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Congregational Bene Shalom Hebrew Association of the Deaf Mission Statement / June 2022

Congregation Bene Shalom - Mission Statement

Providing an inspirational place for community worship and study


  • To worship G-d in the spirit of freedom with the understanding that we encompass a wide range of backgrounds and ideas about the nature of G-d

  • To cultivate love of Jewish traditions, understanding of our history and to have fun celebrating being Jewish together

  • To stimulate fellowship among the Jewish deaf and hearing people in all communities and to strengthen the bonds of loyalty with Jewish people in the United States, Israel and throughout the world

  • To promote and encourage brotherhood and sisterhood in society at large through our shared value that Judaism provides a way for us to be supportive to each other, Jew and non-Jew alike 


  • An inclusive Reform synagogue welcoming Jew and non-Jew, deaf and hearing, individuals and families, various sexual orientations making it universally accessible

  • Celebrate Shabbat and religious holidays – Rosh Hashanah, Yom Kippur, Sukkot, Simchat Torah, Hanukkah, Tu B’shevat, Purim, Passover, Shavuot

  • Be authentic in all of life’s events – Baby naming, Bar/Bat Mitzvah, Weddings, Anniversaries, Funerals

  • Foster Healing Prayer Group 

  • Empower through Kabbalah meditation

  • Welcome, acknowledge and support Special Needs

  • Create an environment encouraging the interest of youth so as to ignite the opportunity for individual and societal growth

Be yourself.  We like it that way.  Everyone is welcome.  Difference is valued.

Everyone is welcome in ASL with multi racial hands

Attributes & Credentials


  • Hybrid options for in-person or virtual participation 

  • Weekly Shabbat Services

  • Monthly Havdalah Services

  • Monthly Kabbalistic Meditation

  • Monthly Healing Prayer Group

  • Recordings available on YouTube

  • Full selection of prayers and songs available on our website

Leadership and Staff

  • Full ownership of our building at:                                4435 W. Oakton Street, Skokie, IL

  • Rabbi and Cantorial Soloist Charlene Brooks  

  • ASL interpreted services and choir

  • Executive Director – Barbara Weiner

  • Facilities & Maintenance – Armando Rivera

  • Chicago Police Officers – Joel Bemis and Dino Amato 

Congregation Bene Shalom’s Model

Board of Directors 

President Laura Schwartz

Executive VP Ken Clinkman

VP Finance Ken Clinkman

VP Finance Mark Schwartz

VP Building Administration Bill Donets 

VP Membership Marla Anderson 

VP Public Relations Ina Winston

Recording Secretary David Freireich

Financial Secretary/Treasurer - Vacant

    At-Large Member Gary Slutkin

    At-Large Member Chris Malwitz


Friends Group –

Formed by an initial group of families committed to supporting an inclusive congregation. This devotion continues through the generosity of an annual endowment.

Haverah Groups –

Members with like interests gather for social events

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