Frequently Asked Questions
Question: How can I become a member?
Answer: If you are interested, please contact the office at (912) 352-4737 to get an application, or click “Membership Application” under the Member Info tab above or click here.
Question: What if I can’t pay the full amount?
Answer: We don’t believe that there should be a barrier to entry. We will work with you in order to accommodate your financial situation and have you become a full member.
Question: How do you accommodate interfaith families?
Answer: Our synagogue welcomes interfaith families. We have numerous interfaith families that are very involved in our congregational activities. Non-Jewish family members can participate in almost all synagogue activities and committees, except for certain rituals. Non-Jewish family members are encouraged to participate in rites of passage such as weddings and b’nai mitzvahs, as allowed by the Conservative movement.
Question: Can one study for conversion to Judaism at Agudath Achim?
Answer: Of course! As Jews, we do not proselytize, for we maintain that the righteous of all nations has a place in God’s kingdom, but individuals who wish to undergo a conversion process are always welcome. Candidates for conversion study with our rabbi on a one-to-one basis and in organized group classes. Private Hebrew tutors are arranged for the candidates so they can gain a reading fluency in liturgical Hebrew. We are proud to count among our congregation leadership, Jews by choice – righteous converts – who have served as past presidents and members of our Chevra Kaddisha, our volunteer burial society.
Question: Are minorities welcome?
Answer: Agudath Achim welcomes all people, regardless of race, sex, gender, physical or mental capability, religion, and anything else you can think of. If you come in good faith, we will provide good faith.
Question: Can women participate in services?
Answer: Agudath Achim is an egalitarian synagogue, where everybody is encouraged to participate at their comfort level. We have many women who lead services, read Torah or Haftorah, wear kippot and tallitot, and hold/have held leadership positions.
Question: Is your synagogue Zionistic?
Answer: Yes, we pray for the state of Israel every Shabbat, maintain contact with Israel, and offer trips to Israel from time to time.
Question: What educational opportunities do you offer?
Answer: We have a supplementary school for children K-12. We also offer various adult classes in a group or on an individual basis. Classes are taught by many types of people, not just the Rabbi or a professional teacher. If you have an interest in learning about certain subjects, or even teaching, please let us know!
For a list of our current adult classes, click on the Education link above or click here.
Question: What comprises Jewish Savannah?
Answer: In Savannah we have three synagogues, each of them affiliated with the three major movements in North America. Our Synagogue, Agudath Achim, belongs to the Conservative movement. There is also a Chabad branch.
Besides Synagogue affiliation, there is an active community Jewish Federation housed in the JEA – the Jewish Education Alliance – which is the equivalent of a JCC in other communities. The JEA has health club facilities and sponsors cultural events. It also houses a Jewish pre-school day care program.
For grades K-8, there is Rambam Day School – housed at Bnai Brith Jacob, the Orthodox synagogue of Savannah. The Shalom School is a supplementary school that meets twice a week (depending on grade level), and is a joint partnership between Agudath Achim and Congregation Mickve Israel, the Reform Congregation.
Savannah has a mikveh used by all the synagogues housed at the BBJ. There is a joint Chevra Kadisha for burial rites, and a Jewish section at Bonaventure Cemetery.
At this time, there is no kosher butcher in our community. However, many kosher foods, including meat and chicken, can be obtained at the local Publix and Kroger supermarkets and Costco Warehouse.
Question: Where can one get kosher meals in Savannah?
Answer: Agudath Achim has a kosher kitchen, and we offer breakfast after minyan on Friday mornings and a Kiddush lunch after Saturday morning services. We also have 1-2 events a month that offer food.
There is a kosher caterer, Gottlieb’s, housed at the BBJ. Orders can be placed online or by phone. The BBJ also offers weekly inexpensive meals in their social hall.
Savannah also has several vegan restaurants, for those comfortable in eating in such a setting.