Frequently Asked Questions
What is a Havurah?
Havurah (plural is “Havurot”) comes from the Hebrew word, HAVER, meaning friend, or fellowship. Each Havurah is a small group of CBB members that gathers together to socialize, celebrate Jewish holidays, learn more about Jewish topics, or take on any other focus that the group chooses. They may study together, worship together, celebrate together, and eat together. For many, the Havurah is an extended family.
What’s the advantage of being a part of a Havurah?
Congregation B’nai B’rith is a large and vibrant community of more than 800 households. It can be overwhelming for individuals to get to know our community intimately. Belonging to a Havurah encourages members to become acquainted with others who have similar interests, to explore a connection to Judaism in a group, and to develop a community for sharing in life cycle events.
What does a Havurah do?
Each Havurah creates their own set of experiences – and decisions are often made as a group. The most successful Havurot start each year with a planning meeting to set up dates and event ideas for the entire year. Activities can include Holy Day observances, Jewish educational programs, Temple activities, and also social outings, community service, and whatever else your group can think of to do together. Volunteering as a group is another great way to establish closeness and achieve Jewish values.
What if the dynamics of the group change or we are not getting along?
Imagine that, ten Jews and eleven opinions! Although this rarely happens, it does. The best thing to do is stick with it and work it out, just as a family would. Reviewing the group’s goals and expectations on a regular basis to make sure everyone’s needs are being met should help prevent this. Being effective communicators, practicing cooperation, tolerance and flexibility, and conflict resolution all lead to a more cohesive group in the long run. If there are still issues that cannot be resolved, the Havurah Coordinators can assist you with your options.
Want to Join a Havurah?
Please Contact CBB’s Havurah Coordinators
Elaine Rudin at firstname.lastname@example.org, or
Beth Katz at email@example.com; or
Exec. Director Elizabeth Gaynes
at (805) 964-7869, ext. 111 or firstname.lastname@example.org