Congregation Shomrei Torah is the home of progressive Reform Judaism in Sonoma County. Blending the traditional with the innovative, we are a diverse, inclusive and socially conscious community that provides a doorway to Jewish life through worship, study, social action, fellowship, and play.

Our congregation is a welcoming community for households of every variety. Our clergy are available to marry interfaith and same-sex couples, and our facilities are available to host weddings and other life-cycle celebrations. Click HERE to read about interfaith families at Shomrei Torah.

All Friday evening Shabbat services begin at 6:15 PM in the Sanctuary. Saturday morning services begin at 10:30 AM. The second Friday of every month is a Rabbi’s Tisch, an alternative Shabbat experience consisting of a catered dinner followed by a lively discussion led by our clergy and guest speakers.

NO Friday Shabbat Service at CST – Community Wide Solidarity Service at Glaser Center

Friday, March 22, 6:00pm
The Glaser Center, 547 Mendocino Ave, Santa Rosa

Please bring desserts to share

We will not hold Shabbat Services at Congregation Shomrei Torah this Friday so that our community can pray with our feet and attend the Islamic Society of Santa Rosa service.

Congregation Shomrei Torah stands in solidarity with our Muslim brothers and sisters here and around the globe to denounce hate and violence in all forms. The Islamic Society of Santa Rosa, in coordination with Congregation Shomrei Torah and a long list of our fellow Sonoma County churches and synagogues, is hosting a community-wide service this Friday at 6pm. We encourage our members to attend and show support for our Muslim family.

Our Voices are stronger together,

Rabbis George and Stephanie

The Board of Directors

A Blog by Rabbi George

March 7, 2019

Freedom is an Inside Job 

With Passover around the corner, my mind naturally turns towards its many themes. This year I am especially interested in how we can relate Passover to our inner lives.

The story of the Exodus from Egypt that we retell at Pesach is rich with metaphor. Many years ago, my colleague and close friend Rabbi Margaret Holub in Mendocino wrote about how her own personal Egypt… (READ MORE)


Saturday, April 20, 6:15 PM

Passover at Shomrei Torah is more than the retelling of the ancient story of the Exodus; it honors our ongoing struggle for freedom, justice and equality. There is a place at the table waiting for you.

Our annual Seder on the second night of Passover welcomes both members and non-members.

Seating in the sanctuary is limited; please reserve your seat early to ensure your place at our Seder table.

The cost is as follows:
$36.00 member adult (13 and up)
$46.00 non-member adult (13 and up)
$18.00 member child (ages 5-12)
$23.00 non-member child (ages 5-12)
Free for children under age 5.

Reservations are required as well as meal preference of chicken or vegan.  Contact the temple off at (707)578-5519 or CLICK HERE to reserve online.

If you are interested in volunteering to help with Passover, please CLICK HERE to sign up!

Reserve Today for the Congregational Retreat!

April 26-28, 2019 | Point Bonita YMCA, Sausalito

Reserve your spot with a non-refundable $100 deposit by contacting 707-578-5519 or denise@cstsr.org.

Please join your congregational family for a community healing retreat. Activities and “chill-tivities” for every type of CST family, big or small, fun for all! Bring your spouse, your kids, your grandparents, or just bring yourself!

Enjoy the beautiful surroundings in the Marin Headlands, completely accessible, close to the beach and ocean air, a break from your allergies. Fun includes hiking, art, study, campfire, lighthouse tour, yoga, or sitting with your book surrounded by nature

Price includes the whole weekend – boarding, meals, and activities!

  • Adults 18+: $200
  • Kids 4-17: $125
  • Kids 0-3: FREE
  • Family cap of $500. Scholarships available upon request. Final payment due by March 15.

What’s COOKING at CST? Mandelbrot Baking with Jo Anne Bressick

Sunday, March 24, 1:00-2:30PM

Is it Jewish biscotti? No, it is delicious mandelbrot taught by baker supreme Jo Anne Bressick, a newish CST member, who loves to bake and especially loves to make Jewish dishes.

No experience necessary. You will eat and bake and have your own scrumptious mandelbrot to take home. Materials are provided.  Jo Anne has made mandelbrot over a hundred times in the last 10 years. Her father-in-law loved them and she sent a double batch every few weeks to his delight.  They are the perfect cookie to dunk in coffee or tea while schmoozing with friends.

BAGEL MAKING CLASS with Cy Wilcox (Class Full – Waitlist Available)
Sunday, April 14 from 12:00-3:00PM

Learn to bake chewy and delicious New York style water bagels. No more having them shipped from NY–make them yourself! Participants will learn to mix bagel dough, shape, boil, dress them up with your favorite toppings and bake. Class will be approximately 3 hours and will conclude with a bagel and a schmear.

Want to Teach a Class?

CST would love to offer classes for matzoh ball soup, brisket, gefilte fish, knishes or your bubbe’s favorite. Volunteer to teach these or other classes. Please contact Susan Bailyn at susan@bailyngraphics.com.


If You Are Worried About Climate Change and the Future of Our Planet, Don’t Miss This
Thursday, March 28 at 6:00 PM
Free Dinner Included!
Please RSVP to the office by Monday March 25 so we can plan accordingly.

Many people in the Shomrei Torah community are disappointed and fearful of what is occurring in the United States and around the world regarding the looming disaster of climate change. The Social Action Committee knows we can address some of these issues utilizing the skills, time and talent of our congregation. This is a big job that can only be accomplished by a supportive community.Please join us for an engaging evening of connection, information and action as to how SAC and the CST community can address these challenges.  Working with some of our community partners you will learn what you can do right now to bring positive change to our environment. And this is a great opportunity to make new friends with fellow congregants.

The Folk Experience

Jewish American Songwriters of the 60’s Folk Era

Sunday, March 31, 4:00 PM – 6:00 PM
Free, bring a friend. Please RSVP to the office.

With Cindy Paley, Mike Sirota and Ed Labowitz. Enjoy noshes, beverages, and schmoozing. The Folk Experience brings classic 60’s harmonies in a show featuring Jewish American songwriters of the 60’s folk era. 

Their concert is part nostalgia, part entertainment and part sheer joy as everyone in the audience sings along with the help of lyric booklets.  It’s a hand clapping, foot stomping happening!

A Season of Mussar with Sharon Schwartz

Seven Wednesdays: April 3, 17, May 1, 15, 29, June 5, 12
10:00 AM – 11:30 AM
$136 for the series, please RSVP to the office (scholarships available)

Mussar is a Jewish spiritual practice that gives concrete instructions on how to live a meaningful and ethical life. Based on the idea that by cultivating inner virtues, we improve ourselves, Mussar allow formore meaning and balance through study, practice and contemplation.

Sharon, a trained Mussar facilitator, will offer a beginner course called Season of Mussar I, a curriculum created by Alan Morinis, the founder of The Mussar Institute. For more information visit mussarinstitute.org/courses/season-of-mussar.

Aging and Beyond

Wednesdays, April 3 and May 1, 10:00-11:45 AM

Free, please RSVP to the office.

Many who attended the recent series Death: A Spiritual & Practical Exploration were eager to talk further about this.

Fran Danoff invites seniors who are interested to continue the discussion at our first meeting on April 3.

On May 1, we will discuss a short paperback by R. Rifat Sonsino (UAHC 1990) titled “What Happens After I Die? Jewish Views of Life After Death.”.  In future months we can explore concerns about aging.

You need not to have come to the previous lectures to participate. Contact Fran at frandanoff@aol.com with questions.

Bagel Club

Sunday, April 7, 9:00 AM

$7-$10 donation requested.

Please RSVP to cstbagelmen@gmail.com or (707) 829-1388

Our April topic will be announced in the upcoming Chai-Lites, we look forward to seeing you. We are gathering ideas for new and exciting programs for the rest of this year and next.  If you have a topic idea or want to help out with the 22nd year of the Shomrei Torah Bagel Club, please email us.

Diversity and Inclusivity Summit

“Creating a Culture of Inclusion” Led by Dr. David Neufeld

Monday, April 8, 6:30-8:30 PM

Free, bring a friend!

In this experiential, interactive session, Dr. David of Jewish Learning Works will guide you through games and activities designed to create and lift up personal connections to difference and diversity of all kinds.


The Jew Store by Stella Suberman

Thursday, April 11


The Jewish Literary Circle, one of the Life Long Learning programs, meets monthly, to read Jewish literature and other published material in an atmosphere of stimulating discussion. Our upcoming discussions will be:

May 16 @ 6:15PM – Gimpel the Fool and other Stories   by Isaac Bashevis Singer 

FREE, all are welcome. Please RSVP to the office.

For more information, please contact Marian McKenna: chabansky@yahoo.com.

April Rabbi’s Tisch with Dr. Elaine Leeder

“American Jewish Radicals: The Lesser-Known Stories”

Friday, April 12, 6:15 PM

$18 suggested donation for the catered dinner, please RSVP to the office.

At a time when America has major political and social problems, it becomes necessary to look at previous times in history to learn methods of coping. American Jewish radicals have long been at the forefront of major social change efforts. Dr. Elaine Leeder will speak on her research on American Jewish radicals, beginning with early Jewish radicals in the labor movement and other social justice efforts. She will also discuss more recent Jewish activists and their influence on American politics and social change.

Leeder has a PhD from Cornell University and was able to interview many activists in the New York area. She has written four books that have been used at universities around the country. Additionally, she has traveled around the world three times on Semester at Sea, studying family life in Africa, Asia, and Latin America. Leeder is involved in restorative justice activity in California, having run groups for people serving life sentences at San Quentin. Now she facilitates Victim/Offender Dialogues statewide.

Habitat for Humanity Playhouse Build

Saturday, April 13, 11:30 AM -4:00 PM

Free lunch provided, please RSVP to the office.

Please join your Shomrei Torah congregation and the entire Santa Rosa community as we build a playhouse for Habitat for Humanity!  Building and painting will take place here at CST and the finished playhouse will be delivered to a Habitat for Humanity home.  All ages are welcome, lunch will be served following Shabbat morning service. Invite your family and friends to this wonderful community event!

Gun Violence Prevention Community Forum with Congressman Mike Thompson

Thursday April 25, 7:00 – 8:30 PM

Free and open to the public. Please RSVP to the office. Limited parking, carpooling encouraged.

Join Congressman Mike Thompson and Shomrei Torah’s Social Action Committee for a forum on gun violence prevention and pending legislation.  We will have a panel of speakers, offering varied perspectives from individuals and professionals who have been impacted by gun violence.  

Our panel will include:

o Ruth Moore, Middle School Teacher

  • Joshua Weil, MD, Asst. Physician-in-Chief Hospital Operations,
  • Dept. of Emergency Medicine, Kaiser Hospital
  • Kathleen Pozzi, Sonoma County Public Defender
  • Jeannine Ruggeiro, Las Vegas Shooting Survivor

There will be time for questions and discussion, as well as action steps we can collectively take as a community. 

Watch Services Online

Congregation Shomrei Torah now streams all of our services!  Click here to see a past service or event.

Click the PLAY button on the screen below to view a current event or to see an video archive of our previous events..

Activities and Events at Shomrei Torah

Click HERE to read the Spring/Summer 2019 Program Guide.

Click HERE to read The VIEW: A Guide to Programs, Holidays & Special Events.


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