsletters and updates from the congregation.

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