Temple B’nai Shalom’s mission is to provide a vibrant Jewish life for our congregation; take care of each other; and be a blessing to our community.
Temple B’nai Shalom will be a magnet for connection and support for Jewish people in southwest Michigan.
Chesed Kindness, compassion
Tikkun Olam Repair the world
Temple B’nai Shalom traces its history back to 1895, with the creation of Children of Israel Synagogue in Benton Harbor. Originally Orthodox, it later became Conservative. Ohava Sholom Synagogue, which was Orthodox, started in 1911, also in Benton Harbor.
The two congregations merged in 1959, taking the name Congregation B’nai Sholom. In 1963, it moved from what had been the Children of Israel building near downtown Benton Harbor to a new building, the current location, at the corner of Broadway and Delaware streets in Benton Township.
The third local congregation, Temple Beth-El, which was Reform, started in 1934 in Benton Harbor. But with the declining number of Jews in the Benton Harbor-St. Joseph area, it merged with B’nai Sholom in 1971 under the name (and spelling) Temple B’nai Shalom.
The congregation is affiliated with United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism. At Temple B’nai Shalom, men and women participate equally in all aspects of religious life. The kitchen is kosher.
Temple B’nai Shalom has a library for members with books on a wide variety of Jewish topics. Our gift shop offers whatever is needed for that special (Jewish) occasion or holiday – candles, games and toys, wrapping paper, books, etc. What we don’t have, we can order.
We have officers and a Board; we have committee chairs to handle the day-to-day needs of the temple community. All questions about our offerings should be directed to our office manager at (269) 925-8021.
We are partners with the Jewish Federation of the St. Joseph Valley, located in South Bend, Indiana, about 45 minutes away. We participate in many activities with them, including a Purim carnival, a fall festival, lunch ‘n learns, and more. Together we sponsor Camp Ideal, for children in the summer, and Winter Ideal, the last week of December. The Federation sponsors free concerts on the campus several Sundays in the summer as well as adventurous offerings for teens, young adults and seniors.