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Temple Sinai, Oakland

#7 of 7 in Historic Sites in Oakland
Religious Site · Hidden Gem · Tourist Spot
Temple Sinai (officially the First Hebrew Congregation of Oakland) is a Reform synagogue located at 2808 Summit Street (28th and Webster Streets) in Oakland, California, United States. Founded in 1875, it is the oldest Jewish congregation in the East San Francisco Bay region.
Its early members included Gertrude Stein and Judah Leon Magnes, who studied at Temple Sinai's Sabbath school, and Ray Frank, who taught them. Originally traditional, the temple reformed its beliefs and practices under the leadership of Rabbi Marcus Friedlander (1893–1915). By 1914, it had become a Classical Reform congregation. That year the current sanctuary was built: a Beaux-Arts structure designed by G. Albert Lansburgh, which is the oldest synagogue building in Oakland.
The congregation weathered four major financial crises by 1934. From then until 2011, it was led by just three rabbis, William Stern (1934–1965), Samuel Broude (1966–1989), and Steven Chester (1989–2011).
In 2006 Temple Sinai embarked on a $15 million capital campaign to construct an entirely new synagogue campus adjacent to its current sanctuary. Groundbreaking took place in October 2007, and by late 2009 the congregation had raised almost $12 million towards the construction. As of 2015, Temple Sinai had nearly 1,000 member families. The rabbis were Jacqueline Mates-Muchin and Yoni Regev, and the cantor was Ilene Keys. The synagogue has two emeritus rabbis, Samuel Broude (1924-2020) and Steven Chester.

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TripAdvisor traveler rating 4.5
13 reviews
  • Always see children playing and familes rushing to service. Does not matter denomination even kind to homeless folks on the steps.  more »
  • Temple Sinai is Temple, a congregation, a preschool and houses a Midrasha. They also manage part of the nearby cemetery. The buildings are of three age groups. The temple itself is early 1900's...  more »
  • Wonderful place, everyone is approachable. I like the good vibes and most importantly feeling at peace after visiting. I recommend👌🌞
  • Remarkable and very interesting place to be, espesialy with someone to quide you.

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