Friday, October 21, 2022

Dorshei Derekh Overview 2022

Deborah Schwartzman's
Minyan Dorshei Derekh (“Path Seekers”) launched in 1986 as one of the three davening (prayer) groups meeting on Shabbat morning at Germantown Jewish Centre (GJC).

We are based in the Maslow Auditorium on the second floor of the school building. Shabbat services begin at 10:00 am and conclude around 12:30 pm followed by a kiddush/schmooze.

Dorshei Derekh is an affiliate of Reconstructing Judaism - we count faculty, students, and alumni among our membership. (As part of GJC, we are also an affiliate of the United Synagogue for Conservative Judaism.)

Ñ Core Dorshei Derekh ValuesÐ

·         Lay leadership

·         Vibrant participatory services

·         Critical and creative engagement with Torah and liturgy

·         Theological diversity

·         Mutual aid/caring for one another

·         Feminist innovation

·         LGBTQ inclusion

·         Anti-racist learning and practice

·         Intergenerational community

·         Inclusion of those who have been historically marginalized in Jewish communities

Ñ Davening Ð

·  We use Kol Haneshamah, Reconstructing Judaism’s prayerbook; many members of our minyanhelped to create it.

·   The first half of our service is enhanced by lively singing and/or chanting, occasionally accompanied by rhythm instruments.

·     We read Torah on a Triennial Torah cycle, divided into 3 aliyot.

·   Members volunteer to prepare and give each week’s Dvar Torah. These are text-based, creative, and intellectually stimulating presentations, encouraging lively response. Zoom participants participate in their own breakout groups following the Davar Torah.

Ñ LeadershipÐ

We rely on our members’ educational, liturgical, and organizational contributions to keep our minyan running.

Our leadership consists of the Chair, the past Chair, and the Incoming Chair. Individuals organize the many functions that are required to keep our minyan going. They are listed at

Ñ Service Times Ð

We meet on Saturday mornings and on Rosh Hashanah, Kol Nidre, Yom Kippur, Sukkot (1st day), Erev Simchat Torah, Shemini Atzeret/Simchat Torah, Purim Eve, Pesach (1st and 7th day).

We have joint davening with the other GJC minyanim for:

·         Kabbalat Shabbat
(Friday evening services)

·         Erev Rosh Hashanah

·         Charry Scholar-in-Residence Weekend

·         Occasional celebrations of Bar and Bat Mitzvahs and special events

Ñ Membership Ð

For minyan membership information contact Heather Shafter at

For GJC membership information, contact Nina Peskin, GJC Executive Director, at

215-844-1507 Ext. 12 or

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