“If you build it, they will (presumably) come.” So sums up the impetus for Lincoln Square Synagogue to pour an ungodly [sic] sum of money into their new building (“Lincoln Square’s $50 Million Gamble May Be Paying Off”, Jan. 3).
While the congregation’s ultimate success in attracting new members remains to be seen, the article unfortunately omitted mentioning the oldest congregation in America when describing the Upper West Side’s “in-vogue shuls”: Congregation Shearith Israel, the Spanish-Portuguese Synagogue.
Shearith Israel recently hired two dynamic rabbis, Richard Hidary (from the Sephardic Synagogue in Brooklyn) and Meir Soloveichik (from Kehilath Jeshurun on the Upper East Side). Both rabbis have been dazzling the congregation with their learned erudition, and the synagogue has swelled with all of the people coming to take part in the new offerings, including a full complement of adult and teen educational options.
While Shearith Israel continues to occupy its 100-plus-year-old landmarked building with an interior designed by Louis Tiffany, we fortunately do not need to rebuild our main structure. Our new rabbis and programming have attracted a steady stream of new members, and the congregation continues to move from strength to strength as we enter our 360th year of existence.
Co-Segan of Shearith Israel